well the surprises continued as the project
of replacing the bench top continued. While I knew it was not going to be a straight forward job it turned into something with far greater challenges than I could have imagined.
Just recapping to do this job,
1) to remove the bench top you first have to remove the base window frame.
2) to remove the window frame you have to remove the sliding door as the base frame for the window and the door are all one piece.
3) The frame (10 years old) had the paint
peeling exposing the alloy beneath it. The unit had been sealed with copious amounts of sika ( or similar) and looked in a pretty shabby state so we decided to have it stripped back to bare metal and new powder coated so it should look new on its return (3 to 4 business days) 4) to remove the bench top the side cupboard has to be dismantled.
5) lots and lots of under galley
top screws have to be removed to free the cupboard from the under cupboard.
6) find that bench top extends to the hull
sides to support galley top cupboard and have to remove roof which is attached to underside of galley top.
7) Lots of screws required to be removed to free galley top from this area and inside cupboard in starboard hull
. With the bench top out you can see where another top has been badly stuck over the original laminate. This caused issues to access the window frame. This top cover had to be removed to remove the timber fiddle safely.
8) The timber fiddle around the benchtop is held on by screws every 100,, (4 inches) Not only is it attached by lots and lots of screws but it is also glued and siliconed in place. Trying to remove the fiddle to recover the wood is a tedious and patient affair. As I could not access the same profile here in Australia
I had to recover the wood intact or it was going to cause a major issue. The only way that I could succesfully remove the fiddle was the use of a oscillating tool with a sharp blade and run it along the side and underside of the joint gradually breaking the seal.
Having removed the old timber bench top I could get to work on the new bench top. I used premium quality 18mm (3/4 inch) marine
ply cut to size for the job which appears to be what the original benchtop was made from. The benchtop has to be the same thickness as the old one or it will cause issue when re-installing the window sill.
Now that the new top was sitting in place I could fit the new sink. Sue did not like the sink unit with a large and small sink so we sourced a larger single
sink with a attached drainer board which will be far more practicle. I do have to drill the new sink to fit the water spout for the foot operated water supply but there is room on the new sink to do this.
Today I am hoping to put the first layer of clear two pak on the new top. It amazed me that there was not protective coating around the edges or underside of the old benchtop which was quite evident where the taps went through the timber as it was competeley rotted due to moisture ingress. We went with the two pak finish instead of laminex just for something different and if need be we can cover it with a laminate at a later date. Hopefully over the next two day I can put together all the components and get our galley back in working order.
Greg and Sue