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Old 12-12-2021, 12:09   #1
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Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

have just seen a fellowship 28 of excellent price and condition, but with a peculiarity: the central bilge has been filled with something that looks like glue cement, almost reaching the floorboards. I wonder if anyone has an idea of ​​the reason for doing this. the fellowship is a very shallow draft boat. maybe as ballast? in some cases it is done to prevent water ingress, but it is a bad system. if anyone has any ideas i would appreciate it. Cheers!
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Old 12-12-2021, 13:18   #2
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

What precisely do you mean by "glue cement"?

The word "cement", used as a noun, means, among other things, the limestone-based basic binder that holds together the "aggregate" (sand and gravel)" in a material called "concrete".

Used as a verb, the word "cement" means to "bind together" - to glue together, in other words.

As a noun and as an adjective the word "concrete" means "something made solid"

Do you mean that the boat's bilge is full of what is properly called "concrete"? And if so, why do you think that using concrete for ballast in a boat such as the F28 is particularly bad? Is it not immaterial what the ballast is made from, just so long as it causes the boat's centre of gravity of fall where the designer wants it to fall?

If that criterion is met I see no difference between encapsulated lead as ballast, and encapsulated concrete.

Given the underwater profile of the F28 and the fact that she is, by most standards, severely under-rigged, I would think that she was "built down to a price", specifically for Dutchmen who in the '70s became as enamoured of yachting as did people elsewhere. Not all Dutchmen are born sailors :-)!

https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/fellowship-28

The long straight keel and the shallow draft would indicate that she was intended to "take the bottom", as she might often do in places such as the Waddenzee at the southern end of the North Sea, or, for that matter, in the Solent on the other side of the Channel. While there obviously were little fishing harbours back then, many dried at low tide, as many still do. But there were few "marinas" as we know them. So designing a cheap yacht to take the bottom with no ill effect was a very sound design desideratum back then.

Your profile does not tell me where you are located. But your screen name suggests that you are not located in either of those places (although your closing salutation could place you in England). You may not, therefore, be familiar with the operating conditions that obtain in the Northsea, or be able to judge the boat's fitness for purpose in those waters.

If you are contemplating buying the boat you have seen, be warned that she will not sail like anything you've ever sailed before. Her SA/D ratio is far, far too little. She is likely to feel to you like "a dog". In respect of SA/D she offends against one of the fundamental principles that have come down to us Northsea dwellers from our forefathers: Let your "full sail" rig have PLENTY of canvas - but be sure you can reef down quickly and easily to meet the vagaries of Northsea weather!

All the best :-)!

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Old 12-12-2021, 13:57   #3
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Welcome to the forum, 50.

That boat comes with 3,500 pounds of ballast, but in the long flat keel, not the bilge. There is a difference - the weight in the bilge is much closer to the CG than that in the keel. And, why more? Is there something odd about the keel as well? Having a rather limited rig would suggest that she not need more ballast. Ahh, but did someone add rigging? A taller mast? Then she might need the extra ballast in order to sail in a largely upright manner. In any case, the boat has been messed with, and unless the messer knew more about the business than the original designer, the "improvement" is suspect. There are bunches of 28' boats out there. Some are likely to be a better bet.
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Old 12-12-2021, 14:01   #4
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

My boat has concrete ballast never been an issue !
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Old 12-12-2021, 14:16   #5
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

I watched a video the other day where it was stated —for wooden boats — that cement in the bilge was a good choice for ballast. Something about the cement helping prevent rot in the wood. For a fiberglass boat? Maybe it was just a holdover from older methods?
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Old 12-12-2021, 14:27   #6
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Quote:
Originally Posted by tkeithlu View Post
Welcome to the forum, 50.

That boat comes with 3,500 pounds of ballast, but in the long flat keel, not the bilge. There is a difference - the weight in the bilge is much closer to the CG than that in the keel. And, why more? Is there something odd about the keel as well? Having a rather limited rig would suggest that she not need more ballast. Ahh, but did someone add rigging? A taller mast? Then she might need the extra ballast in order to sail in a largely upright manner. In any case, the boat has been messed with, and unless the messer knew more about the business than the original designer, the "improvement" is suspect. There are bunches of 28' boats out there. Some are likely to be a better bet.
Thank you for all the intelligent and wise answers, but I think, friend, that you have hit the nail on the head here! someone has added ballast because they have put a higher mast! sure. I saw that they had added extensions of about 1 meter to the shrouds. I found it very strange. Surely the genius who did this, believing to improve the original design, put cement in the bilge to give more stability, and also sink the ship by 10 cm. for me, a bungling mistake, but I don't want this boat for myself. I like the classics of straight keel, but this one so strange ... I would not buy it. but it is a great opportunity, it is spacious inside, it has a new engine, a famous design. I change rigging and sails and sell it. I think that the cement thing, although it is not optimal, it will not be disastrous either, now that I know 90% that it was motivated by raising the mast
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Old 14-12-2021, 01:07   #7
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

I guess a previous ownsr, complaining about the "tenderness of his boat", was advised to add metal punchings mixed with concrete into the bilge.
From memory, the boat does have additional ballast to the centreboard, as a casting round the keel aperture.
I would leave well alone unless there is no room for bilge-water, or there are eruptions on the top of the concrete due to the punchings rusting.
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Old 14-12-2021, 01:21   #8
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

A cubic ft of concrete weighs 150 lbs a cubic ft of lead is over 700 lbs ,concrete is not good ballast .⛵️⚓️
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Old 14-12-2021, 04:44   #9
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, 50knots.

Concrete ballast is only used as a cost savings measure, since there is no other advantage to using concrete ballast, except to save money.
If a manufacturer chose to cut this [not confidence inspiring] corner, I wonder what other, less obvious corners, were cut.

Concrete ballast can expand, when it ingests water, and the steel punchings [often fitted] rust and corrode, also causing expansion. It can crack or bend bulkheads, hulls, and stern tubes.
When concrete is poured, and cures, it shrinks, pulling away from the mold, which in this case is the hull/bilge. Instead of a watertight bond between the concrete and glass, there is a small but perfect capillary to allow water/moisture to move around the casting.

There is a big difference in density, between a lead ballast and the usually mix of steel and concrete, that is typically referred to as 'concrete ballast':
Cement/concrete weighs around 150 lbs. per cu. ft.
Cast iron weighs around 450 lbs. per cu. ft.
Lead weighs around 700 lbs. per cu. ft.
Water weighs around 60 lbs. per cu. ft.

Wood, in direct contact with concrete, will rapidly decay.
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Old 14-12-2021, 05:23   #10
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, 50knots.

Concrete ballast is only used as a cost savings measure, since there is no other advantage to using concrete ballast, except to save money.
If a manufacturer chose to cut this [not confidence inspiring] corner, I wonder what other, less obvious corners, were cut.

Concrete ballast can expand, when it ingests water, and the steel punchings [often fitted] rust and corrode, also causing expansion. It can crack or bend bulkheads, hulls, and stern tubes.
When concrete is poured, and cures, it shrinks, pulling away from the mold, which in this case is the hull/bilge. Instead of a watertight bond between the concrete and glass, there is a small but perfect capillary to allow water/moisture to move around the casting.
As a 'hunk of junk', lying in the bilge, this may not be as much a problem, as when in the keel.

There is a big difference in density, between a lead ballast and the usually mix of steel and concrete, that is typically referred to as 'concrete ballast':
Cement/concrete weighs around 150 lbs. per cu. ft.
Cast iron weighs around 450 lbs. per cu. ft.
Lead weighs around 700 lbs. per cu. ft.
Water weighs around 60 lbs. per cu. ft.

Wood, in direct contact with concrete, will rapidly decay.

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Old 14-12-2021, 11:05   #11
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Using Gord May's table as evidence, maybe we should advise MacGregor owners to pour concrete in their bilge.
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Old 14-12-2021, 11:28   #12
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Re: Fellowship 28 with cement in bilge

Maybe it was stock that way?
I had one boat built with cement around the iron ballast.
Many Pacific and Alaska fishing boats were built that way.

Is it the BEST way? Probably not. Does it work fine? Yes.
Magellan used stones.
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