I recently found out that the shop where I had planned on taking my Mariner 4 hp outboard will not look at it. So, I did my own tune-up. One new sparkplug, dumped the old gas, cleaned the little screen in the bottom of the tank, ran a shot of Seafoam through it to clean out the pipes and changed the gear oil. I ran it for over 30 minutes in a barrel of water and it looks ready to go. I also bought a new impeller to install, but I’m going to wait on that one for now.

There were many nicks in the gelcoat that needed to be fixed. A couple were deep enough to see the fiberglass below. I used Andy Miller’s Boatwork’s Today videos to attempt to color match the Harpoon off-white color. It’s a slow process mixing and I only mixed two, 2 oz. batches. I probably used less than half before it began to set. The color came out pretty close. I still have a lot of cosmetic “age” cracks that need attention.

I debated messing with the red boot stripe but once I had the bottom looking so nice it had to be done. More tape, more hand sanding with 150 grit and a wipe down of 202. I went with Rustoleum’s Topside bright red. The paint was so thick I had to water it down with mineral spirits. Starting at the bow and working toward the stern, I used a new, small 4 inch foam roller for each side. It was getting very sticky by the time I was finished. The port side was rougher as there were many spots that were sanded down to the gelcoat.

I picked up my new companionway cover just in time for a good round of storms coming through over the next few days. It fit pretty much as I had planned. Yes, the window flap is upside down. It’s getting fixed now. I didn’t want to add anymore snaps to the boat, so it’s pinched in place by the hinged top board and held down at the bottom by tucking it under the cooler cover lid.

I setup the dodger and boom tent to see how it looks. Apparently the boom vang cannot be used, if the dodger is on! I also found out that the 303 I carefully applied to the dodger didn’t stop the rain. It slowed it down but by the pools of water on the new companionway cover shows – it leaks bad. I’ve decided that the boom tent will be rarely used. While it does protect the cockpit mostly, it’s a pain to take on and off. And since I’ll be stepping off the pier onto the bow, it would be difficult to get in the back door.

I also rigged up the Gerr downhaul on the jib. The stainless steel blocks I bought might be larger than needed, but they were a great price. It looks like it will work to douse the jib while sailing one-handed. I won’t know for sure until I get it out on the water.

 

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