The bow was a bit of a challenge. We fought with it for quite a while on Saturday before it became obvious that we had both cut away wood that we new was safe to remove and work with strategically placed wet rags. We knew all along that we were going to need to do the hydrating thing, but we didn't expect it to be as critical to success as it turned out to be. I was also surprised at just how much easier things went once we let the wet rags sit for a few hours.
Wow!! Are there ever a lot of screws to install! In fact, there were so many that we killed both batteries for our cordless drills then switched over to our backup (a corded drill) and burnt the motor out. That wasn't a big deal, because that drill was a gift from Devy's dad in the early days of our marriage. I'm guessing that the it was 25 years old, so it doesn't owe us anything. Anyway, we took that as an excuse to go out for lunch and tool shopping. If it wasn't for that little glitch, we would probably have finished the port side, too, so things actually went quite well. Our choice was between a couple of spare batteries and a new corded drill, both options in the same price range. We elected to go with the spare batteries. Well, I opted to go with the spare batteries, because I hate cords. Besides, we have two matching cordless drills, so as long as we have battery power, two of us can work at the same time.
So, here's what the starboard side looks like. There is still some finish work to be done along the chines (where bottom meets side) and along the keel and bow. And there are way too many screws to putty over.
Here's another shot of the starboard side from an aft position. When we started this, one the things that I was hoping for was to get a nice enough job on the sheeting to actually have the option to leave it unpainted. So far, we're on track to achieve that level of finish, assuming that standards are not kept too high. There are a few spots where the screw spacing is off because somebody got overzealous with the counter sinking and there are a couple of spots where the line of the screws is crooked because somebody misjudged the position of the battens. However, if the bottom sheeting on the port side comes out as nicely as this, then the only fairing (think body filler) will be in places that are only visible if you crawl (or dive!) under the boat. In any case, the final decision to paint or not will be made only after the hull is faired and fiberglassed.