Rampage Update 2017

Designs for inboard or outboard power

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slug
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby slug » Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:22 pm

Denon; I have great luck with a CP 8" random orbital air sander. It seems to smooth everything out nicely. Problem is it uses a lot of air.

Doug

JimmY
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby JimmY » Tue Aug 15, 2017 7:39 pm

I just know that I had a dip in the sides at the scarf joints and at the screw heads. It took a lot of time and epoxy to level things out, since you can't add fillers I=on a bright finish. Sounds like your sanding skills are better than mine (even with all the practice I've had!).
-Jim
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Denon Osterman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Denon Osterman » Thu Aug 24, 2017 1:44 pm

Hey Jimmy,

That's weird to hear - I'm the exact opposite, I always have a high point at my screw heads and joints. I wonder if it's different types of wood / fasteners? Either way I did get another chance to re sand the entire hull - and it will likely take quite a few coats of "clear" to level things out regardless (spoiler alert for below) - but hopefully everything works out!

Doug, where do you find discs for your 8" random orbital? I've only ever seen the 5" ones that are pretty commonplace.

In terms of my progress this past weekend, apologies for the delay - I think it's one of the most annoying weekends I've ever had so subconsciously I was probably less anxious to share than normal! The main goal was to get the mahogany stained...and that's mostly been accomplished. My general plan was to mask the mahagony and cover the white ash (and spruce coamings) with some epoxy, let the epoxy set, and use it as a "mask" for the stain. I used this for my sides and my memory says it worked well, but maybe I'm mis remembering, because it certainly didn't this time!

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The above shows an area where we've masked everything off for epoxy, as well as label any spots we dripped epoxy (the squares). I also took this time to test out some new stain concentrations, and finally got one I like...it's very dark, but looks more "brown" under the epoxy, and particularly once you add sunlight!

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The above shows the stain tests - keep in mind this is late at night with poor lighting and a bad camera, so things look much more "black" than "dark brown".

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I also went to test the masking tape - a rebutable brand associated with amphibians - and found it was totally useless. See below...

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This is when I started to worry about my epoxy and, making sure it had set up enough that it wouldn't run, I peeled away the masking there to make sure that it wouldn't "cure" onto the tape.

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That picture pretty much sums it up. Not only had the tape failed to do any sort of masking whatsoever, it had also ripped up my mahogany veneers in multiple places! I cannot express how angry I was to see that all of our work masking things so carefully...had just resulted in messy epoxy work, and damaged veneer. :evil: :evil: :evil:

Needless to say almost the entire rest of the weekend was spent...sanding. I had to grab a 'non random' orbital sander to sand right up against the strips, and still managed to leave a noticeable gouge along the length of each one where I'd had to take away the epoxy. I tried my best to level everything out as best I could and re longboard the whole boat, so hopefully only the keenest of critics will notice that the mahagony "dips" a bit where it touches any white ash.

Last but not least, we had to stain *extremely* carefully, as I'd of course nicked the epoxy covering the ash in a number of places, which meant it was no longer protected. I thought about re touching up the ash but worried if I got even one drip of epoxy on the mahogany veneer, I'd just have to start all over again, so decided to take it slow and steady with the staining.

The result after one coat is pretty uneven looking, though by the end of the weekend as the stain dried more uniformly things looked a little better. I'm going to add a second, much more diluted coat to blend everything together more and fill in any cracks, let it dry fully, and then sand away any bleeding on the white ash strips. The below shot shows what I mean:

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Here you can see that the 'border' line of stain right against the ash strip - which is fully dry - looks lighter than the more wet, black stain next to it (which has just been applied). A second coat and some dry time should fix all of that. There's also some bleeding of the stain into the white ash...that will have to get sanded clean very carefully before I epoxy everything and seal it there forever.

Last but not least though, a progress shot from this week -

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From this far away, all of those little imperfections disappear, and the boat looks nice! It's still noticeably "wet" in some places, and looks much blacker in the photos than real life...it's almost equally dark, but in a much warmer way, in person. Either way I think the highlights of the ash stripes will turn out very nice, and with a bit more clean up work and another coat of stain, it should look good up close as well!

Once the epoxy goes on it should show it's more "brown" nature as well, so hopefully in a few days when I've gotten the stain and some epoxy on there it's all looking much better! Otherwise any comments / suggestions / concerns all appreciated...and please remember that painters tape does NOT mask epoxy, or water based stain, at ALL...even the expensive stuff :(

Cheers,

Denon

slug
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby slug » Thu Aug 24, 2017 2:28 pm

Deno; I use automotive finishing tapes, usually 3M. The 8" discs are Norton, again available from good automotive paint suppliers.

Boat is looking really good in spite of your concerns!
Doug

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hoodman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby hoodman » Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:47 pm

I'm sure that stain bleeding onto the ash is frustrating! But man, looking at the big picture on your boat, I love where you are going with this thing! It is really stunning. The striping is very tasteful.

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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby DSR » Thu Aug 24, 2017 5:55 pm

Hi Denon, just wanted to stop by and say that I REALLY like the color contrast you did on the Rampage! It really looks great like that!

I'm not familiar with stains, but I was under the impression that one of the attributes of stains was to penetrate the wood and "soak" Into it? Please correct me if I'm way off, but wouldn't that make it extremely difficult to be able to mask the wood to get a clean line like you would with paint no matter what you would mask it off with? Or no? I'm really curious about this because I'll run into the same deal if I decide to bright finish the center foredeck on the TNT.

Thanks Denon,
Dave
DSR Performance - Home of yet another jet TNT build :D
Codename "Just A Little....."
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DSR
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby DSR » Thu Aug 24, 2017 6:17 pm

Ahh, I looked at the pics again and it was actually the epoxy on the ash that leeched under the tape. Sorry for my mistake. That does definitely look like the tape failed. It looks like the epoxy that leeched under the tape was on the surface of the wood wasn't it?
DSR Performance - Home of yet another jet TNT build :D
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Mr Hot Rod
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Mr Hot Rod » Fri Aug 25, 2017 5:49 pm

Just an idea to work around the bleeding problem.
It might be simpler to bond a 3/4" wide x 1/4" thick ash strip with 1/8" rounded-over edges to your existing ash strips.
The deck would be stained and epoxied as usual. The ash 'cover' strips could be finished off the boat and epoxied or glued once the deck is finished. This would provide a feature line and a 3D effect.

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Denon Osterman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Denon Osterman » Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:57 pm

Hey everyone,

Well, got a little more done this weekend, and of course took lots of pictures!

Thank you as always to everyone for the kind words - Dave, you're correct that tape doesn't usually mask stain, which is why you do an "inverse
" procedure...epoxy the parts you *don't* want stained, and then if any stain does get on them it's very easy to just rub it off. The only reason mine didn't work is that, in sanding off the excess epoxy that bled through everywhere, I also nicked the white ash itself, ruining the protective seal and allowing some stain on.

All of that being said, I managed to clean up the strips pretty good with a file and some patience. See the two below photos as a comparison of before and after:

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Before filing, there's still some bleeding on the edges.

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After filing, everything's nice and clean now!

https://scontent.fybz2-2.fna.fbcdn.net/ ... e=5A205F29

Compare that last shot to the one from last week - much cleaner!

Now before I did all of this cleaning, I did put on a second coat of stain - so you'll notice there's no weird colour variation in the stain as well (see above shot vs same shot last week). The final, two coats of stain and following cleanup of the strips is shown below - and it looks nice!

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The next step was to epoxy everything. I put on two coats in succession to completely cover the stain, as the first coat always tends to "absorb" into the wood more than cover it, if that makes sense. Infuriatingly, the first coat of epoxy actually picked up some stain, and I had to wipe down the areas by the ash strips as any epoxy that got on them showed a deep brown colour! This was all fixed by the second coat, which no longer picked up anything. Below is a quick shot after the first coat - note the dry area by the ash strips - and unfortunately I forgot to take one after the second coat when it looked all pretty!

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The epoxy does help a lot with the colour, though. The almost greenish, charcoal black of the pure stain fades into a nice brown when the epoxy comes on - and the sunlight really changes things as well!

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The area under the epoxy on this test stick looks more brown than the exposed stain (which looks quite black).

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Once you put the same sample stick in the sun, the dark brown shines through - it's a big difference! I particularly like the very subtle red / purple tones in the brown.

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This shot is of the boat, not in the sun, but with epoxy - note how the stain looks more brown than it does in previous, stain only photos (i.e. before the epoxy was applied).

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Last but not least, the deck in the sunlight. The red / purple tinge is more apparent here, though part of that is because there's sanding dust on the surface which is messing with the white balance. Still a beautiful colour, and should look particularly nice once the varnish starts going on. A quick note here - If you're mixing your own stain, test strips are worthwhile. And, make sure to show your test strip in the sunlight where your boat will be...my interior photos of it show it being very dark, and I would have chosen a lighter colour if I hadn't gone into the sun...where the color changes drastically.


After getting the epoxy on, the next step is sanding...and I managed to get things fully ready for the next coat of epoxy! In a 3 step process, I got the transom and deck all ready for the next layer of epoxy. First, belt sanding on the transom matched with random orbit sanding the deck. This is because the transom was quite rough and totally unstained, so heavy removal was both required and not dangerous. But on the deck, I'd only gotten two layers built up, and it was already quite flat. The second stage was to long board both the deck and transom, to get everything nice and straight - and the final, third stage was to random orbit again with a finer grit paper (80 to start, 120 to finish). Each type of sanding does very different things as many already know. In this case I was looking to actually level the ransom, so I used the belt sander, which agressively sands until you're relatively level. I also wanted to both scuff the entire surface of the deck, and it was relatively flat, so the random orbit was the best for getting the whole surface scuffed, as it will still hit low points relatively well. The long boarding helps get everything very flat - much flatter than either the belt sander or random orbital will - but it leaves scratch marks. Finally, the second pass with the random orbit sander is very light and even...it just removes the scratches from the longboard, without affect the overall height of the surface anywhere.

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There's a shot of the first pass with the random orbit on the deck...you can still make out the veneer planks relatively well, because the epoxy seeps into the gap between them more than it does on their surface.

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There's a shot of the deck after longboarding - you can see the scratches in the deck from the linear sanding movement, as well as the "twisties" of epoxy dust that it makes.

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After the second pass with the random orbit sander, there's no more scratches, and just epoxy "dust" on the deck surface.

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That's where it stands now, notice how much "greyer" the surface is from the previous shot, now that the whole boat has gone through two more stages of sanding (long boarding + second pass with the random orbit).

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Final shot for this week - washed down to get all the epoxy dust off after sanding. It will dry over the week and be ready for some more epoxy next weekend! I might not quite make it to varnish this summer based on night temperatures, as it's getting cold fast - but hopefully I can get a few coats on before it's all said and done.

Cheers,

Denon

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hoodman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby hoodman » Tue Aug 29, 2017 4:46 pm

That is stunning! Looks like you got it all worked out.

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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Nova SS » Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:27 pm

Looks great Denon :)

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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby JimmY » Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:08 pm

8)
-Jim
Nothing says poor craftsmanship like wrinkles in your duct tape!

Denon Osterman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Denon Osterman » Tue Sep 05, 2017 1:37 pm

Well, the weather sure decided to get bad...and fast. It was so cold and wet over the long weekend I could barely do any work (it was down to 0 on Thursday night!!!). Unless things take a nice up swing for September, I'll be mostly stopped in my tracks here as it's just too cold to epoxy or varnish! I'll likely bite the bullet and run the heaters ($$$) for one or two more nights to finalize the epoxy everywhere but I might then stop and leave the varnish and finishing touches for next summer.

All of that being said, I owe everyone some progress pictures of the boat with some brightwork on it!

There's more pictures in the original facebook thread, but a few highlights. This is with 3 coats of epoxy on now (2 in succession, plus sanding, plus tis third one...there will be more sanding and likely 2-3 more coats to go until it's "flat"!). I took it while it was still drying but it should give a good idea!

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It's hard to get good pictures given the lighting, etc... but you can get the idea of where it stands.

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A closeup, hinting at the colour underneath.

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The transom is now "equal" with the decking, in the sense that they now both need 2-3 coats of epoxy and then varnish to be finished. This means I'm doing them both at the same time for each coat, i.e. for this third coat of epoxy I did the entire deck and transom as one.

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A progress shot - it looks nearly jet black, super glossy and plasticky...not ideal for a boat. But as the varnish goes on and the sun comes out, it should look great!

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A little close up of the drying epoxy around the edge of the boat. It's cool because you can see big features (the dip lining the white ash edge, from where I sanded off the epoxy that bled through the masking tape), and small features (little ripples and dots in the surface), and get a real sense for how uneven things are once you get some clear coat on them! This will take another few coats of everything to level out so it's more in line with my expectations.

That's it for now - hopefully I can get another few coats done next weekend and the weekend after, but the weather is making it hard!

Cheers,

Denon

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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby mrintense » Tue Sep 05, 2017 2:25 pm

Denon,

The glossiness is going to really pop once you get it all smoothed out. That dark color is very eye-catching! :) :)

It seems alien to me to hear you talking about cold weather up there. Down to )! Not to be rubbing it in anyone's noses but we are still in mid 90's down here is Texas. I guess that's what people mean when they say Texas has two seasons, hot and not hot! Although I am no fan of cold weather, I do wish it could be cooler. :D
Carl
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Denon Osterman
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Re: Rampage Update 2017

Postby Denon Osterman » Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:14 pm

Hi Everyone,

Apologies for the delay in getting back to you all - I didn't up doing anything last weekend as a party and a film festival kept me in town. I did manage to get up this past weekend and get quite a bit of work done despite the *gorgeous* weather we're now having again...It's actually the nicest weather we've had all summer, by a long shot!

Anyways, by the end of the last update I'd gotten two coats on, sanded 3 different ways, and then put on another coat. This past weekend I did three more passes of sanding (Long board in the "x", longboard in the "y", and then random orbit over everything), and then managed to get on not one, not two, but three more coats of epoxy! Hopefully this brings me almost all the way to the "varnish" stage, but with the way the forecast is looking I'll get another great weekend this weekend and maybe a good one following as well...so I can hopefully get everything nearly ready. I've decided to leave the varnish until all of the structural stuff like seats, motor mounts, etc has been mounted...so that there won't be any more cutting or sanding or spilling on it. So, I'll likely do that first thing next spring, and just try and get the boat fully ready for it by the end of fall.

Some pictures on this week's progress:

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Longboarding really brings out the highs and lows. The drip marks, build up at the edge (and resultant valley just beside it), and even the low points where the screws hold the plywood down along the carling are all visible!

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After all the longboarding, I did a pass with the random orbit sander - this gets rid of the scuff marks and ensures everything has been scuffed, so epoxy can hold on to the surface with equal strength. It certainly looks a lot smoother, but it's just an illusion - that's why long boarding is so important!

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Another comparison shot between the "before and after" of the random orbit. We're only about 50% "smooth" on the right shown by the long board, even though the random orbit gets nearly the entire surface. This is good though - it means we're getting closer!

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The other benefit to random orbit sanding, besides roughing the whole surface so the epoxy sticks even in the "troughs" not touched by the long board, is that it gets rid of all the scratches! I always like to long board to 50% depth (half the boat white) because then you're doing an equal job of building epoxy up, and sanding it down. Once that's done, I go over it in the other direction to ensure it's flat in both X and Y - you can sort of weight which direction is getting more attention as the sanding scratches overwrite each other...a nice criss cross means they're roughly equal. Then, I just use the random orbit *just* until the sanding scratches go away, or until the surface is marked for adhesion anywhere else. These are just my ways of ensuring I do a roughly equal blend of sanding in all directions, and without removing too much material anywhere!

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Once everything was sanded fully, it's time for a wash and dry before the epoxy goes on. I always just vacuum everything with the shop vac, and then use a towel with some water (no soap). Then, leave to air dry! You can clearly see which parts are wet and which are dry in the picture, and then once everything is "dry" based on the weather and temperature i give it some more time just to be sure.

Once the boat is all dried and ready for epoxy, I put on 3 coats in one day according to the Ark Composites instructions of waiting ~4 hours between coats. I roll them all on in 5 sections - front left, front right, side and back left, side and back right, back middle and transom. It goes very quick with a roller - only about 30 minutes to coat the whole boat, and even faster if someone else is mixing epoxy for me!

I didn't manage to get any pictures of it fully set (and it always gets smoother as it sets up), but it's already starting to look promising:

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Starting to see the wood! It's looking more and more like a dark stain now, which is beautiful. Note that you can start to see some stuff in the reflection too - though it's still quite wavy.

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After it's starting to set on the transom. Getting more and more like a mirror every day! (You can see the rafters in my shop more clearly than the boat...that's the middle of the rear decking, between the ash strips between the coaming and transom).

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Last but not least, another progress shot, later in the day after I'd just put the third coat on. I had some friends over to help with mixing and the boat is looking darker and richer with every layer!

That's it for this week - I'll probably try and get finished with the epoxy both outside and inside the boat over the next weekend or two if possible. That being said, the floors and the seats have been neglected for a while, so it might be time to try and finish them up first and give everything a really nice clean before the winter.

Thanks everyone!

Denon


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