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The building of "Earnest"


Index | Planning | Fabrication of the steelwork | Fitting out | Launch | "Earnest" in detail | "Earnest" Repaint 

Harefield Marina


The painter R&D use is a semi retired transport painter and signwriter called Don Ridyard. He is obviously very skilled and used to working with Mason's Transport finishes. When the boat fitting was nearing completion he discussed with Neil the relative dimensions of the lining and dark blue box sizes. When it came to discuss the lining it was decided to split the blue panel up, not going through the doors (this would have caused the white line to awkwardly go through the hinges of the side doors) and to form a separate panel round the portholes. This panel lead itself to more signwriting. The obvious candidate to sponsor this extra writing and to have their initials emblazoned on the side was the Tuesday Night Club, hence the writing finally chosen. It leads to interesting 5 minute Grand Union lock sharing conversations, especially as Neil has always wanted to remain incognito and not have his name on the side. It is bad enough people knowing that you come from Harefield, but to the average yob it would not be apparent where Harefield is. There was of course a colour change from that initially envisaged. When the red Vanette cooker was seen in a chandlers it was found to be a colour not unlike red oxide! Sheila said that there was a new dark blue one coming out. Neil decided to opt for this and change the envisaged dark grey side panels to Atlantic Blue a nice mid colour to match the Vanette blue theme. 

Neil took all the door linings, cratch and top board to paint at home along with the gang plank, barge pole and boat hook kept over from "Beatty". Don did the sign writing on the doors capturing Neil's sketches exactly. We have had many people admire the choice of colours and the door detail, it is a departure from the norm of roses and castles, but then we had them on "Beatty" and we did not want "Earnest" to look exactly like "Beatty". On the Grand Union the final leg of getting "Earnest" back for winter we even had one man who's boat was in primer stop and discuss whether the paint was Mason's and what the colours were as he thought the grey and blue just the colours he had in mind for his boat! Owing to the slightly decadent amount of signwriting (well for Linda anyway) we decided to keep the lettering simple and without any adornment, I think Don was a bit sad with this as he was looking forward to "letting go" on "Earnest". On one of the trips up Sheila showed some of Don's water colour pictures of lilies that he had painted for Ray (whose big escape from fabricating is to grow prize lilies), they really was excellent, Neil wonders if he could be commissioned to paint a picture of "Earnest"? "Beatty" had a particularly course sharp grit painted into panels on it's gunwales, probably the reason Neil has never fallen in (well not off the sides anyway), even though he has been known to touch up and clean the sides of "Beatty" while going along such places as the tidal River Trent! For this reason Neil decided to make Don his own special blend. To do this he scrounged a couple buckets of sharp sand from the local builders merchants and dried this out in baking trays in the oven. The sand was then sifted using Linda's course cooking sieve, the fine sand being removed with her fine sieve! This blend has proved in practice to be even better than on "Beatty". 

A bulk supply of obsolete International Papua Red was purchased for the small amount of red on "Earnest". This was due to the bad experience Neil had with the Mason's Middle Red on "Beatty". When we met the International paint rep at The Braunston Show we asked why this nice bright red was no longer available. He told us in a roundabout way that it was because of the new regulations now even affecting chromate in paint and that this paint I had procured was probably better than even the more bland red that they do now. Because we had good experience of the International Non-slip Interdeck paint used on "Beatty's" roof this same paint (and colour) was used on "Earnest's" roof, cockpit and stern floors. Neil has since put over-painted panels of this paint on top of the cants as they were a bit slippery. The engine compartment was painted in the standard base Chinchilla Grey, but for some strange reason he has re-painted the weed hatch and box an old "Beatty" blue (well I suppose it could be a colour key to warn Neil that there is water below here when he gets involved in his non-stopping weed removal antics!) Hammerite silk black had been recommended to Neil for the top of the hull and gunwales as it supposed to be self priming, good for when touching up. Neil decided very early on to have black gunwales as he got so sick of touching up "Beatty's" red gunwales. The final bit of painting involved pouring grey International Danboline bilge paint in the bottom of the engine compartment and spreading it around going up the sides a couple of inches and also painting the engine bearers, Neil thinks that it now has finally set!


The Arlidge painted cratch is tried up.

Don gets stuck in to the painting, laying out lining.
Main painting finished. Silk black Hammerite still to go on            gunwales / top of hull.

The more boxy panelling eventually chosen.

"Earnest" index

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