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Old 03-10-2020, 21:17   #1
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Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Hi, while my boat was on the hard for bottompaint, I was inspecting my salt-water inlet for the volvo penta diesel, and I noticed it had one small screw into the "grill" up into the hull. I unscrewed it (maybe 3/4" long) and water steadily flowed out of the hole. In fact, it was still trickling out (same steady volume) when I left tonight!

Inspecting the thru-hull seacock from the engine bay, I don't notice any holes or any indication of the screw whatsoever, so I don't think its from the bilge.

If anyone can solve this mystery, I'd appreciate it. I'm putting her back in the water in a day or so and I'd love to know why that screw hole is holding in so much water.

The link below opens the photo in google photos: https://photos.app.goo.gl/UcRo12Ybii4sWZke7

Thanks!
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Old 04-10-2020, 00:41   #2
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Your core.

Looks like someone screwed that straight into the hull.

This is a disaster if I’m right and it’s a balsa cored boat.

I’m really, really sorry to see this.
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Old 04-10-2020, 00:50   #3
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Hi, can you elaborate a little bit on this? How could a boat's core hold so much water? If there was delamination, wouldn't it show clear signs? I've tapped around the bottom of the hull and haven't heard anything to indicate voids. If this is water in the core what's the best way to verify this? Thanks.
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Old 04-10-2020, 01:27   #4
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

My immediate thought was that it was coming from the core.

How did it get there? Is it salty water or more like rainwater: that would be a start.

I wouldn't be in a hurry to put the yacht back in the water until you solved the problem.
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Old 04-10-2020, 01:31   #5
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Do you know if the hull is cored below water? I have to agree, looks like it’s from the core. If you can get your hands on a moisture meter then check around from inside.

I’ve never seen anything like this.
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Old 04-10-2020, 01:32   #6
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Ok, let’s get to the bottom of this. What’s the boat’s make, model and year?

We need to determine if it’s cored below the waterline first.

Assuming it’s a 40’ boat and a 3/4” core space, using a rough calculation, there is a 200 gallon space there. So, quite a bit of water can be in a core.

It also may not yet be delaminated because something is still holding it together.
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Old 04-10-2020, 01:41   #7
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

If it has a lifting keel I'd look there for leaks

https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/first-265-beneteau
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Old 04-10-2020, 01:46   #8
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

She is a 1992 Beneteau First 265 (26'5")

I do believe she is cored below the waterline. How do I know? I removed the old transducer and had to drill a slightly larger hole to install the new one, and noticed that yes, there is a wooden core. I didn't really think much of it because the core was dry. Now this was near the bow, a bit forward the keel. I'm not sure exactly what type of wooden core it is - balsa? ply?

Ok some complications - I left the water draining today, so when i go back tomorrow, I assume it will have stopped. Would've been more helpful to keep the water in for now as I investigate.

So some options I'm thinking of, let me know what you guys think.

1. Call in a boat repair pro to verify or diagnose

2. Buy a moisture meter and use it

3. drill a small hole from the inside (hull behind the engine, forward the prop shaft, near salt water intake) inspect material
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Old 04-10-2020, 02:23   #9
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

BTW, its a fixed keel.
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Old 04-10-2020, 02:35   #10
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Quote:
Originally Posted by dad_n_Seattle View Post
She is a 1992 Beneteau First 265 (26'5")

I do believe she is cored below the waterline. How do I know? I removed the old transducer and had to drill a slightly larger hole to install the new one, and noticed that yes, there is a wooden core. I didn't really think much of it because the core was dry. Now this was near the bow, a bit forward the keel. I'm not sure exactly what type of wooden core it is - balsa? ply?

Ok some complications - I left the water draining today, so when i go back tomorrow, I assume it will have stopped. Would've been more helpful to keep the water in for now as I investigate.

So some options I'm thinking of, let me know what you guys think.

1. Call in a boat repair pro to verify or diagnose

2. Buy a moisture meter and use it

3. drill a small hole from the inside (hull behind the engine, forward the prop shaft, near salt water intake) inspect material
Exactly how did you seal off the core after installing the transducer?

Its a balsa core. Plywood isnt used as a core in your type of boat.

You will likely notice there is still a little water coming out days later. Just a tiny bit. Still enough to check for salinity.

If you are proficient with repairing the test hole, by all means Id drill that first to check. Id drill nice and close to the problem area. Within a foot.

Then Id get the moisture meter to drag all around the hull, checking how extensive the water ingress is.

From there, is post the results here and make a decision on what to do moving forward.

At best, your Water ingress is from the screw itself and there are some solid pieces or vertical columns of resin in the laminate to act as dams keeping the water to one spot.

At worst, the water went in from your new transducer area up by the bow and made it alll the way back to that screw. Or went in at the screw and traveled extensively.
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Old 04-10-2020, 02:49   #11
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

In this article, it says your boat has solid glass hull construction and a cored deck.

https://www.practical-sailor.com/sai...teau-first-265

Make sure we know exactly how it’s constructed before proceeding with anything.

Sometimes, at a transducer, I’ve seen a plywood doubler backing added to the hull. Is it possible that’s all you had there? It would be added inside the hull. Then there would have been maybe 1/4” to 1/2” of fiberglass after the wood as you drilled through from the inside. Do you still have the core sample from that to look at?
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Old 04-10-2020, 03:13   #12
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

The amount of water (duration of leak) is confusing.

Colour of blister fluid and possible origins:
Colour: Likely origin
Red tint: Excess catalyst on American vessels.
Black liquid: Decomposition of foam core.
Brown stains, looks like rust:
(1) Wood flour based filler, often found on Taiwanese vessels.
(2) May also originate from an epoxy tar barrier coat.

Smell of blister fluid and possible causes:
Smell: Likely origin
Strong vinegar smell (acetic acid): Decomposition of fibreglass and polyester.
No smell, neutral pH: Probably water trapped in large voids or a delamination.
Polyester smell (styrene): Trapped during manufacture or from thinning resin that was going stale.
Amine smell, foul fishy stink:
(1) Indicates that a resin booster was used, perhaps during cold conditions. Look for other symptoms that would occur as a result of an undercure.
(2) May also be from epoxy resin. May have been applied over a damp surface, causing blistering.
Sickly sweet smell: Glycol
Diesel or fishy smell: Fluid has seeped through from inside, possibly due to poor molding process.
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Old 04-10-2020, 03:19   #13
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

So the situation with the transducer is that there was two installed side by side. One depth and one speed. They were older (not NMEA2k). The depth one was installed in the designated, reinforced location centerline with its own "bilge" enclosure (like a mini walled tub). The speed was installed about 6 inches starboard of the depth transducer. I chose to install the new transducer (Arimar triducer) where the old speed sensor was and leave the old depth transducer as-is as it seemed to be better sealed. To install the new into the old speed sensor, I had to enlarge that hole by 1/4inch, so I removed the old speed sensor, put in the blanking plug, centered my hole-saw and drilled through, enlarging that hole. I drilled from the outside. This is when I noticed, as I was sanding the newly drilled hole that yes, there was GRP for about half an inch, then a thick layer of balsa or ply.

I should have kept that drill plug around but I may have thrown it away. One thing was clear - it was dry so I did not get concerned.

Tomorrow (today) I'm going to try to get a hold of someone who works at Beneteau and see if they can confirm hull construction. From what literature I could find, they have a proprietary system called Beneteau Water Shied which has been in use for a long time that supposedly protects from water intrusion into the hull, but the description of that technology is super cryptic.

Anyway, thanks again for the inputs guys hopefully tomorrow (today) won't be worse than today.

PS. In regards to the transducer install - I should have replaced the centerline transducer instead. I may have to go fix it for peac of mind, actually. Ugh. a different headache. Also remember the transducers are installed forward the keel, the saltwater inlet is aft of the keel and just before the prop shaft.
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Old 04-10-2020, 08:24   #14
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

I would take out the salt water inlet and see what is there. Then I would drill a hole on the lowest part of the hull to see if any water runs out. If it does let it completely dry out. That may take some time.
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Old 04-10-2020, 08:43   #15
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Re: Can someone identify where this mysterious water is coming from? (Photo)

Suggest aggressive frost protection until this is resolved.
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