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Old 04-06-2013, 08:30   #2251
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I used rubber H channel and liked it. It looks clean and stays water tight. New formulations of rubber are UV stabilized.
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Old 04-06-2013, 08:47   #2252
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Hi Randy, where did you source the rubber seal? I'm thinking of keeping the glass in the pilot house front so I can still use the wiper.
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Old 04-06-2013, 09:11   #2253
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I got it at a local rubber gasket supply house. Try Googling " rubber H channel" and see what comes up for a local source
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Old 04-06-2013, 12:29   #2254
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

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Originally Posted by happyendings View Post
Actually one of the waterborne LPU paints DOES say boat on the can--System 3 WR-LPU. Maybe it's just DuPont auto paint in a different can?


The way I go about boatbuilding, is like the Gougeon Brothers... as a scientist/researcher. I make destruction samples of a proposed joint, and then hit it with a sledge hammer to break it. If the ply broke but not the glue joint, then it's OK!

I did the same thing to compare epoxy resins against each other, in both impact and peel strength. Systems 3 was better for impact, but WEST Systems was better for peel strength.

I also tested solvent welding and caulk bonds, as well as glue bonds to various materials, as well as noting advantages between them in solvent resistance or UV longevity.

I even taped or held a thermometer under different canvass fabric colors and later under different samples of painted clear plastic, to determine the "cooler" materials, and actually note the superior UV and heat blocking characteristics afforded by using grey primer rather than white under your topcoat.

EVERY aspect of my boatbuilding choices was thoroughly researched first, to get BOTH the popular consensus, AND manufacturers propaganda. (During this time... I read over 20 magazines or trade publications per month, for more than 20 years). This took the first two hours of every day, while I drank my coffee, and was quite EXPENSIVE. Due to the problems avoided, it was money well spent!

THEN, after this research and phone calls "all over the world" sometimes, I did my own research and experimentation to find my "own" results. Bear in mind... I am NOT a perfectionist, and CAN back off when it is called for. I am just an amateur scientist that got sick of school, and took up boatbuilding instead. It has not made me rich, just fulfilled.

SYSTEMS 3 WATER BASED 2 PART LPU:
I researched and tested the Systems 3 water based LPU back then too, thinking it may be the way to go. I first got their small test kit, and later a qt of primer and a qt of beige topcoat.

Using their small volume test kit, I primed and painted a 1' square sample of sanded epoxy/glassed plywood. It was flat, as described, but a subsequent clear coat would have shined it up OK.

I set this in the middle of my pasture, facing directly at the sun, for 6 months.
After this period, I checked it out. It was colorfast, but chalking already. It would chalk up my hand when wiped. Based on this, I decided not to paint the hull with it.

Their test kit was so small, that they did NOT include catalyst in them. It is a VERY small ratio to the base, so would have been drops only. When I called them to discuss this, they said that the catalyst was not deemed necessary to making a test, so I "assumed" that this omission was not what effected the paint's UV resistance. This may not be correct, or it could be that the addition of the clearcoat would have given a different result. It made no sense to me at all, that the test kit did not include catalyst, no matter how small an amount.

I also tested the sample for paint adhesion with the previously explained crosshatch test, which it passed 100%, and I found it to be VERY hard and VERY tough as well. It did not like wiping with isopropyl alcohol so much, but did not dissolve. It was, however, quite resistant to other solvents, like gasoline & diesel fuel, so I used my Qts of the stuff in the cockpit's subfloor fuel compartment, (this time WITH the catalyst).

It has held up VERY well in this shaded but permanently wet area for about 18 years now, and neither small fuel spills nor the water have effected it. This last point would not be true of solvent based LPUs... They can stand anything BUT being perpetually wet with something over it, like a throwable device cover, or cockpit seat cushion, or a fuel jug, for years. In this one application, with moisture trapped against it by something flat, solvent based LPUs will blister. They seldom pop, but look terrible. I switched to using just AwlGrip's 545 EPOXY primer, (only under these items that trap moisture), OR used pure pigmented epoxy resin in my refrigerator's usually wet bottom, and in the anchor lockers. These areas were shaded, and this permanently solved the blistering problem.

In the cockpit's subfloor, as I said earlier, the waterbased LPU stuff did NOT blister. While not pretty the way it was just roller tipped in there, it is perfect for that application. I think it is even harder than AwlGrip!

In a phone conversation with System 3's inventor/chemist/president, Kern Hendrix, he told me that he had painted his kit airplane with it, and loved the stuff. With 200 MPH winds and lots of solvent, his is a very harsh paint application!

Because Systems 3 LPU originally failed my UV resistance tests, I wouldn't just run out and buy it for painting the entire boat. It would, however, make a PERMANENT but streaky/flat "waterproof/peelproof" paint job down below, in anchor lockers or in refrigerators. THESE would be possible applications for the stuff.

IF you contemplate it's use on the outside of your boat, I would try to get at least 10 different testimonials from cruisers that had used it on their boats for over 10 years, (presumably with the clearcoat on top). This adds a labor intensive 3rd step to painting, so is far more work than 2 steps with solvent based LPUs, but without it, the results are almost totally FLAT, not a pearly semi-gloss.

These testimonials mean NOTHING, btw, unless they are all from full time liveaboard cruisers that spent most of that 10 years in the tropics. If they all said that during that time they never got peeling or paint failure, just mild chalking after 5 years or so, and thinking about re-painting after 10, then I would definitely consider using the Systems 3 waterbased LPU. My results did not bear that out, but like I said, they may not apply.

This paint IS a lot safer than solvent based, and better for us all. When someone looks at their ENTIRE carbon footprint, however, their house & choice of car, are over 90% of it. Painting their one trimaran just once every 10 or 12 years, with nasty ol solvent based LPU paint, would only make up a VERY small fraction of 1% of their decade long carbon footprint. In the big picture, this is a very minor issue in the life of an otherwise environmentally conscious person.

"Professional" solvent based LPU painters (that spray daily), on the other hand, are the big polluters that have a real impact on the environment.

Water based LPUs for health & safety reasons sounds great, but I would still want an over 10 year lifespan, without any failure. In MY small application with it, it is perfect. Do your homework first is my advice, and make it an educated choice.

If anyone needs more detailed advice on this or other boat building/maintenance issues, I can go into more depth for them by email or on the phone. Many folks have contacted me "personally" for a consultation through CF, as this is now most of how I make a living.

Hope this helps,
Mark
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Old 04-06-2013, 13:07   #2255
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

I get those emails after people have tried elsewhere first.....
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Old 04-06-2013, 13:15   #2256
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy View Post
I got it at a local rubber gasket supply house. Try Googling " rubber H channel" and see what comes up for a local source

Randy,
I love the classic "look" of H channel rubber, like all old Searunners started out with. They were clean and professional looking, as well as being WAY easier to install than the alternatives. It was really an RV thing, however...

The reason that Jim & John switched to "nuts n bolts" ports on the last Searunner designed, the 34, is that over the previous decade of collective Searunner world cruising, a number of H channel mounted ports had been punched in by a big wave. In particular, the front 3 ports are vulnerable.

Of coarse this happens suddenly at the worst possible moment, not gradually over time. It could lead to a desperate shipwreck situation in a bad enough storm. I have been there, and taken waves over the bow SO hard that they broke over the hard dodger, and almost totally stopped the boat from 9 knots! The mast bent forward, the babystay got inches of slack in it, and it popped back with a violent BANG! Then we took off again...

In this 40 knt gale while crossing the Gulf Of Mexico... I have no doubt at all that a soft dodger would be washed away, and any of my impacted dodger OR port's lenses would have been bashed in, if I had used the old H channel, VS the indestructible "nuts n bolts" ports.

I think that if I just cruised locally and prudently, the H channel is fine, but not for multi day crossings at sea. Over a 5 day crossing, you take it as it comes, because you have no choice.

For this kind of serious cruising, a version of Roy's trim ring port method or nuts n bolts, would give peace of mind. It might actually save your life!

Even my nuts n bolts ports, btw, is only recommended if you do it EXACTLY right, as I described. The same thing is true of trim rings or H channel ports too.

Kindest Regards,
Mark
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Old 04-06-2013, 13:24   #2257
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Of course if you put backing bars on the windows punchout is prevented. They should be there for vulnerable windows anyway but Lexan needs support because it is the most flexible plastic, some have bent through the openings!
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Old 04-06-2013, 16:09   #2258
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

On window bars- you should have at least 2 backing up a window you want to protect. If you put 1 in the center only a wave could punch in an end and let it pivot around the center......
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Old 04-06-2013, 16:50   #2259
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

[QUOTE=Mark Johnson;406431]FROM ROY M :
Mark, I'm trying to be ready to leave on my series of mini-cruises in a year and a half. First I'll spend several weeks in the Channel Islands, ashing to weather in the Santa Barbara Channel, where the winds regularly reach 35 knots in the afternoon and the seas are nasty. After ducking into a protected cove when I've had enough, cleaning up the vomit and broken stuff, you can head out again the next day until stuff doesn't reak any more and you have discovered your sea legs.

The next trip will be to Hawaii for a whirlwind spin through the chain - there are very few good anchorages in that part of Paradise. Then north to about 50 degrees and east into Puget Sound for the summer, departing in September back to San Diego. Then, when the southern weather is ready, off to the Marquesas for three months (the limit I can stay in French Polynesia), and north again for the Hawaii-Pacific Northwest-San Diego circuit. Gradually I'll shift my three month Polynesia visits westward, but continue the loops back to San Diego, where my Social Security checks will all go to paying my yacht club slip fee and expenses. I see it as a sort of condominium payment, allowing me to return regularly to another place in Paradise. I like the idea of cruising, and I like the idea of returning to old friends, income streams, medical and dental care, and easy reprovisioning and yacht repair. I'll keep doing this until I croak, or obecome sick of warm water and frangipani, or cold, green water with oysters and salmon.

Time and Tide, Roy Time and Tide

sorry to hear about your CB problems. Had a similar issue with the board on Serenity as a previous repairer has added a ton of glass over a waterlogged board and it was oversize and would not fit in the new trunk built to plans. A quick bit of grinder work solved that problem as I basically consider these boat's board to be sacrificial and likely to be full of water anyway. If it ever breaks off, the boat will still sail OK until you can make a new one. If I were to make a new one I would either use some type of foam or just pressure treated ply.
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Old 04-06-2013, 18:13   #2260
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Agree with you Cavalier about the backup bars on forward windows, mine was setup just that way.

As far as Jim and John recommending one thing or another; John is also recommending spreaderless rigs now as well because of past rig failures....I'm sticking with the double spreader concept which is particularly strong when used as a cutter. The deal is that as designers they feel responsible even for neglected maintenance or poor workmanship. They try to idiot proof these boats which I think is actually a departure from the 70's thinking of just getting people out there.
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Old 05-06-2013, 00:19   #2261
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Well the idiots did get out there and they've been trying to allow for that ever since. Wharram got it right in designing for people who had no idea what they were doing but SRs are more ambitious in scope. Nothing wrong with the 2 spreader rig, very strong if well maintained. I always liked Newick's thought that if you give them 3 big wires and a rotating mast there are fewer things to go wrong, less drag and a performance boost. For cruising though, there are times when you want no drive at all. As the man says, you pays your money and makes your choices.....Economics are a great factor in making sensible choices.
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Old 05-06-2013, 11:59   #2262
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

Jeff,
you know that putting a ton of glass on an already saturated board, (as you say a previous worker had done), will not stand the test of time. Doing this kind of "repair", the wood just continues to swell.

Water intrusion is best avoided by crash proofing the board before installing it into the boat. My CB bottom corner's "touch zone" on the leading edge is glassed 1/2" thick, and the rest of the leading edge is wrapped 3/8" thick! The skeg is glassed similarly. (Sides are a full 1/8" thick). To do this much glassing to my 3 foils, and still end up with the right "perfect" shape, took me 6 full time months, sure. I'm not saying it is easy. In fact, it is because it is SO time consuming that so many Searunners' foils get punctured by the first good boo boo. Then the wood starts to swell, (even from a pin hole), and 20 years later, it's all crap inside.

Without a doubt... IF BUILT, SHAPED, GLASSED, AND INSTALLED to stand the test of time, a Searunner's CB & rudder/skeg will do exactly that, indefinitely. I have hit a lot of hard stuff, with only a ding in the glass as a result.

I think that the majority of builders that are considering a design, should either be willing to go the extra mile here on their CB & it's trunk, OR choose a far simpler design in the first place, with one cabin, a spreaderless rig, fewer hatches, and a keel... like a Cross or Kantola.

Your choosing the Vardo cat for a far quicker build time, its simplicity, and its economy VS the SR 34 tri you considered... will get you out there much faster for sure! I know that was your goal, and it was a good choice for that.

The project is looking great, btw.

Mark
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Old 05-06-2013, 12:02   #2263
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

I wasn't the one that glassed it. It literally blistered in the sun sitting next to the boat in the yard.
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Old 05-06-2013, 13:08   #2264
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

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Agree with you Cavalier about the backup bars on forward windows, mine was setup just that way.

As far as Jim and John recommending one thing or another; John is also recommending spreaderless rigs now as well because of past rig failures....I'm sticking with the double spreader concept which is particularly strong when used as a cutter. The deal is that as designers they feel responsible even for neglected maintenance or poor workmanship. They try to idiot proof these boats which I think is actually a departure from the 70's thinking of just getting people out there.



Randy,
A THOUGHT ABOUT SR RIGS:
John switched to triangular oriented spreaderless rigs on some of "his" boats, like his CC series and my old SC 28, but he never suggested that it would work on a Searunner at all.

I talked with him at length about various rig options for our SR 34, before settling on our taller version of the original double spreader cutter rig, (with runners moved forward 3') but always sailed as a sloop, under headsail OR staysail.

I wondered about a large full roach main with small jib. (I had sailed on a SR 34 like this). Of coarse, this means moving the mast way forward. John talked me out of any departure from the SR concept that required such a change.

The same would be true of putting a triangular oriented, spreaderless, 7/8ths rig on a SR. The mast could be in the same place, but the rigid "strong places" for chainplates that are designed into the boat, would be in the wrong places. Also, the headsail and/or its sheets would conflict with the swept back side shrouds. Nothing about the boat really works the same way, with this sort of rig. (Many Crosses, however, use it well).

On other versions of his designs, the concept of a spreaderless rig as described worked GREAT because the entire boat was designed from the get-go to accept such a rig. I loved it on my SC 28. It was rigged like a TANK! You couldn't shake the mast at all...

For our Searunners, they were perfectly designed to only accept the double spreader, masthead rigs drawn, as complicated as they are. Jim & John were in total agreement here... Good that you are keeping yours as is! On a different boat, I prefer the simpler spreaderless rig.

FRONT PORTS:
The older Searunners indeed, had very wide ports in front, (compared to the 34). This was why putting two vertical bars behind them was in the plans back then. Of coarse, it had nothing to do with the material or method that the ports were glazed in, it was just due to their size. You can see that I had one single 6' long piece of plastic on my dodger's front, but put bars behind it too, to break up the unsupported span of plastic. Good that you have your support bars as a backup.

GOING SMALLER ON FRONT PORTS:
It was because they came to the realization that one wants the "bedroom" darker and not REALLY bright, that after a decade of Searunning, Jim & John drew the SR 34 with a relatively small front port. We still find it too bright at night, on a full moon! I guess that's what the bunk curtains are for.

Hope you didn't think I was po pooing your Lock Strip channel ports. The stuff looks great, and is probably the right choice for you, (unless you're circumnavigating). We took that big wave over 10 years and 20,000 sea miles ago, and it has never happened since. For one thing, now... I have stopped continuing to go to windward @ 9 knots, in 40 knots of wind and 15' square waves!

The Lock Strip comment was only meant for those currently making the choice, who DO anticipate those very sort of conditions.

Regards,
Mark
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Old 05-06-2013, 13:23   #2265
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Re: Trimaran - Especially Searunner - Owners

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I wasn't the one that glassed it. It literally blistered in the sun sitting next to the boat in the yard.
Jeff,
I knew that YOU knew better. I think I know who did do that "repair", but we won't go there!
M.
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