We’ve decided to go the whole hog and get the paint job on Eileen completed… well, complete as far as the Autumn weather will allow.

I’ve had to recognise that currently, despite my enthusiasm and desire to get as involved as possible in the renovation of the boat, both my work and home-life commitments pretty much prevent me getting more deeply involved in any major work. My involvement this Autumn/Winter will tend to be confined to projects I can haul home with me and do there.

So cabin painter Jez Barrington has agreed to return, hopefully within the week (if repainting heritage railway carriages allows!). He’s planning to repaint the elum/rudder; complete the painting of the back well-deck, and put a protective coating of plain matt black on the sides of the ‘Long Cabin’.

Hopefully that way we should see the two repainted ends of the boat link together to create a coherent overall design and a more complete boat.

I’m very excited (again!).

In the meantime, over the next couple of posts I’ll share the process of re-painting the boat so far.

There are a couple of photos missing from this series at the moment, namely the first critical steps where Jez stripped back the ‘Woolworths’ Pure White, Midnight Blue and Berry Red gloss paint that had covered the back cabin built by Warwickshire Fly Boat Co.  in the early 1990’s. Jez says he took some photos of Eileen stripped bare, so hopefully I’ll add them later to complete the set.

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Early days. The detail on the stern is picked out with two coats of undercoat and then the Tekaloid Bright Red gloss. In the background the left hand cabin door still shows the square hole cut by the previous owner for a cat flap.
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After the stripping back, step two on the cabin sides was two coats of Off-White undercoat. The first of three coats of red oxide undercoat goes down on the cabin roof too.
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Meanwhile, outside the protection of the wet dock covers, this is the view the day after a fine day. The fine day had allowed Jez to protect the stripped bare fore end with a couple of coats of undercoat. Rain sit on the surface of the newly laid paint. The surprisingly fine lines of the bow are revealed by the matt undercoat.
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Another view of the fore-end, she’d not looking too back for 110 years exposure to the elements!
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back under the tarpaulins and it’s the start of the gloss stage. The cabin sides gets the first of two coats of gloss white. They’re the priming coats and help to iron out minor blemishes in the steelwork. It’s an International paint by the way, Jez tried various whites until he was happy. In the ‘green-tinged’ light passing through the poly tunnels side clothes it looks a lot more creamy than it actually was. It’s odd to think that all that’ll remain of this gloss coat will be the coach line, the remainder will later be overpainted with Bright Red and Grass Green. The masking-off of the line of the  ‘mouse-ears’ on the cabin doors can be seen.
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The doors at this stage still show the preparatory work. They weren’t taken back to bare metal, but were rubbed dow,n and imperfections in the paintwork removed with undercoat.
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The second coat of gloss Off-White is laid down on the cabin sides…
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A transformational stage. The first coat of the gorgeous Bright Red is brushed on to the six panels defined by masking tape. Two further coats of gloss to follow…
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End of the second week and major sections of the boat now have a least one layer of their final colour. It’s the first time we could assess whether the colours worked together and hinted at that BCN/Stewarts & Lloyds legacy we were striving for.
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And, with tape removed all three colours come together, and to my eye work wonderfully well together. They balance each other out and no colour dominates the others.
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All ready for the lettering. Three weeks of solid work to get to this stage. Jez had done a FINE job, and Eileen looked rejuvenated.
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And how her new gloss work SHONE!
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