April 2012: Bulkheads, fuel tanks and pilothouse


    Forward hanging locker bulkhead, forward of pilothouse steering station. Marking to surgically remove the outboard side of this bulkhead. Will scab in a new one and tab to hull. Will also add an access hole for the deck fitting that is just aft and otherwise completely inaccesible. Will be adding better wiring conduits through the bottom of this locker as well.


    Port diesel tank. 36 gallons all on it's side. We need to pull it to inspect the bottom as both tanks are sitting on flat plywood and likely have some corrosion underneath.


    Thanks to Clay for helping wrestle this out of the boat.


    Lowering to the driveway for eventual repair.


    Wow, gross. Not only is there no air space under the tank, there is also no drainage for condensate and other water that finds its way in here.


    Underside of tank. This will need to get cut off and have a new bottom welded on. At least it's only mild steel. Then a little sandblast and powdercoat and she'll be as good as new.


    The view from inside. A pretty hokey looking baffle and some thick rusty sludge on the bottom. This tank rusted from the outside in.


    We had to remove the inside rails to verify the method of attachment from the pilothouse to the deck. Looks like lots of #14 screws every few inches and then fiberglass tabbing on the outside. Should be a breeze to remove. There is a lip molded into the deck that will make locating the new trunk pieces even easier. Well done Mr. Gardner.


    Removing teak bung plugs. Lots of them. First round is to drill out all the bungs with a brad point bit, then follow up with one I have custom ground to cut flat-faced once there is a "pilot" hole left over from the bradpoint.


    Then Rachel follows up with an awl and scrapes out any remaining wood and cleans up the screw slot or phillips "+" for removal. Then we do it all over again for the next piece.


    I've alrady hauled this hatch up and out of the floor about 5,000 times. The boat and I needed to take a day to simplify some things.


    There we go, now I won't wake up in the middle of the night with the floorboard sliding towards me knocking over jars of diesel.


    Goal for the month of confirming the construction method of the pilothouse! A nice simple plywood lap that gets rounded and then tabbed on the outside. Should be quick and easy to replicate. We'll find out what we overlooked soon enough.