1952 Chris Craft Riviera Runabout Bleaching Day

It has been 18 hours since the last application of Kleen Strip wood bleach (50:50 mixture of parts A and B) to the hull of our 1952 Chris-Craft Riviera Runabout 18’.

The lowest reading I just read with the moisture meter is 25 percent. It pegs the meter well above 30 percent on most of the hull. We now turn all the humidifiers off in that section of the shop as we have an 18’ hull pumping humidity into the atmosphere as it dries.

Once the hull returns readings in the 12-15 percent moisture range, we will hand sand it lightly with 120 grit paper, just enough to remove the fuzz that bleaching produces. We must be super vigilant, however, as sanding to aggressively risks going through the approximately 1/16 – 1/8 inch layer that the bleach penetrates.

Sanding will be followed by staining the blonde deck panels with Sandusky Paint Chris Craft Corina Blonde Filler Satin 9802 and then sealing it with three coats of Smith’s Clear Penetrating Epoxy Sealer.

The balance of the hull will be stained using Don Danenberg’s personal favorite: 2 parts #573 to 1 part #42, Interlux Interstain Wood Filler Stain. We agree with Danenberg that “it creates a deep, rich, warm color that is neither too dark nor too red. (The Complete Wooden Boat Restoration Guide, p. 217).

We will continue updating the project as each stage of the finishing process unfolds.