1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: Tent Model XXX 3

With the vapor barrier between the gravel boatyard lot and the tent envelope, it’s much, much drier inside. Tent Model XXX is working out very well. I got the top frames re-positioned and the top skin on while the weather was nice and the wind was light. Booyah.

When I was last at the tent, the skirt was ready for shrinking

When I was last at the tent, the skirt was ready for shrinking

For the next step, I cut off the roof shrink wrap film.

For the next step, I cut off the roof shrink wrap film and adjusted the top frames

The roof for Tent Model X was low over the cabin top but high over the aft deck hardtop so we could repair the hardtop and replace the windshield. Both the hardtop and the windshield needed work because of the bastard thieves who stole my stuff back in May 2014. With the hardtop work done and winter coming, I’ll drop the roof height there and raise the height over the cabintop. I need to do that because when the 34′ Searay gas boat next to mine exploded in July 2015, shrapnel from it damaged my paint…repairing that means I need scaffolding again. I can’t get a break!

Roof frames adjusted...ready to pull plastic

Roof frames adjusted…ready to pull plastic

Lifting the shrink wrap for the top skin is heavy work!

Lifting the shrink wrap for the top skin is heavy work!

Once I pull the shrink wrap up from ground level, over the back frames, and onto the hardtop, I walk it forward, tossing it over the frames all the way to the nose. This is definitely young man’s work.

Fortunately, there was zero wind

Fortunately, there was zero wind

I used small clamps to hold the edge of the plastic tight at the joint where the top skin meets the side skirt. Next, I screwed a line of battens around the joint and trimmed the plastic to fit, leaving enough material for me to weld the two sheets of film together.

Battens are mostly done as the sun goes down

Battens are mostly done as the sun goes down

Rain made a big belly out of my tent!

Rain made a big belly out of my tent!

I hadn’t shrunk the plastic yet, so when it rained a pocket of water collected over the hardtop. No harm, no foul though…I just pushed up and the water ran down the sides. Gotta get the plastic shrunk before it takes a beating.

Climb the ladder, weld the plastic, tape, screw, descend the ladder, move ladder, repeat

Climb ladder, weld plastic, tape plastic, screw batten, descend ladder, move ladder, repeat

I use my heat gun and shrink wrap tape to weld the two panels together, then I screw a line of battens over the welded joint. This approach has worked well and held up to snow storms and hurricanes even though for Tent Model X I only used battens every few feet. For Model XXX, the battens are pretty much continuous all the way around the base of the skirt and at the joint above.

Almost done...new door cover looks better than the old one

Almost done…new door cover looks better than the old one

I finished shrinking the plastic the next day.

Done!

Tent Model XXX is done!

Hinged front door is much better than the old zippered one

Hinged front door is much better than the old zippered one

The small breaks between the battens top and bottom are where the upright frames overlap. Otherwise, the battens are nearly continuous, and that’s keeping things nicely tensioned…far better than Model X with fewer battens.

Nice, dry space for my ShopSmith

Nice, dry space for my ShopSmith

Using old shrink wrap as a vapor barrier has been a HUGE improvement over Tent Model X. Some water vapor still manages to get up inside the tent, but it’s noticeably much drier inside. Now, if only I could get rid of the surface rust on the iron parts of my ShopSmith. I figure I’ll think of them as battle scars once the refit is done.

That’s a wrap for Tent Model XXX. It’s looking really good so far. Even after shrinking the plastic a week ago, it’s still tight as a drum. I’m about as ready for winter as I’ll ever be.

Next up on our 1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: Making a Data Inlet

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8 comments on “1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: Tent Model XXX 3

  1. alloyed2sea says:

    Well, we’re all about to see how snow-proof Tent X-tasy relly is.
    Good luck as the snowmargedeon approaches!

  2. Tom Long (Coastal sort of guy!) says:

    After you get the rust removed (there many, many ways to do that) I would recommend CRC 3-36. I use it in Florida here on the East Coast and it works a treat. Available from places like Grainger, I get the trigger sprayer. A little bit on a rag or paper towel wipe it on fairly heavy, let it dry over night, give it a drying wipe and you’re good to go. Won’t transfer and cause finishing problems with the wood either. Good stuff. Google CRC 3-36 and check it out.
    Power on!!
    Tom

  3. Doug says:

    Q,
    For rust on the Shopsmith table (and other places) I presume you already know about
    “Whink, Rust Stain Remover”? It will work as a reducing agent which turns the rust into non-oxidized iron. It is still on the surface as a black substance that is more easily removed than rust. Great for lots of other boat stuff too. Can be found in most grocery stores in a brown squeeze bottle in the cleaning supplies. I believe it is a strong alkali that acts as a reducing agent.

  4. Pete says:

    Let’s hope this one holds up to the burglaries, bombings, storms and snow you seem to be surrounded by……. With hindsight at the start, a nuclear bomb shelter would have been a better idea….!!!!

    • 1969roamer46 says:

      No kidding, Pete. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that there aren’t any comet strikes, alien attacks, or Jihadi suicide bombers who get confused about where they’re supposed to go off. 😉
      Cheers,
      Q

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