Monday, March 19, 2012

Wheelhouse console finished

It's been a busy couple of weeks at work but I've managed to squeeze in some good boat building time (a few hours here and there) to get the wheelhouse console finished up. I am taking this particular part of the boat to a finished stage because this will allow us to go ahead with hooking up all the electronics and controls, and not have to disconnect and remove everything later when we get to finishing and trimming things out. When I last left off, I think that we had just finished installing the black laminate on the console top. For the face of the console, I used a wood veneer. This is a very thin sheet of wood that comes glued to a paper backing. The veneer is attached to the plywood with contact cement and then it is set permanently by "scraping" it down  using very hard pressure with a block of hardwood. This removes any air bubbles. They say if you aren't sweating when you're done, you didn't use enough pressure. Then we gave it a light sanding and a few coats of varnish. The veneer we used is Lyptus which is a farm raised hybrid of Eucalyptus. With no stain applied (just oil and varnish) it comes out looking like a cross between teak and mahogany, with some nice reddish pink salmon tones. The instrument panel is also Lyptus (but from a different, more "blonde colored batch) and shows the wide variation in color you can find with this wood. We bought a big batch of this stuff on close-out and I'm going to use it in a few different areas on the boat. It also goes very nicely with the old salvaged mahogany that we found a few weeks ago. This mahogany finished out nicely too. We ripped some of it into smaller dimensions and shaped it for all of the trim work shown in the pics. Amazing color and grain and just the right amount of imperfections to give it some "character". Unfortunately, I got sort of wrapped up in this job and I did not take very many pictures of any of the finish work in process, so most of these pics are just of the end results. Now its back to more wiring, plumbing, and rough in carpentry... 


  1. This is not a critique but a curiosity question, Is the inside of the cabinetry sealed in anyway? Is there a concern about moisture being absorbed there in a marine environment?



  2. Bison Daddy,

    I am in the process of putting one coat of sealer on the interior of all all the plywood surfaces that are being veneered. Not so much for water intrusion, but because I am told that this helps to stabilize the plywood substrate for veneering. I also find that it keeps the interior of cabinets and closets (that are not painted) looking better. That said, I am not too concerned about serious moisture exposure on the interior carpentry. Being a steel boat, very well insulated, with new hatches and ports, she is bone dry inside in even the most torrential rain storms and condensation producing dew points. Also almost all the ply that I've used for the interior is (allegedly) made with exterior rated glue. Time will tell...

    Thanks for following!