External Paintwork completed

Well, its been a beautiful autumn here on the north coast. For sure we have had some cold and blustery days but compared to previous years the conditions have been very mild. Next month things will change, as we head into full winter.

Accordingly, our push now is to get her watertight. We want to take down the big tent. We have had a love-hate relationship with this beast. It has protected the build admirably and has done so through wild weather, but it is dark underneath, especially on overcast days. We are now craving light, as we prepare to move below for the final fit out.  In reality, there is no immediate rush to do so, as in the big picture we could be working in a number of directions without slowing down the build, but as a moral boost, the idea is too enticing to resist.

So its full steam ahead, all work is directed towards one goal – to seal her up. Calls have been made, money spent and the perspex and polycarbonate sheets required to make the windows have been ordered.

Before we could apply the polyurethane top-coats we needed to protect the areas of the decks that were to later be coated with Treadgrip non-slip.

After completing the primer undercoat, we began masking up the deck areas.
It took us two days to mask up.

Treadgrip is a rare thing, a water-based paint that has excellent adhesive properties to epoxy substrates, however, we did not want to risk any of the polyurethane topcoat over-spray contaminating our carefully prepared deck areas, so we took the time to mask things up properly.

Smoky, the workshop cat, enjoys the early morning sun on our stern decks.
The underwater areas are to be treated with a different regime, so the waterline was masked 100mm above the designed watermark.

The decision to use Treadgrip on the decks and walking areas was a practical choice for us. Water-based, easy to apply and eminently practical. Its rubber compounds are soft underfoot. We are told it’s very durable, helps to insulate the deck and will reduce glare and reflected UV in the tropics. It is however not a glamorous look, compared to the usual alternative, high gloss polyurethane sprinkled with sand. It’s a trade-off we are happy to make, as it really is so beautiful to live with.

The stippled look may not appeal to builders going for a production-boat look, but Treadgrip is lovely and soft to walk on.
Sleeping cabin hatches, plus webb locker storage hatches have been installed.

After painting was done we began installing hatches. Just when we were congratulating ourselves on getting past stinky sticky fiberglassing and paint jobs, along comes Sikaflex … a whole new level of stickiness!

Treadgrip flashes very quickly, so maintaining a wet edge on the large areas can be a challenge.

We finished our last touch-ups of 2 pack polyurethane yesterday (Saturday), and we are frankly glad to be done with it for now. It is undoubtedly the toughest paint around but is demanding to use. Water-based 2 packs are available, but for large projects, the costs are prohibitive, around twice the price of the already expensive, polyurethane based paints.

Cockpit all glossed up. Originally we were going to put down some vinyl tube soft floor (and we still might) but for now, we are so impressed with the softness of Treadgrip that we will paint the cockpit floor with that.
It was a fabulous moment when we could tick the external paint-job off the to-do list. Deb can’t wait to get inside and finish off the internal painting, so she can begin to create her new home.
In the end, we glossed up the cockpit ceiling. Time will tell if it was the right choice, and introduces reflected glare into the cockpit.

16 thoughts on “External Paintwork completed

    • Thanks Patrick. They are 445 x 390 cutout. The position of the underdeck stringers are designed to match on the plans. If you are building an Easy: Pete does not specify the spacing of the Webb fore/aft bulkheads, so you will need to take the hatch cutout into account when working out your dimensions.


  1. Big milestone guys! The Tread Grip sounds easier to deal with than what we had in Take It Easy. Just as well as we found you have to periodically redo those areas when they get grubby!


  2. Big milestone, guys! The Tread Grip certainly sounds easier to deal with than what we had on Take It Easy. Just as well as we found we had to repaint those areas periodically as they get grubby, especially after haulouts!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks guys. Yes, we had heard the same: keeping non-slip clean is a hassle. We have been advised repainting Treadgrip is straightforward. Just hose off and re coat. It’s commonly available as well. A couple of places keep it here in Devonport so we thought we should have no trouble finding it up the coast. We have created a monster with all the masking though. Will have to do that every time now! That was my concession to aesthetic‘s: to make up a bit for its somewhat agricultural finish.

      Liked by 2 people

      • You might find you only have to do the back steps and cockpit regularly. It helps if you don’t allow shoes on board! Re the agricultural look, we had that too. The sand/gritty stuff builds up unevenly as you roll it.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. The paint certainly changes the look of the boat guys. The difference from just a couple of months ago is fantastic. All the hard work is paying off. Well done


    • Thanks Jim. Yeah, painting is one of those jobs that (after all the prep work) the world changes dramatically. There are a few times like that. Roll-over day is another, I recall.


  4. YAY !!!!! Paint looks great and I can appreciate the amount of work there is to get to this stage. I’m interested in the nonslip you are using. Can you get me the exact brand and other information. Thanks mate.


    • Thanks Dean. Its good to have the outside done, and just in the knick of time, winter has kicked in this week. Treadgrip is made by an Aussie company : https://www.aicoatings.com.au/tredgrip . I’ve flicked them an email to see if there is an equivalent formulation manufactured in the US. I’ll forward their response to your email. Cost was $280 for 10L. The first coat is thinned 20% so one bucket did the whole job (including cockpit floor & catwalk) with a few litres left over for future touch-ups. Dead easy to use, but is flashes fast do you gotta go quickly to avoid trackmarks, especialy over the sleeping cabin decks, which is the largest single area. We applied it as a top-coat straight onto the high-build primer (Joutan Penguard HB). Fantastic stuff.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. The two of you are an inspiration! I spent the last few hours reading through all your posts. It’s quite remarkable as an outsider to be able to read through a build like this. You’ve managed to capture the highs and lows of your story, and most importantly, keep optimism throughout. No doubt the optimism was born from a strong relationship and love. Keep up the amazing work! You’ve both turned in to craftsman along the way, and the best is yet to come!


    • Thank you for your kind comments and encouragement Adam. It really has been a team effort. I’m in awe of those who tackle a build such as this singlehanded. Yes you are right: A big project is as much a spiritual battle as a physical one, when fatigue sets in and the nagging thoughts threaten to overwhelm. Neither of us could have done this alone.


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