Monday, June 23, 2014

I Finally Finished Something

It seems like a rare statement from me, but I can actually say that I have fully completed a project... Yay! I kind of completed 2 projects but can't quite cross one of them off the list because there is still some varnishing to be done... Boo!  

The first project that is officially crossed off the list is the chainplates.  A bit of a long time coming because I actually had the new chainplates fabricated in 2013, but they have been sitting around doing nothing in the interim.  As with every boat project, this one ended up taking more time because of a variety of little issues.  

I had decided early on that I would use the old chainplates as backing plates for the upper shrouds but didn't realize that I would need to cut them down to make them fit.  Not sure why I didn't see that coming, but I am blindsided by many things in life so this came as no surprise.  I also needed to do something to make the newly cut (old) chainplate fit in the locker because there were shelves fastened to the bulkheads that would need to be cut or removed.   

On the starboard side, I decided that the shelves were not needed since I never used them before and they got in the way of the functionality of the hanging locker.  They always made it difficult to hang items, so I ripped them out.  Once I had pulled everything out of the locker I realized I should really clean and paint the whole area.  Years of neglect had resulted in a nasty, smelly locker with plenty of mold and mildew.  I scrubbed it out and then put on 2 coats of brightside polyurethane, mostly because I had 2 cans of it sitting around, but I figure the shiny surface it creates will make wiping it down easy.  

I moved onto the next locker in the forward cabin on the same side and did the same there.  I let everything dry overnight and then bolted in all three chainplates on the starboard side.  The upper (center) chainplate I backed with the old, cut down chainplate and 3/8" lock washers and nuts while the lower chainplates I backed with fender washers, lock washers, and nuts.  I moved onto the port side, and while the lockers were smaller because of the head, I cleaned and painted them as well before bolting the chainplates in with the same fastener configuration as on the starboard side. 

With the chainplates properly bolted in place, I moved up on deck and drilled and tapped the chainplate covers for #6 - 32 x 1/2" machine screws.  I snugged down each of the tapped screws to make sure they fit before taking them out and then packing butyl tape around the chainplate.  Then I slowly screwed the covers back down until the butyl tape squeezed out the edges.  I did the same with the backstay chainplate and called it complete.  

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