Vberth remodel

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by AlaskanBowie, Apr 25, 2020.

  1. AlaskanBowie
    Joined: Apr 2020
    Posts: 4
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Juneau AK

    AlaskanBowie New Member

    Hi all, I'm new here, found the place via Google for a lot of info. I'm here to tell you about my current project, ask some questions and get ideas.
    I've been living in a 32ft 1967 Rawson in Juneau Alaska for about 1.5 years, and have learned a lot about boats but am otherwise no sailor having hardly taken the boat out at all. It's more of a house to me than a boat.
    I've replaced a lot of the insulation as a consequence of getting annoyed at wet walls, mold and musty smells. I've gotten a pretty good idea of insulation and heating requirements. Putting up insulation has been really challenging, fitting it and glueing it just so. So far I've gotten down pretty well a 3 layer process - Reflectex glued to the fiberglass hull, 3/4" foam board glued on top of that, and Reflectex glued on top of that. It's a lot of glue, and a lot of cutting/shaping all while living inside.
    I've recently stripped out the vberth, I've never done such a large area in one go so I intend to try the 200sqft 2 part spray foam insulation kit from Home Depot, about 2 in thick below the waterline and depending on how much foam I have, then Reflectex on top. I've never used 2 part spray.
    I need to replace the bobstay chainplate thing, under the front bulkhead... the wood backer was rotten. But I'm not sure yet how to replicate that wooden block backer for the bolts, id rather not use more wood and would have trouble cutting such a shape anyway. And directly above, the bottom part of the forward most bulkhead was rotten...I cut it and don't think so much is missing as to warrant replacing.
    I plan to spray over the wood furring strips on the walls which are epoxied on.... If I ever need to screw into them, I think I can find them beneath the foam. But I don't have any idea yet why I'd need them.
    The floor confounds me.... There's a 4-5 inch flange of fiberglass sticking out all around above the cement in the bilge. Too thin and weak to step on except right up against the wall. Is this intended to hold the floor board (I believe 'sole' in boat jargon)? Previously, the floor panel was suspended 2-3 inches above this, against the wall. I'd like to lower these panels down to get those inches of living space. So either directly on that flange, or supported with blocks under, on top of the cement for an easy quick solution. I like having the panels easily removable to wash the stink underneath, so no glassing in place.
    Should I pour epoxy on the cement to seal it? Moisture in there is ever present, and I hope to cut down on the odor.
    The next bulkhead is minimal - barely glassed to the wall and suspended over the floor. I intend to build on this, creating a platform between it and the forward bulkhead, though would like to cut it down on the bottom as it sticks so far above the sole, so it should be quite strong as a structure, but as rigid support for the hull, I don't know. Bad idea?
    I hope the attached pictures show up.
    Edit: do you think I need to wipe the walls with acetone before spraying? I've been over it with a wire brush, and hosed it down with soap and water and more brushing.
    Thanks from an amateur for any experienced advice or best guesses.
     

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    Last edited: Apr 25, 2020
  2. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
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    Location: Monroe WA

    ondarvr Senior Member

    If the surface is clean and dry like you described then an acetone wipe won't help.
     
  3. AlaskanBowie
    Joined: Apr 2020
    Posts: 4
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    Location: Juneau AK

    AlaskanBowie New Member

    Thanks! I went over it again, with a wire brush and washed. Added some fiberglass stripping along that one weak bulkhead, slowly curing below waterline at about 45 degrees, should have put heater blowing on it. Cut a block out of Trex synthetic decking I had leftover to serve as the backplate for the bobstay chainplate ubolt I found someone to make for me. Expecting cold rainy weather all week so waiting on spray foam.
     
  4. AlaskanBowie
    Joined: Apr 2020
    Posts: 4
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Juneau AK

    AlaskanBowie New Member

    Why is everything so difficult? Projects take much longer than expected, are better in imagination than reality and cost so much. I got the spray foam up. The good news is that 2 primary objectives are complete: old moldy insulation is replaced and the bedframe is level (the last builder left it crooked - annoying to sleep on). The bad news is my math was off by a factor of 4 because I divided by 2 instead of multiplying by 2 so I used way more foam than budgeted, over $1k worth. Now the hardest part of any project for me: finishing.

    The foam went on like chunky cauliflower dipped in cottage cheese. Not the texture I want to try affixing a wall finishing onto. I tried filling in the voids with more spray, which is like filling a spoon using a squirt gun pumped to the max. Now imagine the overhead areas, oof.

    I have however gotten good at wielding a bread knife to shave the lumps. Using drywall sanding tools to smooth the rest. Considering plaster to fill those voids - a bad idea. Maybe caulk mixed with foam scraps? Idk.

    Overall I think better insulation than the Reflectex/foam/Reflectex sandwich method, but no easier and much more expensive. Also more fun.
     

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  5. Blueknarr
    Joined: Aug 2017
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    Likes: 215, Points: 63
    Location: Colorado

    Blueknarr Senior Member

    It actually looks better than most amateur sprayed foam jobs.

    Somebody forgot to warn you to attach small blocks or strips of wood to the hull before foaming. The interior finish is then easily attached to the wood.

    Is your foam dense enough to accept Staples or screws?
     
  6. ondarvr
    Joined: Dec 2005
    Posts: 2,468
    Likes: 292, Points: 83, Legacy Rep: 506
    Location: Monroe WA

    ondarvr Senior Member

    Yes, that looks typical for a fairly good job.

    Many times people apply a polyurea coating over it and leave it like that.

    It's a bit of an industrial look though.
     

  7. AlaskanBowie
    Joined: Apr 2020
    Posts: 4
    Likes: 0, Points: 1
    Location: Juneau AK

    AlaskanBowie New Member

    I was planning to glue Reflectex ontop, but air gaps between the layers will keep me up at night. Ideally the insulation is thick enough now to prevent any condensation, but making the interface as smooth as possible is the goal.
    I will have to read on polyurea.
    Thanks both!
     
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