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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Painting and Prepping

Pictures are still in the camera, but I'll describe yesterday's and today's progress.

The cure finally completed on the filler, so I drilled the 8 bolt holes for each actuator. The battery in my had drill only lasted for two holes, so I broke out the Milwaukee right angle drill. I was probably going to need it anyway since a couple of the holes are partly obstructed by the bulkhead support. Even with the bigger drill it still took almost an hour per side to drill the holes. There was lots of stopping to clear the bit, then restarting.

With the holes drilled, it was time to separate the mounting plates from the filler. After seeing how sticky the filler was, and seeing where some of it found it's way up the side of the plate, I must say I was worried how easily the plates would separate from the filler. Per ABT's directions, you just crank down on the jack bolts which lifts the plate. Much to my relief, it worked exactly as described and the plates came right off. The jacking bolts and filler are a really good approach to precision mounting and alignment of the actuators. I can't even imagine trying to build up the hull and glass in a wood block per other designs, and have any expectation of correct alignment when you are done. Obviously people manage to do it, but the ABT approach strikes me a simple, yet highly effective solution.

With the plates removed, my glass guy performed his final magic and cleaned up the edges and other imperfections in preparation for painting.

With everything cleaned up, "painting" began. As a first step, I put a coat of Inter-protect over the new glass. It acts as a primer and also helps show any additional touch up work that might be required. This first coat didn't reveal any imperfections inconsistent with and engine room, so today I moved on to Awlgrip. Actually, the interior of the hull is finished with Awlcraft, not Awlgrip, but it's still a nasty two part mixed paint. I was smelling the Inter-protect and Awlcraft through my respirator, so I bought a new one today. Problem solved, but it's still nasty, nasty stuff.
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After three coats of Awlcraft, the engine room is starting to look like it's old self again. I also spent a bunch of time vacuuming, followed by removing the plastic bagging around the engines, bulkhead, cabling, etc.
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Tomorrow is a big day. A friend is coming to help do the final install of the actuators! It's a huge milestone and represents the conclusion of the messy work.

Changing topics a little bit, a while back I installed the hydraulic pump and transmission PTO kit, and in doing so found the tranmissions main oil line no longer fit because on interference with the new pump. It turns out the solution was very simple. The other end of the oil hose had a 45 deg end, so by simply turning the line around and rerouting it slightly, I was able to reconnect the existing hose. It took a while for it to dawn on me, but I finally figured it out.

Stay tuned for tomorrow....

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