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Old 19-09-2011, 06:15   #91
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

one of the many ferro barges built during ww2 in falmouth harbour.
many are currently being used as housboats.
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Old 19-09-2011, 17:01   #92
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Quote:
Originally Posted by barnakiel View Post
My guess is that that the design will sail very poorly hence the need for large fuel tanks (and a huge diesel).

Unless this is a huge ketch, then everything can be all right - big boat, big engines, big tanks.

What is the design. How much does she displace?

b.
The yacht is a well known and respected design, (here in Australia) She's a professionally built 1979, 50' Wilf O’Kell Ariella 2, with a small 72hp Perkins, and her displacement is 25Ton.
I don't believe she's over-powered with that engine, by all accounts, Perkins engines are well known for their reliability and economical running.

I now believe the lady responsible for advertising the yacht has made a couple of honest mistakes with the advert' as she lists, Fuel: 2,000LT. Water: 2,000LT. Engine Hours: 2,000.

I hope to get-up and see the yacht sometime soon but the way things are at home, it may not be as soon as I would like. Oh well, first things first
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Old 19-09-2011, 17:28   #93
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

I personally have had no problems with mine at all. I it's 34 years old has crossed the pond [Atlantic ocean] sailed from Toronto and still floats here in Halifax where i keep her. Can't speak for other boats but mine is a good one. Samson C bird 37.
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Old 19-09-2011, 17:40   #94
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

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Originally Posted by muskoka View Post
I kind of get your point, but the basic difference is that glass is inert when immersed in seawater whilst steel is not. So, worries about the integrity of a steel armature require core samples to ease the mind. I've got a 7 year old boat and a 30 year old boat - both GRP. Grinding out an osmosis blister is easy and cheap. Messy, yes, but easy to self inspect and repair.

Your reference to the GRP structure is spot on when referring to self builds, but its really not that applicable to factory built vacuum bagged hulls. They are pretty simple.

I'm convinced that an FC hull can be built well, light and eggshell thin. But, I think that takes a professional builder. In which case the material costs become subordinate to the labour costs.....
Good points but one thing you got to understand, the steel armature of a FC boat is not immersed in seawater, it is protected within the Ferro Cement sandwich/coating. If you have a look at a well cared for FC boat, of any age, then have a look at a badly neglected FC boat of any age...You will see a big difference in both boats and the neglected FC boat is real easy to spot. I have seen a few glas boats that were riddled with osmosis and spongy bits of hull and deck and, the damage areas were no easy project to cut out and repairr. It was a bloody big job.
I have also seen a 56' FC schooner (a Samson) with a three foot hole (almost) in her hull, she had been caught in a huricane, washed-up, first onto rocks that did the damage, then washed off the rocks and up onto a sandy beach. The amature had been exposed but I still wanted to buy her, she was a beauty, anyway, another bloke had beaten me to her, he bought the yacht, did the hull repair while she was up on the beach, then had a dozer haul the yacht back down the beach where they had dug-out a basin in the sand at low water, they pulled the boat into the basin and she was floated-off on a high spring tide...The full job took just over two weeks and that FC yacht was last seen in Darwin heading for Broom.
I often wonder...Could the same repair and refloting, under the same conditions and treatment given to that FC yacht, have been done on a glass boat I personally don't think so but...I may be wrong

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Old 20-09-2011, 17:42   #95
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

25T at least 2 hp per each T, minimum 50hp, driven at 40hp times 200 grams of fuel per hour makes 8 liters per hour. 2000 / 8 makes rough 200 hours of motoring perhaps 1000 plus miles of motoring range.

Perhaps the tanks are OK then.

But a boat with 2000 fuel and 2000 water will no longer be 25T !!! Unless the displacement quoted is not light ship.

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Old 22-09-2011, 14:20   #96
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Serious question for those who know fairly large FC yachts, I have the chance to buy a 50' FC Ketch in Australia and I'm wondering, can a 50' Ketch be sailed safely single handed. She's a beautiful, well cared for yacht but I believe I would be on-board on my own most of the time, along with my dog. So when I want to sail somewhere, I would most likely have to sail the boat on my own. I have thought of picking-up foreign tourists with sailing experience to help me sail her, you know the deal, the tourists get to sail Australia and travel/live aboard for as long as there stay and they help with sailing the boat and do other required work on-board. No money changes hands.

What do you think, is a 50'er too big for one bod to safely manage? Could it be safely sailed single handed...Or would it take two or more people to sail her safely?
I guess you understand from my question that I don't have a lot of sailing experience under my belt, (I have a Careel 22 sail-boat and not much experience with my Careel either) that is another reason for me thinking of foreign tourists with sailing experience...They could most likely, teach me a few things about sailing.


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Old 22-09-2011, 15:33   #97
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

I sail my 48' ketch alone most of the time. Nothing fancy either - no roller furling, no in mast reefing.
an auto pilot, self tailing winches and a couple of line cluches is all I've got that could be considered modern equipment.
You just dont push your luck out there - trim up before you need to and stay in your bunk with a good book if it gets too rough!
I have a strobe light , legal or not, it's on when I'm down for the night. I use a watch alarm, radar alarm, etc. at night - a guy's got to sleep sometime!
I spent over 25 years drifting around at night offshore while fishing for a living. Oh, yeah! Ive had my close calls! I've had a few of my friends run down and sunk too!
It's a rough life but somebody has to do it!
Docking a big boat by yourself can be a challenge sometimes - just use lots of fenders!
The truth is you dont need a 50'er or a 40'er to live/cruise on by yourself but the extra room is nice.
If I had all the money in the world, I'd look at something newer and easier but I like the old girl I've got - this boat will outlast me, I'm sure - if I dont pile her up some dark stormy night!
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Old 22-09-2011, 19:09   #98
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoduck View Post
I sail my 48' ketch alone most of the time. Nothing fancy either - no roller furling, no in mast reefing.
an auto pilot, self tailing winches and a couple of line cluches is all I've got that could be considered modern equipment.
You just dont push your luck out there - trim up before you need to and stay in your bunk with a good book if it gets too rough!
I have a strobe light , legal or not, it's on when I'm down for the night. I use a watch alarm, radar alarm, etc. at night - a guy's got to sleep sometime!
I spent over 25 years drifting around at night offshore while fishing for a living. Oh, yeah! Ive had my close calls! I've had a few of my friends run down and sunk too!
It's a rough life but somebody has to do it!
Docking a big boat by yourself can be a challenge sometimes - just use lots of fenders!
The truth is you dont need a 50'er or a 40'er to live/cruise on by yourself but the extra room is nice.
If I had all the money in the world, I'd look at something newer and easier but I like the old girl I've got - this boat will outlast me, I'm sure - if I dont pile her up some dark stormy night!
Thanks for that Geo, that's good advice.
Quote:
The truth is you dont need a 50'er or a 40'er to live/cruise on by yourself but the extra room is nice.
The last FC 35'er I looked at (she was so bad with rust she was ready to sink) was so crampeed below deck, I'm sure my plasstic Careel 22' had/has more room and as I do like me comforts, (like you, I've earned them ) I'm looking at FC boats 38' and up.
With the FC yacht I've taken a shine to, I'm sure no-one would ever guess from looking at her, that she's FC...In my opinion she looks better than a fine glass boat, you can see her on the hard here. And she's up in the tropics already...An added bonus
Quote:
Docking a big boat by yourself can be a challenge sometimes - just use lots of fenders!
Having operated 38' to 42' full timber constructed inshore fishing boats from Brixham, Devon, in England, I hear you loud and clear on docking...Even if I don't plan to spend to much time along side a dock

I'll contact the agent later today, although I would rather talk with the owner...and see what more information he can give me, I'll also "try" to fish around and see if I can find out just how low he's ready to drop the price for a serious offer. Anyway, I'm sure you'll agree, she's a beauty and I'm sure I would be right at home and real comfy living aboard her...If I can get her for a little lower price
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Old 23-09-2011, 06:46   #99
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

A couple of days back I thought I had found my dream Ketch, a beaut to look at 50'er but today I was informed by a member who has a mate who was interested in the same Ketch, a year or more ago, and had gone and checked her out, the prospective buyer lost interest in that beaut FC Ketch because someone had encased the hull...In glass and there were signs of comming problems with the glass seperating from the FC hull
Now I'm no FC expert but I have done a lot of research on FC boats and nowhere have I found any pro designers/builders who recommend you sheet their FC boats with glass. Paint is good enough when it comes to FC. Besides, if someone wants a glass boat, why not build a glass boat, the same goes for steel or alloy. I guess some people believe a FC boat needs glass coating for whatever reason but...They don't!

During my research on FC boats, I read the blog of a young English couple who found a sad and neglected Hartley South Seas Ketch, they fell in love with the Hartley and have spent the past five years bringing her back to a real nice FC South Seas and...They created a blog showing/telling how they did it and, NO! They did not sheet the hull in glass...Here's a section on how they treated the hull:
Quote:

When we bought her, the concrete was bare and exposed, which was useful as we could examine it properly, not so good as it was being eroded slowly by the elements. First thing we did was add 2 coats of clear garage floor sealant from B and Q. This stuff is fantastic at sealing concrete and stopping any water damage. It's now been on there for 5 years and we've never had to put more on.
Once these coats had dried, we applied a coat of International Paint Primer. This thick grey layer created yet another barrier between us and the ocean- every little helps. We finished off with International Anti-foul, which again worked fairly well and went on the concrete hull- something not every anti-foul does!


We then started on the cabin and topsides- which was originally painted a cream colour and looked like faded photographs. We went for white to brighten it all up, and also painted the area of hull above the waterline white- we think she looks lovely! Initially, we used International Top Lac as it was supposed to be brilliant and the International anti-foul had worked so well, but it was an expensive mistake. The Top Lac was too thin and would not stick to the surface, so we had to take it all off again and eventually used Dulux Weather-shield exterior house paint- works brilliantly and is much cheaper than 'boat' paint.

End Quote.
If you're interested in FC boats, then I can recommend their blog, lots of good pictures and tips there This Is Their Blog Link.

Oh yes, the Ketch I was interested in, she's in Darwin and I'm in Geelong and her asking price is $100,000 +, or make an offer but after hearing what I did hear, about her hull being glassed, I think I'll give her a wide birth...I have no wish to buy someone elses problems and...Stripping off all that glass from her hull will be a bloody nightmare I think.

Bill
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Old 23-09-2011, 07:34   #100
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

I've been following the threads on ferro boats and I seem to understand the various schools of thought.
The viewpoints seem to vary somewhat depending on where the posters are from. Some of the most vehement 'ferro is terrible' arguments seem to come from the US and the majority of 'ferro is good' arguments seem to come from the UK, Australia and Europe.

At this point I'm going to buy in.
I've just closed on a 35' Ferro Hartley Queenslander Ketch. She was built in 1974 (apparently in Port Lincoln, South Australia) Under the name 'Aussie Blue' it appears she cruised extensively with her then owners, probably overseas given she is an Aust Registered Ship (little point in doing that if she never left Oz). The last ten years she has spent as a liveaboard in Sydney, or more correctly, Pittwater. She looks tatty above decks and desperately needs painting, but the fitout below is good and in good order and the rigging and sails (with the exception of one staysail that (in the words of the broker) flogged itself to death on the furler) are in good condition still. Largely due to the fact she has rarely left a mooring or berth in that time. Slipped a couple years back and the antifoul was ok then, but probably getting tired by now.

There is some minor damage on the gunwale on one side that requires repair and naturally I would make sure the exposed mesh is treated etc before replastering. A timber dress strip seems to have split off and I am unsure if the damage to the gunwale is due to deterioration or getting knocked against a dock, but that will be sorted too. I would be interested in the best material to do this with - Australian made/available products please - many of the things our US brothers and sisters recommend are either not available here or have some other name.
The hull itself seems sound and there is no evidence of bleedthrough on the the sides both interior and exterior, so the armature is likely in very good condition. Given that she sailed extensively prior to her career as a flat on water, it's reasonable to assume that if she was poorly built, she would be gracing the bottom somewhere after around 37 years afloat.
Decks and deckhouse are all ferro as well and the decks seem in good condition. In some respects the loss of the paint helps as you can see that the cement is good order, with no significant surface deterioration.
I've paid $14000 for the boat and consider that a fair price given the way she looks and the general (low) value of ferro boats.
I'm well aware of the insurance issues, but at $14k I don't have a fortune tied up in her, so third party will do if I need it. Given what I would have to pay for something that size in steel or GRP I'm happy with the compromise.
It will be a while before we can go and pick her up (possibly as late as February) which is intensely frustrating, but I intend to use the time well to ensure that she is well prepped before her delivery run to SA.

As you can see from the pics, she's a little tatty and there is some growth at the waterline. The cockpit shows the general state of the paint above decks. The other pic shows the damage on the top of the gunwale and the split dress timber.

AussieGeoff

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Old 23-09-2011, 07:37   #101
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Bill, that ketch is pretty much what i was talking about, a nice fair hull, pro built boat that has obviously been well maintained,30-40yrs old that has travelled far. Im not sure why you are so set against a glass sheath (unless of course it is indeed seperating from the ferro) Even though it is not generally done i see no issue at all with it all. When i built my boat in the early 70s what was generally done was to seal the hull with coats of 100% solids epoxy,(not paint) and then continue on with the paint system of your choice, so logic would tell you that, if you believe that the epoxy is going to adhere to the dry ferro adequatley there will be no negative to applying a layer of glass cloth,we do exactly the same with cold molded hulls, plywood hulls etc and while you dont have to apply the glass with those either it is always a plus. My point is that if you are confident that the resin is going to adhere there is no reason to think that the glass will not. If i were to build a new ferro boat today i would sheath it with a layer of Dynel without a doubt. You know,while writing this it occured to me that it may be that this is one area where an amature built boat may be at an advantage, a much longer time for the ferro to dry before sealing.
Let me be clear, sheathing is not something you would necessarily want to do at a later date after the boat has been in the water for years. BTW, have you been looking on Trademe.com in NZ, there are usually a few Ferro boats on there, Allan Mummery designed some really nice ferro boats.
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Old 23-09-2011, 08:21   #102
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Congratulations Geoff and welcome to the forum. I agree with your observation about many of the naysayers on other threads being from the US, ill add that they are invariably folk who have never built or owned a FC boat and in fact have no knowlege at all about them other than what they have heard from equally unqualified people or by observation of the poor ones (they wouldnt even know it if they were standing on the dock next to one of the good ones) One of the things i think that influences people here is that for the price you paid for yours i can find lots of production glass boats of similar age, size and condition so most folk myself included would buy one of them just because it will be easier to sell later. One of the things ive noticed about boat buyers in the US is that most are afraid of custom boats of any material. This has been one of the better Ferro threads i think, largely because using the Intelligent in the heading seems to have kept them away.
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Old 23-09-2011, 09:10   #103
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Thanks Steve.

I agree with your observation about many of the naysayers on other threads being from the US, ill add that they are invariably folk who have never built or owned a FC boat and in fact have no knowlege at all about them other than what they have heard from equally unqualified people or by observation of the poor ones (they wouldnt even know it if they were standing on the dock next to one of the good ones)

I did notice that also. Some of the fervour bordered on religious. Oz produced its share of dodgy ferro hulls, but the US seems to have had a lot more, including a number that never saw water and decorate the landscape apparently. I have also run into several 'experts' who under close questioning, didn't understand either the theory or practice of ferro construction, maintenance or repair and had gleaned their 'knowledge' from third parties that seemed to be equally ill informed. It kind of reminds me of the 'urban legends' that circulate on the internet these days.

One of the things i think that influences people here is that for the price you paid for yours i can find lots of production glass boats of similar age, size and condition so most folk myself included would buy one of them just because it will be easier to sell later.

Well, I can assure you that a 35' anything in any material but Ferro is going to be a lot more than $14k over this side of the Pacific. Even within Oz it differs. It may surprise you I bought a bought on the east coast when I am in roughly the middle of the south coast. About 1700nm from the boat where it lies. But the price of even a 20-25' boat locally is easily as much and often more than the Hartley. Insurance wise, wood is as bad as ferro, it's near impossible to insure them as well, even GRP can be a problem and surveys are megaexpensive here for some reason.
That said, marinas are satisfied (or so I'm told) with Third Party insurance, so no big deal. Yes if it sinks, I'm out of luck, but given the cost of insurance, even if I can get it, after ten years, it would nearly equal the cost of the boat, so... As to resale value. Well, who in their right mind expects to make a profit on any boat they resell? The value is in the use you get out of it. I'll probably increase the value 30% just by getting it to SA where the market is smaller but there are less boats around. In any case, even if I sell it (unlikely in anything less than a couple of decades) it will probably get me what I paid for it at least by then. It's more likely it will simply get passed on to a family member, my son probably or possibly one of my grandchildren, so it may end up being worth more than I paid for it. I've no doubt that in the joy it will give us, it will be worth every penny.

One of the things ive noticed about boat buyers in the US is that most are afraid of custom boats of any material. This has been one of the better Ferro threads i think, largely because using the Intelligent in the heading seems to have kept them away.

Yes, it does seem rather less controversial.

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Old 23-09-2011, 19:53   #104
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Good on you Geoff, I called about that Hartley Queenslander, at the asking price, I thought it well worth a look but when I rang, I was told "it's sold" so you beat me to it mate Oh well, like I say, never run after a bus, a woman or a boat, there's always another one coming behind
I'm sure you'll get a lot of pleasure from the Hartley Geoff

As for that good looking glass sheathed Ketch Steve, I was told by another member, his mate inspected the boat two years ago but lost interest when he spotted declamation of the glass in some spots...And repairing, or stripping that could become exspensive.

I know, from personal experience, polyester/glass can declamation from ply hulls, big time, and as that FC Ketch was built back in 1975, chances are, her hull was coated with polyester, not epoxy

And as I know almost nothing about FC boats, I go with advice given by others, preferably people who have owned and/or worked on/with FC boats, people like: Capt. Alan Hugenot, a marine surveyor who states:
Quote:
Because well-made ferrocement is impermeable (waterproof), there should be no need for painting?. Quoted from UNDERSTANDING FERROCEMENT CONSTRUCTION, (?1988, ISBN: 0-86619-284-0)

Unfortunately, this popular mistaken belief (that water always penetrates clear through cement), creates an additional unfounded fear (which takes on the form of an urban legend along the waterfront), that the chloride (salt) dissolved in sea water will penetrate (soak) through a cement hull and attack any metals imbedded within the structure. But, this is also completely untrue.
End Quote.

Now, if things are not as reported by Capt Alan Huegnot, a marine surveyor, and the FC boat owner believes his FC boat needs a hull treatment other than paint, or pre-painting, then why not go for this Bio Vee Concrete treatment instead of glassing

Or, as a young couple in the UK have done, more that five years back, with no ongoing treatments, treat the hull of their FC Hartley South Seas with a clear garage floor sealant from B and Q. (Don't ask me who B&Q are cause I don't know, most likely a pommy builder supply store) before painting with:
Quote:
International Paint Primer. This thick grey layer created yet another barrier between us and the ocean- every little helps. We finished off with International Antifoul, which again worked fairly well and went on the concrete hull- something not every antifoul does!
End Quote.
Geoff, Here's a link to their helpful blog on working on their Hartley Queenslander Lots of helpful information and pictures too

I have no idea why anyone would go to the extra expense of glassing the hull of their FC boat, as, from what I have read on FC hull treatments, by those who know and have done it, glassing is "not" required...Unless you want to make your FC boat look like a glass boat. I have nothing against a glass boat, I have a glass Careel 22 but the lower maintenance on a FC, live on-board boat appeals to me, (I guess my belief in the KISS principle is even stronger now that I'm getting to be a weee bit long in the tooth)

And I've no worries about selling any boat after I've finished with it, the boat will be passed-on to one of my kids...Or the dog, whichever I feel strongest about

The glassed Ketch “is” a big bugger and if she's back in the water, I'm guessing it would be pretty difficult to spot any and/or all declamation of the glass on her hull But, I still like the look of that Ketch and won't scrub her from my watch list just yet. I would love to get-up to Darwin to look her over myself but, unfortunately, I just can't get away for a least another six or eight weeks.

I'm also begining to think a 50'er would be to big for me and the dog so perhaps I should be looking more at 36' to 42' max' FC yachts

Bill
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Old 23-09-2011, 21:51   #105
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Re: Intelligent Discussion on Ferro

Bill, i agree that if that boat was glassed using polyester resin it would be a problem but i would be very suprised if it were, if it were the US maybe but if it were built in Aus or NZ it is most likely epoxy, sheathing with poly was just not done at least in NZ since epoxy was common practice since the 50s, as i pointed out before, i can think of no situation where sealing with epoxy would not be improved with a layer of cloth even though it sure was not necessary. I would disagree with Mr Hugenot somewhat as if i remember right when you quoted him in an earlier post he was saying some ridiculous amount of cement cover over the armature to result in it being impervious, you simply dont have much cover over the armature and often there are ties quite close to the surface so you MUST have a good barrier coat at least below the waterline. It suprises me that we are over 100 posts on this thread and i dont think that there is anyone other than myself posting that has actually built a Ferro boat and im not sure that folks actually realize that when a competent plastering crew plasters a nicely faired armature they dont need to apply excess plaster so are just skimming over the mesh, you then water cure it continuously for a couple of weeks during which time you scrub the hull down with emery stones while its wet and you invariably expose some ties which start to rust by the time the water is shut off, you then chip them out and forget about them until years later when everything is bone dry and you are ready for epoxy you then fill them with an epoxy product such as epicrete, which is why a nice fabric would be a good thing, that said i did not do this on my boat.
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