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post #8 of Old 07-21-2009
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Originally Posted by captxtina View Post

I just noticed a water droplet on the handrail above our heads that hangs from the cabin ceiling, which means water is getting in from the deck where there's hardware. The obvious culprit is the sister handrail that sits on the deck outside, mirroring the one on the inside of the cabin. However, it could be some other hardware, and the water is simply running down to the next exit point inside the cabin.

My question is this:
My first thought was: Well, I'll have to re-bed those handrails. But what about the cabin liner? It would be great to remove that so I can get as close to the fiberglass and really investigate where the leak is coming from. However, in order to do that, I have to removed the portlights. (And I already replaced the portlights this winter, so I'm not doing it again -- I wish I had known about the slow leak beforehand). But! I tend to be too meticulous in my maintenance so maybe it's not necessary to involve the liner. Is is okay if I simply remove both handrails, epoxy and caulk (with LifeCaulk or Sikaflex), and be done with it?

How about finding the leak(s) for sure? One way would to be to seal up all the obvious big openings with masking tape. Then get a leaf blower and blow air into the boat through a scrap piece of plywood replacing the companionway boards or a hatch. The slight amount of pressure you get will work it's way out through every leak on the boat. Spray around all the deck and fittings with a bottle of soapy water. Leaks will blow bubbles.

Gary H. Lucas
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