Today was a very busy day for me. I began by sanding the epoxy filler on the deck interior. I then proceeded to create a large fillet all along the keel with epoxy thickened with wood flour. While this was still wet, I laid out the fiber-glass. I am using a full single layer of 9 oz cloth, augmented with another layer of 4 oz cloth in the cockpit area and strips of 4 oz bias cut cloth in the bow and stern to reinforce the epoxy fillets. I put the bias strips on first and then used two pieces of 9 oz cloth to the cover over everything. I took a bit longer (and used more epoxy) to wet out the 9 oz cloth. Once it was wetted out, I squeegeed off the excess. About an hour later, I applied the piece of 4 oz cloth in the cockpit area, wetted it out and squeegeed it. It is quite a relief to finally put this hurdle behind me. The hull interior was (hopefully) the last of the really labor intensive parts.
I cut several stringers to serve as spacers to ensure the hull was keeping the right shape as the epoxy dries. My plans include the correct dimension for each station, but you could jut as easily measure the maximum width of each station form and use that. The hull was actually a little wider than it should be at each station, so I used some packing tape to pull it in tight to the stringer I had placed across the opening. Once the epoxy cures, the hull shouldn’t move very much any more.
On a different note, I recently purchased a new (or rather different) vehicle – a 2001 Subaru Outback, primarily as a means for transporting Maya (have mentioned that the kayak has a name?) It has the requisite roof racks and even a hitch that I will eventually use to help support Maya’s unusual length. The only things it lacks is a reliable way to play tunes from my ipod, so I ordered a new stereo which arrived today. This afternoon my arms were up to the elbows in dashboard. But, no major mishaps ensued and I am now happily plug-n-play!
I also removed the carbon-fiber blade from the mold and roughly trimmed it to shape. It is still quite flexible, so I am thinking it will need at least two more layers of carbon.