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Yarda and Jim's
Most Excellent
Mutineer Refurb Project


Yarda and Jim started a project to bring a tired old Mutineer back to racing form in early July 2014.  The plan was to have her shipshape and race ready in time for MNC 2014 "Boogie Back To Texas".  Here is what she looked like on here way to her new home:


Definately not the prettiest girl at the dance - yet.  Scroll down and experience the transformation of this Mutineer.  You will be inspired by the excellent craftmanship performed by both Yarda and Jim.

July 13


Day One on Yarda's Mutt started by verifying just what the existing conditions were.

The previous owner drastically modified the boat by removing the deck/hull joint.  This may have been a last ditch effort to save the boat, so kudos to the guy that took on this project because the work was pretty well thought out and executed IMHO.

Unfortunately, the previous owner did not finish the project leaving the fiberglass/epoxy joint work exposed to the weather, and the boat seemed to just fall off the completion track.

There was evidence that starboard side had a rubrail previously installed, but was gone when rescued.

Most of the hardware came off easily since the Nylock nuts just fell off when tested.  The rudder bracket bolts were seized up due to typical saltwater and SS/aluminum reactions.  The CB pivot joint was toast, and a CB glass repair/buildup around the pivot had the CB pretty well jammed up.  Once we finally got the CB out of the trunk it looked pretty good overall, but we will probably get a top mounted pivot on the go back

We prioritized getting the boat to a baseline for the weekend which was to strip the boat of all old hardware, cut out all the bad stuff, clean out years of leaves and dirt, and get a good jump on the glass/epoxy go back items.  Yarda had acquired all the materials and tools needed so we could make good time on the boat once we started.   So here we go.

Starboard hull had two punched holes from trailer bunk failure it looked like, one midship and the other just in front of the stern.  We cut out all the loose glass, and beveled the perimeter of the holes for the new glass at about an 8:1 and moved on.

Port side hull just aft of the chainplate suffered slightly fractured glass strands on the exterior face, but was obviously weak when sounding around with the butt of your fist.  Access to both sides of these non accessible areas of the hull had been discussed for a couple of weeks.  So the decision was to gain access by cutting the vertical wall under the seat for shallow storage bins about 17" long and 5" tall rough opening, and removing enough foam to get good room for the hole repair, and to allow (2) horizontal stringers about 24" long and  5" apart to install on port side weak area.

Moving on to prepping the deck/hull joint . The previous owner ground down a strip on the deck and hull so their glasswork would be flush with the deck and hull, which meant there wasn't a whole lot of glass there, and couple of small had already been sanded thru.  Biaxial tape provides a high ratio of glass to epoxy.  So the decision was to add a layer of 15oz. bi-axial tape to give a better comfort level on the existing joint strength.

The sanding prep was finished including extending the sanding below the joint about four inches to remove the current white paint and providing more area to fair-in the additional glass.

Moving on.


July 14

Work started with masking off the hull below deck joint to protect the boat from errant epoxy runs.  We then laid out the bi-axial cloth in place and taped it down about 16" on center to hold it while pouring and brushing on the epoxy.


When a section was well saturated we would remove the tape then saturate the glass where the tape was, then lightly squeegee over the glass to get a uniform amount of epoxy, then move to the next section.  

After the initial epoxy set, we applied another coat of epoxy over the cloth, and still have one more coat to apply before we start to fair out the work.

We then moved to the inside of the cuddy to clean the black paint from the joint area for a width of 3-4" for another strip of the biaxial tape and epoxy. Before the tape goes on though, we used a prepackaged thickened epoxy product that mixes in its caulk tube to build up the inside of the joint making a more consistent and not so sharp corner to bed the cloth to.

I think this step to add a layer of cloth on the inside of the cuddy was worth the trouble to insure a very strong joint especially up front where all the pounding will happen.  The picture was after cleaning and before the additional glass.

On to glassing the holes in the hull.  Nothing special here just good bevel of the surrounding glass for successive layers of woven roving or chop mat for smaller areas.  The final fairing of these repairs will wait till we have the boat upside down.

The final project of the day was left to Yarda.  Following in the footsteps of Mr. Jimmy Yurko on a 1971 Bucc, Yarda decided to give the skipper and crew more footroom by removing the CB housing surrounding the CB well. Hey the boats pretty radical already, so what the heck, right?

We will strengthen the sides of the well, with fiberglassed bracing and additional layers of glass, and an aluminum angle at the top sides of the well to stiffen, and provide a wide support base for a new Nickels CB cap.  But that work is for another day!

The Glass Masters.





July 21


Yarda pushed for work sessions just about every night after work.

We prepped for fairing out the deck/hull joint, and fairing out the very rough CB housing which was never meant to be exposed.  And the gap in the cockpit floor left from the removal of the CB surround, as well as the small stringers added to the port hull to stabilize a week area under the seat. We are using West System components for glass work.

Yesterday was the first day to install epoxy fairing material to the deck/hull joint. This material is a low density formula which is not crazy hard to sand to an infinite edge. We used two light coats to build up the very thin film needed to hide the joint work on the hull and an even thinner layer on the deck.

We moved on to the retro work on the CB housing.  Aluminum angles were added to the CB well to stiffen the top edges of the walls, and give us a good anchor for the new Nickels CB cap.

We started with Yarda removing all the rotten remaining wood and the top original fiberglass flanges (which were the base for the original wood strips that received screws from the CB cap).  The aluminum angles were drilled with pairs of 3/8" holes 6" apart then chamfered which would allow thickened high density epoxy to ooze out of the joint and lock to the walls.  The angles were fully bedded with this mixture as well (the angles were roughed up with grind marks at 90 degrees for the epoxy to grip).  The angles were left long to be cut off later to coordinate with the new CB cover.

A layer for cloth was also installed over the vertical  flange of the angles and down on the CB well to additionally secure the angles.  The tube laying on the angle in the picture will be mounted under the CB cover as a conduit for the spinnaker halyard/ retrieval line.

Tomorrow we make a form for the fiberglass/epoxy to make the replacement lower wall in front of the CB housing, and install the new bulkhead/forestay anchor point behind the spinnaker chute.

July 22


Tonight was some structural and some cosmetics projects. Yarda detailed some gelcoat spiderweb cracks, chasing them out to be filled with epoxy to keep them from telegraphing thru the new paint job.  I wrapped the new forward bulkead with fiberglass, then we bedded it to the deck, and tabbed it to the hull.  The hole in the center of the bulkhead is to access the nut end of the furler eyebolt which will bolt thru an alumimum angle on the aft side of this bulkhead.  In the pic the angle is not bolted on yet.  We also tabbed in the new lower cuddy wall section we made on a jig this weekend.  It will get some cosmetic tabbing on the cockpit side, the inside is fully tabbed with 2 layer of glass/epoxy.  The lower edge of the cuddy opening has not been trimmed to final height yet.  A couple more good evening of work, and the boat will be ready to flip this weekend to start removing the bottom paint and start fairing the hull for her paint job.


BTW yes we are living vicariously thru the race update from Fleet 10!  Great idea to invite non Mutters to take the helm!


 Yarda & Jim

July 25

We had a good week after work and finished all the glass work topside and cockpit except final sanding.  They will get painted after the hull. 

Yarda brought some guys from work and flipped the boat today, cribbing her back on the trailer.  He has half the hull stripped of her black bottom and white hull paint. He will finish sanding the rest off while I start fairing out the hole repairs and several chiggers on her bottom. 

The hull should be ready for primer and paint starting next weekend.  She is getting white bottom to water line and black from water line to new rubrail line.  Yarda is using Interlux Perfection Plus which is in route from Jamestown Distributors.


The FL Mutt Shop


July 26


This is the deck and cockpit with final epoxy fairing compound still to sand off from the new glasswork and spider web cracks.  We were pretty happy with the way the new cuddy bulkhead lower panel fit up to to the CB housing.  The topsides and cockpit get new paint job of course.




Yarda and Jim




July 29


Hi All,


Per pics 1-2 we are down to the final sanding of fairing work tomorrow night including a once over sanding with 220 grit before primer and first coat of color (white bottom). The dark area forward of the CB opening was hole from years of abuse from the trailer roller.  Before the glass repair we pumped closed cell insulation back in this area which had settled on the roller and was soft.  Also discovered was a fracture at the stern bottom edge that was all the way thru.  This area is notoriously thin on all these old boats.  I was able to build it up on the inside with glass to get some thickness put back.  This weekend will also start the glasswork on the spinnaker snout using the very nice (traveling) mold built by Bob DeRoeck.



The CB was stripped of a heavily built up repair to the pivot area which we will also grind out and install a new epoxy/glass pivot area.  We will be changing the pivot from the original 1-1/4" to a 1/2" SS shaft which will help us build some strength in the weak design.



In the last pic you can see the original pivot brackets are pretty thin at the flanges and the screw holes are wallered out (as we say back home in KY), so we will make new ones out of heavier aluminum.  We will stick with the bottom mount pivot assembly for now, but the new brackets will be wider than the original ones to allow the new screw locations to move fore and aft to miss the pivot shaft recesses for the pivot bolt head and nut. We will include some pics to better explain this planned detail.



Yarda and Jim




Fleet 18 (planning to "Boogey Back to Texas")


July 31

On Yarda's project boat the CB had been fractured and broken at the pivot corner and heavily glassed over on one side.  As Yarda dug into it deeper, it was evident that the PO had dug out the foam core in the area, filled the gap with what looks like horse hair, and then filled the cavity with polyester resin!  That's not how Mother would have done it!


Actually some pockets of the resin never cured.  All of this mess was pulled out and sand prepped and washed out with lacquer thinner to remove the residual soft resin. I filled the void with about 12 layers of mat glass with epoxy to fill the void and bond the two outer shells back together and also give us a solid core area for the new pivot axle. 


Even with slow set epoxy this much mass got pretty warm, I used a wet rag and fan to help keep the temp down till the epoxy thickened.  The blade has also been sanded down too much on the aft edge exposing the foam core, which will need to recessed and filled with thickened epoxy and faired out.  What looked like a pretty ugly project turned out to be not that bad, and still a good board now.



Yarda and Jim


August 4


Tonight's project boat update is that we are right on schedule.  This weekend the boat moved back to Yarda's garage for the start of the paint job.




The first pic is the stern and starboard in primer.  We took a chance and tried the roll and tip method for the two part urethane prime.  We chose to follow the thinning advice of someone who had done it before instead of following the Interlux directions, and we did not like the results with the brush strokes.  We wound up with a ghost coat of primer remaining after sanding which is ok since all of it is solid.




In the 2nd pic the laser made short work of shooting on the water line location.  We transferred the line to the hull with pencil tick marks about every 3" then masked off for the white bottom.  The 3rd pic shows the first coat of two-part urethane (having switched over to the spray method for finish paint). We waited till the first coat kicked off, then applied the second coat which cancelled the need to sand between these two coats, then let it cure overnight.  This afternoon we wet sanded with 320 and applied the final coat which is the 4th and 5th pic.  It's hard to see in the picture with the doors shut trying to keep the humidity off of it, but it looks pretty good.  Tomorrow the tape line gets reversed to the opposite side of the waterline and then prep for the black color from waterline to rub rail. Hopefully she's ready to flip over this weekend and start the painting of the deck and cockpit.





The CB repairs and re-bore of the pivot hole were also completed.  We used an 1-1/2" thick hardwood scrap to make a drilling jig to bore the new pivot hole.   On the drill press I drilled the jig with a hole matching the outside diameter of the sleeve for the pivot bolt.   After marking the center point of the original pivot hole, I clamped the jig to the CB as a drill guide which assured the hole was very square to the CB, then epoxied the sleeve in place. 





Yarda and Jim (masked men)





August 6



OK you guys and gals are probably getting tired of our progress updates, but too bad!

Yarda masked off the new white bottom, and we found that a lot more fairing was needed from the water line up last night, enough so that we needed to re-prime this area.  It was sanded today with 320 for the first of three coats of black, and man it really laid down well.

The rudder was faired out as well for its paint job this weekend. It appears to me this may not be an original rudder. Although the overall shape looks accurate to my rudder, it was just a slab with no taper to the edges and the edges were blunt, no fairing at all. There is still some final fairing to do in this pic.

Yarda is prepping cross bunks on the trailer to ready it for flipping the boat back on her bottom on Saturday.

Today was 25th consecutive day of weekends and evenings after our paying gigs!

Yarda and Jim


August 10

Well she's turned the corner now and is looking less like a project boat and more like a real Mutineer 15!



Yarda converted the trailer to cradle bunks and flipped her back over on Saturday.  He then took on the job of final cleaning the cuddy and primed and painted it bright white, sqeezing his 6' frame in there to do it (he had given me the day off!).


Yarda's wife, Marianna, was his helper on the outside for that project.


Today the final fairing of the cockpit modifications, and some touchups on the deck were completed.  One final sanding tomorrow afternoon and the primer will go on.  We will also epoxy-in the new backer board for the tabernacle, and paint the faired rudder.

Next weekend Yarda should be able to start putting her back together!



Yarda and Marianna- ok me too.

August 14

Hi All,


Tonight's update shows Yarda's infill/replacement of the old tabernackle backing with (2) layers of 3/4" Azek and adhesive epoxy filler fairing.  He was able to get more Azek in the void by using two layers than with a single piece by sliding the first piece (cut as wide as possible) off to one side, then slide the second piece in and then center up the two.  The large void around the backer was filled solid with foam and let setup, then cleaned up and prepped for epoxy.


Last night the primer went on the deck and cockpit.


Tomorrow night the finish starts going on.  The years of use has left its marks on the topsides that we cannot completely get rid of.  Yarda spent hours gouging out and filling spider cracks in the gelcoat (smooth) areas.  We filled the spider cracks in the nonskid gelcoat with two part primer to as somewhat fill the gaps without disturbing the nonskid pattern.  Their still visible when your up close but she looks pretty good.













August 17

Hi All,


As said previously our goal was to finish the topsides paint job this weekend and we made it happen.  Primer and (3) finish coats with 400 grit wet sanding and wash down between coats.  Yarda would have had all the wet sanding done when I got there which was great. 


A lot of our old boats have suffered gelcoat stress cracks from side to side at the deck reinforcements locations.


Although Yarda had already gouged out the cracks on the smooth bands on the deck and faired them out with epoxy, we did not want to mess up the nonskid pattern by trying to gouge out these cracks for the same repair.  So before spraying the primer we pushed primer into these cracks and then wiped off the excess.  This process allowed the sprayed primer to get pulled into the cracks instead of just blowing over the crack. We did the same thing with the first coat of finish, and the results were worth the effort. We didn't get all of them, but overall the deck looks 100% better.


The cockpit nonskid also benefited from the same process.  I'm not a fan of painting the decks and cockpits if it's possible to bring back the gelcoat, but some of these old boats are just too far gone, this one was, and we needed to paint over all the new glasswork.


Our workmanship with the glass and epoxy work on the CB well fairing, and new cuddy wall shines thru with the paint job.


Today was the start of the spinnaker snout glasswork and what a rewarding project it was.  We read Bob DeRoark's snout instructions again before starting the work (we put the instructions in a binder to protect them for the next user).

Yarda lathered on two coats of paste wax as bond breaker and let it set up, while I cut the fiberglass cloth into about 3" strips and various lengths.

This snout version is without gelcoat applied to the mold, as the snout will paint to match the deck. We covered a plywood work surface with newspaper to catch the errant resin, and clamped the mold to the plywood. Using a narrow throw away paint roller tray we dipped the cloth then placed it on the mold starting at the perimeter then filling in the rest with overlapping pieces.

The second layer went on in the opposite directions, then the third layer same direction as the first.  We put a quartz lamp on the setup to speed up the process some.  An hour later, the first half popped easily from the mold.Yarda cleaned up the edges, and prepped the mold for the second half of the snout tomorrow.

Rather than build up the entire glass thickness while on the mold, we will stop after three layers, then join the halves together, then bulk up the entire snout at one time. We got a late start today, otherwise we could have gotten both halves done today. Having a second pair of hands while laying up the glass makes a lot of difference. Yarda will ship the mold to the next team on Tuesday.


In the picture with the half snout in place on the deck you can see the layout lines (drawn on the mold) transferred to the casting and it had not been trimmed to the line yet.

Also pictured is what we think was the original spinnaker snout with the very restrictive opening.  Yarda has orderd his spinnaker with a double belly button from Schurr Sails.  The double belly button keep the spinnaker from extending past the cuddy wall into the cockpit when doused, and this large snout opening can handle the extra layers of spinnaker material folds.

Almost time to start putting her back together.  Yarda has ordered most of the new hardware from Sailcare who is marketing the Verdana line.

The CB cover from Nickels was fitted today, all new lines delivered the other day.  Every day the UPS truck shows up, its like Christmas on August at his house!


Yarda and Jim, (soon to be just Yarda and wife Marian who has been feeding this crew some awesome lunches)!


August 21



Yarda has been on his own this week and making good time.

In the pics you see his compression post using 1-1/2" thin wall aluminum square tube and coordinating brackets (last pic) epoxied in place. He has cut out the aft face from the bottom of the tube to clear the top of the bracket for easy removal.

Also he has carefully cut out the new cuddy wall for the spinnaker opening which will trim out with a short section of 6" pvc mounted to accept hose clamps connection to the spinnaker sock.

He found a replacement rudder head and relocated the pintle brackets it to fit the original rudder bracket for now.

We will connect the spinnaker snout halves tomorrow night and ready it for two part urethane paint to match the deck.  Saturday we install the centerboard and furler connection as well as some small projects.


The insulation (taken out under the seats to allow the hull repairs) will be replaced also, so the under seat storage bins can install.

A local vendor sells a kit of two part polyurethane closed cell foam, which should be a close density match to the original foam.

Lots of detail stuff from here on out.

Yarda will collect a set of barely used Bartlett racing sails from Jerry T. when he gets to Grapevine!

For Yarda, 


August 24


Hi All,

Some not so sexy project background here!

Yarda found a local distributor with small kits of two part closed cell foam(see last pic) to restore the insulation that had been removed to make hull repairs.

The trigger wand and a couple of feet of tube will let you shoot this material pretty far so getting it back in some cracks is not a problem.

As you can see it filled the existing gap between the bottom of the seat and the top of the old insulation to make the seats more firm, and potentially stiffening the hull.

The material expands 25-30% so prepare by masking off everything you don't want it to get on.

The hardened material was then carved out for the storage units to install.  Since we could not replicate the factory gap between the insulation and the vertical of the seat, Yarda installed some half pipe pvc at the bottom of this repair section so water can get thru if needed.

Yarda was dreading this part of the project but this kit made the job pretty easy.  I stayed clear and handed him stuff!

Jim for Yarda

Oh yea, some sexy project pics tomorrow night if you think spinnaker snouts, centerboard hardware, and rubrail are sexy!


August 27


Hi all!

OK here are some of the sexy pics I mentioned the other day!

Check out the hull color matching rubrail, and sporty new wide mouth spin snout!

What that? What's that hole in the CB housing? That is the retro CB pivot prep to allow board removal from the top without top mount brackets. The bolt head and nut end will get capped with urethane caulk to seal her up! 

Yarda's publisher, Jim


September 2


Two of our local friends with sewing machines were out of pocket.  So Yarda and Marian took a trip to a pawn shop and picked up a good Singer machine.  Yarda made a pattern, found some vinyl coated material, and Marian stitched up the sock.  I think she’s taking orders! 

The CB pic was meant to show the tape dam installed on the inside edge of the CB well to help contain the bed of urethane to bond the CB gasket.  Also in this shot is the new CB pivot bolt setup, which is now accessible from the cockpit for easy removal.  The last pic is the finished gasket. 

The cockpit pic shows some value engineering acrylic scraps and closed cell foam gasket used to make covers for the access ports.  If we used screw-in type access ports, then the original opening would have to be enlarged, then you still wind up with a reduced opening for access.  And they make a great place to put your Mutineer decals. 

Unveiling of the finished Mutineer next time.


Yarda, Jim and Marian

September 6

Hi all, not much narrative needed on this post!  Yarda wrapped up the project with the spinnaker rigging as the final project.  "Skipper's" official naming ceremony will be at MNC at Grapevine with the event (and spirits) shared with all!  The project wrapped up on schedule in time for Yarda and Marian to turn their focus to moving into new home this weekend.





Editor's note - this is without a doubt the best job of breathing new life into an aging Mutineer we have seen.  Yarda and Jim displayed great skill and determination.  But I am told that most anyone who has the desire can do the job.  Hopefully their narration and pictures will serve to inspire others to breathe new life into an old Mutineer.

Great job Yarda and Jim!


Job well done!