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Old 14-02-2007, 12:12   #1
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Internal Bulkhead - How to Finish?

One of the things on my list is to "finish off" the aft bulkhead (It's a common problem on the Seadog - I was happy to buy her with the job unfinished so I could see how well the job was done - plus it just was one of the compromises I had to make).

I left things as they were for so long partly so I could see that the source of the leaking was sorted / the job was as good at it looked, but mainly out of laziness

Until I read the thread "Using Epoxy to Stop Wood Rot" I was quite happy with how I was going to proceed.........but now I am a bit confused

The wood is Marine Plywood, and what I want is a finish in White (the aft cabin needs the light) that will never need any attention or only in 20 years time . I figure that the wood will not now be getting wet from a constant small leak (around the cabin hatch), but that some waterproofing would be no bad thing.......

My plan was to coat in Epoxy (thinned a bit to aid a smooth finish / penetration). And then to glue on some White "leather cloth" type Vinyl (to match the rest of the boat and so I don't have to finish the bulkhead with a Mirror gloss).

Without getting too technical , anyone have any great objections to this plan and if so can suggest an alternative? (NOTE their is now NO Rot involved )

Obviously I still have to finish off that locker!

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Old 14-02-2007, 13:12   #2
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David - I did a similar installation on an old powerboat in the v berth. Used a textured vinyl - cheap from the fabric store - came out fine - hints - use a good spreadable waterproof adheasive with notched trowel and roll out any bubbles to the edges. You might want to install small corner bead strips of 1/2" plastic molding to trim of the join around the edge of the bulkhead where it meets the hull and trim the cutout with outside corner mold to secure and hide the cut edges of the vinyl.


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Old 14-02-2007, 15:12   #3
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Hi David,
Good looking bulkhead!! I've done some laminating with sheets of plastic laminate using oil based contact cement. It works very good and you can get any color or pattern. Much more protective than paint and easy to clean. For a description of how to just check out "This Old Boat" by Don Casey.
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Old 14-02-2007, 18:18   #4
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Laminating resin should be thin enough...

I've found that straight 5:1 laminating resin is thin enough to penetrate well.
The problem is uneven penetration so a second coat would be necessary.
After a couple of coats of epoxy you can put anything you like ontop.
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Old 14-02-2007, 21:29   #5
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Finishing Bulkhead

I have 2 bulkheads that were existing in my boat that needed finishing and I employed different approaches to both.

1. Saloon Bulkhead dividing main saloon and front cabin.

Boat was being fitted out using Rockmaple veneer with a solid Jarrah (West Australian hardwood - red in colour). Bulkhead was existing, and I was able to get the Rockmaple veneer on 3mm (1/8'') ply. All I did was make an accurate template, cut out the ply veneer panel to the template and contact to the existing bulkhead. Now with the Jarrah trim in place and a few coats of varnish, looks like it was always part of the re-fit.

2. Aft Bulkhead - main saloon to cockpit.

Adjacent to galley and nav station. Used white laminate. Once again an accurate template (using cardboard or paper) is essential. Cut laminate and contact to the bulkhead, trim with the Jarrah - beautiful!!

You will need 2 people to sucessfully apply the laminates the bulkheads as there is little margin for error.

The rockmaple blends perfectly with the rest of the fitout, and the white laminate is perfectly practical next to the galley, light and bright and easy to clean.

Good luck.

Fair winds

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Old 15-02-2007, 03:30   #6
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Cheers folks. I do have a tendency to over second guess myself

Good looking bulkhead!!
Thanks! This is also part of the reason I have not yet done anything, I do like looking at it! (sad but true!) - it is a seriously good piece of work, it would have been so easy for the last owner to have used filler rather than go for complete replacement. (it was actually the clincher on the deal).

Another reason for not doing anything is that at present the aft cabin is laid out as 2 singles, I intend to make this into a permanent small double, with a capacity to convert into a large double. A fair old job.......and so far quite easy to put off

Laminate? I did think of this briefly - but I am just not up to doing this , and in any event the vinyl treatment will keep things consistent, plus it is a bit more idiot friendly

I do want a good finish, especially on the edging, and I suspect this will involve a fair amount of Vinyl! Whats the old saying? "Amateurs practice until they do the job right, Proffesionals practice until they can't get it wrong".

Thinned Epoxy it still is then
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Old 15-02-2007, 08:06   #7
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You guys are better, if more succinct*, than Don Casey
(whom I sometimes find a little amateurish)
Great advice, great thread !

*You know I don't practice the religion of brevity
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Old 17-02-2007, 13:32   #8
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I went down to the boat today armed with good intentions to start on the Aft Cabin bulkhead.

When I arrived I decided instead to clean up the Forecabin (it's the head and also stowage - no berths).

An hour or two later I find I am part way through a major refurbishment project, which will involve a complete repaint. I am not quite sure how that happened - but it will be a very smart due course

I guess the Aft Cabin Bulkhead can wait another month (or so) then
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Old 12-07-2009, 01:27   #9
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Ain't that how it usualy goes?
So why not just use a bit of this CPES Warm Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer MultiWoodPrime

Which is smiths cpes, it will provide the waterproofness you seek. Then just either glue on the vinyl with some 3m adhesive, or manybe better yet glue it on to some very thin fiberglass board, then screw that into the bulkhead. Makes for easier replacement in the future. But of course the price then goes up.
If you can't make up you mind right now, just paint it white after faring it, perhaps that will do for now.

just noticed the date of the thread ... sorry.
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Old 12-07-2009, 06:41   #10
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Bobfnbw is correct. CPES for at least two coats, then we epoxy slightly thickened with colloidal silica and paint it on the bulkhead. We then apply Formica laminate. We have done this on several bulkheads we are refinishing, with great results. Using epoxy as an adhesive, along with a solid laminate means no more water worries. Do you worry about your kitchen countertops?

I just noticed this is an old, revived thread. I thought I would post anyway, just in case someone could benefit...

Here's to swimmin' with bowlegged women!
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Old 12-07-2009, 07:49   #11
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............I knew their was something (else ) I meant to finish off

Thanks for the reminder folks..........
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:32   #12
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The vinyl will look smoother and better if you use the foam backed stuff. You can create trim for the corners by cutting strips which follow the curves, then folding over and stitching both sides, then glue on.
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Old 12-07-2009, 09:37   #13
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The foam breaks down due to heat in a a few years and turns to dust, so be aware of that.
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Old 12-07-2009, 10:25   #14
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Foam breakdown? yeah, I am aware of that one .............a slightly longer job than I anticipated to remove and replace - with non foam backed vinyl......mainly because I have a habit of sayng "whilst I am doing that, it makes sense to..........."

I won't say I am now an expert on vinyling - but a lot better than when I started

And cheers for the stitching idea - hadn't thought of that , a couple of small bits which still need to be done (my trademark ) where that might work well

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