Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 25-06-2015, 18:51   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Sacramento
Boat: Sailboat Vagabond 14
Posts: 5
Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Hello Sailors,
Last Sunday I went sailing at Folsom Lake for the first time in 40 years. I "learned" to sail when I was a teenager on an El Toro in the Lafayette Reservoir.
Well I capsized the boat (Yamaha 14) when tacking. The many power boaters were quite helpful and saved some of my stuff from sinking. Also they helped me climb onto the boat so I could grab the keel and right her.

Later the wind broke a shroud (I suspect it was weakened when I righted the boat) and the mast fell snapping the connection to the boat. Luckily it was early enough in the day I could get a tow back to the Marina and a ride back to the truck.

My questions are...
How to reattach the mast to the fiberglass boat? Three screws pulled out.
Two screws pulled out of the wood rudder. How should I attach those?
Where can I get another jib (small sail)?
Do you think there is wood rot under the fiberglass? The boat is in excellent shape so I doubt it.
Should I pay an expert to do some of these repairs?
He could do it for 900 dollars. (I bought the boat and trailer for 800.)
Hugo
__________________

__________________
Hugo G-B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-06-2015, 18:55   #2
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 19,363
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

If I were you I would dig into it, look to see how it was built underdeck etc. Think about it and learn to fix yourself. Send pics here if you want specific advice.
__________________

__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-06-2015, 19:02   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: San Diego
Boat: Pearson 39-2 "Sea Story"
Posts: 1,109
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Don Casey has some excellent advice for repairing fiberglass. It just doesn't make sense to pay more for the repairs than you did the boat, but if you are willing to put in some work, the fiberglass work can be done for probably less than $100, depending on the extent. The fiberglass work itself can be relatively simple; making it look good is the hard part.

Start by taking a close look. Were these actually screws? (It seems to me the mast support should be bolted in, rather than screwed in.) If so, did you just pull them out, or did you tear up the core? The gelcoat? If you just pulled out a few screws, like you said, then you just need to overdrill, fill with structural epoxy, drill your pilot holes and reinstall the screws.
__________________
Greenhand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-06-2015, 19:33   #4
Moderator
 
JPA Cate's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: aboard, cruising in Australia
Boat: Sayer 46' Solent rig sloop
Posts: 10,679
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Trailer sailers are meant to survive capsizing.

Greenhand's right, as far as she went, with the repair. I would place a backing plate in back of where fitting is mounted.

There are many possible ways to deal with the sail issue. You might look for a used one from a similar sized boat; or you could make one, or have one made.

Ann
__________________
Ann, with Jim, aboard US s/v Insatiable II, in Oz, very long term cruisers
JPA Cate is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25-06-2015, 20:05   #5
Registered User
 
Nicholson58's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Live aboard
Boat: Camper & Nicholson58 Ketch - ROXY Traverse City, Michigan No.668283
Posts: 3,466
Images: 83
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugo G-B View Post
Hello Sailors,


My questions are...
How to reattach the mast to the fiberglass boat? Three screws pulled out.
Two screws pulled out of the wood rudder. How should I attach those?
Where can I get another jib (small sail)?
Do you think there is wood rot under the fiberglass? The boat is in excellent shape so I doubt it.
Should I pay an expert to do some of these repairs?
He could do it for 900 dollars. (I bought the boat and trailer for 800.)
Hugo
Sounds like you had 40 years worth of fun in a very short make-up time.

There is nothing on a 14 foot trailer boat that can't be fixed by a person good with tools and a bit of talent. Get the We$t Marine video on fiberglass repair or go to Jamestown Distributor's or US Composites sites and study the methods. Years ago I managed to pull the wood screws out of the forestay on a Buccaneer sailboat about the same size. Even at about 14 years old, I concluded that wood screws were inadequate & replaced them with through bolts and a backer bar. I later did the same on my Tornado Cat. All equipment was only screwed to balsa-core. I put aluminum backers inside the hull for everything. On big boats, I add backing disks behind all of the winches. Fiberglass is amazingly strong if the load is distributed. If it is point-loaded it will fail.

You may find sails on-line if your sails are repairable. A local sailmaker might fix your sails or direct you to a source.
__________________
Nicholson58 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-06-2015, 10:48   #6
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 1,172
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Screw holes ???

As others have said, implicitly and explicitly: That bespeaks a need for a thorough going over. "Screws" (Woodscrews, self-tappers and other such) are NOT appropriate fasteners for the structural parts of a boat, not even a Yamaha 14.

As for the mast: I assume, but you are specific about this, that the three screws that pulled out were the ones that were intended to hold the "chainplate" to the hull. A "chainplate" is a little sort of strap that is fastened to the side of the hull to give an anchoring point for the stays that hold up the mast. "Screws" are totally inadequate in this application. "Bolts" bust be used. They must be "through bolts" meaning that they go through a hole in the chainplate, then through the fibreglass hull, then through a "backing plate" (as others have also said), and are then furnished with flatwasher, lockwasher and nut on the inside of the hull. "Hex bolts" (with hexagonal heads) are my preference, but in a pinch a "Round Headed Machine Screw" will do Stainless Steel, of course. For chainplates on a 14 footer I would use (3) bolts of 1/4" diameter.

As for the rudder: the "Pintles" (The bits of the "hinge" named after that part of a small boy they resemble) should - like the chainplates - be "through bolted". Pintles are normally fitted to the rudder. "Gougeons" (the mating bits of the hinge mounted on the transom) should also be "through bolted". Again, 1/4" SS Hex Bolts would be my preference.

Your problems are the sort of stuff that is really, really cheap to rectify - provided you know what to use and have the tools required. With a cheap electric drill, say five bux at your local "Goodwill Store" if you don't already have one, ten bux worth of drill bits, and twenty bux worth of bolts, nuts and washers, Bob'll be you uncle. It's the sort of thing any seafaring man absolutely MUST know how to do!

And always remember: An "expert" is just some guy who lives in the next village over! Usually not worth paying for. Just learn to do the stuff yourself, and keep everything simple. Ms. Google knows EVERYTHING. Just ask her. Or just ask on this board ;-0)!

Cheers

TrentePieds
__________________
TrentePieds is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 27-06-2015, 01:25   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Bolts nuts and backing plate as suggested spreads the load. I often use SS penny washers instead of a single backing plate. They are around 1,1/4" diameter there are half penny washers as well and also heavier gauge larger diameter where I buy them at an engineering supplies. Sometimes you need to grind flats on the sides to fit them close together. Large washers are easier to align than a single plate. A single plate is good but much more work and large washers adjust better to an uneven surface as you might find under a deck. Fibreglass is easy once you overcome your fear. I use little steel rollers made of threaded rod on a wire frame to squeeze the resin into the cloth. West suppliers should have all that stuff and they will give you helpful advice if you ask. Im sure other brands are good but I know West. If you have rotten wood where there was a screw or bolt hole inside a rudder for example you can drill it out right through with a suitable size hole saw, then fill that hole with high density epoxy mix. You may be best to drill the hole saw from each side using a small pilot hole from each side to align. Then line up the fittings and drill the correct size bolt holes through the middle of the epoxy plugs ( from each side) allowing about .5mm clearance. This epoxy "plug" also waterproofs the core material. I usually use SS nylock nuts rather than plain but that's just me. Epoxy resin / glass sticks well to original polyester fibreglass if you follow instructions such as abrading the surface and cleaning. There is a booklet of West system fibreglass boat repair on line. I have it and dragged the PDF into Kindle to make an ebook.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-06-2015, 18:45   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Sacramento
Boat: Sailboat Vagabond 14
Posts: 5
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Thanks for your suggestions and advice. I've got Marine Tex epoxy putty and a 5200 tube of adhesive sealant. There are plenty of online videos about repair loose screws on a door hinge, (toothpicks, matchsticks, plastic inserts, and dowels)
What type of wood will I drill into?
To get nuts underneath the bolts I'll have to cut a window in the fiberglass hull and repair that!
I can modify the rudder to work always down if those screws pull out again.
Then it's back on the lake for round two!
__________________
Hugo G-B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 29-06-2015, 20:54   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 1,172
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugo G-B View Post
To get nuts underneath the bolts I'll have to cut a window in the fiberglass hull and repair that!
You prolly SHOULD have "a window" in the hull! It's called an "inspection port", and in a 14" dinghy it is normally found in the "bulkhead" at the aft end of the foredeck.

If there isn't an inspection port, you go to your chandlers and buy a "ready to fit" job. It consists of a rim or frame of plastic having threads on the inside. In it fits a "lid" that screws into the frame just by twisting it with your hand.

You glue and screw the frame into a circular hole you cut in the bulkhead. Screws are okay here, because the joint is NOT structural. Better still, you use rivets instead of screws, cos a sharp screw-point catching your wet and cold hand as you reach in through the inspection port is likely to make your language VERY intemperate. Once you've installed the inspection port in a convenient place in the bulkhead so you can reach into the "tank" under the foredeck, you do as we've outline above. Fit the chain plates with bolts and backing plates or washers under the nuts.

It's very unlikely that you would be drilling into wood. Doubt that a Yammerer would be wood-cored, but I could be wrong. More likely if there is any core at all it's PVC foam. Anyway "twist drills" from you local hardware store will do the job.

Cheers

TrentePieds
__________________
TrentePieds is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 30-06-2015, 01:55   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

I wouldn't modify the rudder to stay down as if it hits a beach or ramp you'll cause more damage. If you use screws rather than bolts they will likely pull out again even if it doesn't hit anything. Folding rudders on small yachts are often fitted with bungee cords to hold them down but give if they hit something. Or use a line and cleat. There can be strong loads on a rudder when sailing, as, along with the centerboard it is converting the wind pressure into forward motion. If you can, have a look at other similar boats to see what they've done. If you do use bolts (hopefully) don't make the mistake of using oversize. Oversize bolts means oversize holes which weakens the fittings. Ideally a minimum spacing of 1,1/2 X the hole diameter from the hole edge to the fitting edge. And the hole will have clearance making it larger diameter than the bolt. Even fairly small diameter SS through bolts have a lot of strength depending on the application. The unthreaded part of a bolt is strongest so you could get longer bolts than necessary and as long as there is sufficient thread to tighten, plus a little, hacksaw the extra off after tightening and file the burs off. If it's hidden under the deck don't worry.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2015, 22:24   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Sacramento
Boat: Sailboat Vagabond 14
Posts: 5
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

I ordered a 6" diameter inspection port from Amazon. I plan to cut into the hull and reattach the steel plate to the fiberglass hull with bolts. With the port I'll be able to work on both sides of the fiberglass. Also I could add some type of backing plate, and locking washers, between the nuts and the fiberglass.
__________________
Hugo G-B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2015, 22:29   #12
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Sacramento
Boat: Sailboat Vagabond 14
Posts: 5
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Thanks for your advice. That's the plan. Inspection port and nuts and bolts.
Also I got a water resistant pouch for the cell phone. Maybe I'll put the truck keys and money inside the inspection port.
__________________
Hugo G-B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13-07-2015, 08:04   #13
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: Sacramento
Boat: Sailboat Vagabond 14
Posts: 5
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

It is finished! I mounted an inspection port on the hull, bolted the mast bracket to the hull, retied a wire, re-glued the rudder and added a stop bolt to keep it down if necessary. There was a lot of water in the hull which I would have known about without the inspection port.
Also downloaded some information on the boat and am ready for round two.
__________________
Hugo G-B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 13-07-2015, 16:09   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 811
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugo G-B View Post
It is finished! I mounted an inspection port on the hull, bolted the mast bracket to the hull, retied a wire, re-glued the rudder and added a stop bolt to keep it down if necessary. There was a lot of water in the hull which I would have known about without the inspection port.
Also downloaded some information on the boat and am ready for round two.
Congratulations Just one thing; I suggest you don't use a bolt to keep the rudder down.
Better to use a thin wooden dowel instead of a bolt. It should break and save the rudder if / when you touch the beach. 1/4" should be Ok and you could partly cut through to weaken it. Even better if you can use a bungee cord. One way is a small hole in the rudder blade. Pass the bungee through and tie a figure 8 knot. Then take the bungee up to a cleat you can reach on the side of the rudder. Get the angle and tension right to hold the blade down. Then you can pull the rudder up when you come into the shallows. You could use a nylon line instead but it won't have the spring of a bungee. There are other ways to safeguard your rudder but I can't see your rudder.
__________________
GrahamHO is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-07-2015, 13:12   #15
Registered User
 
pesarsten's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: St Pete
Boat: Sabre 34
Posts: 461
Re: Repairing screw holes in fiberglass

One note, be very careful of 5200 as it will be an almost permanent bond very tough to take apart.
__________________

__________________
All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing. Edmund Burke
pesarsten is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
crew, fiberglass

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Filling/repairing screw holes in interior cabin teak Suijin Construction, Maintenance & Refit 14 05-07-2013 17:01
Filling Old Screw Holes in Boom? bluewater Construction, Maintenance & Refit 8 28-04-2011 10:42
Best Filler for Repairing Screw Holes in Fiberglass cabo_sailor Construction, Maintenance & Refit 17 17-04-2011 17:23
Repairing Ripped-Out Screw Hole in Teak msulc Construction, Maintenance & Refit 22 15-01-2011 05:25
Filling screw holes in mast. Ryan Deck hardware: Rigging, Sails & Hoisting 18 31-10-2008 03:47



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 14:49.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.