Making the Most of a Minimal Budget. Contact me at: or on Twitter: @skintsailor

Monday, 18 July 2016

Bottom Scrape

On Saturday it was the annual chore of scraping the bottom free of weed.... and barnacles. So many barnacles. I cleared them all of last year and didn't think the whole bottom would be completely coated again in 12 months, but it was.

But, after a few hours of work in the sweltering heat, Sprite 2 was weed and barnacle free.

I got antifouling paint in the Spring, but yesterday didn't have enough time to clean the hull to a decent enough standard to apply primer and then paint. I'm thinking that Sprite will need to be hauled out for a few days to get that done. Maybe the next early/late high tide cycle I might book some time off work and spend a couple of days doing it. The hard work is done, but I'm  not sure what applying primer and then getting it wet would do to the bond between it and the antifouling.

I'm just wondering the best/quickest solution to get down to a decent substrate for the primer to adhere to. I'm not sure a sander would do it, I'd need something like a sandblaster, an electric scraper, or something like a rotating polisher but fitted with a rough scotch pad instead. I think the ones fitted to angle grinders may be a wee to much on GRP.

I'm almost considering saving up to join a club to get Sprite hauled out for some yard time. It's my birthday next month, maybe if everyone gives me money I can put it towards the cost.....maybe.

One thing I do know is that I'd apply it about an 20-30mm higher than the original application. There was plenty of algae above the original line, so applying it a little higher should stop that.

I also filled in a hole at the bow, where the gel coat had cracked and flaked off, exposing the glass fibre strands underneath.

It was a blistering hot day on Saturday, so I rigged up a tarpaulin as a Sun shade. Even after applying Sun cream I had to keep ducking under it to recover. I also drank about 4 litres of water to keep hydrated.

On Sunday I rested my aching arms. :-)

At least now Sprite will sail, rather than dragging a ton of weed along.


  1. Ooh, I have a bottom scrape coming up!

  2. My arms send you their sympathies. :-) It's a good workout, but the worst things are crawling on the mud and the smell as the barnacles are scraped off. Not the worst experience I've ever had, but pretty close. I need to buy a big sheet of plywood to lie on for next time.