Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The While-We've-Got-it-Apart Flying Scott Repaint

At the end of last summer we started having issues shifting the motor. We've never had reverse but even worse was the shift lever was becoming increasingly difficult to move from Neutral to Forward. I could push it with the cables but it got to the point that I couldn't move the lever by hand when it was disconnected from the control cables. The issue was rust in the shift lever post that runs across the top of the mid section of the motor. Unfortunately to get to this part, the power head needs to be removed. So in the grand tradition of "while-we've-got-it-apart" I decided to repaint the entire motor.

The most common question this winter... "Do you remember how to put it back together?"

The process started with disassembly. Thank goodness Karen came out with the plastic bags and a sharpie marker. Its all so obvious when its coming apart but a bucket of bolts it pretty intimidating 2-3 months later when you start reassembly. I recommend dis-assembly with a friend you will be very thankful later.

This is not fun.

By far the worst part of this project was glass-blasting the parts. I bought a $100 Harbor Freight cabinet and two 40lb boxes of glass blasting media. I started the painful process of blasting every square inch of every part. Some parts were too big to fit in the cabinet and needed to be blasted with the cabinet open or out of the cabinet altogether. The biggest challenge is my compressor only flows 5 gpm and you really need 10 gpm for the cabinet to work well so it was very slow going. In the end, I made it work but it would have been a whole lot easier and probably cheaper to send it out for blasting.

Sending it out would have been cheaper than buying a bigger compressor
and a whole lot easier than the 20-30 hours (yep) of stripping.

My friend Mike is an old boat owner and professional painter, ordered me a quart of  '60 McCulloch Wake White (which is also '59 Thunderbird Colonial White). He got me the paint, thinner, clear and catalyst. He even offered to let me use his paint booth. But I decided to do it on the side of the house so I could take my time and learn a few new skills.

Once everything was stripped, on Mike's recommendation I rattle canned everything with self-etching primer. You can buy this stuff at AutoZone and it is really amazing. I went through 3 cans as I stripped and primered every part, nut and bolt on the motor. The next step was to paint the disassembled parts. I thinned the paint 50/50 and shot it through a $20 HF paint gun. For this part of the process my little compressor was just fine. Every part got multiple coats of Wake White enamel. The paint flowed really great and looks amazing.

When I started the project I planned on reassembling the motor on the back of the boat. But the best decision I made was to make a motor stand to use for reassembly. I got the plans online and spent an evening building it. This was a life saver as I could assemble in the garage, roll it out to the side of the house and paint the assembled components. Basically I put the motor back together piece by piece with primed and painted bolts and then torqued the bolts and painted them again after assembly.

When the Scotts were made they came in all white or in two tone. I decided to do the two tone Red/White cowl treatment using the same red-orange color as the power head. And in the "while-we've-got-it-apart" theme I also pulled the Scott gauges and steering wheel and re-painted them. The Steering system is a Quick Silver Ride Guide and I painted the steering wheel two tone with a red accent. (Thanks for the idea Eduardo!)

The final touch was to repaint the cowl trim. I painted the base and then hand lettered the script and then knocked the paint off the top of the letters to get back to the chrome.

Once everything was reassembled I put on a final coat of color on the whole assembly and shot the entire motor with a couple of coats of clear to give everything a final seal. I will say the clear is not easy to shoot and it has some runs, drips, flaws and few fuzzy's that flew in from the backyard paint job. But overall I'm happy and this motor after all it is going back into the water. If it was show boat I would have had my friend Mike paint it, but then it would be painful to put it in the water.

Reassembly went pretty smooth as I've done this several times now. A big help is the manual I have posted. Its got blow ups of the parts and gave me an indispensable guide to reassembly. This was a 3 month project working a little on weekends with a big push at the end.



The good news is I think it looks really good and the shifter is working great. I'm even hoping I will be able to use reverse this year.

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