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>> Home > Boat Building Blogs > Range Safety Launch?
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Range Safety Launch? Print Booklet
Author: NPJ   Posts: 8   Photos: 30   Subscribers: 3   Views: 1784   Responses: 76   |   Most recent posts shown first   (Show oldest first)
Spraying Again....... - Posted: 25th Oct 2018
Well had a break of a few weeks, now back on the job.

So now have a Red Oxide boat rather than Yellow one………………

Although these next stages are a bit ‘ samey’, I have learnt a few things as it happens.

For example, I had put three coats of the Halfords filler/primer on a couple of days before I had a break. Now when I left it all looked dry, well covered and ‘solid’. When I came back to it some weeks later the longer drying period had shown up some gaps.

Well not gaps actually but ‘mouths’ where tissue I had overlapped had pulled apart slightly. Interesting, easily fixed with some 240 grit sanding, showing that the drying period is longer than it would appear. At least for filler/primer which is a much thicker substance than just spray paint.

With the sanding, I had not appreciated the difference between the grades say from 240 upwards (or is it downwards) as my experience was with doorframes and floorboards. For the stage I am at, 240 and 400 seem very effective and leave a good surface. What I did find was how important dust becomes………………

The sandpaper rides on it (the powdery dust) and so becomes much less effective and I found brushing with a thin 2 inch brush worked well, using the vacuum cleaner to clear up later. I did try blowing it off with the heat gun but that put the dust up in the air too much. It is my intention to try ‘wet and dry’ approach for later coats and looking for a better answer when it comes to finishing coats.

Another interesting discovery was coverage per rattle can.
It may be my ‘beginner’ technique, but it seems to take a lot of paint.

On this size of boat hull, 44inches (112cm) by 14 inches (36 cm), it took a 500ml rattle can of yellow filler/primer for three coats. For two coats of the red primer it took the whole of a 300ml can.

Also discovered, using these ‘rattle cans’ for the first time, that the primer on its own comes out differently to the filler primer. This unsettled me for a minute or so but appreciate may be due to the different density so will be aware next time.

Another issue that became obvious was…………..I must improve my ‘masking off’ !

So that is it so far. Next stage is - going to buy a couple more cans for the finishing coats, do a bath test, mark the white line point, more sanding down and then start applying the finishing coats.

Any helpful comments will be much appreciated.


Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by boaty on the 28th Oct 2018
Hi Doug Red primer certainly is porus and does need some protection when used on a wooden hull. The only exception to this is when the hull is plastic then plastic primer can be used.
It adheres better than the standard primer and is readily available from the likes of Halfords etc.

I have used this on my Italeri P.T 109 and is still good seven years on.

Response by RNinMunich on the 28th Oct 2018
Agreed Boaty 👍
With a plastic or glass fibre hull it's a slightly different kettle of fish.
However I'm still wary of the primer absorbing moisture.🤔
Sealing with a matt or silk lacquer seems to give an extra knot or so as well😉
But here we were discussing wooden hulls.
Cheers, Doug 😎
Response by NPJ on the 29th Oct 2018
Just to feel comfortable I am going to go with a matt sealer of some sought............

Sticking and Spraying - Posted: 15th Sep 2018
This is the situation as of this week.
I now have a yellow boat!
Now out of communication for ten days ish.........
Shed loads of stuff learned during this part of the project.
EziKote great stuff to use.
Matting easier to apply than imagined.

Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by RNinMunich on the 16th Sep 2018
Sorry, didn't seem like it somehow 😲
I'll shut up and leave you in peace.
Ciao, Doug 😎
Response by cormorant on the 18th Sep 2018
Good to see someone else is using Halfords shake and rattle. I often use it as a primer/filler and a top coat. Excellent results.
Response by RNinMunich on the 18th Sep 2018
Ain't got no 'Alfords in Germany 😭
But the hull is looking good Neville,👍
Now Coating and Matting - Posted: 8th Sep 2018
On to Coating and Matting. (as well as sanding!)

Now have at least finished all the stripping.
Then did the ‘bright light in the hull bit’ to look for areas that needed patching.

The major problem area was in the bow and that did not receive the light as it is a totally blanked off compartment. However, it was obvious from the outside anyway so, could I assume it was the only leak?

Decided to put a fine matt over the whole hull, not deck, just to be sure of best chance of success. I can imagine what will be said here if it still leaks after all this!

I had ordered some supplies ready for the next stage and drew up a plan view of the boat to help think through layout of electrics and other items.

Made my usual mistakes about size.

Some fittings purchased too small………However, never too large now that’s interesting.

Some materials purchased too large. Now have a life’s worth of Resin……(when does it ‘go off’ by?) Also have a lounge floors worth of tissue matting!

Also Sandpaper. Now there is a mine field. So now I know a bit more about that and which way the numbers work! When I forgot to put the mask on, I had some of the crispest 'bogies' in years.............. No images posted!

On the plus side, although I never wanted to get into this stripping sanding, filling sanding, sealing sanding, matting sanding, painting sanding, painting, sanding bit…………….

I now feel I started out with someone’s boat I had bought and now it has become “my boat” for real!

I am at the stage now where I have put some filler in and applied the first coat of Eze-Kote from DeLuxe Materials
To use Eze-kote read stuff from RNinMunich on this blog or the’ leaking boat’ thread. Washes out of the brushes very easily.

There is such as this ..... Youtube link - watch?v=yP05qv3QtUk

RNinMunich or Colin H. and the like have bits of extra comment and experience that is always very helpful.

BTW, after that finer sanding before first coat, I did the dust down and vacuuming bit but it still felt a bit ‘chalky’ so I gave it a wipe with Methylated Spirits. Now I realise that has water in it, so if anything goes wrong it could be blamed on that.................

Having left the first coat to dry I started to cut out the light matt to apply after the next sanding.

The matting I have is called Glassfibre Surface Tissue EGlass from FibreGlass Direct. A part of Tricel Composites (NI) Limited. Available internationally in lengths from a metre upwards, it is quite fine in weave so we shall see what happens.

I have left quite a wide margin at the moment but may reduce that when I have tried using it!

This is another first for me so plenty of room for mistakes...............

Will need to cover with the matt in stages as I cannot get around all the boat without changing its position.

Going for the bottom of the vessel and stern board first as I figure they are going to be easier than some of the other bits. Then will leave that to cure before moving the boat.

Really worried about the joins/overlaps and how well I will cope with those, not to mention the curved bit!

Started to look at electrics and layout for a bit of a change.

I will post again when I have had the first battles with the matting!


Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by Donnieboy on the 9th Sep 2018
After the application of fibreglass or matting i usually put on a second coat of EZ-Cote.After drying lightly sand.Overlaps I find easy to level up with another coat of EZ-Cote.I have been using the same bottle for 3 years.That stuff really stretches.All the wrong size fittings can always be used on other projects or modify them to suit yours.
Response by NPJ on the 9th Sep 2018
Thanks for the encouragement Donnieboy.

Hope to move it forward today to the tissue bit in the way you are suggesting.

Fittings may end up in a selection bag on Ebay!

Still Stripping......With Care! - Posted: 2nd Sep 2018
Starting to feel a little better about this.

Still many things that can go wrong on me, but for anyone else who has not done this before, try it. If I can do it anyone can!

This second period of scrapping has been much easier. Twice the area covered in half the time taken in the first session.

Yes I have left some of the ‘twiddley bits’ for later and going for the larger areas first.

I am hoping to get away with leaving the deck to a rub down and re-paint.

What has become more obvious as I progress is the need for space and preparation when using a heat gun. Completely invisible, a lot of heat is generated ( mine can produce 600c but I am using it on 450c) and it travels a surprising distance.

I found I did not clear the floor enough or allow a large enough clear area around me.

Others may manage in a very small space, but I was surprised by how much paint/material there was coming off with each push of the tool. This fell to the floor and smoked…………

When pointing the gun away with one hand whilst scrapping with the other it is easy to lose track of where the gun is pointing!

Having somewhere safe to put the gun down when hot is critical, as is having at least a damp cloth if not more to hand to ‘damp down’.

I will not post more on this until the stripping and sanding are finished, but I am surprised as to how satisfying the work is yet it looks so challenging at the outset.



Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by RNinMunich on the 4th Sep 2018
That was exactly my impression Colin, your call was a pleasant surprise.
Stay in touch, Cheers, Doug 😎
Response by NPJ on the 5th Sep 2018
Oh thank you kind Sir, I am really over come.............

A lot of information in that Post. Will be really helpful.

I concur, really bought a 'pig in a poke', 'donkey in a sack' or whatever.

I will look later today, but doubt access being available to the bow from inside.

Starting Monday, I am out of action for almost two weeks so will try and crack on now.

Dropping my 'Jazzed up' ideas means a rethink on the electrics. Will look there for light relief whilst rubbing away!

All the best my friend.
Response by NPJ on the 7th Sep 2018
No way through to the bow from inside as first compartment is completely blocked off.

I am thinking some 'putty' then tissue and EsiKote or resin for the whole of that area both sides.

As the clean off progresses, thinking about general layout of the 'bits' and wiring layout.

'The Stripper' - Posted: 1st Sep 2018
It seems that the proper procedure for fixing the leak and then moving on to “the good stuff” is to strip all the paint off and see what we have.

So the heat gun has been obtained ( I already had the fire extinguisher..) as amongst other reasons there would be less dust.

Time for a few tentative steps. Now at this point I am not only well out of my comfort zone, but up to my knees in my “slough of despond”……………………….

After all, I bought a boat to sail this month and so far I have drilled holes in it and am now about to set it alight!

First image shows efforts with lower heat and using the tools supplied and the next two show temperature taken up to 450 degrees c and a ¾ inch chisel used to remove paint. A much better outcome.

Now who suggested that would be the answer I wonder???

45 minutes spent to get this far and although I did remove the plastic props ( being replaced by brass anyway) I wondered if I should remove prop shafts? I have used a bit of a deflector to reduce the heat anyway.

On the final images, I wonder whether I am down far enough to start sanding or to go further.

Now that I have started I hope to complete at least the general stripping tomorrow.


Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by RNinMunich on the 1st Sep 2018
Evenin Neville, So far so good👍
If you are down to the primer you can start sanding. I started with 150 grit (80 on the cutter where there was 'inches' of filler!) and worked up (down?) to 600 grit Tamiya Sponges before priming.
The primer doesn't react much to the heat as it's mostly fine chalk dust or similar. Glad the chisel 'trick' worked for you as well. Cheers, Doug 😎
Forgot to mention: before priming I applied two coats of EzeKote resin.
Sanded that flat with 400 / 600 grit Tamiya sponges used wet. Then primed with grey primer filler. Pics show Sea Scout, Fish Cutter and PTB.
The latter after EzeKoteing and the last with primer.
Bit of a problem............. - Posted: 29th Aug 2018
Well if you have read the “Leaking Boat” thread you will know that my cunning plan to fix the leak failed…………..

Even after drilling holes in the boat (?!?!), pouring in sealer and persuading my ‘assistant’ (I think I am married to her, but it was a long time ago now to be sure) to shake the boat as you would a cocktail shaker to distribute the fluid over the insides (not seen her move like that in thirty years)……………………..Did not do the trick.

Yes I know you told me!

I am now not in a place I wanted to be. No sailing for it this season, facing the prospect of a lot of dust and over-spray and trying to apply skills I do not have.

I am at the edge of my” River of Styx”.

The images show I have reluctantly collected together items I have for stripping paint. The large wire brush I have in my other hand!

So I have had a bit of a go at the ‘red stuff’. Looks like a large area to tackle and then I went to investigate that ‘funny bit’ on the side of the bow.

Well bits of filler flew off in all directions and exposed this crack which I hope you can see to the right of the metal rule.
Could this be the source of the leak?

Well it is two compartments away from where the water collects. On the other hand someone mentioned water passing along the ‘layers?.........

Am I really going to need to strip all the paintwork down to the wood or is there something else I could look for as a clue?

Most of September I will not be able to function much so I will have a good go whilst I can.

It really does seem to suggest I have “bought a pup”.
All the best.

Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by RNinMunich on the 30th Aug 2018
Hi Neville, yep, only took about a half hour per hull 😊
If adjustable use the gun on medium heat and don't get too close or too long on the same spot or you'll scorch the wood.
As soon as the paint starts to bubble or flake lift it with a not too sharp but not blunt 3/4" chisel. The gun will blow it off in chunks. I found that the chisel was more effective than a normal scraper. Work the gun from side to side just ahead of the chisel.
After that I shone a very bright light inside the hull, which instantly showed up the holes and thin spots. I ringed them all with a felt tip and they then received extra attention and fibreglass strengthening. That'll fix your leak wherever the heck it is😊 Eeezy peezy😉
So - Tally Ho matey! Cheers, Doug 😎
PS I didn't have to 'scrap' either boat 😁😁
PPS I love the embedded insect fossils in your hull! Or are they cave paintings?? 😁
Response by NPJ on the 30th Aug 2018
So heat gun should arrive tomorrow.....................Oh I do like buying new toys!

Given that I am now going to destroy all the decals, should I be changing the number on the hull and would that mean a change from Blue to Black?

I should not be asking this, but looking it up. However, you have it in your head.

Enjoyed the 'woodies' bit elsewhere.

Response by RNinMunich on the 30th Aug 2018
I believe it should be black Neville.
I would also correct the number.
All the Fireboat and similar builders on the site know where to get the decals.
Check out the Build Blogs / Discussions.
I've started printing my own on adhesive Decal Paper, but I'm just like that 😉 Cheers, Doug 😎
"issues" - Posted: 11th Aug 2018
For those not following the Leaking Boat thread. We have a 'hitch'.

Model took on water whilst in bath trials. See first image.

No obvious point so going to need to do some stripping.

Plan is when visitors leave I will post re the electrics and sound whilst having a go at the sanding, sealing and painting bit!

Upwards and onwards.


Attached Photos - Click To View Large
Range Safety Launch? - Posted: 6th Aug 2018
The ‘Range Safety Launch’………….

I am now the owner of this boat. Wooden, good hull lines and hull paint work but needing to be finished. I am told that it looks like it started life as a kit, but has had considerable modification to at least the above deck layout and detail.

Advice is that it could be a rather simplified Range Safety Launch, but maybe I can use a little ‘artistic licence’ and just make it look interesting and capable.

There are two main reasons for sharing this project.
1. I will undoubtedly need guidance
2. Maybe some of the information will assist others

The hull is 44 inches ( 112cm ) long and 14 inches (36cm ) wide, it has two brushed MFA Torpedo 800 motors………. and weighs in currently at 15 lbs 4ozs (6.91 kgs).

It is large enough for me to be able to work on reasonably comfortably and apart from the cabin/upper deck areas to be ‘improved’, I aim to introduce sound, lighting, active radar sweep, search light, together with maybe a deck hoist and water /fire monitor appliance.

At my age it is difficult to tell the difference between wishful thinking and dementing……

However, the prime aim is to try and achieve at least some of this whilst having the boat usable during the current ‘season’.

There is so much knowledge, good will and help available on this site that even before I touched a thing, information came pouring in.

If anyone feels like making a contribution then please just ‘pile in’.

Have ordered some parts so next time should have something to show.

Attached Photos - Click To View Large

Response by NPJ on the 3rd Sep 2018
First Trekil........

Thanks for that info. It all helps.

I am still unsure of which way to go yet as I would like it to be a reasonably short refurb.

Will watch for yours and be back to you with more queries I am sure.

Now Doug.........Yes I could go for those colours or I could just cover the whole thing in 'dazzle' and that would hide a multitude of sins...................

To do it 'properly' there will be issues with the doors/hatches . The two cabin tops I can probably make up curved but the back bay will be an issue.

Its all down to time really and I was not expecting to get in this deep with the structure.

The extra 'fittings' I am not too bothered about, just thought it would add interest.

I will have another look at it as I was/am not that comfortable with making it a 'mish mash' but would like to make the structural work as easy as possible.

As I will not be able to work on the boat during the day tomorrow I thought I would start to draw out a layout for the electrical bits and pieces. Have loads of stuff from 'Action' to play with.

BTW you have forgotten to tell me how well I have done with it half stripped and no real fire......

Do you think I can get away with leaving the deck? Assuming that is it does not leak after all this effort!

All the best.

Response by RNinMunich on the 3rd Sep 2018
Hi Neville,
I recognise the 'I want it all and I want it now syndrome' cropping up again😉 Wev'e been down this road before haven't we!?
You don't have any "structural' problems.
The original builder simply cheated and covered over the 'back bay' instead of fitting it out.
And - Why do you want to mess with the cabin tops?
To get the boat going for some fun just leave the superstructure like that for now and think about it and fiddle with it in the winter.
The deck looks fine from the photos. Just flat off with some 1000/1500 grit wet & dry and give it a spray of medium sea grey and finish with satin or matt varnish. After you've fixed and repainted the hull.
If you do all we've said to fix the hull, and apply the fix up to the joint of hull and deck there will be as good as no chance that the deck will leak.

When all is said and done YOU saw the boat before you bought it and YOU had a specific purpose in mind apparently. Namely; some quick fun.
Soooo - fix the hull, have some fun learning to drive it, and leave the fiddly bits and embellishments until the 'closed season'.
Then you can deliberate and decide if you want to restore it as an RSL or convert it into something more exotic.
Looking forward to your cogitations on the electrical layout😉
What Action bits are you thinking of using?
BTW: if you had a fire at all with the heat gun either you have it too hot, turn it down to about 300 -350°C, or you're hanging about too long in one place. The gun should only be just hot enough to start the paint surface bubbling up. ATB Doug
Response by NPJ on the 3rd Sep 2018

Re fire, when I passed over one place on the Hull there was a pop and a flash plus smell but nothing more. It woke me up though....

The small fire was when I set alight to the foam I had put between the supports and the boat!