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Old 28-10-2010, 20:24   #1
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Gelcoat and Epoxy Questions

I went and looked at a 1974 Hunter 25 today. The interior is mint, the standing rigging is new, the sails are excellent. Now here are the problems:

The boat hasn't been sailed since 2009, nor has it been out of the water.

There are some through cracks in the cockpit seats but they are located in the hinged seat that covers the storage area below, they do not lead to the interior of the boat. I think the small cracks, less than 1/2 wide can ve covered on the bottom with 8 oz glass, then filled using fiberglass filler material (micro spheres and epoxy) and covering with another layer of 8 oz glass cloth and resin.

The hull, (dark blue) has cracks in the gel coat starting at the toe plate and heading down toward the water line (not touching the water), every 4 to 6 inches, some as long as 12 inches. I tapped some of the locations with a screwdrive handle and the hull sounds solid in the areas I tapped. I am ASSuming that the entire gelcoat covering the hull is shot and will need to be removed and re-done. I am also ASSuming that the cracking is 1. because of the age of the boat and 2. because of the dark color.

Since I have built 2 wooden boats and covered the hulls with 4 oz fiberglass, I am by no means an expert on fiberglass or gelcoats. So, are my conclusions valid and does anyone have a ballpark figure of the cost to have this work done? I can get the boat for around $3,000 and I plan to use it for weekend overnighting and daysailing.
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Old 29-10-2010, 05:11   #2
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It just isn't worth it to do any extensive gelcoat cosmetic repairs to a $3,000 (or less) boat. Plan to only fix what is required structurally. If you can't live with the cosmetics, don't buy it.

David
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Old 29-10-2010, 05:40   #3
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agreed, a 74 hunter 25 for 3 grand isn't generally a bargain boat, with all of the issues you have mentioned i'd put on my shoes and walk
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Old 29-10-2010, 05:44   #4
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the old hunter is probably not worth redoing .. not worth it.
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Old 29-10-2010, 06:44   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
I think the small cracks, less than 1/2 wide can ve covered on the bottom with 8 oz glass, then filled using fiberglass filler material (micro spheres and epoxy) and covering with another layer of 8 oz glass cloth and resin.
Gelcoat repairs should be done with polyester based products, Michigan Fiberglass Supply has a 2 part white marine filler that is excellent, then spray with a matching gelcoat.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
The hull, (dark blue) has cracks in the gel coat starting at the toe plate and heading down toward the water line (not touching the water), every 4 to 6 inches, some as long as 12 inches. I tapped some of the locations with a screwdrive handle and the hull sounds solid in the areas I tapped. I am ASSuming that the entire gelcoat covering the hull is shot and will need to be removed and re-done. I am also ASSuming that the cracking is 1. because of the age of the boat and 2. because of the dark color.
Cracks in gelcaot can be for many reasons, a complete peel and regelcoating of the hull is a costly and time consuming ordeal. I would just properly repair the couple of cracks the boat has now and go sailing and keep an eye on the hull to see if things with the gel start to become an issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khagan1227 View Post
Since I have built 2 wooden boats and covered the hulls with 4 oz fiberglass, I am by no means an expert on fiberglass or gelcoats. So, are my conclusions valid and does anyone have a ballpark figure of the cost to have this work done? I can get the boat for around $3,000 and I plan to use it for weekend overnighting and daysailing.
Sounds like a good plan, maybe a good price, simple fiberglass and gelcoat repairs are really pretty easy and can save yourself alot of money over hiring a pro. If you decide to by the boat I can send you some information on a very good instructional DVD as well as a good source for products you need to compleete the work. That being said gelcoat repairs done professionally vary by region, the NY metro area it costs between 75-100 an hour.
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Old 29-10-2010, 08:04   #6
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I think djmarchand said it best. This boat is not worth repairing. The cracks in the gel coat are most likely cosmetic, caused by heat. It is a common problem on dark hulls. You have to grind one down to the fiberglass to see if it might be a structural issue. That said, rationality often escapes purchase decisions when boats are involved, so if you're smitten with the boat and want a labor of love, go for it. The gel coat can be peeled as mentioned. I had this issue on my transom and elected to re-glass it. The PO painted over the cracks, and of course they returned. So there are basically three choices to do the repair: remove the gel coat (angle grinders will do it, but pros use special purpose peelers because they leave a more even surface); use a dremel to route out every crack and fill back level; glass over everything.

Good luck!

Brett
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Old 29-10-2010, 08:10   #7
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ain't worth it...run away...if it is the hunter you are in love with, they are pretty common production boats...
there are a bunch of boats in that size and price range, it is not hard to find one in which you can basically pull up sails and go...

saw a 28 or 30 foot albin for 3000 awhile back...
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Old 29-10-2010, 08:49   #8
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I for one would like to see some pictures before pronouncing judgement. The hull gel coat cracks could be normal gel coat spider cracks from to thick of gel coat. I have never heard of removing gelcoat from hull topsides. Are intenal bulk head tabs still good?
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Old 29-10-2010, 09:43   #9
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... Gelcoat repairs should be done with polyester based products ...
Polyester boats are usually repaired with polyster resins; but why shouldn’t Vinylester boats be repaired with vinylester, and Epoxy boats with epoxy?
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Old 29-10-2010, 15:25   #10
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Thanks for all the replies!

Thanks for all the replies, I really do appreciate them. I'm tying up my shoes and getting ready to walk away, after all I have a couple more boats to look at.
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Old 31-10-2010, 19:23   #11
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Well, I got cold feet and let the Hunter pass me by. I figure there are a LOT of other quality boats out there and two of them will be mine someday.

My first goal is still getting a daysailer or a pocket cruiser. Then a live aboard.

Thanks for all the opinions, they really helped.
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