As I work through my boat treating the steel and building the interior
furniture I reflect on how I wish the boat should have been built.
Abrasive blasting is clearly the best method, followed by the application of a suitable quality paint system. However, while the exterior of a steel boat can be properly blasted the interior
is far more difficult.
In practical terms I really wish that my previous builder
had left cutouts in frames and stringers so that any water could drain away freely. Wherever water has been able to pool rust has formed. If it was salt water
it was bad rust. Just goes straight through the paint. I spend my time drilling drain holes.
The second thing that I wish had been done is to use a thicker coating. My preference (if I had been building) would have been to use Sigmaweld as a primer, followed by two pack epoxy paint and two pack polyurethane
. If different coloured paints were used it would be possible to determine the condition of the coating visually.
I would suspect that if the steel was treated with phosphoric acid and then primed before being welded that some of the abrasive blasting could be avoided. This could be of use in the interior where it is almost impossible to achieve a first class blast.
The third technique that I wish had been used is the extensive use of stainless steel (above the waterline and inside) where ever paint can be chipped or abraded, water can pool or anything needs to be attached to the boat.
And finally I wish that all frames and stringers had been predrilled for the mounting of interior furniture, and water lines and buttock marks had been left on the frames (just small grinder marks would have done).
These actions would have made a far better hull
and made the overall process quicker and easier.