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Old 23-11-2015, 15:38   #91
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Re: How old is too old?

A little gas for the fire. Two sources that suggest longevity from FRP.
It's the internet, only time will tell for sure.
Everything else is opinion, IMHO.

http://compositebuild.com/wp-content...Durability.pdf

and

http://www.ericgreeneassociates.com/..._Longevity.pdf
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Old 23-11-2015, 15:39   #92
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Re: How old is too old?

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Originally Posted by reed1v View Post
Nope. Nothing to do with the care, nor even quality of hull. Just basic fiberglass chemistry and cure rates. As it cures, it becomes brittle. at about 40 year point, brittle enough to crack like an egg shell(ONR findings). Why a lot of old glass boats on long distance cruises just disappear, especially during storms.
This is interesting stuff. Can you provide any links to these studies or findings? The variables here are tremendous (epoxy used, resin used, method used i.e. vacuum bagged), and it would be interesting to see what these findings are based on. What is an 'ONR finding'?

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Old 23-11-2015, 16:12   #93
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Re: How old is too old?

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This is interesting stuff. Can you provide any links to these studies or findings? The variables here are tremendous (epoxy used, resin used, method used i.e. vacuum bagged), and it would be interesting to see what these findings are based on. What is an 'ONR finding'?

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ONR=Office of Naval Research.
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Old 23-11-2015, 16:34   #94
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Re: How old is too old?

btw I don't need to palm off my gorgeous boat to anyone, go look at the detailed album...200 years from now might be too late...
reed what boat do you own? what boat factory did you work in? What boats have you sailed on extensively? Which boats have you refit? What boats have you captained? what boats have you rerigged? where have you sailed offshore? How many nights have you slept aboard a sailing boat at anchor?
to the last question my answer is 1,740... perhaps a bit more...
for me to answer the other questions I would have to write a short book...
please avail us all of your vast knowledge of sailboat use, and construction.....you know, to substantiate your position...

The reason I responded to this thread is for people not so informed, reading this, would get wrong information about old plastic boats...
bottom line on old boats is.....

If original construction was quality built, if properly refit and cared for....will last many lifetimes!!!!
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Old 23-11-2015, 16:38   #95
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Re: How old is too old?

Fibreglass's Archilles heels are it's fatigue and abrasion resistance. The product itself doesn't significantly change chemically over time. AFAIK, id doesn't even suffer significantly from UV degradation.

Quick Google for articles stating actual numbers finds these couple of examples:

Inspection: 30-year-old fiberglass pipeline stands test of time : CompositesWorld

http://www.ericgreeneassociates.com/..._Longevity.pdf

The latter article mentions some Navy research work on the subject which doesn't agree with the "30 year" service life of fibreglass.

As someone who has spent more time then I should have grinding and repairing boats between 30 and 45 years old, I have never seen any evidency of failing fibreglass excepting in situations where the fatigue strength of the laminate had been exceeded. In fact, I just repaired my keel last week after hitting a vertical reef wall at around 2 knots and becoming wedged on top and the worst damage was a couple of deep gouges along the side of the keel. The initial impact point needed nothing other than a clean up and wipe over with filler.

I can totally understand a lightly built boat raced hard and put away wet having a shelf life of sorts, but a heavily built cruising boat will do just fine as evidenced the fact that old f/g boats are actually more likely to end up in landfill then be lost at sea.
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Old 23-11-2015, 17:22   #96
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Re: How old is too old?

There will be something like life span. Sure.

Wood has to be re-planked. Steel has to be re-plated ...

I think in each case the need for re-doing is apparent: rot, rust are obvious signs.

I have seen some very old grp hulls (built from 1964 onwards) with no apparent signs of any deterioration.

I have also seen relatively new hulls with extensive signs of loss of some of their original properties (from impact as well as from cycle loading/flexing).

It is sort of difficult (but not impossible) to take in that a hull with no signs of loss of its original properties (mostly stiffness, I think) would fail in a dramatic mode.

Do you know any examples of old stiff grp hulls failing in a dramatic mode?

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Old 24-11-2015, 05:34   #97
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Re: How old is too old?

Dramatic hull failure!! back in 1990, a rather old ericson 39 went on the reef by Diamond Head Lighthouse. A common occurance with sailboats since the reef is hard to see and right by the Diamond Head red bouy. Easy to misjudge which side to go on. Anyhow...
Most boats get dragged off the reef with just scrapped hulls. Not the old 1968 Ericson. almost all of its starboard side broke off, leaving just the deck and port side intact. Boat was hauled out at the Ala Wai Marine. Surveyor Doyle said it was old glass that was unable to flex when the boat went onto the reef.

Now mind you, the boat's keel took the impact. The hull just laid over onto the reef. No storms, no big waves, just a typical trade wind day and that spot is sheltered from the trades.
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Old 24-11-2015, 05:50   #98
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Re: How old is too old?

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Originally Posted by JTHAW View Post
btw I don't need to palm off my gorgeous boat to anyone, go look at the detailed album...200 years from now might be too late...
reed what boat do you own? what boat factory did you work in? What boats have you sailed on extensively? Which boats have you refit? What boats have you captained? what boats have you rerigged? where have you sailed offshore? How many nights have you slept aboard a sailing boat at anchor?
to the last question my answer is 1,740... perhaps a bit more...
for me to answer the other questions I would have to write a short book...
please avail us all of your vast knowledge of sailboat use, and construction.....you know, to substantiate your position...

The reason I responded to this thread is for people not so informed, reading this, would get wrong information about old plastic boats...
bottom line on old boats is.....

If original construction was quality built, if properly refit and cared for....will last many lifetimes!!!!
Just because you can not sell your tired, old boat does not mean its safe. Good grief. BTW: I am in my 70s, started sailing on family's schooners back in the 1940s as a tyke, and spent youth mucking around family's boatyards up here in Maine. Sailed lots of boats over the decades. Family helped Ev Pearson and Dick Fisher get their respective companies started. Two of my boats stand out: A genuine Yamaha 33, not the ones for the US market with engine forward, low coach roof, tiller steering I sailed solo from Japan to Hawaii via the northern route. The other a westsail 43 we took three quarters around the world and only ended the complete circumnavigation due to lost rudder when visiting the Kerguelen Islands. Various other boats included luders 36, ranger 26, and a cheoy lee clipper ketch.
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Old 24-11-2015, 05:59   #99
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Re: How old is too old?

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Originally Posted by reed1v View Post
Dramatic hull failure!! back in 1990, a rather old ericson 39 went on the reef by Diamond Head Lighthouse. A common
Erickson 39. Built 1970 - 79. So it was at most 20 years old, possibly only 11 years old.

Hardly fits your "Any fiberglass boat over 30 years old is too old" and "at 40 years"

Are you now saying that anything older than 2004 to 1995 is going to break up?
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Old 24-11-2015, 06:06   #100
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Re: How old is too old?

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Erickson 39. Built 1970 - 79. So it was at most 20 years old, possibly only 11 years old.

Hardly fits your "Any fiberglass boat over 30 years old is too old" and "at 40 years"

Are you now saying that anything older than 2004 to 1995 is going to break up?
An example where a glass hull can get brittle and break. Whether from layup, use, or premature age who knows. When the surveyor tested pieces of the hull for the insurance company, the failure was found to be in the glass structure. Otherwise should have survived the reef impact just fine. Folks do not realize that glass can get brittle, just like tires or any other petroleum based product. That was the only situation i became involved with personally and on the spot. Of course most of the time we never get to see what happens to a brittle hull for they simply sink out of sight(missing at sea) or as another poster said "get towed to the dump".
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Old 24-11-2015, 07:02   #101
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Re: How old is too old?

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An example where a glass hull can get brittle and break. Whether from layup, use, or premature age who knows.
Exactly. So it doesn't support your contention at all .
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Old 24-11-2015, 07:58   #102
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Re: How old is too old?

The surveyor said that the hull of a 39 foot cruising monohull should flex????? I guess if you want stress cracks, loose keel boats and rigging... If the hull had such thin scantlings that it flexed, it would have failed much earlier.

In the world of catamarans, boats such as the Gemini, with very light lamination schedules, have a tendancy to develop stress cracks all over the deck/cockpit enclosure in a very short time. It has nothing to do with the glass aging, but has everything to do with inadequate scantlings which PERMIT flexing.

Stress cracks can also occur on the hulls of poor quality boats due to 'oil canning' (again flexing) in heavy seas, or around structural bulkheads that have been inadequately attached to the hull of a boat that requires them for stiffness. Some poorly built cats have even developed stress cracks where the bridgedeck joins the hulls - make no mistake, no properly built cat should ever allow that kind of flex or wracking in a seaway! One clue is whether the manufacturer insists that jackstands be placed under the bridgdeck when storing the boat on the hard, rather than the boat resting solely on her LAR keels. One cat that was stored next to mine not only required numerous jackstands, but perfect adjustment of the same or else the interior doors would jam! If a cat flexes that much on the hard, what will happen in heavy seas?

My 21 year old cat has ZERO stress cracks on the hull or deck, not even at the stanchion bases (it does have a few on some exterior hatches by latches). So in spite of your contrary view, the quality of construction of the hull and deck not only make a difference, they ARE the difference in terms of longevity.

Brad
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Old 24-11-2015, 08:24   #103
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Re: How old is too old?

Quote:
Originally Posted by reed1v View Post

Dramatic hull failure!! back in 1990, a rather old ericson 39 went on the reef by Diamond Head Lighthouse.

Surveyor Doyle said it was old glass that was unable to flex when the boat went onto the reef.
Arggghhhhhhh!

One: This is impact damage. Not normal use, unless that Ericson was build for hitting reefs!

Two: So now we learn NOT enough flexibility is BAD. But above thru the posts we can read too much flexibility is the devil.

You see? There is NO answer to OP's question. We wait and see. They may as well last about the same as wood or steel hulls.

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Old 24-11-2015, 09:57   #104
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Re: How old is too old?

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Originally Posted by reed1v View Post
Whether from layup, use, or premature age who knows.

Dave-Zim,
Just read my PM and come back to build You a 50ft (no need for 70 as we have to match Your budget ) sturdy aluminum hull cat which will last well over Your estimated 20 years cruising and still show a good value after that!
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Old 24-11-2015, 13:07   #105
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Re: How old is too old?

Alloy (=aluminum) boats do NOT age faster than grp?

Hmmmmmmm.

OK. Maybe not, but they show their age much more and much sooner.

How can we say a boat is OK if it is visually old?

Scan it? OK. Can't we scan a grp boat then?

Hmmmmmmmm.

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