Stella - the sub-project

I had not intended for Stella to grace these pages at all, since her purpose is as a boat to be sailed while Luna’s restoration continues, not one to be restored herself. I bought her earlier this year when it had become apparent that Luna wouldn’t swim this year, and possibly/probably not next either – and there was an opportunity to get her at a favourable price, on a trailer. Seemed a good idea – that takes the pressure and frustration off of the main restoration, and lets me avoid cutting corners for the sake of getting something sailing. The only trouble with it is that any boat at all requires a little work – and while I thought I could just launch Stella in her current, somewhat down-at-heel state, I couldn’t.

I kept walking past her (she was parked in front of the boat shed, and there has been much activity there related to moving, although none of it on Luna) and thinking about launching – and kept going back to the horrible state of her paint. I couldn’t imagine rowing up to a mooring and getting aboard, and I knew I wouldn’t look back at her as I rowed away – and those are two of my pleasures in sailing, so something needed to be done.

I started by putting a sander against her hull, hoping that I could just smooth her out a little – but as soon as I hit the red paint under the white, and then the red gelcoat under that, I knew that it all had to come off, and a fresh coat of red go on.

This is an example of what prompted me to get painting (you may need to click to get a larger photo to appreciate it)

And this is what she’s looking like now, on the port side.

The starboard side is about half done – although at the stern I haven’t crouched down to get under the hull to get to the waterline yet, and there is lots of detail work, filling and fairing, and sanding through the grits (I started with 40, ran out, and have continued with 80 – will then go over it all on random orbit with 80, then 150, then 220) before the paint can go on. Still – on a boat this small, with the limited time I have (motivating, having deadlines), I hope to have it all done in a week of spare time.

I’ll post here under the Stella section, and post pictures in a gallery of the same name.

Here’s a couple more shots, similar to ones I like to take in the shed…