Most seasoned sailors would agree that a clean bottom leads to faster sailing. Sometimes it may be necessary to do more than scrub away the algae and zebra mussels, though. In the case of Adagio, 44 years of sailing was starting to ripple the bottom of the boat. Simply put, it was time to fair the bottom. While fairing the bottom of your boat may seem beyond your reach, it is a project that novices and experienced boaters alike can accomplish with a few simple tools and a love of a little manual labor. The first step that I took to fair the bottom of Adagio was to get the main hull tipped up on an angle to make working on it easier. On most Continue reading →
Ronnie Janowicz, a good friend of mine, called to say the wooden horn on his antique Edison Concert phonograph was cracked. I had Ronnie bring it by so I could take a look.
I told him it could be repaired very nicely with epoxy if that is what he wanted to do. “Why wouldn’t I want it repaired that way?” he asked. I explained that repairing an antique with epoxy may affect its resale value if the potential purchaser objects to the repair. Some collectors take a dim view of wooden antiques being repaired with epoxy Continue reading →
This is the story of a 20′ sailboat manufactured in Norway in 1956 by the Ejvinds Company. This boat sailed from Iceland to the east coast of Canada, then down to Miami. From Miami it sailed south to St. Croix and the Virgin Islands. After a few years in St. Croix it was brought to the Florida Keys 1967 and had two or three different owners. I purchased it in the Florida Keys in 2003 and brought it to my home in Murray, Kentucky for restoration. Continue reading →
While most of our customers are successful when using WEST SYSTEM Epoxy to repair damaged fiberglass, we have become familiar with some common mistakes that are easily preventable. These mistakes are made by both professionals and amateurs. The information discussed in this article is available in our Fiberglass Boat Repair Manual and WEST SYSTEM User Manual, and on the WEST SYSTEM website.
A typical fiberglass repair in cross section.
This diagram illustrates how we recommend laminating a repair after the damaged Continue reading →
On November 27, 2006 ground was broken on a perfect waterfront site overlooking the Les Cheneaux islands in Cedarville, Michigan in a ceremony that marked the end of a two-year fundraising effort and the beginning of The Great Lakes Boatbuilding School.
The Les Cheneaux islands are a group of 36 small islands, some inhabited during the summer months, along a 12-mile stretch of the southeastern shoreline on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan about 30 miles northeast of the Straits of Mackinac. Les Cheneaux is French for ‘the Channels’ which describe the extensive system of Continue reading →
Turned wooden goblet. The cracks are filled with G/flex 650 and black pigment.
Vern, a good friend of mine, turned the exterior of a wooden goblet made from a nice piece of spalted sycamore. Unfortunately the blank was not as dry as he thought and it cracked along one edge as it sat uncovered on his lathe overnight. He called to see if there was anything available for gluing it back together. I said I had some ideas and asked him to drop it off at work so I could take a stab at the repair. Continue reading →
The Gougeon Technical Department has added a new lab technician, Bryan Jacobs.
Before coming to work at Gougeon Brothers, Bryan served in the Army and earned the rank of Sergeant (E-5). Bryan served multiple combat tours in support of the global war on terrorism and was awarded the Bronze Star. He then tried out for a Long Range Surveillance Unit (LRSU), where he was deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Continue reading →
Early in March of 2012, a local boat owner called our technical line and asked about repairing his cast iron wing keel with WEST SYSTEM® Epoxy. He asked if a technical advisor would be willing to take a look at the cracks on his keel and recommend the best way to repair it. After looking at the boat I gave the customer a call back and recommended using G/flex® Epoxy. The advantage of G/flex is that it is a toughened system that has a tensile elongation of more than 30 percent, which would prevent cracks from reappearing in the fairing compound. The boat owner then asked if I Continue reading →