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Old 11-04-2016, 09:26   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Portland maine
Boat: 1986 Catalina 27
Posts: 53
Spider cracks

My cat 27 has the worst case of spider cracks in the planet. Between the rubrail and the topdeck, about 3 inches of gelcoat, is a pure forest of gross spider cracks. The rest of the boat has a few here and there, like around hinges. How would you go about fixing these? is there any other way to do it besides grinding it down, laying up glass and having 27 feet of brown spots forever?
Sailuke is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-08-2016, 07:49   #2
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Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 21
Re: Spider cracks

I am having the same issue with my American mariner monohull. I tried doing what you are thinking and I can tell you it is the worst. you need a big flap disc on a powerfull grinder that you wont be able to hold up for that long, fully enclosed eye protection, a good respirator, and loads of time.

frustrated with it I contacted my local shipwright and he said I was going overboard worrying about nothing. he said I would be doing it for weeks and no matter what I did they would come back because the hull is meant to flex and give in the waves.

he said unless it leaks, just sand it and paint it.
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:56   #3
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,842
Re: Spider cracks

It's a gelcoat thing. Gelcoat is not as flexible as the underlying layup.

My advice would be to live with it. If you don't want to do that: Choose a paint system, grind through the gelcoat, fill with whatever filler the paint manufacturer recommends, prep then repaint the decks as a whole.

Sometimes life is like that -- (as in elections) you choose the lesser of evils. Nobody likes choice B, so choice A might be better.
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