Wednesday, April 23

What's Happening?

This past weekend I had the strange opportunity to be working on my own boat in the yard, the whole weekend. While walking around in between sanding and applying fairing compound, I notice a few things that I’d like to share with you. Plus I have a few tips and tricks, notices and other things happening around Crowley’s.

The weather was amazing and the crowds in the yard were at the highest level all season. Boaters helping boaters, music, and oh, power washers. The camaraderie was great to see. But wait; let’s get back to the power washers.

There’s always a conflict between those trying to tape off their water line to paint and the boat next to you power washing the sides and deck. It’s going to happen to every boater at some point. This weekend I had that very thing happen, except I was dealing with wet epoxy that needed to cure. Note: water and epoxy do not play well together.

What’s the solution? Use plastic sheeting! As an employee I had the advantage of going to the warehouse and grabbing some. I then realized this should be a product available to all customers in the yard. And now it is. If you need some, come to the store and we will sell you some.

My boat neighbors were very kind and helped me to tent off my boat. It only took about 10 minutes of actual work time and it was win-win for all. Thanks guys!

In the store, we are getting real busy. It’s great to see familiar faces again. As a boater, I love talking the talk and helping other boaters realizing projects. Seeing the proverbial light turn on is a great thing.

Also in the store we have shoes. Lot’s of shoes. Mention this article the next time you’re in the store between today and June 1 of this year and get 15% off your next pair of kicks. This includes closeout pricing that can save you up to 55% off.

Earlier I mentioned taping off the waterline for painting. I’m here to tell you that many of you are painting your VC17 all wrong. I encourage you to take another look at the directions on the can. You are supposed to paint in one direction and one direction only. What I witnessed this weekend was people painting and going up and down and up and down. Not the best application method.

So, I tried this just last night to see if the directions were worth following and they are. They most certainly are. I just finished taking all the old paint off the rudder, faired it, and applied 6 layers of barrier coat. Last night I finished sanding it down with 320 grit, recommended for a smooth finish, and started painting VC17. I tried the up and down see-saw method and what I found is as you start to work the paint, it starts to lift paint from your last stroke. I don’t know exactly why this happens, but it does. Of course I corrected this and finished the correct way.

I then tried the correct method and what a difference. No lifting paint and a more uniform coverage. Just FYI, I was using West Systems foam rollers and I absolutely saturate the roller with paint to ensure good coverage. This leads me to address those of you using thinner for the wrong reasons.

V172 thinner from Interlux is meant for three reasons; clean up, thinning to spray, and to help increase drying time for when it’s real hot out while applying VC17. If you’re trying to use this thinner for any other reason, stop. If you want the best performance from VC17, make sure your coats are on thick enough. If you’re looking for an extra smooth finish and that’s why you’re rolling so thin, try applying it to the correct thickness and then take a crumpled up piece of newspaper and very quickly burnish off any tiny bumps or imperfections. This process only takes a few minutes with good crew.

If you want to get the leading edges of your rudder and keel extra, extra smooth try using a Preval spraying unit. In this case you can use the special thinner to help with the spraying. Read the directions and only thin to recommended specs. This little unit is also handy for applying VC17 to those hard to reach areas like where the keel meets the hull, the prop strut, and other tight spots where the roller doesn’t work and brushing isn’t desired.

I’d like to give a quick shout out to Assistant Store Manager Mike Travis and Production Manager Andrew Spaulding for completing their USCG Captain’s License classes! Way to go guys. Well done.

That’s all for this week. If you see something around the yard you feel is worth mentioning please shoot me an email at I hope this finds you well.

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