Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: On the sea
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Re: wet keel
It sounds like you already figured it out, but I'll chime in anyway in case someone finds this info helpful. We have an encapsulated keep with wood and lead and we had a "keel smile" from a previous grounding. Water had clearly penetrated the wood at the front of our keel, but we weren't sure how far back it went. Everyone told us to wait as long as possible...but unfortunately we couldn't afford to wait longer than two weeks (because in addition to waiting for it to dry, the repair itself can take a week or two).
As mentioned in a previous post after grinding back the front of the keel we got some tough plastic, duck-taped it around the repair spot and hooked it up to a wet-vac. We let the wet vac run nearly every day for four days (the engine on your vacuum may burn out, luckily ours didn't). Since we had wet wood we also sprayed the area with alcohol to expedite the drying process and put screen between the wood and the plastic so that the water wouldn't get trapped. I highly recommend using a vacuum, we were amazed at how much water came out once we had a good seal.
I think I uploaded pics, but I really don't know how that works.
Best of luck to you!