Core extent

welkman001 5:24pm, 4 December 2011

I know that the cabin roof is cored and the foredeck, could anyone tell me what other areas of the deck are cored? I have removed most of the rotten balsa from the cabin roof now but I am having some issues with removing the rot over the top of the bulkhead and forward of the bulkhead in the forepeak. I removed the original headlining and can now see perfect, dry balsa core in the forepeak so thats a massive result! I am not sure about the deck aft of the lazzarete lockers really near the stern? I seem to have two huge bolts through the deck here either side of the flag pole holder doing nothing, I have no idea what they were for. They are not sealed in anyway and the deck seems softish here. Do you think it would be ok to ignore that for the season or will it affect the anchoring of the backstays if left?

Another issue I am faced with is an area on the cabin top aft of the mast foot where the deck is dry or very slightly damp but not rotten or discoulored in anyway. It is impossible to get off using a hammer and chisel and im inclinded to leave it alone and just replace around it. What do you reckon?

The leaks seem to have originated from the sliding hatch cover/mounting which has no channels in it to let water out if it gets in and also the grabrails along the coach roof which had no wood to screw into and so seemed to have moved a lot. I have also noticed that the roof has sagged a bit at the mast foot bulkhead, maybe 5-10mm and i think I will have a go at jacking the beam up a bit and then reglassing the deck. You never know that might sort out my hatch which fouls against its cover making it almost impossible to operate!

As always any advice greatly appreciated.

welkman001 7 years ago

All core out of the cabinroof up to the beam/bulkhead. Unfortunatley the mast foot has also been leaking so all the core that extends over the top of the bulkhead is wet, as is the core forward of the beam in the forepeak up to the front of the hatch.

My plan is to use a blunt chisel to punch the sof balsa out from between the bulkhead and the upper skin. I will then clean it up and fill with epoxy and ply fitted in by cutting small wedges and tapping in with a hammer.

Anyone got any idea if this method is a good one? The only other option is to completely remove the supporting beam and then glass in a new one which im not keen on doing. I really want this to be strong as im hoping to go offshore with the boat in the future.


busy home [deleted] 7 years ago
Im going to be orrid.
You are thinking of going ofshore,
You have a job like bodging up a chassis on a rusty Range Rover.
It will never be succesfull.
In the first blow you will sh..t yourself.

sorry . my advice,,, sell the dog and buy a good one.
Andrew Curry 7 years ago
I would look at a redesign of the mast support. I have seen this done on racing Ruffian 23’s the picture shows the sort of support that could easy be made up.
welkman001 7 years ago
Thanks Andrew that looks like a strong support there and Im sure you could do something similar in mild steel if you wanted to.

Chilie, in an ideal world I would love to just go out and buy a sorted boat but that is not to be. I have seen a few of articles on replacing deck core and the only issue I have seen is cosmetic, they all seemed to be strong repairs that have held up well. I have also looked over the photostream and seen a couple of boats that have had the same issue with water ingress over the bulkhead, one went in from below decks and one from above with the repairs. I have removed 99 % of the soft core now so it seems ashame to just give up on the boat. I am just after some practical advice on how to re core the deck above the bulkhead.
Andrew Curry Posted 7 years ago. Edited by Andrew Curry (member) 7 years ago
Lets not be negative. If a man can built it it can be repaired. What you are suggesting sounds good. It might be worth using hardwood for the section under the mast step. For a really strong job i would look at adding a steel frame to spread the load. If possible could you post more pictures. Are you thinking of the Jester?
busy home [deleted] 7 years ago
Sorry I cant be helpfull ,Ive not done that kind of repair.
I did not mean give up, I would be tempted to do the repair .spruce her up
sell her and get a sound one ,
Ive been in a Challenger 35 Junk rig ketch in a 9
The alloy mast went down through the table ,then 5ft more to the keel.
We made a mark with a felt tip , The mast flexed 1/2in in both directions
IE up and down and sideways !!
She went around the world single handed, Little fellow ,mad
I went from Hayle to Cowes in the fog in October years ago.
welkman001 7 years ago
Well I have just returned from a look at the boat with a boat builder mate and have come up with a pretty good plan ( I hope). Im going to cut away the ply bulk head about 45cm down from the beam on both sides so I can gain access to the whole thing. I am then going to remove the core as close to both sides of the beam as I can get, the area will then get cleaned up and keyed. I have found out that the mast foot mounting is actually fine but a tiny bit damp on the lower section, this just needs to dry out. When all is dry I will put a nice epoxy fillet along the edge of the area where I have just the beam to ensure a smooth area for laying up. After this I hope to laminate all the way around the beam along its entire length and about six inches on to the cabin roof if possible, im thinking 6 - 8 layers of cloth. I will then refit the cut ply and add 1/2 inch ply on each side of the bulkhead to act as 'doublers'. This will be throughbolted and epoxied. I will then have a beer.

I think this approach should be strong.

Andrew, I am aiming for the jester but have not 'commited' to it yet. I would be looking at 2014 so plenty of time to sort stuff out. Have been to meet the local guys doing the jester azores challenge this year and was quite encouraged, they seemed fairly normal!
welkman001 7 years ago
Oh and I will try to sort out some pictures tomorrow.
Skykomish E29 7 years ago
At least you will have a known quantity when the job is done and then you can at least decide whether you are happy to take your boat out into the open ocean,
As Andrew says any boat can be fixed, just don't try and cut too many corners if you plan to put her under real stress.I would suggest anybody contemplating taking their boat offshore would need to strengthen her anyway . At least you can rebuild her with the final goal in mind building extra strength in where it would otherwise not be possible.. Good Luck
welkman001 7 years ago
Now with added photos, see my photostream!
welkman001 7 years ago
Found this and now im getting ideas

Do I cut the original beam out ? I am really tempted. What would you do???
farmer boy 7 years ago
Hmmmm... looks like a lot of work in a confined space! ..... I guess if it means you can get better access to the wet core it would be worth doing. I assume the beam is supported at either end on the hull? Is it glassed in or does it rest on some sort of support at either end?

I have bought a reinforcement kit for mine (Albin Vega - but similar setup) and it is simply a piece of sheet stainless steel shaped the same as the support beam and a 1 inch strip of stainless onto which the reinforcement sits. Basically the sheet s. steel is bolted alongside the existing curved beam and the 1 inch strip sits between it and the roof (to spread the load I guess). I am not sure what is at either end to support it but this is the recommended technique to add a bit more strength. Yet to do mine so unsure how easy it is!

I have emailed you the pdf with pics and instructions.

Good luck!
Andrew Curry Posted 7 years ago. Edited by Andrew Curry (member) 7 years ago
Just a thought and maybe a silly one as i am not sure how thick the outer skin is. Would it be worth looking at not replacing the core,but instead running support timbers long and across the boat in the same way the cabin roof would be done on a wooden boat. Between these support beams you could epoxy in plywood for extra strength.
welkman001 7 years ago
Mast support beam is now sitting in my workshop. Really glad I removed it as it was not strongly bonded, I only needed to apply minimal pressure to remove it. The core was saturated above the beam but the mast foot was sound. Now I am researching options for the replacment, I'm still thinking long the lines of a laminated wodden job held in by epoxy tabbing and bonded directly to the outer skin. It should be a fun month.
farmer boy 7 years ago
I think Chile installed a couple of vertical "props" either side of the doorway? .........seem to remember seeing a pic of it ages ago. Might help stiffen things up a bit!
busy home [deleted] 7 years ago
.I removed a section of Goskars bulk head to allow better access and make things lighter, When removed the roof was strong enough to jump on without deflection and I made poles to support mast compression be on the safe side. I have sailed Goskar without them in with no movement.
welkman001 7 years ago
Yep Im thinking along those lines as well. I have been advised to jack the beam slightly before inseting the joining beams so they remain stressed. I am going to laminate the beam in 6mm ply cut into appropriate lengths, probably building up 10 or so laminates. I will then glass over the whole beam and reattach bulkhead.

What do you think?
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