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Old 02-12-2014, 14:20   #16
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Re: Peeling a Hull

I'm baffled by how people can stay in business. Never return calls, emails, or respond at all. I've never had so much trouble finding someone to sell me something. I still haven't heard from the only guy in my neck of the woods who does this, I've had no response from the Gelstrip company. Nobody answers the emails or their phone in England, nobody responds to the messages I've left. Blows my mind.

At any rate, today I ordered a Gelplane.

I considered the turboshear, but it appears I can get a more even working surface with the Gelplane. I'll have to end up with a smooth surface and it'll be a lot easier to keep it that way than to try to get it back. I need to get this thing stripped so drying can begin. Boatyard fees go on, so taking a couple months finding someone or figuring it out would pay for a lot of tools.

If I keep it when I get done with this project I can get more use out of it restoring my 50's big fin fiberglass boats.

More to come, I'm sure.
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Old 02-12-2014, 21:11   #17
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Quote:
Originally Posted by austinsailor View Post
I'm baffled by how people can stay in business. Never return calls, emails, or respond at all. I've never had so much trouble finding someone to sell me something. I still haven't heard from the only guy in my neck of the woods who does this, I've had no response from the Gelstrip company. Nobody answers the emails or their phone in England, nobody responds to the messages I've left. Blows my mind.

At any rate, today I ordered a Gelplane.

I considered the turboshear, but it appears I can get a more even working surface with the Gelplane. I'll have to end up with a smooth surface and it'll be a lot easier to keep it that way than to try to get it back. I need to get this thing stripped so drying can begin. Boatyard fees go on, so taking a couple months finding someone or figuring it out would pay for a lot of tools.

If I keep it when I get done with this project I can get more use out of it restoring my 50's big fin fiberglass boats.

More to come, I'm sure.


When you are done with it, you should consider selling it here. A number of members have had the same difficulty as you in the past. Take care of your unit, in particular by not being to aggressive in the size of your "bite" in the step pattern when you begin cutting. If you take the maximum amount on each pass you will go through more blades and belts, and may also experience chatter. They should provide you with an instructional video which you definitely want to watch. The deadman switch on the Gelplane unit is definitely safer than the switch on the Gelstrip, but it always gave me severe carpal tunnel. Seriously consider proffessional gel filled gloves with industrial grade wrist support. It makes a huge difference for me.

I agree that a peeler will result in a more even surface, but it may require many passes and a lot of disposables to remove the amount you need. In the case I encountered, which was an approx. 60 ft. powerboat, the symptom displayed as severe bottom blistering, with some quite large. Heavy exploratory grinding revealed that all of the blisters were connected over the majority of the bottom at a depth of about 3/8"-1/2". The presumption was the factory lost the bond over a weekend, with insufficient prep. We proceeded to remove the affected outer layer of laminate and relaminate to original specs. The job was done in sections, obviously because if you peel that much off the entire bottom of a large boat, it will no longer support itself on the jackstands without potential oil canning resulting in warpage which becomes permanent during glass work. The job was an epic nightmare which would be impossible to describe to anyone who hasn't done large amounts of overhead glasswork. Do not underestimate the amount of time required, particularly at the fairing phase.

You might also have considered a blasting outfit for this. But I do think that particularly in this sort of case, the more even surface left by a peeler will pay dividends. I just hope for your sake you don't have to remove too much material to get back to good laminate.
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Old 02-12-2014, 21:23   #18
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Btw, I do seem to recollect that in that case, many areas were so badly delaminated that we could run a circ saw set at 3/8" depth around the waterline, and then in vertical kerfs every foot or so across the area in question, and a few longitudinal, in a grid pattern. Then you could use hammer and chisel/air chisel to peel the bad glass off. This was vastly faster than any other method, but couldn't be done everywhere, and left a fairly rough/unfair surface. Remember, this was a very big boat, with a severe problem, don't know if that sort of thing might work for you. In the end we were joking that we should have just glued the keel to the ground, run a saw around the waterline, and picked the boat up with a crane and eyebolts through the deck beams! Then we would have two hull parts, which we could prep grind and bond back together! Only a seam at the waterline. In a perfect world...
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Old 06-12-2014, 20:39   #19
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Re: Peeling a Hull

thanks for all the pointers, Minaret.

Gelplane will show up Tuesday, so by Wednesday I'll at least have gotten a taste of what I'm getting into.

I think your description of what you think happened with the boat you stripped is similar to mine. I've heard that damp/humid of glass at the time it was laid up would also cause problems like this. The worst area has what appears to be uncured resin oozing out in some spots.

Regardless, once I got through the worst places where I've stripped it so far, it seems to be exceptionally strong, solid glass. As mentioned in another post I read, even taking off as much glass as I have to, there is still going to be more left than many boats have in the first place. Certainly thicker than the Hunter 37 Cutter we previously cruised on. In spite of that thought, I most certainly will build it back up.

I appreciate the pointer on taking lighter cuts. My inclination would be to hog it out as quick as I could, but I suspect both me and the machine would suffer. I have no idea if I'm in for a weeks work or a month, I'll just have to suffer through it.

Your mention of the hull oil canning is worth thinking about. I'll have to spend some time talking to the yard guys and thinking about it to work around that. Possibly adding many more stands to spread the load, removing only the pair where I'm working? Lots to think about.

It's a ways off, but someday I need to decide whether to rebuild with polyester or epoxy. My supplier says use polyester for all but the last layer or two, then vinylester due to it being more resistant to water penetration. And, if I use polyester, he loses, as he knows I already have a drum. He'd make much more if he talked me into epoxy. Polyester would be easier and cheaper. I have friends who have been around boats a long time, have built small boats with epoxy and are having a cow over me even thinking of using anything except epoxy. Of course, they aren't doing the work or paying for it.

I will have a fair amount of time, though. It needs to dry for a spell, so I can sort through all the inputs I get for some time.
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Old 07-12-2014, 12:26   #20
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Originally Posted by austinsailor View Post
thanks for all the pointers, Minaret.

Gelplane will show up Tuesday, so by Wednesday I'll at least have gotten a taste of what I'm getting into.

I think your description of what you think happened with the boat you stripped is similar to mine. I've heard that damp/humid of glass at the time it was laid up would also cause problems like this. The worst area has what appears to be uncured resin oozing out in some spots.

Regardless, once I got through the worst places where I've stripped it so far, it seems to be exceptionally strong, solid glass. As mentioned in another post I read, even taking off as much glass as I have to, there is still going to be more left than many boats have in the first place. Certainly thicker than the Hunter 37 Cutter we previously cruised on. In spite of that thought, I most certainly will build it back up.

I appreciate the pointer on taking lighter cuts. My inclination would be to hog it out as quick as I could, but I suspect both me and the machine would suffer. I have no idea if I'm in for a weeks work or a month, I'll just have to suffer through it.

Your mention of the hull oil canning is worth thinking about. I'll have to spend some time talking to the yard guys and thinking about it to work around that. Possibly adding many more stands to spread the load, removing only the pair where I'm working? Lots to think about.

It's a ways off, but someday I need to decide whether to rebuild with polyester or epoxy. My supplier says use polyester for all but the last layer or two, then vinylester due to it being more resistant to water penetration. And, if I use polyester, he loses, as he knows I already have a drum. He'd make much more if he talked me into epoxy. Polyester would be easier and cheaper. I have friends who have been around boats a long time, have built small boats with epoxy and are having a cow over me even thinking of using anything except epoxy. Of course, they aren't doing the work or paying for it.

I will have a fair amount of time, though. It needs to dry for a spell, so I can sort through all the inputs I get for some time.


If you are seeing uncured resin, this is probably the result of a chopper gun snafu. Many guns are external mix, meaning the resin and catalyst are never properly mixed in the machine, but rather both are sprayed simultaneously from side by side nozzles and any mixing happens in the fan while airborne or on the work surface. This leads to a much easier and cheaper to maintain gun, but can also lead to problems. The most common being that the catalyst reservoir clogs or runs dry and nobody notices until it's too late.

I've also seen a similar scenario with boats built outdoors in open molds. This solves the air quality problem for the builder, and many do it this way, rolling the mold out of the shed for layup. But it can lead to problems with humidity, particularly if left out overnight. This is less and less common as regulations have removed this option for many builders, usually seen in older boats. The telltale is milky white resin at the delam area, with a poor cure.

I vote with your supplier. Use poly iso resin for your layup. If this was a chopper gun related problem (likely), you will have removed only matt and no roving. You should consider replacing like with like. That will really piss off your epoxy friends, but it's how it should be done, for a plethora of reasons.
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Old 08-12-2014, 22:12   #21
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Hope to start tomorrow, but I thought a couple before pictures might be interesting. This is what the pressure washer did. Wouldn't take barnicles off of the cheap bottom paint, but it would take the glass off!
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Old 08-12-2014, 22:30   #22
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Originally Posted by austinsailor View Post
Hope to start tomorrow, but I thought a couple before pictures might be interesting. This is what the pressure washer did. Wouldn't take barnicles off of the cheap bottom paint, but it would take the glass off!



Bad one! Looks very familiar. Appears to be all matt as expected. I wish we had talked more and you had got a turboshear, that will be difficult to peel. You will understand after watching the peeler info vid.
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Old 09-12-2014, 07:55   #23
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Bad one! Looks very familiar. Appears to be all matt as expected. I wish we had talked more and you had got a turboshear, that will be difficult to peel. You will understand after watching the peeler info vid.
Nothing says I can't still buy one if I really need to. Is it because I need to cut so deep? My fear is the turbo cutter will leave too uneven a surface. Would I be better to hog out most of it with a turbo shear, then even it up with the plane?
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Old 09-12-2014, 08:10   #24
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Nothing says I can't still buy one if I really need to. Is it because I need to cut so deep? My fear is the turbo cutter will leave too uneven a surface. Would I be better to hog out most of it with a turbo shear, then even it up with the plane?




No, my concern lies in the fact that you need a fair hull with a smooth surface to peel well. Everywhere where there is already a divot from grinder/pressure washer/delam will be a problem. This is not true of a turboshear.
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Old 09-12-2014, 21:24   #25
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Got the Gelplane, and although it seems pretty awkward to me now, I am getting glass stripped off. I'm sure someone with some experience would be both faster and do a smoother job, but it's working. With a capital "W" for work!

The best news is, it is just as I thought. The mat on the surface (1/4" or so deep here) is really nasty. Full of air bubbles, mat not completely saturated and generaly very poor workmanship. Below, on an even plane, is rock solid glass, no flaws at all. I have no problem telling where the bad ends and the good starts.
I'm cleaning up the results of the plane with a hand grinder with 18 grit, seems to work quite well and I'm getting an even finish. rough, but faired out quite well. Someone with more experience could probably forgo most of the sander part.

At the rate I'm going, a couple square feet an hour, I'll be quite some time getting this done. Hope it's before it gets back up in the 80's this spring!
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Old 09-12-2014, 22:11   #26
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Got the Gelplane, and although it seems pretty awkward to me now, I am getting glass stripped off. I'm sure someone with some experience would be both faster and do a smoother job, but it's working. With a capital "W" for work!

The best news is, it is just as I thought. The mat on the surface (1/4" or so deep here) is really nasty. Full of air bubbles, mat not completely saturated and generaly very poor workmanship. Below, on an even plane, is rock solid glass, no flaws at all. I have no problem telling where the bad ends and the good starts.
I'm cleaning up the results of the plane with a hand grinder with 18 grit, seems to work quite well and I'm getting an even finish. rough, but faired out quite well. Someone with more experience could probably forgo most of the sander part.

At the rate I'm going, a couple square feet an hour, I'll be quite some time getting this done. Hope it's before it gets back up in the 80's this spring!


Didn't the instructional vid tell you to peel vertically in a step pattern instead of longitudinally?
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Old 10-12-2014, 06:44   #27
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Never could get the video to play on my computer, no dvd player around. However, the manual (which I did read every word of) showed how you should do it in staggered starting points, and that was done horizontally. Would someone fire me for incompetence, please! This is no longer fun.

I'll try going vertical today and see how it works. The book did say it was set to go from left to right, though, which to me implied horizontal. If I get to places that are sharp curves, like the edge of the keel, certainly vertical is all that will work.
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Old 10-12-2014, 07:20   #28
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Looks like you're making pretty snappy progress with a good result. I'm sure it will go a bit quicker as you move along. Good luck with the remainder!
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Old 10-12-2014, 08:39   #29
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Re: Peeling a Hull

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Never could get the video to play on my computer, no dvd player around. However, the manual (which I did read every word of) showed how you should do it in staggered starting points, and that was done horizontally. Would someone fire me for incompetence, please! This is no longer fun.

I'll try going vertical today and see how it works. The book did say it was set to go from left to right, though, which to me implied horizontal. If I get to places that are sharp curves, like the edge of the keel, certainly vertical is all that will work.

Yes, vertical is the only way to go. The manual is telling you to cut vertical stripes left to right because the guide shoulders which control depth of cut are set up that way out of the box. That is, the right shoulder should always be running on gel/uncut surface, while the left shoulder rides on cut surface. Hold a straight edge over the cutter head in line with the blade and note how the adjustable guides are aligned with it. You can set it up to cut left to right or right to left, but always in vertical passes. Look at some youtube vid. This is also where you adjust depth of cut. Tuning is critical to running a peeler. If you don't follow the instructions it will lead to divots and gouging. Good luck, and work safe. That's a very dangerous tool.
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Old 10-12-2014, 19:02   #30
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Re: Peeling a Hull

Vertical is certainly working better.

If anyone is wondering if I was just doing a strip for no good reason, these pictures should tell it all. First is a section with about half the thickness od the mat cut away. All the bubble are air pockets. No water, no osmosis, just badly laid up glass. All the white grain is mat that was not completely saturated.

The second picture - well, I have a question. Is it still delamination if it was never laminated in the first place? This is about a 2 sq ft spot that never was bonded. Just a void betwen the mat and the start of the layup. Pretty sad. I wonder if Cheoy Lee would warrenty it??
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