5/378 Lead and Paint

Today I stopped in at a tire shop and got a bunch of used tire weights. When I came home I went out to the shed and dug out the old Coleman stove we used when I was a kid. I lit it up once a few years ago to see if it worked and until today that was likely the only time it had been fired up in the last 40 years. I should also mention that I used a very new piece of technology to level the rudder…my iPod Touch with a bubble level program that I installed a few days beforehand. I checked it with a regular level and it was dead-on. Really old stuff and really new stuff 🙂

Filled it with gas, pumped it up and it started up just fine. I loaded a bunch of lead weights into an old cast iron frying pan, put it on the stove, opened all the doors to the garage and stood outside with a fire extinguisher and waited. It didn’t take too long for the lead to melt. I put on a cotton glove and two leather gloves, coveralls and heavy boots, Just in case I did something stupid I wanted a little protection.

When the lead was all melted I poured it into the hole previously routed in the rudder. I had also screwed a backing piece of 1/4″ plywood just in case the lead burned through the bottom of the rudder. The wood smoked and it scorched the plywood pretty good but didn’t burn through. I had also placed a big tin pizza sheet under the rudder to contain any lead that may have escaped. Here are some shots…

This was something I have been nervous about doing for a long time so it was good to get it done without mishap. You have to have a lot of respect for metal that hot!

After supper Terry came over to inspect the paint job and after giving his approval helped roll the boat over and put it into the bunks I built. I put some carpet on the bunks just before Terry arrived so our timing was perfect. Inspired by the compliments I started painting when he left and finished painting the underside of the decking pieces and also put a coat of paint into the bulkheads. I’ll see if they need another coat tomorrow. If not, I’ll epoxy the deck covers to the hull and start priming and painting the cockpit, anchor well and engine slop well.

I also bought a Makita 1902 planer today to use for tapering the mast.It will be slow going but I am sure it will get the job done.


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Filed under Assembly, Materials, Painting, Tools

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