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Monday, July 18, 2005

Tilling the Keel

So this last weekend saw the removal of the top of the keel. After about six sawzall blades, the fiberglass and plywood underneath was removed. The loose ballast was very dry. I stole some of my wife's gardening tools and started digging through the ballast. I could dig down about 3-4 inches before I hit the recently infused cured resin. Very solid, which is good. While I was tilling through the ballast I found a few interesting things in there. I hit numerous 3" x 4" x 1/4" steel plates that were near the surface. This is the main reason I went through so many sawzall blades as I hit them as I was cutting the top of the keel off. Also found in there were a few odd pieces of steel pipe or machinery. One looks like an old pump or drum brake. I couldnt identify it positively and I could not remove them entirely as the lower half was embedded with the recently infused resin. It was clear that the ballast was not graded evenly as there were large gaps between the plywood laminate. After pushing it around with garden tools, I was able to reveal a small 2-3 inch area at the center of the keel. So, the plan is to fill this area with lead shot (or equivalent), to bring the ballast up to the same level where the plywood was, even it out, bag the top of it and do the final infusion. Later, the glass mat will be installed when the floor is done.
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