Dorade boxes

As with pretty much every piece of exterior teak on our boat, the dorade boxes are in pretty rough shape.  Earlier this summer we started playing around with removing & polishing the bronze cowls and scraping the old Cetol off the boxes.  But then we got sidetracked with other little projects like tearing off all the teak decking and doing a complete renovation of the cockpit.

 

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Last weekend Jeni was looking for something to work on while I was filling and fairing the glass inside the cockpit.  Knowing how much she enjoys scraping Cetol and sanding teak, I was certain it would thrill the shit out of her if I suggest she go to work on the dorades instead of saving all that fun for myself.  One of the tops had broken loose from the box several months ago and needed to be glued back on.  I figured this would be a great way to let her in on how much fun I’ve been having the last few weeks mixing epoxy and thickeners.  Like a duck to water, she jumped right in counting pumps of resin and scoops of thickener, mix, mix, mix.  Lid reattached, she went to work on the other three boxes.

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The original dovetailed construction was very nice, but years of exposure had taken their toll.  Joints had separated and wood was splitting at screw holes.  Nearly impossible to completely restore to their original beauty, and not willing to build new ones only to spend hours each year varnishing, we quickly agreed that filling, fairing, and painting to match the topsides would be the quickest course of action.  Each box, after scraping, sanding, and cleaning with acetone received a brushed coat of clear un-thickened fast cure resin inside and out to seal and protect the wood.  More sanding and wiping, and, over the course of several more days, a couple coats of slow cure with 410 Microlight to fill in the low spots (with additional sanding and wiping in between).  Yesterday she finished the last of the sanding and they look pretty sweet; all ready now for two coats of Interlux Epoxy Primekote (and some more sanding).  Maybe it would’ve been easier to build new ones after all…

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A bigger cockpit
Sanding the cockpit
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