Saturday, September 6, 2008

Saturday Afternoon - Epoxy Time

So there was no more putting it off, it was time to use the epoxy.

This is the bit I am most wary of. The most careful woodwork could easily be trashed by carelessness with the stick stuff, and I could trash a load of other things too if I get too messy.

The first thing to do on the kayak with regards to epoxying is to join the fore and aft pieces of the four hull panels to their full 14' length.

My plan was to lay out the master parts that I cut on day one of the build, tape and epoxy them, lay plastic food wrap over the join and then lay the other panels on top to get their alignment spot on and then tape and epoxy those. That plan turned out to be far too ambitious. The ply, even at only 4mm thick, has quite a spring to it, and as soon as I lifted some of the weights, the joints lifted on one side, bringing the tape with them. I quickly weighted it all back down again and went to do something else.

My son has a little basketball hoop that clips over the top edge of his bedroom door. The only trouble is that when its in place, the door doesn't shut and then the door frame blocks half of the basket. After I decorated the hallway I promised him I'd make a permanent backboard to mount the hoop on. While I waited for the epoxy to cure, I cut the backboard from 10mm MDF and then measured and drilled the hoop mounting holes. I masked up and sprayed the lines using some left over black enamel, then gave a clear lacquer coating to the bare MDF. Mounted up I think it looks pretty good, and Sam was really happy with it.

Well, it was time to check on the epoxy. A test piece in the garage still hadn't gone into the final cure state, although with the increased volume and therefore exothermic heat, the leftover epoxy in the pot had gone rock hard. Although it was a beautiful warm day, its only just getting in to spring and it cools off quite quickly. I suspect that out on the driveway under the boards and bricks, the kayak panels still won't have cured by the morning. I covered them with a polytarp and more bricks round the outside, and we'll see what the morning brings.

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