We Start Painting Narrow Boat Alice

We Start Painting Narrow Boat Alice

Hello. Thank you very much for watching.
Well I’m finally in a poly tunnel. I let Alice go through a winter last year and
it wasn’t painted and it’s made the job a lot more difficult but this year I’ve
put her in a polytunnel a friend of mine Steve has come up from
London to give me a hand. I couldn’t have painted the boat up to
this far without him. So thanks very much Steve. He’s whorked like a trooper and we’re
gradually getting some colour on the boat. That’s been one of the reasons why
I haven’t done a video within the last what, month and the other reason is this.
A bit of an incident with an ironing board and my MacBook Pro that I used to
edit with. About a week after I came back from the Netherlands I was moored up on
the the canal near here and a boat went past really, really fast.
Rocked the boat all over the place. I was in the galley making a morning coffee
and I saw the ironing board that was propped up against the side, slide down
the wall and smash on the back of my MacBook. It broke the screen off, both the
the back off the MacBook so it shows how sort of fragile they are and of course I
wasn’t able to edit. I wasn’t able to do anything. So luckily, it was insured and
with all praise to the insurer, they paid out relatively quickly. I had a new
computer within about two weeks and I have done lots of filming on the boat
now and obviously I’m editing again, hence this episode but that’s really the
reasons why there’s been two delays. One because it’s cause Alice is in this
polytunnel and two because I’ve had absolutely
nothing to edit on. Instead of attempting to sand and paint Alice out on the wet
canal side, I decided it was time to put her under cover in a poly tunnel. The first job was to remove the rust
spots from all areas of the boat. Key areas were un-welded joins and rope eyes
where water sat and rusted over time. Where the boat had been flicked or
scraped by tree branches, there were lines of rust to sort out. Instead of
treating the rust with a rust inhibitor, we ground the worst completely out, back
to bare metal. We used a 150 and 125mm
random orbital sanders. We used a range of different grit sanding
disks from 80 for badly rusted areas like the floor of the bow up to a fine 600. As
soon as the metal was bare, it was important to cover it with primer to
avoid the moisture in the air re rusting it. I used a grey yacht primer by
International and it contains aluminium flakes to create an anti corrosive,
protective barrier. It had a really good coverage and was really easy to use. The
entire boat was sanded back to remove over 20 months of dirt, loads of weld
splatter spots which were underneath the primer and original paint runs. Large
areas of the original primer was slightly textured. This textured
imperfection is called orange peel, as there are small bumps like on the
outside of an orange. All of these needed to be sanded out to
create a smooth finish. Preparing the original metal work back to a super
smooth surface was key to build the layers up from then on. We used a compressor to blow the dust
away from the metalwork and a larger fan to keep the air and dust moving through
and out of the tunnel. Having spoken to a lot of boaters over the past year and
after witnessing a lot of rust around windows on other boats, I was keen to
fully remove all my windows and portholes. I striped back the foam
insulation from around the windows inside and revealed the metal screw
clamps that held the windows in. These simply unscrewed and I put them to one
side. I was worried the windows would be really difficult to remove but after a
quick blade around the outer edge, they popped out – thank goodness! I was pleased
I made this decision as already rust was starting to form under the edges of many
of the windows. We sanded all the sealant away and cleaned off the edges back to
metal. We applied three coats of primer to the entire boat and before each coat
we cleaned it down with panel wipe degreaser and sanded back any
imperfections with wet and dry 1500 grit sandpaper.
I’ve decided to have a lighter colored roof, to reflect the heat in the summer.
The final coat will include a nylon grit to deflect any glare and help avoid any
slipping when walking on the roof. We applied three coats of ivory
international top black paint using small 4-inch foam rollers. We found cheap
foam rollers were the best as they left a clean surface. We replace the rollers
after completing around half the roof, to avoid them breaking up or going gloopy
with paint. Each roof coat took just over a litre of paint and we added around 30
milliliters of International Number 1 thinners to stop it going off so quickly.
I’d like to thank two people for becoming top-level Paterons and they are
Mark Jones and Colin Neil. Thanks so much guys.
In the next episode we continue to smooth down the metalwork and Alice
starts to get a bit more color on her sides. If you’ve not already subscribed
please do, it doesn’t cost you anything and by clicking the bell icon you’ll be
notified about future releases. Until next time, see you later.


  • John Baxter Walker says:

    Sorry to learn of your ironing board mishap – glad you had a good insurance company. Are you able to name them ? Always good to have recommendations. Great video as always. Out of interest my brother Nic worked with Phil Speight at the Ellesmere Port Boat Museum where they painted many narrowboats.

  • John Garner says:

    Been very , very very worried about you .

  • Betty Swollocks says:

    Looking good Jono 🙂

  • Robert - DL3RR says:

    Wow! That's a lot of sanding. Alice is coming along wonderfully.

  • mmanut says:

    Great Job👍👍 Excited to see your final results. Vinny 🇺🇸

  • Scott FW says:

    Wow, y'all have put in a Bunch of effort!

  • The American Wanderer says:

    welcome back to Youtube….

  • Garry Stacey says:

    Look great keep up the good work 👍🏻

  • Benny Hill says:

    are there no restrictions on working on your boat while its on the water? much of the paint and rust dust will end up in the canal. you mentioned at the beginning that you didn't fancy working out in the open at the canal side, would that be possible and not break any rules or laws? i ask because i'm thinking of doing it myself!

  • Nicholas F says:

    Looks brilliant Jono! Can't wait to see your next episode!

  • Jorge Ace says:

    Professional job!

  • Martin Bissell says:

    Starting to look like a ‘proper job’ – how many days have you had to hire the polytunnel for ?

  • C Cooper says:

    That is another good reason not to iron stuff. Life's too short for ironing !

  • Treve Jenkyn says:

    Good to see you back, glad all is going well

  • snubbedpeer says:

    Great, a video where we see Alice and some action, not just you walking along the towpath!

  • Rain Coast says:

    Starting to look really spiffy Jono! Thanks also to your friend for being generous with his time.

  • J B Smart says:

    Great video jono nice to see your keeping steve busy. Millie and molly are like two peas in a pod in that bed.

  • By the Numbers says:

    Good to see that Supervisor Molly was at her station to make sure that there wss no slacking znd that you did a right proper job of it. Good work Molly.

  • Mandy Smith says:

    It’s lovely to see you and Molly back!

  • George Caruso says:

    Being an old boat owner, one of the ways I got that way was wearing a respirator when painting, I use a lot of Interlux (US brand for International) and all the paints I use along with all the thinners suggest breathing protection when working in confined spaces. The two part paints require it because the thinners use benzene derivatives which are carcinogens, and one should also wear gloves since the thinner can be absorbed transdermally. When wet sanding, first you can wetsand with a power sander, I have an 18" long air sander that does great long board style work with 400 and 600 grit wet paper. You can get a terrific final finish if you roll and tip the paint working from a wet edge. The International paints look sprayed on if you roll then tip them with a good badger varnish brush. I mention the respirator because long term exposure to this stuff can give you what is called respirator rash from repeated exposure, I have it from 50 years of painting, and it is not fun, and I now have to use a full face powered respirator to avoid getting the rash, which is much like hives and not all that comfortable. The other benefit of the two part International paints is that they last 4-5 years longer than the one part poly paints. At $90 a quart they are pricey but well worth it in the longer time you will get. Who is Molly's friend?

  • Lee Bruner says:

    This makes my arm and shoulder hurt. How much are you kicking yourself for not having painted sooner?

  • Knut Inge says:

    The video titel is in Norwegian, how come?

  • David Marsh says:

    Can you stay on the boat while in the tunnel? I guess no windows makes securing it harder. How long did the whole process take?

  • Bernard Schirmeyer says:

    It is a New boat…..how is it possible to have RUST……….after one year of use ?….

  • Sid Dalton says:

    Awesome as always Jono! I can't wait to see more!

  • Bruce Boschek says:

    I am very impressed with the great job you are doing there. Alice will look amazing when finished. Enjoyed the video as always. Have missed you and Molly. Glad the insurance came through on the laptop! Thanks for the update.

  • Marcomanseckisax says:

    Wau, deutsche Titel und Einführung, nicht schlecht – vielen Dank! Sorry, wenn das jetzt ein bisschen altschlau rüberkommt, aber ich denke, "narrowboat" würde man entweder belassen (wir lieben englische Begriffe) oder mit "Kanalboot" übersetzen. Völlig deutsch wäre "Wohnlastkahn", aber das Wort gibt es nicht, und keiner hätte die leiseste Ahnung, was es soll.

  • Charles Damery says:

    So, how did you keep the dogs from getting painted too? Dogs will find a way to get into everything given a chance when you're not looking.

  • dairyfarmerdan says:

    Bloody lovely video 👍👍👍

  • MR.IRISH LAD says:

    Great video as usual!

  • ALAN GLASS says:

    Looks like your perfection standards are shining as usual.

  • fins59 says:

    Proper job!
    Not only will your narrow boat have the best electronics, I bet it has the best paint job by the time you're finished.
    PS You missed a bit 🙂

  • Ken Allen says:

    My first job when I left school at 15 was with a car painter and yes a good prep is the key to a great long lasting finish. Looking good so far bro and friend. All the best.

  • HowlingCoder425 says:

    u finally painting Alice enjoy it

  • John Neal says:

    Looking really good,cant wait to see her finished and all shiny and new

  • tom collier says:

    I hate to be the paintshop Grim Reaper here but……. You should have removed the shop primer in its entirety after leaving it so long before top coat. After prolonged exposure to the elements its protection properties are compromised, flatting back and recoating with new primer will not undo this. All the paint in the world on top of primer that's absorbed contaminates uv etc could potentially flake, blister or inhibit the properties of subsequent topcoat causing fading etc. Hopefully that may not happen but, after spending how much on your boat? Why oh why leave it so vulnerable for the sake of a few litres of paint and a bit of graft in the beginning. If it's not too late!?!?!? Get suitable respirators, set up good ventilation and use a 2k topcoat. You can obtain low temperature thinners for painting in the cooler days ahead. it may or may not save you bacon. Good luck mate!!!!

  • Ross Holmes says:

    looks to me like molly is in charge here hoho

  • Rolex drone channel. says:

    Wow. Fantastic. I see no one would want to come into your boat at night. 🐕🐶🐕

  • The Venomator says:

    Awesome job and excellent attention to detail Jono, coming along very nicely indeed… 👍🏻 💚 🐍

  • TheLifeOfSteve says:

    Reminds me of my days preparing and spraying in a car body shop ……

  • Chris john Emery says:

    It will look great when done 👍

  • ThatDutchguy says:

    I knew you had a black Labrador, but, is the Rottweiler yours too ?

  • William Jordan says:


  • Stephen Kite says:

    What a huge job Jono but stopping the existing rust and any future rust is a bonus. The original undercoat will not stop it rusting as it’s supposed to be painted straight away with antitrust paint but in taking the windows off etc and finding rust underneath will ensure many years of rust prevention . Good luck with the painting and I can’t wait to see it finished 🙂

  • Dale says:

    Alice is becoming ship-shape. Well done mate.

  • rod logan says:

    ….so the ironing was NOT made in China…..

  • Richard Miller says:

    Nice to have one of your very interesting videos, Jono. Paint job looks great, will be fun to see what you end up with-will you have her name painted on the side?

  • RodgauChaton says:

    Ahoi, Alice bekommt ein neues Kleid. Wie ich es so sehe freuen sich Molly und Du darauf. Das mit Deinem Laptop war ja nicht sehr erfreulich und ich hoffe Du kannst alle Daten retten. Grüß Leo

    Ahoy, Alice gets a new dress. As I see it, Molly and you are looking forward to it. That with your laptop was not very enjoyable and I hope you can save all data. Hello Leo

  • Robin Bergen says:

    Welcome back Jono!! Shame about the MacBook but glad you got a new one pretty quickly. The work on Alice looks great so far, lots of attention to the little bits which is great. And nice to see Molly has a companion while she oversees the work! 🙂

  • Anthony Williams says:

    Great work Johno, love the attention to detail you have an all aspects of the fit-out and painting.

  • Emmas Spareroom Machineshop says:

    pretty excited to see what it will turn out like. !

  • jose correia says:

    hi had blasting back to metal used two pack paint

  • Mike Tipping says:

    Interesting with the aluminium in the paint. My original through was putting 2 different metals together was a bad idea because you'll get electrolysis but I guess the aluminium would corrode instead of the steel so you're effectivly painting your boat with a big sacrificial anode… or maybe you'll wire up some terminals and use the whole boat to supplement the batteries!

  • Norman Boyes says:

    Looking dang spiffy.👍⛵️

  • Christopher Steers says:

    Looks like Molly has made a friend 🐕

  • Gary Bellis says:

    Looking great John you get my 👍👍 of approval it's going to look fantastic when complete

  • Joshua Bicknell says:

    Can’t wait to see the finished result Jono, looking awesome 🙂

  • pilotdane says:

    Interesting to see wet sanding with 1'500 grit then cut to a shot of paint being applied with a roller. After such fine surface prep I expected to see a spray gun to get a high gloss automotive finish. 😀

  • Jesse Parker says:

    Don't let that happen again! Get rid of that ironing board!

  • L. West says:

    Jono, Alice is looking good with your careful attention to detail. We are looking forward to the completed paint scheme.

  • rip vanwincle says:

    Wow.Alice is looking amazing.You're doing a fantastic job on her.

  • neil simm says:

    Nice to see your progress Jono, a true perfectionist it looks very good (Lock keeper Neil)

  • Sylvia Page says:

    What a great job. She’s looking great. I can’t wait to see the finished job. Thanks as always for another interesting video.

  • wsatnutter says:

    lovely what is the rotty name

  • Tim says:

    Alice is going to look amazing. You always do such a great job of whatever you turn your hand to.

  • mac69041 says:

    Good to see you back. The bow area at the end of the video looks good just in primer, but it will be good to see Alice in her final apparel.

  • Philip Aspinall says:

    You missed a bit!

  • Graham Bearman says:

    My word Alice does come up bright and shiny and she looks good Jono , glad you got that rust gone. Lets hope it is forever! Sorry about your laptop breakage though.

  • Kevin Rummelhart says:

    Curious why you didn’t pull her out of the water into an undercover area?… Seems like the water would create humidity and all sorts of sanding dust and pain gunk would go into the water and pollute it…

  • Cliff Briggs says:

    Where did you paint your boat (which yard)

  • lin evans says:

    Is that paint on the roof anti slip? We have had our boat painted this year and it has the anti
    slip on the roof but it not as good as the old stuff we had on.

  • Malcolm Elliott says:

    Your going to have a queue of willing buyers if you ever sell Alice.. never seen such well prepared prepainting and attention to details. Not to mention the superb quality wiring and joinery. When will you be turning your hand to lace making and basket weaving? 🙂

  • Lynne Deegan says:

    I can't believe how stupidly excited I got when I saw a video coming about painting Alice, I need to get a life!

  • benny s says:

    Mazal Tov! 😉 It's looking great already! I also love how the dogs sleep together 🙂

  • joe pineapples says:

    As a recent subscriber, been bingeing/catching up on all your videos Jono. Enjoyed them all, and looking forward to seeing the new paint job. Good vlogging. Good golly that molly can run.

  • Liam K says:

    Great job Jono nice to see the boat finely getting a paint job look forward to the finnished product.. Good Luck..

  • Ant French Photography And Vanlife says:

    i did think the other day about your channel not putting any videos up, but glad things are ok 🙂

  • Critical Role Highlights says:

    Good thing you had it insured because fixing a Macbook at an Apple repair place is as expensive as a new computer of any other brand.

  • Floating Our Boat says:

    Looking forward to seeing a 'new' Alice' .

  • lysippus says:

    i guess i echo the others– excellent attention to details. job well done. thanks steve too

  • C Cooper says:

    Note to self… when I win the lottery remember to have the narrowboat made out of stainless steel,

  • Tlaloc Lopez-Watermann says:

    Hi there! I really like your channel. Entertaining and educational. Question on this video: do the aluminum flakes introduce a potential for dissimilar metal corrosion potentials? Thanks in advance.

  • Sue Watson says:

    Oh nooo, I have finished binge watching, and am now up to date. More vlogs now please!

  • Sharps Law says:

    19,000th subscriber. Glad I found your channel. Excellent work. 👍

  • Opal G says:

    I have a question about a previous video. In that video you passed a sunken narrow boat. Is there any way of salvaging a boat if it sinks? Can it be brought back to the surface by some means and restored? Or once it sinks, is it a total loss?

  • ancha achirafe says:


  • Rick Parker says:

    Great job Jono! I'm very impressed with your attention to details prior to painting. Painting is 90% prep and 10% application.

  • Brian Jones says:

    Jono: question for you. I understand why you are travelling in tandem – boat and car – currently. Do you think once the boat is fully fitted out, you might be more adventuresome with just the boat?

  • John Rushworth says:

    Professional job!

  • Fiddling with my Whistle says:

    Hi Jono…. I am looking at buying a boat. And surveys are expensive… So thinking about a DIY Hull thickness Gauge…. to save some £'s,
    Have you seen these?? —– "DecentGadget® Ultrasonic Thickness Meter Tester Gauge Velocity 1.2~225mm Metal Wave"
    https://tinyurl.com/DecentGadget Do they work, they are only £75, so I could save hundreds on hull surveys… by checking hull thicknesses myself.

  • Kevin Larrabee says:

    You know where my vote goes Jono… a Yellow Submarine theme. A couple of yellow and red periscopes welded to the top… a number of see through window graphics showing the Fab Four in the windows, and you'd be set. Imagine the reaction you'd get.

  • Mr Mensa says:

    Would painting it all white dramatically reduce the heat from the steel in the summer? – love your videos btw – peace

  • Mr Mensa says:

    Ah just heard you mention "roof a lighter colour to reflect the heat" – thanks

  • mmanut says:

    Looks Fantastic ‼️👍👍. Smart move painting in the tunnel ‼️👍👍. Vinny 🇺🇸

  • john hatcliffe says:

    Hi jono what marina r u at .

  • Daniel Eccles says:

    bin the mac book. and use a windows based laptop. more performance for less money. across all apple products…. for the same money you can get more performance… its just branded poop. (and yes i can back this up)

  • John Rooke says:

    Have just started watching your videos have you made a video showing the inside complete

  • David Smales says:

    Hello Jono, how about adding short sided angle bar in a vee formation, to reach across your windows and above them, and guide any rainfall away from you windows, easy to replace at your annual service of the narrowboat.

  • CoolMusicToMyEars says:

    Hi Juno, Great video, paintwork on the boat is A+ good job, maybe next time look at hire a 1000W laser paint – rust removal !, have a look on youtube :), Philip

  • Sue Cox says:

    Awwww, Molly is such a good girl to share her bed!

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