Previous Page -- INDEX -- Next Page

Mini Vee Race Boat Plans
Page Thirteen
Finishing

Epoxy

I'm told that a clear finish is best for a racing boat. I finished my Mini Vee with four or five coats of epoxy resin. Rolling it on leaves a bubble-filled surface which is easily smoothed out with the very light touch of a foam brush. As soon as one coat has cured, roll on the next. If you wait too long, you'll have to sand between coats.

Keep in mind that a raw epoxy finish is susceptible to sun damage -- not a problem on a bottom, unless you store your boat upside down at some point: cover it up! Also, I don't think an epoxy finish of this sort is recommended for boats that live in the water. A coat or two of varnish (or paint) would be wise.

Spar Varnish

Another option, and one I intend to try next time around, is to seal the wood with one coat of epoxy, sand it down, then apply several coats of spar varnish. I believe it will be simpler, and cheaper, than all that epoxy.

Deck

Designing and building this boat was an experiment, and hence I wanted to keep it as cheap and simple as possible. So, I painted the deck with semi-gloss latex house paint. The result was a finish that remained slightly tacky almost forever. It picks up stains. It's kind of dull. But easy to repair.

Doing it again, I'd use oil-based marine paint -- or at least an oil-based house paint. One or two coats of primer, then two coats of topcoat should do it.

You may also choose to varnish your boat. Or, you could have your boat professionally finished.

Cockpit

I also used latex for the cockpit, which works out fine. Use flat to avoid that lingering tacky surface.

Or you could just seal the cockpit with epoxy, keeping in mind the possibility of sun damage.

Previous Page -- INDEX -- Next Page