1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: 1st Galley Plywood Install

Back when I was first thinking about insulation, I figured I’d get the best bang for the buck with spray foam (R7 per inch) on the hull and cabin top and 1-1/2″ thick Buffalo Batt polyester nonwoven fabric (R3) on the backside of each plywood panel that faces the hull. That combination should stop condensation dead and keep conditioned air in the living spaces, where it belongs. With the spray foam done, I decided to make the plywood stack smaller and install a panel.

1/4" marine doug fir ply, cut to size and epoxy sealed

1/4″ marine doug fir ply, cut to size and epoxy sealed on the back-side and edges

Need to square away some wiring

Need to square away some wiring and install a couple more cleat attachment points

The big wire loom on the right is the main feed shore power line that will go to the isolation transformer in the V-berth.

3M contact cement ought to hold the Buffalo Batt in place

3M contact cement ought to hold the Buffalo Batt in place

Rolling out and measuring the polyester nonwoven fabric

This stuff is a LOT nicer to work with than fiberglass. No itch, and since it’s a fabric it doesn’t lose fibers.

The polyester nonwoven fabric needs to fit between the battens the panel attaches to.

The polyester nonwoven fabric needs to fit between the cleats the panel will attach to

Hose on the contact cement

Hose on the contact cement

Press the polyester nonwoven fabric into position, leaving space for the batten and cleat attachment points

Press the insulation into position, leaving space for the cleat attachment points

Buffallo Batts are all in place

Buffallo Batts are all in place

Shore power main feed and stbd running light wires are secured

Shore power main feed and stbd running light wires are secured out of the way

Inside the cavity

Dead air space inside the cavity between insulation layers reportedly yields best results

Polyester nonwoven fabric breaks for the cleats

Polyester nonwoven fabric breaks for the cleats

Nice fit!

Nice fit! Done!

So, the lesson learned here (and in a lot of other instances) is that cutting the panel, slapping some primer on the back side and edges of the panel, and installing it (like Chris Craft did originally) would have taken maybe an hour. Doing it the way I did took a day, including an overnight curing process for the epoxy. Multiplying that out over the entire boat, I figure I’ll  have a literal month of Sundays added to the time the project will take to complete with this approach. It better be worth it. In any case, this one panel install gave me some ideas for how to improve the process that I’ll try out on the next panel.

Oh, and if anybody’s interested, I’ve got a low-hour set of Cummins 6CTA exhaust risers that I just listed for sale.

Next up in our 1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: Aft Stateroom Wall Panel Install.

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