Monday, October 6, 2014

Seaford 10/5/2014)

Although the weather was decent for sailing this weekend, I decided to put in another port (window) into the boat.  All my ports were leaking and in very bad shape.  It was so bad that a previous owner had lined the outside of the with duck tape and on top of that even blue painter's tape.  Try getting that stuff off after it has been on a hull for a couple of years.  To add insult to injury they had put some dark colored plexiglass on top of the entire window frame and fastened them with some kind of silicone.  Finally, the boat has one missing port, where the previous owner had just put a garbage bag over the hole (which I replaced with a sheet of plywood).  The boat was a mess.  Over the past few years I have been slowly replace the ports (probably to slowly for the admiral, but I want to sail the boat as well and enjoy it).  So I know it is time to do the windows, being a member of a yacht club, being the first boat on the dock (and thus the first boat everybody sees), and considering I have had the boat for four years now.

2010 picture, just after I took possession of the boat (note the plywood cover over the window opening) I just arrived for the first time at my new skip.

Knowing I had one missing window, I jumped at an offer on the Catalina-Capri 25s International Organization for the purchase of a complete set of secondhand ports.  I got the for a decent deal, and they have been sitting at my home for the past year.  So I knew it was time to start with the replacements.  I bought a new port resealing kit from Catalina Direct and read all that I could on the message boards of the Catalina Association.  From all that I read, it seemed that it was almost better for me to try to get butyl tape and set the windows in that, instead of putting them in the silicone that came in the kit from Catalina Direct.  Butyl tape is relatively inexpensive, and I took the plunge, although I knew nothing about that stuff.

Out came the first port, it was located above the head (toilet) The port that was in there had a sliding window, and I painstakingly tried to restore it.  I also had the restore the opening.  The wall of the cabin at this location is a sandwich of a balsa plywood core between two layers of fiberglass.  Over the years and because of all the moisture, the core had deteriorated, and after letting it dry for a few weeks, I injected penetrating epoxy into the core and then, at a later time used the West System Epoxy Adhesive that you can put unto a caulk gun to inject epoxy into the core.  I clamped the opening with small C-clamps of get an even thickness in the opening.  After building the opening up and sanding it the opening was finally ready to receive the refurbished port.  Well, disaster struck, The sliding glass port leaked like a sieve.  Taking it out was easy with the butyl tape keeping the port in place, I cannot imagine how I would have accomplished that with fresh silicone.  Finally, I got the new port in using using fixed glass, and it does not leak.

We yesterday we did the fourth port (of the six total), and here are a few pictures of the work.  I am happy to say that we are done with one side of the boat now.

This weekend's opening, ready to do a final sanding and then the fitting of the port.
The fourth port is in!

The three ports on the port side of the boat are in, you can still see the mess that years of adhesive tape have left.I'll eventually will have to sand and paint the entire deck part of the boat.  E few weeks ago I put a non-skid coat on the botton of the cockpit so I have started that as well.

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