Last week we mentioned that about a year ago Amanda and I, along with my sister and brother-in-law, bought a 40-foot sailboat. The Morgan Ketch (a type of sailboat) is currently at anchor in the pasture of my parents’ farm. We spent less than $10,000 on the project boat, so as you may guess it requires extensive repair work. My brother-in-law, Matt, is shouldering most of the burden as Amanda and I are currently living in Pittsburgh — 200 miles away. The summer weather being almost ideal for work on the boat, I decided to make a day trip of the 3 1/2 hour drive to my parents to put in some sweat equity. Matt had already painstakingly found all the soft parts in the roof of the cabin and cut and chiseled out the rotted parts and replaced the wood.
The next part was to cover the new wood with fiberglass, cover it with resin, let it dry, put in some filler, cover it with resin, let it dry and then repeat the process until the new area is raised slightly higher than the surrounding surface. The process is tedious, painstaking and needs to be accomplished quickly because the resin dries very fast. I said earlier the summer weather was ideal, since working in the winter cold simply sucks. It was rather warm since the two of us were working on top of a boat in the middle of a field with no shade, wearing long pants (fiberglass and bare skin doesn’t mix), respiratory masks and latex gloves.
But it felt good. I like the feeling that was making a physical contribution to this joint venture. I look forward to taking pride in pointing out the areas we prepared when the vessel is finished. I just think there’s something about doing the work yourself that makes the finished product that much more impressive.