Bottom Glassing – Epoxy Application

The next step in the process is to apply fiberglass and epoxy resin to the bottom panel of the hull. One of the important tricks here is to add enough epoxy to saturate the fiberglass (and turn it transparent – white or light gray is bad) without floating it onto of a pool of epoxy and making something that is heavy and weak.

Fiberglass laid out ready for epoxy.
Fiberglass laid out ready for epoxy.

The good news is that the bottom curves away and down from center (when the hull is inverted) which makes pooling much easier to control.

One of the other challenges is having a nice transition from the fiberglass over plywood to just epoxy resin over plywood. The folks down at Chesapeake Light Craft worked this out nicely.

By adding a curve of filler along the edge of the bottom panel the fiberglass fabric curves up to meet the joint, and after it is partially cured it is easy to cut away the excess fabric.

After Epoxy application
After Epoxy application

Once the epoxy is cured the transition point can be cleaned up with a block plane. The result is a very lean transition that will vanish when additional layers of resin are added.

This is a great learning (or in my case, refresher) for working with epoxy saturated wood construction.

It’s really cool that things I learned in shop class, decades ago, are still there, still useful. Our shop teacher was convinced that us college bound types had no manual talent, and he tried anyhow. Thanks.