Rust in encapsulated keel?! - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 23 Old 07-18-2014 Thread Starter
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Rust in encapsulated keel?!

I found an Albin Vega that needs some/lots of work.
The keel has (rust) marks bleeding through the keel. Also the back of the keel has started to delaminate. My guess is that water from the bilge leaked into the keel and several winters created a big problem...
Now here is my question: How would this be fixed?
The keel is encapsulated, the ballast is steel or iron (not sure).
I don't want posts saying that it will cost billions of dollars, millions of man hours, etc.
I just need to know what steps should be taken to fix the problem, (i.e. remove fiberglass from keel, sandblast, etc.)
Thanks!


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post #2 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

I think the best solution would be to find another Vega.

Brian
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post #3 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

Once steel/iron begins to rust that formation of ferric oxide which is less dense that the original material will develop extreme pressure within that encapsulation. Structurally, all that fiberglass in the area of the keel is now suspect to be in failure, as evidenced by the weeping of rust coming through the side walls of the encapsulation. To fix it, all the fiberglass should be entirely removed and the iron/steel portion be 'rehabilitated' or replaced, the encapsulation and its repair should then be verified so that water migration and permeation at less than 'visual' level should be considered .... a "Massive" job to be done to insure the structural integrity of that encapsulation. Without a complete removal and total rebuild the confidence level that this iron keel ballast would not continue to degrade and 'push' apart any repair ... that confidence level should be low. Without such complete repair there would be a high probability that the rusting iron in future would simply continue to 'expand' causing failure of the encapsulation and possible catastrophic loss and release of the iron out the bottom.

So, from that starting point of a totally complete removal and total rebuild including new encapsulation to OEM structural equivalence, you should be able to do a cost and time estimate. That old iron has to be inspected and probably replaced, and a whole new fiberglass keel (ballast section) built from scratch --- or the confidence of the repair integrity will remain very low.
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Last edited by RichH; 07-18-2014 at 11:41 AM.
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post #4 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

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Originally Posted by RichH View Post
Once steel/iron begins to rust that formation of ferric oxide which is less dense that the original material will develop extreme pressure within that encapsulation. Structurally, all that fiberglass in the area of the keel is now suspect to be in failure, as evidenced by the weeping of rust coming through the side walls of the encapsulation. To fix it, all the fiberglass should be entirely removed and the iron/steel portion be 'rehabilitated' or replaced, the encapsulation and its repair should then be verified so that water migration and permeation at less than 'visual' level should be considered .... a "Massive" job to be done to insure the structural integrity of that encapsulation. Without a complete removal and total rebuild the confidence level that this iron keel ballast would not continue to degrade and 'push' apart any repair ... that confidence level should be low. Without such complete repair there would e a high probability that the rusting iron in future would simply continue to 'expand' causing failure of the encapsulation and possible loss and release of the iron.

So, from that starting point of a totally complete removal and total rebuild including new encapsulation to OEM structural equivalence, you should be able to do a cost and time estimate.
If you do not own the boat run. It would cost more than the boat would be worth to repair properly.

Brian
Living aboard in Victoria Harbour
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post #5 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

One of the reasons why we shied away from IP's as we observed this process of using iron in their keel construction at their factory..
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post #6 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

iron encapsulated is a much bigger issue than encapsulated lead...the expansion from rust is what causes the delamination

id much rather have say an iron fin than an iron ballast that is encapsulated for those reasons

the fix is much harder and pricier...

edit didnt see richs post before oops

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post #7 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

All encaped Keels get water in them from above (the bilge) My boat has a lead core thankfully) it's only now developed 2 very small "weeps" I think about ripping out resealing the bilge with glass and epoxy but proably never will.
Thing is, I just don't know it's ever possible to keep water from ever getting around the keel core and behind the glass.

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post #8 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

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Originally Posted by deniseO30 View Post
All encaped Keels get water in them from above (the bilge) My boat has a lead core thankfully) it's only now developed 2 very small "weeps" I think about ripping out resealing the bilge with glass and epoxy but proably never will.
Thing is, I just don't know it's ever possible to keep water from ever getting around the keel core and behind the glass.
My encapsulated keel has no water in it I keep my bilge dry also I have an outboard in a well so no shaft seal to leak
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post #9 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

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My encapsulated keel has no water in it I keep my bilge dry also I have an outboard in a well so no shaft seal to leak
Lets drill a hole and check! LOL

Denise, Bristol PA, Oday 30. On Tidal Delaware River, Anchor Yacht Club.
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post #10 of 23 Old 07-18-2014
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Re: Rust in encapsulated keel?!

Honestly your best Solution is to Dispose of boat.

but Since you Asked - here is a Solution
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delamination , encapsulated keel , project boat , rust

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