Did a ton of sanding today. For some damn reason a few bubbles developed in the CSM inside the fishbox. So I had to grind them out and then knocked down all the high points as well.
Then did one more test fit in the boat. I am going to add a bulkhead under the front casting deck and create a storage compartment and place to mount some bump there. The front ~18" or so of the box will be underneath it and have a fixed top. It should still be pretty easy to clean after trips but fairing and finishing it will be a bit of a bitch. The level is clamped to to the back edge of the casting deck so I could get an idea of where the bulkhead will be.
Then I applied fairing compound to the battery compartment. Since this compartment is all epoxy I had to use an epoxy based fairing compound, in this case System Three Silvertip QuikFair for the sole reason that its available on Amazon. Mixed up like bondo and went on pretty easily.
Then mixed up some poly fairing compound to coat the inside of the fish box.
I also did some sanding on the livewell plug. Something is off with the gelcoat that took some extra heat to cure. It gummed up the 40 grit sand paper pretty badly for the first few passes. Don't know if it was just an excess of surfacing wax or uncured gelcoat but once I got down far enough to knock down the brush strokes it sanded normally. Need to further investigate other gelcoat catalysts.
Been sanding shit. The fish box, the battery compartment and the livewell plug. Nothing to really look at on the battery compartment or fish box but the livewell plug is interesting. If you recall the gelcoat didn't cure until I put heat on it a little at a time. Then after it was dry to the touch the top layer gummed up my 40 grit sand paper pretty quickly. Once the top layer was removed the underlying material sanded fine but it was still kinda weird. So I've been sanding on it and have removed around 80% of the gelcoat. Seems to be a mixed blessing as the white gelcoat has wasted a ton of sandpaper but also revealed a few fairing flaws in the fiberglass and bondo applications. Progress is progress. Still have a TON of pinholes in the plug that will be a pain in the ass to fill and flatten but such is life.
To fill the pin holes, if you plan on gelcoatig again mix up some and use a bondo spreader to fill in the pin holes. Then apply the gel coat. Works really well. Keep up the good progress, I enjoy reading your experience.
Finished sanding down the first fairing layer of gelcoat on the livewell plug. Glad I did it, lots of low areas filled as you can see. On that layer I used surfacing wax in full viscosity gelcoat. As posted above it was really cold when I applied the material so it cured goofy and subsequently, sanded shitty.
This time I ordered some Duratec to try out and I have to say, I'm impressed. It replaces the surfacing wax in the concoction with the ultimate purpose of making the gelcoat self-level and develop a harder, high gloss finish. My first application of the gelcoat was with a shitty 2" chip brush from Harbor Freight and the brush strokes in the cured coating were really bad. The duratec mixed gelcoat WANTS to flatten out. This time I used a 4" HF roller and it had a bit too much nap that left some texture in the wet material but it flattened out a lot by itself. I'm sanding most of this stuff off again but it was still a neat experience to observe.
I'm going to experiment with spraying duratec thinned gelcoat through a harbor freight purple gun tomorrow. I've read just about every thread ever posted on THT about this so I have a pretty good idea of what I'm going to do but I want some hands on experience before I attempt to spray the final coat of tooling gel on the plug. I only have one quart of the black tooling gelcoat so I need to get it right the first time.