Having the Westsail 32 so close to home provides the opportunity to seize even a couple hours work from a day. While I was restoring the Sea Sprite 23 (Froonie), because of the half-hour drive to just get to the project, my workdays were often 7+ hours – making it necessary that I plan for my workday. While I really do need to begin putting some serious hours in on the W32, so far I have been stealing two hours here and 3 hours there from a typically busy schedule – a busy professional pursuing a master degree is a recipe for no spare time!
Well, I was able to concede another couple of hours on Sunday. My focus for this short work session was to continue to remove the loose, cracking gelcoat from the starboard side deck. After sanding the starboard side deck on Feb. 25th, more areas of concern were revealed and would require another “once-over” with the chisel. I spent roughly 70% of my time on the gelcoat removal, and failed to take pictures of my progress. Not to worry, just refer to my earlier posts for the visual explanation.
After I wrapped up my work with the chisel, essentially prepping the area for another round of sanding with the PC 7335, I switched gears and worked on the removal of the starboard grab rails.
The teak grab rails were extremely weathered; not in the usual “nice weathered looking teak” way, but with the rails splitting along the grain in several places. It was very apparent to me that the rails would need to be replaced. A lot of the bright work on the Sea Sprite was saved through a TSP wash, sanding, oiling, and varnish; however, most of the woodwork on the W32 will need replacement. Simple neglect will cause such a thing.
The picture here is of the forward most rail. Very little bedding compound existed beneath the teak grab rail, though there was some sealant used between the screw head and the bung. This sealant used within the bunged screw was hard and brittle, and was removed without too much fuss – not sure what this sealant was. Despite the curious lack of bedding compound between the rail and cabin roof, I found no sign of compromised core by sounding the surface. Future installation of new grab rails will be done in such a way to protect the core from any potential water intrusion – over drill of top skin and core, fill will thickened epoxy, drill and tap for machine screw fasteners.
Three rails were removed today, with 13 screws; aft rail (7 screws), middle rail (6 screws), forward rail (3 screws) - 2” #6 or #8.
Work Date: February 26th, 2012; 2 hrs.