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For those that have read Project Delayed, you will understand why BareBones has been delayed as I became a full time researcher and activist to save the environment around Hervey Bay from the aircraft hoons that have been given the place. Another delay has been weather. If I had been able to take the time, conditions have been bad so opportunities have been few.

With Kay taking over the bulk of the work on the paper, I have been able to squeeze in some work between periods of 100% humidity. The epoxy has a maximum tolerance of 75%.

As we are moving house, I hadn't wanted to join the hulls. Moving is hard enough without that additional complication. But I did want to repair the bogg in the first hull that was riddled with holes caused by the unexpected outgassing of the Duflex panels.

The lesson learnt in all that was that those panels shouldn't have resin applied to the surface unless the temperature of the panels is falling, thus sucking resin through the porous factory coating of fibre glass due to the contraction of gasses in the core and atmospheric pressure. The 'longer' the thermometer the better. The ideal would be to heat the shed along with the hottest part of the day, then throw the doors open and turn off the heater just when the ambient starts to fall and mix your bogg and go. That way the bogg goes on dense and fills the pours in the skin you may otherwise think is already sealed... but isn’t. 

 In the repair of the bogg I learnt another lesson about epoxy… (learning a lot of lessons!) never trust materials if you haven't used them... recently. To explain, to insure the best sealing possible after grinding off the bad old stuff, I mixed a batch of resin to apply with a roller to seal the entire surface, then applied bogg over the areas that had been ground off, wet on wet.

 Unexpectedly, the temperature that night set record low temps. The next morning the bogg was firm-ish but the painted on layer was still gel. I attributed the difference in hardness to the exothermic heat (warmth generated by the reaction of the materials) that would have been developed by the bogg layer due to it's thickness and the fact the painted on layer had less thickness to generate it. So I wiped down the bogg to remove the 'amine blush' and since the other layer was still ‘wet’ I thought I would take advantage of the opportunity to put another layer of resin over it all.

Troubles… it wasn't going off! What happened? In spite of the day time temperatures the first layer remained gel and was not effectively 'tying' the substrate to the subsequent layer. A day or two to set in these conditions seemed plausible but after several days it was becoming obvious it was more than that. I did a test with the resin used. Mixed one pot with the hardener (“medium”) I had used on the first roll on layer (I had used a different resin/hardener on the bogg), then another with a different bottle of hardener, then another using the hardener for the other type of resin(in case I mixed them up). The latter two were hard by that evening but not the first pot, it was still loose gel. Two days later the first pot was better but still rubbery. Mystery solved, bad hardener. Putting my test panel in the sun for a couple days really helped harden the rubbery stuff so… I knocked up a frame for the hull and Kay and I rolled it out the shed, through the big tent, and out into the yard to get what winter sun we could through the forest that is the yard. It's going slow but progressing and that is where we are for now.

If it doesn't set to satisfaction then I get out the heat gun and go to work, scaping off every inch of the hull and washing it down with acetone. Sure glad Kay is running the paper… I need the time!

Again, lesson learnt? If in doubt, test. If not in doubt, you should be, test anyway. The hardener was 17 months old, kept covered in the original container and had been properly stored indoors. I can't wait to get to the vinylester part of the project!

I am looking at plywood for bulkheads, having picked up some good tips by looking at a few other boats and talking with Leon of the $21K cat . Still undecided about decks but possibly for them and other parts, the Polycore panels that Ian is using for his motor sailor being built in Maryborough seem interesting. See TCP # 36

 *Edit as of Sept 09.. The sun did eventually harden the resin but not without damaging the resin with UV... turning the surfaces yellowish and brittle hard. A better technique would have been to drape some of the black builders plastic that I have over the hull, increasing the heat whilst protecting from the uv. I am currently sanding back this work to rid the hull of the damaged surface and prepare for a smooth, finish coat of bogg that will fair well. So far in the sanding, no pits from outgassing. I was concerned that the long length of time involved in setting may have allowed that problem to reappear but nothing so far but another reason I prefer to apply another coat over the suspect one and all coatings of anything that may possibly be subject to outgassing must be done at the correct time... evening.