The aft stateroom wall installation was going pretty smoothly. Gluing and screwing pre-finished panels to the corner pieces, floor, and overhead frames is working out well. Just two more wall sections to go, and the aft stateroom major wall installation is nearly done.
You can see some sanding marks printing through the finish, but keep in mind that ICA is a base-coat/top coat system. The sanding marks and surface imperfections in the base coat will vanish when it’s sanded and top coated.
I wetted out the joint with straight epoxy, then coated it with epoxy thickened with wood flour and cabosil.
The pic above shows a wee bit of a problem that I’d foreseen and considered and had a plan to avoid…that I completely overlooked until it was almost too late. More on that later…
The back story here is that I was selling a piece of equipment on this day and the buyer was coming to pick it up at my house at 6pm. It’s an hour commute from my house to the boatyard. The walls were going in pretty quickly and I’ve got the process nailed, so I decided to get ‘er done and install the last wall before going home. It would be close, but I could do it. Looking at these pix now, I can’t believe I was so focused on gettin’ ‘er done that I didn’t see the problem I was creating.
Pocket screw joinery is popular, in part, because the screws draw the pieces together very tightly. The screws go in at a very shallow angle — I believe it’s 10 degrees — so most of the clamping force is applied in line with the screw. But with glued and screwed applications, the glue acts as a lubricant and that 10 degree skew can cause the panel to creep up to 3/32″. To stop panel creep, I used scraps of wood and a wedge to keep the panel right over the lines I have laid out on the floor while I drive the pocket screws home.
I know a lot of people like straight grained wood, but I really like the character that strategically placed knots add. This one’s at shoulder height…nice eye candy.
It was at about this time, while I was leaning over the new clothes dryer carton trying to get a shot of the inside of the new aft head wall that I realized I’d left the new clothes dryer carton inside the aft head when I installed the last of the walls. The door opening to the head is ~21 inches…about a foot too narrow to get the dryer out.
Fortunately, this was on a cold day and even though time had passed while I cleaned up and taped cardboard to the panels to protect the walls, the epoxy joint had not yet taken a hard set. So, I pulled out my cordless drill and very quickly removed all of the screws. There was a bit of a challenge removing the panel, since the wood flour and cabosil-thickened epoxy was in the process of setting, but in the end it all came apart just fine. While the wall was off, I pulled the dryer out of the bathroom and swapped it for the jet bathtub, which was sitting in its carton on the aft fuel tank. Then I put it all back together again, ending up with just a hint of a scuff on the tough ICA base coat clear. On the principle of “that’ll sand out,” I packed up, set the alarm, and was 20 minutes late getting home, but the buyer waited and the equipment went down the road as planned.
Sheesh…it’s never easy.
Next up in our 1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: Insulation follow-up