Look closely at the laminate around the mast step area. These boats used a cored laminate for stiffness, and if there were any cracks that developed in 40 years, water
will have penetrated the laminate in the way of the mast step and the unremitting pressure it must support. This water will have led to rot
. The solution will be to remove the mast and the outer laminate layer and rebuild
thickness with solid resin & fiberglass
. Any spongy areas in the desk will also need to be addressed, though the optimum repair can vary.
I had a similar age Bristol 26, and repairs
ranged from filling core space with resin under the mast step, to completely replacing core with plywood
, to drilling 1" center "drying holes," injecting alcohol to promote drying, and injecting resin "posts" in soft side deck
In the cabin
, don't forget to look under the floor to make sure the compression
path continues all the way to the keel! In my case, the mahogany block that was intended to do this job had come adrift and was lying ten feet astern, probably provoking the original mast step cracks.
Likewise, check all deck fittings. They probably all should be removed, have balsa core reefed out around holes, be filled with epoxy
, and re drilled. Fittings should be bedded with butyl tape.
Fin keel eh? Probably encapsulated ballast in fiberglass. If it found rocks in its history
, check integrity of repairs
In your response, you said
I am a fabricator and can build most anything.
You'll have LOTS of opportunities to do that!