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Old 27-05-2014, 11:42   #1
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Water in keel; Pearson 30

Water in keel; a 1973 Pearson 30. As I was ready to fiberglass the very bottom forward section of the keel ( repairing damage from a minor grounding last year) I noticed a drop of water; about one drop every 20 minutes.
Tapping the keel reveals hollow sounds up about 2 feet in the forward portion. The sounds varied port to starboard.
To the best of my knowledge the boat lacks keel bolts, and so water in the fiberglass around the ballast could be very serious. In the worst case I can imagine the ballast shifting inside itís fiberglass casing.
The glass on the bottom of the keel is very thin, so however Pearson designed the ballast itís surely not the glass there thatís keeping it attached to the rest of the boat. If anyone can point me to original plans for this part of the boat Iíd be very appreciative.
A friend in the yard suggested drilling into the keel at the spots that sound hollow.
Any thoughts very welcome.
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Old 27-05-2014, 12:03   #2
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Re: Water in keel; Pearson 30

I'd drill too, ballast is lead and not cast iron?
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Old 27-05-2014, 14:25   #3
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Re: Water in keel; Pearson 30

a64pilot:
Itís lead (as far as I can learn on the web). This may have saved the boat, in that there will have been no rust, and thus no expansion around the encapsulated ballast. (?)
Iíve now read that glassí strength is not effected by water intrusion (still researching this: Don Robertson's Marine Marketplace - The Use & Misuse of Moisture Meters ), and so at times allow myself to hope thereís no serious issue.
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Old 27-05-2014, 14:34   #4
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Re: Water in keel; Pearson 30

Not unusual for keels to accumulate water in voids . Drill , let dry , fill void , fill hole that you drilled . I would not believe it was a danger Forty year old boat can weep a little .
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