I got some great advise today from another boat builder that I have mentioned on site. Judy from Scrumble had seen on the site what I am doing and had a great method for applying the filler to the joins. On Scrumble they used snap seal lunch bags as piping bags. I fold a lunch bag over a clean mixing pot and push the snap-seal out of the way. I then fill the bag with the filler and then snap it shut. Then remove the air bubbles, push the filler into a corner of the bag, then snip the corner off to the size required and go and squeeze the filler into the hull join. It’s great because it is fast and clean. Once it is in the bag, the filler only comes out of the corner as you squeeze and goes into the gaps that you otherwise have to try to trowel into. I then just went over any area I had over to under filled and smoothed it out a little with the spatula. I have pictures of each step in the link in the picture below that show the simple process or you can see Scrumble’s excellent pictures on their website at this page on their http://www.scrumble.com.au/bilge-exterior-fillets-port-hull/
Using this new and much cleaner and more effective filling method I managed to fill the equivalent of a whole join in around 2 hours (they were taking me 3) and I am sure I will get faster as I spent a lot of time experimenting with filler thickness. I will definitely finish the rest of the hull tomorrow with the exception of the keel gap.
At one section at the bow, the join was too good. It was so tight that you could not get any glue or filler in between the panels. The join will be covered with fibreglass both sides so it isn’t critical but I decided I would rather they were glued to each other also. So I ran a jigsaw down the join to open it up a little so that I could get resin/hardener in, and I then tried to squeeze a little filler into the join using the spatula.
Rather than do one whole length join I decided to fill the 2 joins left (keel to bilge, bilge to chamfer) as I went. The benefit is I only have to climb the ladder half as many times. So I managed to fill both joins to the middle of the boat before I had had enough for the day and tomorrow I will fill the rest of the hull. Then I will attack the keel gap.