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P.O. Box 91    Gloucester, North Carolina     (252) 729-8021   blake@blakeboatworks.com

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Antarctica or Bust!

Notes from the Field - "Cherokee" Huckins Restoration Project

January 15, 2002   Cherokee survived her first snowfall in North Carolina, and is rearing to go for the new year as the crew prepares her deck for eventual teaking. The first layer of the the original deck was removed piece by piece. The remaining deck was then coated with epoxy twice, sanded, and fared. Next will come a layer of fiberglass. "It's important we get the sub-deck perfectly level and smooth for when we lay down the teak," said Leonard. "But we won't lay the teak until late in the project so it'll stay free and clean of paint, dust, and glue."

Frozen to the Core Sound
A Snowy View from the Huckins Site


The top layer of plywood was not removed in the area where the deck boxes go. Since they will be painted white, there's no need to use expensive teak under them. The teak will be put down in areas that are visible. In the picture below, one of the two layers of 3/8 plywood has been removed. The remaining layer will be fiberglassed completely (the back portion in the picture is already glassed) and will then receive a 3/8 inch teak deck on top.

Not playing with a full deck
Epoxied Deck and Box Base


Bill Brown, having good, fastidious work habits, suggested that a tent be pitched over the engine room work area. Happy in this dust-free environment, he has made much progress with the fuel system, and ignores his new nickname "Bubble Boy". His tent is depicted below, with Bill Davis sanding the deck in the foreground and Stuart mixing putty to the left. Meanwhile, Leonard sand blasted the engine valve covers, and Bud applied three fresh coats of paint.

Once a boy scout, always a boy scout Motor City!
Bill's Tent, Engine Valve Covers


Tom Parker, Jim, Stuart, and Norm are making headway below deck. Stuart is shown below sanding red putty in the shower/tub area. The putty was applied to fiberglass over plywood, and after sanding it will be painted. Tom is working in the master stateroom and guest heads. In the master stateroom shown below, Tom is dry-fitting pieces of the vanity before final gluing.

I'd rather be catching tuna... My drum set will fit perfectly!
Stuart in Tub, Tom in Vanity Site


Lean on me...
A Supporting Jack


Better Headers
Oak Headers


In the top picture above, a jack is shown that supports one of the two headers that run from bulkhead to bulkhead in the forward end of the boat. The horizontal mahogany strip will support the track for the pocket door. The next picture shows the two 1 X 3 oak headers that run down the hallway. These headers will help to stiffen the foredeck in case a dinghy is carried there. Below, Norm is applying his 110 volt thinking-cap mechanism and remembers to mask the bunk in preparation of paint.

Zzzzzzzzzzzt! I needed that...
Norm Gets an Idea, and Commences to Mask the Bunk in Preparation of Paint


Have you every stayed awake at night wondering what role iron and phytoplankton play in regulating the earth's climate? At least 76 scientists have, including Duke professor Dick Barber of Gloucester and his assistant Anna Hilting of Marshallberg. They're part of the "iron gang" who have just embarked on a three-ship, six week Antarctic Southern Ocean expedition. They will seed the ocean, just north and south of the Antarctic Polar Front Zone, with several thousand pounds of iron sulfate, creating "fields" upon which they can test the Iron Hypothesis: do changes in iron concentration of the Southern Ocean control glacial cycles? Has an increased flow of iron been responsible for creating ice ages in the past? Will these crazy iron-pumping scientists make it snow for us again, or at least unlock important secrets pertaining to climatic change and global warming? And which will happen first - the launching of the Cherokee or the melting of the polar ice caps? Stay tuned with Anna's Antarctic Adventure page - you can find her link stuck next to the WestSystem Epoxy logo on our homepage from now until their electric socks run low on batteries and they come home! Signing off for now, Barbara "Fish Doctor" Blake
Okay, aquatic plantlife, open up for your vitamin supplement!
Fertilizing an Angry Southern Ocean with Iron

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