Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Keel Hauling

Keelhauling:  It's a dirty job, but someone's got to do it!
"Keelhauling" was a pretty brutal form of nautical punishment  According to Wikipedia:
'The sailor was tied to a line that looped beneath the vessel, thrown overboard on one side of the ship, and dragged under the ship's keel, either from one side of the ship to the other, or the length of the ship (from bow to stern). As the hull was usually covered in barnacles and other marine growth, if the offender was pulled quickly, keelhauling would typically result in serious cuts, loss of limbs and even decapitation. If the victim were dragged slowly, his weight might lower him sufficiently to miss the barnacles, but this method would frequently result in his drowning'.  
It is considered one of the eight worst ways to be executed, right up there with being drawn and quartered.  Given the choice, I'd walk the plank.

Anywho, we're doing a little 'hauling of our keel and hull as well - overhauling that is... And while it might be a little more expensive, it is far less torturous and the likelihood of loosing a limb is nill.

I wrote before about how our marine surveyor discovered moisture in our hull below the waterline and strongly suggested we peel the hull, which we did.  While there were no blisters to be found, we found some areas where the fiberglass had been poorly repaired (probably from damage due to going aground) and thus needed to be removed and re-applied.
Mission: Accomplished.

I just got word today that our hull is nice and dry and ready for painting.  Several of you wondered how we'll repaint our nice new bottom and we have decided to use an epoxy-based system as opposed to traditional gelcote (which was what was on there originally and is on most boats floating around these days).  There are several advantages to using an epoxy based system:
  1. Gelcote is porous and, over time, will allow moisture to penetrate.  Epoxy is a much better sealant.
  2. Gelcoat is very difficult to apply and it is almost impossible to get a nice, smooth finish.  Epoxy is easy to apply and provides a beautifully uniform surface.
We are using the Interlux Blister Repair and Prevention System on Asante.  The steps are as follows:

Nice to know that if we do any keelhauling in the near future, we'll have a nice smooth bottom to drag along!

Brittany, Scott & Isla


Lorry said...

Smooth as a baby's bottom? :-)

Courtney said...

Very informative. Seems most boats out there have some kind of bottom problem, and nixing the gelcoat is a good idea. Thanks for listing the reasons for your decision, and keeping it so simple.

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