Hull Assembly

Glassing the Bilge, Pt.1

Having a good place to spread out and get fiberglass off the roll has always been troublesome. I have seen a recommendation to set up a bar for the roll to hang on for spooling off the glass sheeting (Doug Braun maybe?). I rigged one of these up and after cutting fiberglass for half the bilge I can say that it’s been a huge help.

I need a stool to get to it but it’s very nice having such a large section hanging at a time.

Last of the Floor Cleats

I still haven’t installed the floor cleats on bulkheads #2 and #8. I meant to do this before laying fillets but I forgot. I don’t think it really matters but the fillet made it difficult to get the cleat fitted to the joint nicely. Mine wound up with a large gap between the cleat and the hull bottom, so I had to use extra thickened epoxy to fill the space. No harm, just a waste of epoxy and filler.

Laying Glass

I really like the way I’ve seen other builders use masking tape to create a clean edge when laying fiberglass. Brent from Idaho’s blog comes to mind. The idea is to run masking tape where you would like your fiberglass edge to be. The fiberglass cloth is cut to extend just beyond the tape. You wet out the glass, rolling epoxy up to and onto the tape but not beyond. Once the epoxy has tacked up enough, you can use a razor to trim the fiberglass at the masking tape. You then simply pull up the masking tape, taking the freed portion of fiberglass with it, leaving a clean glass edge with no messy strands and such to deal with. This process obviously adds some time, but it’s not much, and reducing the messiness of laying fiberglass is worth it to me.

At this point, I’ve laid down glass to cover roughly half the bilge. Per the manual I’ve alternated sections between the floors and extended the coverage a little bit to ultimately have a good bit of overlapping glass for more strength. See how the glass pieces extend beyond the line of their respective sections between floors.

Keep in mind, before the cloth went down, everything was sanded smooth and well vacuumed.

I will roll three coats of epoxy on all this glass and then sand before laying down the other sections. Glass for the remaining sections will be cut similarly, extending fore and aft, overlapping the extensions of the previous sections. The manual recommends this for extra strength.

As I mentioned, it wasn’t a lot of extra time to do all this taping. Each section took me roughly 30 minutes to tape, cut and lay the glass cloth.


I will wait until I have a full day to spend rolling epoxy since I will be applying multiple coats before each coat fully cures.

After all the bilge has been glassed and sanded I can start cutting the sole boards.

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