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Old 22-06-2009, 20:58   #1
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Hard Landing - Cracked Bow

Last week I had my boat pulled out of the water and put it in dry storage. When they set it on the keel, it came down faster than I am comfortable with and the hull demonstrated that it has a little spring to it. I walked around and noticed a crack directly in the seam of the bow that runs from the headstay chainplate down a couple of feet below the waterline. One of the yard workers (who is not employed by the yard) told me that it's cosmetic only, but that it could be dye tested to be sure.

Inasmuch as it runs about 6-8 feet, it's hard to feel like it's "only cosmetic". It may well be just a crack in the LP and bottom paint, but I don't feel like it should be dismissed so easily.

Anyone have experience with a similar crack in the seam of the bow?
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Old 22-06-2009, 21:20   #2
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First check the inside of the hull and see if the crack is all the way through...however, you might need to take a grinder to the crack and see if it is cosmetic or structural...might need a surveyor!

Some boats are made in 2 halves and can split apart.

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Old 22-06-2009, 21:56   #3
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I had a similar "crack" in my boat. It was in a seam between the body of the boat and the tramsom. It was termed cosmetic but it slowly opened up over 5 years.
I believe it would be a good idea for you to properly fix it. It would to be ground out quite a bit to each side and patched.
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Old 22-06-2009, 22:10   #4
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Doesn't sound cosmetic to me either. I'd definitely have an expert you trust look into it. Depending on the hull construction method that could be a lot of work.
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Old 22-06-2009, 22:20   #5
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On my boat I have had several "cracks" and after grinding to explore they were ALL found to be in the gelcoat and cosmetic in nature. I, of course, then had to properly repair the damage I caused by grinding. My suggestion is grind a SMALL spot for a look, if you don't find any real damage you'll only have to make a small patch so it's no big deal. I have never seen any REAL damage from a minor collision/grounding on a quality boat. Mine survived last years hurricane IKE with plenty of damage but even after hammering against the dock for several hours and chewing a long narrow hole in her hull she is repaired and ready to be back in the water. Fiberglass is VERY resiliant stuff and pretty easy to repair.............m
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Old 22-06-2009, 23:40   #6
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Thanx for the input.

She's and old (read thick hull) 1973 Islander 36. They are know for being pretty stout, but...

She spent almost all of last year on the hard and the top hatchboard never quite fit the same in the 8 months since I splashed her again. It is one of those compromise things we are always dealing with. Leave it unattended in the water or risk deforming the hull or in this case, a hard landing.
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Old 22-06-2009, 23:48   #7
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Many boats are laid up in 2 halves then joined with glass layup on the inside. On the outside, they fill the joint with putty and gel coat over it. There may have been enough flex in the hull to crack the putty on this non structural joint. I'd write a letter to the yard describing the incident and describing the problem. That will put them on notice and give you a base if it should be more than just a cosmetic problem. The yard should reef out the filler and redo it if you know the yard caused the problem.AlohaPeter O.Pearson 35
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Old 23-06-2009, 00:22   #8
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I'm a little confused when you call it a non structural joint. But my confusion does not change anything. Hearing that the strenght of the joint comes from the inside does make sense and I feel better about it. I was told by the aforementioned yard worker who sold Islanders in his former life that they were infact laid up in 2 halves.

I wish that writing the letter to the yard would carry some weight. This is a Mexican storage yard only. And they don't take responsibility for anything. The Mexican trend seems to be, break it and charge to fix it... poorly. About the best I can hope for is to document the problem to them and let them know that I will spread the word if they don't contribute to the cost of the repair, which I'm sure will be like water off a ducks back.

During the haul out, one of the line handelers grabbed one of the greasy cables on the travel lift. He then cleaned his hand on my white dockline. Small potatoes, but it demonstrates who we are talking about here.
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Old 23-06-2009, 18:27   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minggat View Post
Last week I had my boat pulled out of the water and put it in dry storage. When they set it on the keel, it came down faster than I am comfortable with and the hull demonstrated that it has a little spring to it. I walked around and noticed a crack directly in the seam of the bow that runs from the headstay chainplate down a couple of feet below the waterline. One of the yard workers (who is not employed by the yard) told me that it's cosmetic only, but that it could be dye tested to be sure.

Inasmuch as it runs about 6-8 feet, it's hard to feel like it's "only cosmetic". It may well be just a crack in the LP and bottom paint, but I don't feel like it should be dismissed so easily.

Anyone have experience with a similar crack in the seam of the bow?
I think you need to make an insurance claim for damages. The yard has definitely damaged your hull which was probably put together in two halves as some hulls were. The crack needs to be opened up, the gelcoat ground back, the crack filled with thickened epoxy and then glassed over with 24 oz bias and epoxy, repainted, etc.

Good luck with it
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Old 23-06-2009, 20:02   #10
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During the haul out, one of the line handelers grabbed one of the greasy cables on the travel lift. He then cleaned his hand on my white dockline. Small potatoes, but it demonstrates who we are talking about here.
Well, actually it only demonstrates something about that particular line handler.

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Old 23-06-2009, 20:39   #11
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I think it is the yards obligation to prove to you whether or not it is structural. This means that the yards insurance pays all the bills...not your insurance. This means that the yard pays for the marine surveyor to have a look and whatever work the yard must perform to make things right.

I don't think you or your insurance company should be paying a nickle for this. It was their mistake and now they are obligated to demonstrate to you the extent of the damage and to repair such damage.
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Old 23-06-2009, 22:27   #12
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Old 25-06-2009, 10:20   #13
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Minggat,
Pull out the copy of the agreement you signed with the yard. They often add language that says that they are not liable for damage to your boat. Did they require you to add them as an additional insured on your policy?

If the answer to either of those questions is yes, then if you do choose to file an insurance claim, you would file it with your insurance policy, not with the marina's insurance company. Unfortunately, that means that you would have to pay the cost of your insurance policy's hull deductible out of your own pocket. If you think the repair cost will be significantly more than your deductible (worth filing a claim), don't wait too long to file the claim, as there is a time limit.
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Old 25-06-2009, 10:50   #14
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There is no point in talking about insurance on a 1973 boat that is dry storage in a Mexican yard.

The point I was trying to make about the line handler seems to have been missed.
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Old 25-06-2009, 11:10   #15
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One approach if you want to try to get some money to repair it in Mexico is to contact the Ministry of Tourism in Lapaz. I knew some people years ago that had a large shrimper drag down on them in Lapaz. They lost their anchor and rode and some cosmetic damage. The shrimper just shrugged.... but after the ministry of Tourism got involved things happened fast!! They are very conscious about their tourist image....
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