Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Galley Cabinetry assembly

The Galley is starting to really come together now and it is nice to see items going back into the boat, rather than out of it.

We put the new laminate surface on all the counter tops.  We chose a laminate rather than granite due to the weight and the desire to ensure we kept the practicality of having fiddle rails on the counters.  If we went with a granite or stone, we were not sure how we would have effectively mounted fiddle rails on the edges.

After the laminate was down, we installed a shelf under the galley sink that has an access panel from above for dry storage. 

We then veneered all of the lower cabinets in African mahogany.  This included the side of the cabinets (one facing the nav station in the walkthrough the other facing the salon, and all front drawer and cabinet panels.  The veneer was put in place using not only the Pressure Sensitive Adhesive that it came with but also the standard contact cement on both surfaces method (like a laminate).  All of the new veneer received a sanding with 240 grit sandpaper.  This will smooth out the surface, blend in the joints and have a smooth surface to put a finish on.

The rear wall of the galley was laminated in Teak rather than Mahogany.  We are trying to keep the bulkhead walls in teak and really like the way it looks   For this we removed the Electric Propane control switch, cleaned the mating surfaces of all dust using a towel dampened with denatured alchohal.  This allows for a fast drying time and allowed us to then coat both mating surfaces with contact cement.  The new wall was cut out of a single large piece to fit the unique shape of the rear galley wall. 

The teak panel is 1/8th inch thick and made installing a little bit of a challenge as you had to cut it with a saw to shape rather than a knife like the thin veneer.  (Tip:  When applying contact cement to an area this large, it was helpful to have 2 people, Deb applied it to the wall and I applied it to the back of the teak panel, this allowed us to install it when it just started to get tacky rather than dry.

A new GFCI outlet was installed at the first plug in the wire chain and mounted back into the face of the pantry. 

New wire was run to the ceiling where insulation (3/4” closed cell foam) panels were installed between the fiberglass and the new pine slat ceiling.  The installation of the ceiling always presents a unique situation in that the roof arches to some extent, additionally the sides are not square so it starts with a single pine slat run fore to aft on the center line of the boat.  It then works outward from that so that the angled cuts to align with the outer curve of the boat can be made.   We have 
decided to install all LED lighting in the boat and wanted to have that light being emitted from the ceiling for general lighting, and then add reading lights at locations that make sense.  To that end, we mapped out how we wanted to control the lights for the common central are of the boat (the Galley, Nav Station, Walkthrough and Salon).  We liked the idea of having control of those lights from a central location near the  companion way.  We decided on mounting 6 switches (3 on each side of the companionway) that each control specifc lighting.  For example the 2 most forward switches will control the led lighting on the salon ceiling lighting on the port and starboard respectively.  The center switch on each side turns on the general lighting across the galley and companionway.  The next switches back control either the lights down the walkthrough, and on the port side control lights to light up the galley including one that shines into the top loading fridge/freezer unit. 

We are pleased with the LED lighting we chose.  They have a brushed aluminum finish, are bright but still a bit warm (not that sterile white from some LED’s) and can swivel slightly to point in specific directions.   They do not each have their own switch on the base which is why we mounted the bank of switches.

When we were looking for LED lights we considered just getting the marine fixtures with LED’s in the, however we wanted a little bit more versatility and selection for our lighting choices.  After speaking to some marine LED vendors at boat shows, I learned that LED’s for marine use are not something special but are typically the same as the ones that you can buy on line that are not “marine” specific.  Armed with that information, we decided to look at all LED lighting options.  We settled on some LED lights from Ikea that came with an adapter that went from 110V AC to 12V dc.  Because the output of the device included with the lights was in the 2-4 amp range, we worried a bit about the potential higher voltage that would be going to the lights.  I have ben assured that the lights will only draw what they draw, regardless of how many amps the supply “can” provide.  That said, I suspect that I won’t see the same life expectancy out of these as someone might on a regulated 2amp output.  So in the end, if I lose 25% of the life expectancy of these, it will still provide some 7500 hours of use.   For the money saved and the selection, I am hoping that I made a good choice.  So far so good but it has only been a couple of months at this point.  We will keep some spares on board in the event we needed to replace these.  Because of that reason we made mounting and replacing them fairly easy if we need to.

After the veneering, sanding, ceiling, lighting, electrical, etc, the sanded molding was all wiped down with denatured alcohol and the dry fitted.  Because the new ceiling is a bit thicker than the old headliner, and because the rear galley bulkhead veneer is thicker than the original, we knew we would have to slightly modify (trim) some of the molding.  We made those minor adjustments and reinstalled all of the trim in the galley and along the new ceiling. 

At this point we still have to build a new fridge/freezer lid with the new counter laminate to match, need to have the compressor serviced (still can’t believe I dripped water on the control panel when taking the sink out), fasten the sink and install the new faucet in the galley.    The next step from there will be bungs in all screw holes and varnish as a last step.