Sunday, February 12, 2006


OHIO- An acronym which stands for (among other things) Only Handle It Once.

This certainly applies to all sorts of mails, be it emails, snail mails, bills, etc. Earlier, whenever I received a bill, for instance, I would open it, check it for its accuracy, file it for later payment. Most of the time, I would miss making a payment and pay a late fee. Or, end up going through the pile again another day and paying some, and stacking the others for another day. This was a very bad habit. Now, I am close to following the OHIO rule for all my correspondence. There is no point in procrastinating. It only multiplies the time spent on the subject. So, as Nike says "Just do It"; as soon as you receive your mail, read it and take an action on it immediately, and be done with it.

I started applying epoxy and fiberglass to my boat a few days ago. It sounds intimidating, but once you get all the materials in place, and follow all the safety instructions, it is not so bad. I am still getting used to laying the glass fiber, and saturating it with the right amount of epoxy. You apply a coat of epoxy on the wooden core, before it dries (this is the wet layup method), lay the fiberglass cloth on it. Now, you are supposed to apply just enough resin to wet it completely, but not float it off the wooden surface. That is the tricky part. In one occasion, I ended up floating the cloth. In another, I had too little resin and had to soak it again. But, I am getting there.

With epoxy, there is not much reuse of materials. The mixing cup, the stirring stick, spoons, brushes, gloves, all go to the trash after 15- 20 mins. You need to use all the resin before it starts getting hard. Epoxy is what is packaged as super glue in small containers. It comes in two parts: resin and hardener. Alone, both of them are in liquid form. Once you mix them in the right proportion, an exothermic chemical reaction starts, and the molecules bond to form a very strong union. So, at the end of the curing time (20 mins, in my case), all tools used in the application will become useless. This was when I remembered the OHIO acronym. In case of fiberglass, you are forced to complete the work as soon as you start it. This is a great way of making sure that you don't procrastinate. Procrastination, in this case, turns out to be very costly.

Well, the boat core is completely done. I just need to finish off some rough edges, and then I can glass the entire boat.