Friday, July 15, 2011

Dirty Bottoms

After 2 years and a few days with Interlux Micron 66 she doesn't look too bad. I will add that no in-water scrubs were needed the first summer, one the second fall, and two this year. The grow rate was really starting to pick-up, so two years is the practical limit on the Chesapeake.

We scrub only with 6-inch squares of berber carpet, which are supper cheap, more effective than Scotch Brite pads, and very gentle on the paint. They are easy to hold with rubber faced gloves. Three stars for that suggestion from a professional hull cleaner. If you encounter barnacles, the best low-impact and easy-to-use scraper is made from either 1/8-inch HDPE sheet or the cheapo plastic drywall mud tools from Home Depot: split an 18-inch length of broom stick with a saw, slide the scraper blade in sans handle, and secure with a screw. They float, give good reach and leverage, and cause much less paint damage than the typical ice scraper (much harder plastic). The PO left a bunch of the scrapers on the boat, and I figured out the handles.

Interlux Micron 66 is strictly NOT recommended for the middle to upper Chesapeake Bay; only greater than 85% seawater. The factory stated that mass pealing was very likely, though we saw none of that. Perhaps this was the result of above average surface prep (Jessica is a great sander), but even so, we sanded heavily this time and went back to Micron Extra. We'll post again in 2 years, though we always got 2 years out of Micron Extra on our Stiletto 27, Cherokee Sun.

Last time we hauled Shoal Survivor they gave us tiny little stickers that we hid next to rub rail, indicating the best sling placements. A good idea that saves some time and fiddling, and might help prevent crushing something important.

Other tasks, during our 2-day haul-out:
  • Install FRP kick-up plates described in the last post.
  • Sand, wire brush, and paint the submerged portion of the outboards. Serious pitting on the starboard engine.
  • Install teak cockpit grate (separate post, coming soon).
A long day, but all smooth sailing. I'm on fair terms with the weather gods this year; they gave us 80F, low humidity and a breeze, rather than the 102F, 90% humidity and no breeze that had been with us only 2 days before.

Dedication: Jessica gets a gold star for prep sanding the entire bottom.

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