Erin has done an excellent job preparing our v-berth lockers. She started months ago by cleaning them, sanding them, cleaning, sanding, and finally putting a coat of oil alkyd enamel paint down. We took turns putting another four or so coats of the alkyd enamel down and last week she finished off both lockers with a coat of Pettit EZ Cabin-Coat anti mildew paint.
In the pictures you can see how the fiberglass headliner that makes up the ceiling of the lockers has sagged over the years. I did not particularly like this as it takes away precious inches of storage space. I also like the idea of having the headliner secured to the underside of the deck to aid in the structural support of the bow area which has to endure some brutal treatment mid ocean.
In order to do this I carefully chose 3M 5200. I say carefully because I vow to use this stuff only in certain, well thought out circumstances. My first question when using 5200 is “would something else work better?” If I come up with a “no”, or “not really” then I move on to “do I really want this to never be taken apart for any reason, even 50 years from now when the poor soul has to refit this boat again?” If I come up with an affirmative I feel relatively good about proceeded but I inevitably revert back to the first question just to make sure!
Anyhow, I decided to break out the 5200 and purchased some flexible caulk gun dispensers. These things are not high quality and one should not believe the advertising. I secured this one on with a hose clamp because the design just does not work well on its own.
Using this flexible tip I was able to laboriously apply the 5200 in between the headliner and the underside of the deck creating a U shape with the caulk nozzle. Once there was enough caulk in seam used wooden shims that I had laying around to push up the headliner and keep it in place.
The result: more space, better aesthetics, and a small amount of additional structural stability. Win Win.