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Old 28-10-2016, 20:10   #1
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Strut Problem

Boat (Cal 39) was hauled this weekend and I noticed that the strut didn't look exactly right where it is attached to the hull. Not sure what could be going on here. Regardless of how it looks, the strut seems solidly attached to the hull and there are no problems (e.g. vibrations) at all during engine operation. Anyone have a idea of what this might be and what I should do about it? Any thoughts much appreciated.

R, Andrew
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Old 28-10-2016, 20:21   #2
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Re: Strut Problem

You will be able to tell more when you get it cleaned up. Is that bondo?
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Old 28-10-2016, 20:25   #3
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Re: Strut Problem

No it doesn't look right. I looks like something has caused fairing compound to be dislodged. Is it possible that the shaft is preventing any appearance of strut movement? The shape of the damaged material sure looks like it could be caused by the imbedded portion of the strut, it would be interesting to know what the part of the strut that you can't see looks like.
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Old 28-10-2016, 20:29   #4
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Re: Strut Problem

From what I can see, it looks as if the strut's flange (plate section that gets bolted to the hull) was covered over with fairing putty at some point. A good 3-5mm of it. Along with loads of the stuff troweled onto the hull as well. And that now the putty is cracking & coming adrift, starting in the area around & on top of your strut.

You'll need to scrape & chip the stuff off in the area around, & over the strut's flange so that you can ascertain the health of the strut as well as it's fasteners. And it's possible that a fair amount of the putty on the hull perhaps has poor bond strength, especially around the strut. As water will have gotten underneath of it through cracks in the putty around the strut, & migrated as far as entropy allowed it to. Thus worsening some of the putty's bonds to the hull. How much putty is on the hull remains to be determined.

Note that I can't say this with 100% certainty from one image. So you may wish to do a bit of semi-destructive inspection, & then call in a surveyor or not based on what you find. But before calling one, sound the hull with a mallet or the butt of a screwdriver to check for loose sections of fairing compound, & possible water intrusion between the putty & the hull proper.

Now's a good time to get things fully diagnosed. Since if you need to strip off a lot of paint & putty in order to let things dry, if you do so now, it'll at least be exposed to the air over the winter so that it can air out some. Plus water freezing in between the hull & layers of putty could make things look ugly. Key word, look.

Also, do some reading on here & online about the use of thermal imagers in boat surveying. As with such tools you'll likely be able to see what's truly going on with the hull & possible water penetration between the hull & the putty. Ditto on the health of your deck cores.
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Old 28-10-2016, 20:53   #5
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Re: Strut Problem

Should the strut have been glassed in instead of puttied over?
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Old 29-10-2016, 08:33   #6
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Re: Strut Problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
From what I can see, it looks as if the strut's flange (plate section that gets bolted to the hull) was covered over with fairing putty at some point. A good 3-5mm of it. Along with loads of the stuff troweled onto the hull as well. And that now the putty is cracking & coming adrift, starting in the area around & on top of your strut...
This...
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Old 29-10-2016, 10:13   #7
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Re: Strut Problem

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Should the strut have been glassed in instead of puttied over?
Most struts aren't covered at all. Though a few are, but then some are also fully made of composites but for the bearing. Fairing them simply makes for better water flow, & might give you 0.05kt of speed over an unfaired one.
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Old 29-10-2016, 19:01   #8
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Re: Strut Problem

This doesn't look like a major problem....

The Cal 39 strut has a hefty flange on the top of it that sits on a recessed "flat" in the hull. The strut has four 3/8 or 1/2 inch machine screws going up thru the flange to attach it to the hull. After tightening the strut completely, the exposed underside of the flange will be a bit recessed relative to the adjacent fiberglass surface. Normally the installer fairs this recess space with epoxy putty to give smooth water flow.

What you are seeing is some of that putty that has pulled loose. Maybe they used bondo instead of decent fairing compound. Knock all the loose stuff off with a chisel and if there aren't any water leaks or other issues, refair it and you're good to go.

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