Day 343 Final Paint, Keel, Portlight
At last the big day has arrived! No more giant paint jobs! This is it, the last area to paint, the keel.
We have both been looking forward to this and are happy to have pulled it all off over summer. ( A miracle in this climate! )
The rudder must be included in this coat as well so Gena got to work on that. My back was thrown out during the work week, so I had to save my energy for painting messing with a port light inside. ( below )

After Coating and smoothing then recoating, the "starved cow" look of the keel has been greatly reduced. Now partially blind fish will think it's perfect!

Gena did the first pass as I went around with the brush doing weld humps and the keel to hull join. This makes certain that coverage is thick as even after a few minutes it starts to set up, thicken. I did the final pass to give it a smooth appearance.

That night the temperatures fell to near freezing but this paint will cure several degrees below, so it wasn't a worry.

Final sanding around propshaft

Gena lowering a support pad

The color of blue, even though quite a bit darker, seems to come up almost identical to the  lighter blue on the hull. Must be a digital camera thing. Our neighbor took some photos with "real film" so we'll have to check out those when they get them back.

A view down the keel

The portlight Lexan was drilled by visually lining up the bit with the holes. I used a test piece first to make sure this would work, ( below left ) and to test the  sealing bead as well. It was interesting as I noticed that after starting a hole, one can look into it to check for alignment. It acts like a lens and shows the hole well. If off target at all, it is pretty obvious. The sealing bead is 1/4"  butyl tape that compresses but keeps its' shape.

An additional seal outside of that and into the holes was created with butyl calk. This will protect any bare steel around the holes and keep the nuts threads coated.

Test piece
On future frames, the holes will be marked from the corresponding lexan. The frame will then be bolted loosely in place to get a pattern of the portlight shape. This one isn't perfect but not bad for a first try. ( Above inset )

The next decision with the port lights is whether or not to blast some of them and paint. The polished look is nice but may be inappropriate for areas such as the aft state room, of dining area. We must make some quick decisions on this as we would like them all in before winter! The "big" windows are next (bigger holes!)

Even though the tint is very light compared to the grey, the privacy is very good when looking in from outside. A consideration in marinas. I consider curtains or shades for use at night...when windows are kinda useless.

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Day 343:
8 hours - Painted Keel, First portlight finished.

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