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Old 20-02-2019, 00:23   #1
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Repairing damage to keel support structure

I would be interested in hearing from the forum their thoughts about a couple of keel repairs - one completed, and one about to begin. Not sure if anyone has seen these channels - Sailing Uma (completed) and Bums on a Boat (in the process).

My thoughts on,

Sailing Uma - I believe a Pearson - did temporary repairs to their wobbling keel by replacing internal wood structural supports with cheap Styrofoam and using their fingers to squeeze out epoxy from the fiberglass overlay. And on the exterior they only replaced the immediate area around the de-lamination forward of the keel and added layers at the upper forward keel area. I may have missed some things.

BOAB - I beleive a Carter 33 - they had surveyors and a Naval Architect make suggestions and will be fastening metal plates on the top sides of the keel support cross stringers. I do not know what else they will do.

With the popularity of the boating lifestyle on a limited budget and doing DIY repairs are we in for some fatalities ahead.

I am all for DIY but it appears amateurs are learning from amateurs and in some cases not doing the proper repairs for critical areas. I say this because there have been numerous suggestions to watch and follow the first example. These kids were planning on heading to the med and have been reckless in disregarding safety lines and protocols and when numerous posters tried to warn them about the reasons for the safety equipment they blew it off. Now they are planning to head to the arctic Greenland area.
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Old 20-02-2019, 05:31   #2
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Location: Annapolis MD; currently in St. Augustine FL
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Repairing damage to keel support structure

I watched the BOAB videos just recently and in my opinion the suggested repair is inadequate.

Metal plates, even 1/4 stainless, laid flat on top of the stringers, dont have the rigidity required to fix this. The stringer is a box structure and the sides are what provide the support against vertical stress (the weight of the keel or the weight of the boat on the keel). The top of the box stabilizes the sides to prevent torquing. So a plate laid along the top will do little. Add to that the recommendation that they be screwed down...the screws will just pull.

In my opinion a better solution is reinforcing the sides of the box. I would template out 3/8 G10 plates, as long as I could make them, and glass them in on either side. Or Id laminate four 1/4 pieces to make two 1/2 plates. Probably overkill but better to make it too strong than have the problem resurface and its only incrementally more work. Whatever was easier in terms of available materials.

I would do it once the boat was back in the water and the oil canning had settled out.

Many sailing vlogs on YT are just extended slow motion train wrecks. Im all for people just heading out and learning by doing but the penchant for ignoring advice, not to mention presenting oneself as some pedantic expert is annoying.

And if I had a buck for every YouTuber who lost their dinghy because they towed it in 25 knot winds and wondered where it went...
"Having a yacht is reason for being more cheerful than most." -Kurt Vonnegut
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Old 20-02-2019, 06:46   #3
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Re: Repairing damage to keel support structure

Fixing a keel is something that needs to be done right. (Cheeki Rafiki, anyone?)
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