Launch of CLC 17 LT (Raven), Olympia WA

Well I finally made it.  I purchased my 17 LT kit 15 years ago prior to marriage, and two houses ago.   My wife's is still hanging from the garage unfinished.   After enough excuses, I launched for real today.  I mostly want to thank the people on this forum who helped me directly with specific questions, and indirectly with all of the other posts.  I saw someone else do a kind of lessons learned, here is mine.

15 year old epoxy is as good as new.  Did several tests before using on my kayak.  

Should have taken one of the classes to begin with, but.....not many offered out here in WA, and those that were did not necessarily include the 17 LT.

Instruction manuals have changed in the last 15 years.  Most notably, glassing the deck was not mentioned, adding epoxy to the deck sounded like a suggestion.  Hatch stiffeners have changed.  Seems like LOTS of small details left to this forum!

I initially opted for System 3 WR-LPU topcoat (instead of varnish) for five reasons: 1) it cleans up with water, 2)  does not require a ventilator to apply, 3) several coats can be applied in a regular day, and 4) it is actually harder than varnish, and 5) I could combine paint whatever designs, stripes, etc first, and then apply a clear gloss coat over the entire boat without taping again (one of the designs was a fairly intracate raven).    

The negatives were 1) very finicky to apply, and requires exacting technique, and close attention to temperature and environment, and 2) re-coat time was 24 hours (and I am not sure how accurate that is). The finish cannot stay submerged in water indefinitely, but that was not a problem for me.

I am not super thrilled with the finish, but that is mostly my own fault for not practicing enough before hand to truly get the feel for applying it. This topcoat is very sensitive to humidity and temperature.  In the pacific NW where I was working the temps could range from 60-85 and the humidity from 90%-20%- (within 6 hours) .  I did not take this rapid change into consideration, and paid the price with brush strokes and sags.  

Nothing that cant be resolve with a bit more sanding, but that will have to wait for winter, because I am going paddling now!

Thanks again for everyones help.

Here is a links to photos,  Two showing the Raven are actually prior to finishing the topcoat.

One last thing, searches using multiple keywords on this forum do not seem that intuitive.  Or is it just me?







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RE: Launch of CLC 17 LT (Raven), Olympia WA

 Nice looking craft. Enjoy- it's been a long time coming.


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