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Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

I just purchased and brought home a Catalina 25 swing keel last week. Started really going over her and pulling her apart to see what she needs.

I have two fiberglass questions:

1. I notice cracks in the fiberglass near the base of the bow pulpit. Are these acceptable/normal or should I do repair?

2. It appears the keel trunk is "disconnected" (for lack of a better term) around its whole perimeter. Is this something I should be concerned about?

First is the keel trunk. Next two are the bow pulpit.

Thank you!
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post #2 of 13 Old 10-19-2015
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

The gel coat crazing around the pulpit bases looks typical and should not be a huge concern.. however the cracking around the centerboard trunk looks pretty bad.. more pics?

Ron

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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

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The gel coat crazing around the pulpit bases looks typical and should not be a huge concern.. however the cracking around the centerboard trunk looks pretty bad.. more pics?
Ditto, the crazing looks just like my Catalina 22 and I would consider that mostly cosmetic.

That thing around the swing keel looks...odd. Maybe bad. Was the boat floating when you bought it?

Agreed, more pictures would help.

Catalina 22
on a starboard tack
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post #4 of 13 Old 10-26-2015 Thread Starter
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

Thank you for the input. Took me awhile to get back in there to get additional pictures.

The keel trunk has absolutely no movement in it.

The boat is on the hard for the winter. Was not in the water when I looked at her.

In order:
  • Starboard side. Forward corner. I believe this is where the pin is attached. This is the view that is most concerning to me.
  • Port side
  • Starboard side
  • Top/forward view
  • Starboard aft corner
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post #5 of 13 Old 10-26-2015
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

This is the link to the Catalina 25 owners' forum. Association Forum You should ask this question there. Those guys know how to repair anything that is capable of being repaired on a Catalina 25, including the keel trunk, and can give you an informed opinion on the condition, as well as advice on how to fix it.
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

I am on that site daily. Lol I have tried to register but am getting no response from anyone there. Kind of frustrating....
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

SailboatOwners has an active Catalina section too:
Catalinas 18' to 25'

Catalina 22
on a starboard tack
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

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I am on that site daily. Lol I have tried to register but am getting no response from anyone there. Kind of frustrating....
If you're referring to registering your boat on the list of owners, you have to be patient. The folks who run the website are all unpaid volunteers, and they update the list of registered boats infrequently.

Nevertheless, you don't need to be a dues paying member to ask questions on the forum, and you can enroll for free and start asking questions on the forum in a matter of minutes. Most questions start getting responses within minutes or hours.

They also have a "Tech Tips" section. The following link is to a tech tip on repairing the keel trunk. Catalina - Capri - 25s International Association

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post #9 of 13 Old 10-26-2015
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

The cracks around the stanchions are common, anywhere the fibreglass is repeatedly stressed. The gelcoat is not as flexible as the fibreglass underneath, and eventually cracks.

To repair this properly : remove the stanchion base, and check that the core is dry. Enlarge the cracks in a V with the corner of a scraper or sharp knife. Fill with gelcoat. Next, to make sure the core stays dry, overdrill the mounting holes, fill with thickened epoxy, then re-drill. Finally, assemble with new sealant.

Around the centreboard box, it looks like repeated flexing has cracked the gelcoat. The cracks might extend into the fibreglass. Grind the gelcoat away, make sure you are down to solid fibreglass, then stiffen the area with more glass and epoxy, then gelcoat over.

EDIT : Looked at the new pics, the cracking looks pretty trivial and probably only affects the gelcoat. The fix above would be a lot of work, and I'm not sure it's needed.

Bristol 31.1, San Francisco Bay

Last edited by MarkSF; 10-26-2015 at 03:17 PM.
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Re: Fiberglass questions- Catalina 25

I disagree about the cracking around the keel trunk - the pics show a lot of "white" fiber in the glass - that is a sign of failing glass - delamination if you will - caused by the glass being overstressed.

The crazing around the pulpit bases is merely cosmetic.

I, myself, personally intend to continue being outspoken and opinionated, intolerant of all fanatics, fools and ignoramuses, deeply suspicious of all those who have "found the answer" and on my bad days, downright rude.
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