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Old 15-07-2013, 09:07   #1
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Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

So we unscrewed a metal plate running down the front ridge of the hull. (there to protect from anchor damage--not used for attaching rigging)
Water started flowing out of the screw holes. Over 4 gallons flowed at the time we left the yard and was still flowing.
We figure that the crush zone/bulkhead must have a leak somewhere, but it cannot be below the water line, as that was stripped to glass and there are no cracks.
This area is supposed to be a sealed bulkhead with foam fill. The only obvious water access is the screw holes

Anyone have any experience like this or suggestions on how to fix?
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Old 15-07-2013, 09:48   #2
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Re: Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

use a hose at a low flow rate, start below the deck and work up you will soon find your leak. Good luck Captain Lately.
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Old 15-07-2013, 10:33   #3
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Probably screws with inadequate or worn out sealant. Check the rub rail stanchion bases, anything above and even forward of the area. This is not uncommon.
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Old 15-07-2013, 21:29   #4
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Re: Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

OK, so lots of new info and pictures. The steel plate actually did extend below the water line (it was described in text as "anchor plate...thus my misunderstanding)

the area of the water seems to be the hull below the bilge floor. (Over 4 gallons flowed before he left the yard, don't know how long it continued)
Also don't know if water was fresh or salt (he wasn't willing to taste)
The bilge is dry when pulling floor plates.
There is evidence of a previous grounding and repairs, but there doesn't seem to be any open areas (and they would have started leaking when it was stripped) so I can only assume that all the water came in through that little screw hole....any other ideas?

There is obvious cracking under the anchor plate, but it is visible from the underside and the plate covers the top, so it seems it would have had to been a very long storm with very high waves.

Any suggestions on finding construction specs so we know how low to drill to let the water out?
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Old 15-07-2013, 23:09   #5
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Re: Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

I should have added.... it's a 1990 34' PDQ
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Old 16-07-2013, 01:08   #6
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I'm thinking this is common over time. I have the '32 and had to empty the port bow crash tank when I bought the boat but not since.
You could also ask at www.pdqforum.com Lots of helpful knowledge over there.
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Old 16-07-2013, 01:45   #7
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Re: Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

Personally I would go for access from the inside, especially if their is foam inside that compartment. The price of that will be adding an inspection plate, IMO no bad thing in itself.

Access from the inside will allow you to see how much water is inside (and bail it out! and if any foam inside likely will be sodden (and heavy) and needs scooping / scraping out - I would not replace it, at least not with foam) and will also allow you to fix the "anchor plate" on in a way that does not fail again (a screw hole underwater is IMO a matter of when and not if it leaks, even without a clout on the bow to accelerate)....I would go with sealing the existing holes with epoxy and then either through bolting or simply adding some depth inside with epoxy so can use a decent length of screw that does not go through into the compartment.

Likely I would also have a look inside the other hull bow compartment as well.
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Old 16-07-2013, 08:37   #8
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Re: Flooded bulkhead on PDQ

amytom "I have the '32 and had to empty the port bow crash tank when I bought the boat but not since."

Do you remember how low the inside of the compartment was?

I will not be able to get back to the boat until mid September and then every day there will be costing me, so I would like to have yard get all water out. NOT real comfortable with them opening up cabinets and cutting inside, but they could put a couple small holes (ie. 3/8") to let water drain and air out.

Then I will probably go with what David suggests once I get there and can work repairs...with the addition of sealed water bottles in the space, so that if this does happen again, there won't be so much water.
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Old 16-07-2013, 13:18   #9
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The 34 and 32 are two different boats but what I did was add a 4" access hatch to each bow compartment. The hull under the waterline is solid glass so unlikely to be any core damage.
Head over to the PDQ forum; there's at least one former PDQ service employee regularly responding.
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