Wednesday, August 27, 2008

As good as it is going to get

I think I am reaching my point of achievable perfection on the hull prep.

I caught myself working on details that I couldn't even see from more than 3 feet away and under the counter to boot!

Having to wait a couple of weeks for the second coat of gray primer and having to open a second can to do so has its issues. It seems there is a slight color variation between the coats. As I sand through the topmost coat I hit a darker coat underneath. I am not sure it makes a difference. It might even add some mystery to to the final topcoat color. A sort of ambiguous shading. Others might refer to it as elephant skin.

Here is a closeup with my thumb for scale.

I didn't really notice it until it was pointed out. The pictures tend to really highlight the contrast and in real life I don't think it looks so bad. I probably have some dust on the hull which is making the color differences look worse too.

In any event, there isn't much I can do about it unless I want to put a couple more coats on and sand it off again. That's not going to happen. I can barely flex my wrists to type today. I am done hand sanding for awhile. With what I know now, I think it would have been much better to pay the painter to spray the 545 primer as well as the topcoat. From my conversations with painters, a sprayed prime coat often doesn't even need to be sanded or at most a light brushing. My last coat was relatively smooth but it still took some time to sand smooth. I probably spent 12 hours over the past two days with a hand sanding block in my hand. It feels great. It looks okay. Next time I will pay to avoid the pleasure. It was a good learning experience though.

I did burn through in a few small spots about the size of a quarter. No big deal but I decided to spot prime them and sand them in a couple of days. Whether it works or not I am basically done. When the painter sees it we will talk about whether it is good enough for a base coat. If not, I will cry, and hopefully he will offer to spray a coat of gray 545 on the hull before putting on the topcoat.

I started going over the decks again but the industrial park next door has been laying down a slight amount of dust and dirt that really needs to be cleaned up before I grind it in with sandpaper. I installed the mooring bit temporarily so the boat hauler will have something to hook a strap around.

And I did an improptu experiment today. Last week when I was finished with the hull priming I still had a quarter of a can of mixed up primer. I didn't want to leave it lying around so I poured it back into the empty can and took it home. Then I forgot about it until today when I needed a bit more. I had to do some testing before I figured out which was the mixed up batch and which was the single base part. The mixed part seemed to still be viable so I used it on a couple of spots. It dried REALLY quick on the hull and it hardened very quickly in the paint tray too. I tried it on two spots before I really noticed how quickly it was going off. The directions give a pot life of 12 hours or so. This can had been sitting with the lid tightly sealed for maybe a week. The results of the experiment was that the old mixed primer might look okay and seem to behave okay at first but it isn't the same as the 'fresh' stuff. It was an interesting experiment but I can't recomened using old mixed up primer.

Another day, another inch of sanding dust...

1 comment:

Tim said...

Don't worry about the color variation between your primer coats.