April and Kevin in Kuna Yala, the northeast coast of Panamá

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Final Boat Update

A few weeks ago, I thought I wouldn't have any more progress to report. They had righted the boat and put a "roof" over it of zinc panels. I thought that was to keep it drier during the rainy season than it would have been otherwise.

(Allie's boat under cover for the rainy season; it was perfectly upright originally, but they tilted it again when they continued working)

It turns out I was wrong. They covered it so they could keep it dry enough to work on. Pedro and a fellow from port applied fiberglass to the lower sides of the boat (a very smelly process) and then started to paint it. The fiberglass and resin/glue cost roughly $800; which is more than most folks on the island make in two or three months, so it took some budgeting and planning to purchase the materials and have them applied (labor is probably $8 to $10 a day as well, and probably took three to five days on a boat this size).

(Painting the boat after the application of fiberglass layers; five on the keel/bottom and three on the sides.)

Pedro achieves the very straight edge by tautly stretching a line of cord from the back to the front of the boat, and slowly painting and chatting.

(April helped out with the chatting part of the painting, which is a very common form of help)

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