Or when you learn the difference between epoxy and antifouling paint
Just the antifouling left…
So we were done with our seven coats of epoxy and, “only”, had to apply the antifouling. Two coats of primer, three coats of antifouling that is, but no mixing to do, no sticky sleeve to change every so often, no time pressure to apply wet on wet: easy-peasy, that’s a week-end’s job at most, fingers in the nose!
Devil is in the details, or in the tech sheets…
Well, not so fast did we learn from the spec sheet: unlike epoxy, recoat time for primer and antifouling (at least for our selected brand Jotun) was 8 hours this time (6 min. according to the rep we called to double-check), and actually primer needed to be mixed and left to settle for 30 minutes before painting! It doesn’t take long to calculate that there are not that many coats you can do in a day, in fact 2 is the absolute maximum if you start the first one at 8-10am and the second around 4pm (with a sunset around 5:15pm). Conclusion: two days were not going to be enough. To which my competitive self replied “Nervermind! I’ll come up on Friday by myself, will apply one coat of primer and we will have Saturday and Sunday to finish the job with Thomas”. In my immense optimism, I had even invited our friends Elodie and Nigel to partake in the painting mission and celebrate with us afterwards. (No, let’s be realistic for a moment, I knew we needed help, if not physically, at least mentally)
Ready, set, go!
Thomas and Claire had agreed to look after our kids for the week-end so everything was going to be easy! I’m glad to say, by the time Thomas had finished his day’s work and dropped the kids on Friday night, I was done with my first coat of primer after getting some extra sleeves, painting the bottom of the topsides, removing the masking tape, putting new masking tape in place to cover the topsides, mixing the primer, and covering the ~43sqm (yipee!). That is, a good hour after sunset, finishing under the bright light of the blessed streetlamp (which in all other occasions I dearly curse as it disturbs my fragile sleep while staying on the boat).
On Saturday, with four people, the painting job (one coat primer, one coat antifouling) was relatively smooth and I must add that applying a coat of super covering smurf-blue antifouling on a white primer is an experience of an orgasmic nature.
However of course there were unplanned “small” jobs to carry out like fixing the fairing pieces at the bottom of the rudder, sanding the latter and catching up with a coat of primer, etc. which meant that there was not so much time to twiddle our thumbs, and actually I had blisters on both… We had a much deserved glorious dinner at the Parua Bay Tavern and came back early to keep some energy to tackle the next day.
After a poor night’s sleep, I made a late appearance in the saloon to discover Thomas and Elodie, idle having a chat as if nothing was pressing. And I realised our energy-depleted bodies had been offered a rest by a lenient Tāwhirimātea who had opted for an indisputable rainy day. We still sent Thomas up the mast to fix the main halyard which Azur had pulled form the mast a few weeks before, we tidied up and left rainy Whangarei without looking back late that morning, stopping for an amazingly tasty brocoli and choko soup at my beloved Eutopia cafe in Kaiwaka.