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post #1 of 10 Old 08-06-2013 Thread Starter
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Rub Rail or Body Work?

My new (1980) Apollo 16 has a place where the hull is separating from the deck. It appears that a previous owner tried to repair it with some form of sealant.

I've read about various repairs, the most logical being to dig out as much of the old material as possible and use an epoxy with fiberglass particles BUT I have no experience with that and somehow I came up with the idea of possibly installing some form of rub rail.

I think I would be more comfortable installing a rub rail plus, I have had the boat out just twice and since the boat was designed for speed, it bounces all over the place at the staging dock, so I'm thinking a rub rail might also prevent damage.

Am I thinking right? Is this a logical step to take or should I suck it up and learn to do body work? Here's a pic of the seam...
Rub Rail or Body Work?-boat-2.jpg
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post #2 of 10 Old 08-06-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

Do both? A good backing plate & rail for mechanical strength, with [5200/epoxy putty/$goop] for sealant.

Was this on the pre-purchase survey? I think *someone* owes you a partial refund if you were not aware of it.

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post #3 of 10 Old 08-06-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

I bet no survey was done.....
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post #4 of 10 Old 08-06-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

Who surveys a 16' dinghy?
Epoxy is pretty easy to work with once you learn how.
No time like the present.

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post #5 of 10 Old 08-07-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

Nope, no survey--30 yr old dinghy with a few fixable issues. It seems like doing both might be a good idea. I have to wonder though, if drilling holes will negatively effect the integrity of the structure (at least that is how I understand rub rails are installed). The reason I wonder is that I don't see dinghies with factory installed rub rails.

From searching, it looks like the best product to fix the gap would be those from West System, mixed to the consistency of peanut butter. Any other thoughts on products?
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post #6 of 10 Old 08-07-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

Sounds to me as though you are heading the right direction for this repair.

The West System use guides is a great resource for helping you learn to use epoxy.
WEST SYSTEM | Use Guides

Yes, there are other brands of epoxy that may be cheaper (Mas, System 3 etc) but for the amount of work you need to do and West's great customer support it is well worth using for a first time around the block with epoxy.

Have you found a rubber rub rail to go over the hull/deck joint?

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post #7 of 10 Old 08-07-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

Maybe just flip the boat upside down, grind and dig as much of the bad stuff as you can. Separate the hull and deck just enough to pack / inject epoxy and chopped glass into the void and clamp it tight till the next day. I'm thinking a two hour job at most. No need for rub rails and stuff. It's a 300 lb boat. Let it bounce and bang...it won't kill it.

Last edited by rhr1956; 08-07-2013 at 03:08 PM.
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post #8 of 10 Old 08-07-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

CalebD, no rub rail choice yet. I'm a sailing noob and not too familiar with what's available and best for my application. After RHR's post above, I'm thinking I may just do the body work and then see how it goes.

I've only had the boat out twice and both times it just seemed logical to have a "bumper" at the staging dock but really, the boat is so unstable I plan to be around docks as little as possible and beach it instead.

RHR, will it be best to flip it over in order for the epoxy to set up right or will that just make the job easier?
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

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Originally Posted by TBApollo View Post
CalebD, no rub rail choice yet. I'm a sailing noob and not too familiar with what's available and best for my application. After RHR's post above, I'm thinking I may just do the body work and then see how it goes.

I've only had the boat out twice and both times it just seemed logical to have a "bumper" at the staging dock but really, the boat is so unstable I plan to be around docks as little as possible and beach it instead.

RHR, will it be best to flip it over in order for the epoxy to set up right or will that just make the job easier?
Flip it over so you can work standing up. Also it will allow the resin to flow down and into the void.
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post #10 of 10 Old 08-07-2013
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Re: Rub Rail or Body Work?

You've only sailed the boat twice, it's lasted 30 years as is, why not sail it enough to see if this is a problem worth your valuable time to repair?
You may have a couple more spots of "dock rash" to repair before you become the perfect sailor anyway.

Last edited by capttb; 08-07-2013 at 03:47 PM.
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