Recent work has largely revolved around the cockpit. It is surprising how much there is to do! First, I needed to finish the interior of the boat where the cockpit is to go, this because it won’t be possible to reach many of the areas once the cockpit deck is glued down. I found I was able to reach the Spinnaker cleats and the Traveller cleats in a trial run – although I had to breathe shallow and the deck was moving up and down on my stomach…I will need to lose some weight or rent a small child – either way it can be done which means two fewer hatches!
At the aft end of the cockpit there is no chance of reaching the fittings so here there is no choice but to cut some holes. I decided on one hole for both the rudder fittings and outboard fittings and one hole each side for the spinnaker fittings. With the plan to put the rudder fittings inside a box the deck also had to be cut to allow access to the upper fitting. Perhaps some pics will explain it better?!
There has also been a fair bit of work done to the undersides of the cockpit decking. All the Toe-strap points have been reinforced as have the Traveller cleat, fairlead and block points. In addition there are lengthways stiffeners at the edges where the cockpit floor meets the sides. This is because there is nothing supporting the floor there apart from the join itself (which is pretty strongly taped and filleted with 450gms Biax on both sides).
After the additional work was done to the underside of the deck (including the necessary butt joints) I flipped the board and tacked the sides to the floor being careful to ensure PVC sheets were placed where the floor rested on the cockpit frames in order to prevent accidental gluing.
Once the tacking dried it was a simple matter to fillet and tape the joint. Note that in the picture below I was careful to screw in 4 blocks of wood (and backers on the deck underside) so that I could attach cross pieces to support the flimsy deck as it is removed from the boat. We remove it from the boat so that the whole structure can be flipped and taped from underneath as well (see the 2nd picture below).