Friday, 31 July 2015

The last post: Scrumpy gets a makeover

Here's the damage from bouncing on an Azore. Both fibreglass skins were split, but the foam - Airex - remained intact and kept the water out. I pressure-washed the hulls and left the boat to dry overnight. With some trepidation I ran my moisture meter over the damaged area, and found the water had barely spread from the obviously damaged area. I was so surprised, I checked my meter against a part of a bow that I know is damp, and the alarm went off just fine. So all I had to do was to replace the damaged glass and foam. The wood shoe wasn't torn off by the rocks - I'd already started removing it before I thought to take a photo.

This oak shoe took a lot of the impact, but it is repairable and reusable. Every boat should have one, or two!

The outer skin and foam is cut away. The inner skin is scarcely damaged, so I left it intact to make it easier to glass up to, and repaired a split in the glass from the inside with some glass/epoxy.

The second damaged area. Scoring the glass with a grinder made it easy to remove the outer skin and foam with a hammer and chisel.

The replacement patches need a 2" overlap. Here I'm sealing any little gaps between the inner skin and the foam to ensure that I will have an airtight surface so that I can use vacuum bagging.

I was glad to have assistants on the vacuum bagging day. One to help, one to take photographs apparently.

The vacuum bagging worked great. I'm just checking for leaks. We were able to warm the Airex up and bend it against the hull as it cooled to get it pretty much the shape we needed. The vacuum was then sufficient to pull the foam tight against the inner skin. The white stuff is bleed cloth.

A bit of fairing and filling before adding the second skin.

And some pink undercoat on the topsides while the epoxy is setting below.

The outer skin is now on - quadrilateral stuff, 1200 gm/m2 - and here's the final fill.

Leigh's Epigrip is an epoxy hi-build. Brilliant stuff. The while boat is covered in it. Unfortunately, it comes only in this colour, which several people have pointed out that it reminds them of the contents of a baby's nappy. Oh well, it is super-hard wearing.  On the deck there are a couple of places where ropes have chafed, but only the top coat of paint is worn away. The baby poop is just polished a little.

It's red. Used to be yellow. I like to imagine it has ripened.

New engines, new-to-us dinghy, and new paint all over. Ready to go again, after a solid month of hard work.

So this is officially the end of the voyage - where Scrumpy is all set to sail once again after our 2 year Atlantic and Caribbean odyssey. So we're off to Brittany for the rest of the summer and who knows where after that. I won't be blogging about it though. I feel like the story is told and no story is complete without an ending. It's been fun to write about and photograph the trip though, and I've very much appreciated the encouragement and support I've received through this. So thank you one and all for that, and good luck with your own ventures - and goodbye!


  1. Ripened to Red!
    Love it!
    Family paint colour expert says "Wow that looks really nice!!"
    Great blogging ,enjoyed very much!
    J & B building Eclipse

  2. Many thanks John for the most enjoyable journey - as it has felt like a journey just reading your blog.

    The cat looks lovely. Enjoy Britanny!

    Ed (T)

  3. Thanks for sharing your journey (and knowledge!) and fair winds for the future.


  4. Godspeed John, from the USA. Since you are no longer 'fixing' Scrumpy, you must have some spare time on your hands. How about buying my large CNC routers (one is 10m long and the other 5m) so that I can sail away in October per my plans, which have changed two times already?

    I understand the end part, but we will now need to look for something to fill the void.

    Best travels

  5. Hello John,
    thanks for sharing great adventures. Wish you many happy and enjoyable moment with/on her.

    I know, it's long shot, but would it be possible to visit you and Scrupy to take a look on her? Our plans are quite similar you yours and Sagitta or Eclipse designs seems just right for our needs. To confirm or disprove our opinion.

    Could you, please, ping me on my gmail account "dacelocz"?

    Thanks in advance.

    Safe sailing and holding anchorages

  6. red and white look reaaaaally nice. what a great adventure you have there sir.