February 11, 2015 Hours spent building to date: 669
One of the major reasons I build boats is the magic moment when varnish, or epoxy or solvent of any kind hits the boat and brings out the grain and color.
After even more sanding (interrupted by the inevitable New England snow storm), Ray came over and we rolled on the “cheater coat,” a coating of epoxy laid down before any fiberglass goes on the boat. Experienced builders don’t use it (hence the name), but I think it gives a nice solid substrate for the upcoming work even though it burns epoxy, time, and inevitably, requires more sanding. The builders who ALWAYS use a cheater coat are kayak builders and surfboard carvers looking for an absolutely perfect finish, so I cheat, too.
It was a long day — vacuuming boat, rubbing down with alcohol to remove dust, mixing dozens of batches of epoxy (WEST 105 resin and 207 Clear Hardener), then tipping off with a regular brush.
The cheater has some runs, bubbles and scraggly bits, but that’s what it’s for — to get all that over before the glass goes on.