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Old 29-04-2008, 19:08   #1
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best way to fix?

hey everyone
Below I have picture of the stern of our sailboat. It is right under our steps. When i first noticed the problem it was a small 1/4" crack. When I tapped on it to see how lose it was it spider webbed like an egg. So I cleaned all the loose areas. I had some Interlux watertite with me and it is going to rain the next few days so I filled it in for now. After I cleaned out the area I noticed that there is about 1/8" to 1/4" gap between the surface you see and the back fiberglass I guess (looked like a weave and was white.) I am not sure if this gap is normal. I am assuming I should gelcoat to fix the problem. However I believe gelcoat does not hold on expoy? What and how should I fill the hole in so that gelcoat can be used for the surface? Or is there something better I can use? Is there a white paint I can use over he epoxy? Thank You
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Old 29-04-2008, 19:12   #2
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That gap isn't normal. It's called "delamination". The gelcoat outer layer has come away from the structural laminates (fiberglass) below. You really should have a professional survey the boat to determine the extent of the delamination. It's not an easy fix. If it's localized you might be ok but it could be an indication of a much larger problem. You can sound around the hole with a small hammer or heavy coin tapping outwards till you hear the dull thud of a solid hull. Where the gelcoat has come away from the structural layer it'll sound hollow. You'll know the sound.

If localized it can be repaired fairly easily with the right materials and tools. There's some good video's on youtube on gelcoat repair. Color matching is the tough part (for me anyways I'm color blind).

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.= Gelcoat repair

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.= Fiberglass repair
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Old 29-04-2008, 19:43   #3
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good luck, that sounds like a very ominous task. One that none of us wish to have
I hope it is only a local problem for you
hooked
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Old 29-04-2008, 19:44   #4
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there is also another thread on blisters and such which could be of use to the repair in the case of localised issues only, showing near the top at the moment
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Old 30-04-2008, 05:34   #5
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This is one of the most recent blister postings....

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...res-14768.html
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Old 30-04-2008, 14:44   #6
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New to the big boys

I have had boats off and on for 20 yrs gradually getting bigger over the years, last season Donna and I were thinking about the future and retiring and spending more time on the water.
at this point we spend July and August in the Gulf islands , the idea was to try and make that 5-6 mos. but for that we would need a larger boat . We had a 28 Zeta and liked it a lot but it would not be big enuff, we started looking at different boats and visiting with the owners , with the intentions of 3-4 yrs making the move.
Wrong!!!
The problem was that when we finally found exactly what make and model we wanted , it would not let us go, If we could afford it in a couple of years then why not now,
The short version is now I am the proud captain of a 41' Canoe Cove coho
I am very happy but every time I get aboard I realize that its a long way from my 28' with a really steep learning curve.
Soo I will from time to time ask for advice and explanations, and I hope that I don't get too irritating.
Sandy M.V. Windrift
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Old 30-04-2008, 16:05   #7
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This may not be as big of an issue as everyone says.

We had gel coat voids on our last boat and they were not blisters, nor were they any form of delamination. They were "air bubbles" between the gel coat and the first layer of fiberglass that were present after construction.

Someone would drop a winch handle here, step heavy there, and bit by bit over the 20 years of life, some of them cracked open.

*If* this is what is happening, you can fill them in with epoxy mixed with some fibers as well if the hole is kind of large.

Hopefully, this is the problem you have. If not, I have to go with what the other said.


Quote:
Originally Posted by turkish6 View Post
hey everyone
Below I have picture of the stern of our sailboat. It is right under our steps. When i first noticed the problem it was a small 1/4" crack. When I tapped on it to see how lose it was it spider webbed like an egg. So I cleaned all the loose areas. I had some Interlux watertite with me and it is going to rain the next few days so I filled it in for now. After I cleaned out the area I noticed that there is about 1/8" to 1/4" gap between the surface you see and the back fiberglass I guess (looked like a weave and was white.) I am not sure if this gap is normal. I am assuming I should gelcoat to fix the problem. However I believe gelcoat does not hold on expoy? What and how should I fill the hole in so that gelcoat can be used for the surface? Or is there something better I can use? Is there a white paint I can use over he epoxy? Thank You
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Old 30-04-2008, 16:53   #8
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If I fill it in wit epoxy will I be able to apply gel coat over it?
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Old 30-04-2008, 17:01   #9
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If I fill it in wit epoxy will I be able to apply gel coat over it?
Ask Rick.

Sorry... private joke.

If you fill with epoxy and you want the colored gel coat to adhere, you must get the gelcoat onto the epoxy well before it hardens. Rick and I ran into this problem when filling in some deck holes on my boat for a new windlass. We put on the gel coat a little too late and it didn't stick to the epoxy (Marine-Tex). It was a shame, because Rick's color skill with the gel coat was top notch!
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Old 01-05-2008, 00:03   #10
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If the glass weave is vissible and white,(resin starvation) it makes sense that you are dealing with a bubble, and as said ,epoxy then apply gell coat whilst still tacky, mask the area a good 40mm beyond where you can here a sound difference when tapping the hull, and have a beer or two.

Cheers
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Old 01-05-2008, 13:39   #11
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I'm in the middle of repainting my boat, so I've become an unwilling expert on these voids. If it is an air bubble as Sully suggests, I'd recommend going after it with Duraglas. Just grind off the unsupported gel coat, fill with Duraglas, sand smooth (you'll probably have to hit it twice with Duraglas), and cover with gel coat. I use a dual action sander with 150 grit paper, folowed by 220 and 320 prior to paint. For such a small area, hand sanding using a block is feasable. Use a Preval sprayer to spray on the gel coat, then sand it smooth. I try not to use epoxy unless I really need the strength. Duraglas dries quickly and sands much easier than epoxy, plus no worries of amine blush.

Brett
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Old 01-05-2008, 14:01   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turkish6 View Post
If I fill it in wit epoxy will I be able to apply gel coat over it?
This may turn out to be a controversial post but I do this all the time. The answer to the question is yes... but... Timing is everything.

In order for the gelcoat to stick permanently, it's important to shoot for a chemical bond between epoxy and gelcoat rather than a mechanical bond. In short, one applies the gelcoat to the epoxy when the epoxy is just beginning to set. In other words it's semi soft. Gelcoat will in fact bond to it. However, if the timing is off and you wait too long and the epoxy has cured, the gelcoat will not stick permanently.
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Old 01-05-2008, 14:09   #13
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I have quite a few of these "blisters" on the deck of my boat. If the fiberglass behind it looks fibrous then you are looking at air bubbles from a poor layup job.

I either sand or grind them back until there is solid glass. If I ground deep the next step is to fill with long fiber epoxy. Then a final finish with microballoon epoxy. This is followed by spraying on a color matched gelcoat. A little sanding and polishing and good as new. If it is not too deep, then just the microballoon epoxy is called for.

It sounds more complicated than it actually is. I would recommend a couple of DVD's from Bennet Marine on repairing stress cracks and voids. A step by step with tips and tricks of the trade while using simple tools and materials. The section on how to color match is worth the video by itself.
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Old 01-05-2008, 21:31   #14
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Thanks you for all the posts. once the weather gets better around here I will tackle on this issue. Everything I read makes it seem like I am going to mess it all up. But I am sure once I get my hands dirty it will be fine.
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Old 01-05-2008, 21:31   #15
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Thanks you for all the posts. once the weather gets better around here I will tackle on this issue. Everything I read makes it seem like I am going to mess it all up. But I am sure once I get my hands dirty it will be fine.
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