Fixing my keel - SailNet Community
 
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post #1 of 6 Old 09-16-2007 Thread Starter
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Unhappy Fixing my keel

One of the best days of the year went bad last weekend when i hit a rock with my keel.
I dove under and the damage appears to be isolated to the leading edge of the keel. The lead is badly scraped, but luckily everything else looks fine and no leaks.
No I need to know how to fix the keel. Can you heat the lead and feather it back like the used to do with auto body work??
Thanks..
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post #2 of 6 Old 09-16-2007
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You'll need to paint or coat the lead as well, otherwise it'll oxidize. After you're done shaping the keel, sand it lightly, rinse it well with acetone and then paint with an epoxy primer.

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post #3 of 6 Old 09-17-2007
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Depending on the extent of the damage (a picture might help get you a better response), lead is soft enough that you can hammer it back into shape; otherwise, sanding it to get a good surface and fairing with epoxy should get it back to normal.
If you hit a rock as your post suggests, be sure that you didn't cause any structural damage at the leading or aft end of the hull/keel joint. But with lead being fairly soft, that's less likely to happen than with an iron keel.
Good luck with the repair.
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post #4 of 6 Old 09-17-2007 Thread Starter
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Thanks gents...
I'll let you know how I make out when I pull out next month..
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post #5 of 6 Old 09-17-2007
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You need to take a real close look inside the boat at the aft end of the keel and a few feet all around. Look for separated tabbing on any floors or stringers in the area (if you can see/access them)

A single skin hull, especially, can absorb a lot of flex without visual external damage, but often the tabbing of internal structures cannot withstand the shock and will separate from the hull. The reinforcement they originally provided will be lost until that is repaired.

This can be real difficult to assess if there is a full liner in that area.
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I would heed Faster's advice... the loss of stiffness from delaminated stringers or floors is easy to miss, and will cause a lot of problems if you don't correct it.

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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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