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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 11-05-2007
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chip in deck

Hi everybody,

I am a first time boat owner(complete newbie) and am confused about repairs to a chip in the deck. I have read several threads on here about people having "cracks" and "crazying" on their decks.

For cracks, it seems the general suggestion is to first see if there is a bigger stress problem somewhere and fix that, and then grind out the crack a bit, fill with thickened epoxy and paint over or gelcoat.

I have what I would describe as a chip in my deck. I think the above repair steps would apply to it but I'm not 100% sure and I'm looking for some guidance. I took a picture of it so you can see what I'm talking about.

http://i208.photobucket.com/albums/b...y/_MG_5895.jpg

I am a little confused on the terminology. Is the entire white part missing the gel coat??? Is the dark fibrous looking stuff underneath fiberglass?? Does the grind, thickened epoxy, paint or gel coat apply to this?

Thanks for all your help.

Jon
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Old 11-05-2007
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What you have is a chip in the gelcoat, probably over a void in the layup. If you put any weight or stress on the unsupported gelcoat, that's effectively what you'd get.

The white stuff is the gelcoat...the dark stuff is the fiberglass. You should probably grind it out a bit and then fill the area with thickened epoxy. BTW, you probably want to grind away any unsupported gelcoat and fill the entire void.

BTW, use either chopped fiberglass or microballons for the thickening agent, not cabosil or colloidial silica, since you may have to sand this a bit. Get it as fair to the final shape as possible..

After the epoxy cures, you can sand it lightly and then re-gelcoat it.
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Old 11-05-2007
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thank you Sailingdog !!!

Jon
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Glad to help. If you have any questions, let me know. BTW, depending on what epoxy brand you use, you may have to wash off the amine blush before sanding it and such... or the gelcoat won't stick properly.
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Old 11-05-2007
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Sounds good. I think I am going to study that West Sytems website.

I appreciate the willingness to help, and I am sure I will have many more questions about all things boats. It's my first boat and I don't want to screw anything up

thanks again,
jon
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BTW, West Systems is one of the brands that has the amine blush problems. MAS epoxies don't IIRC. Don't remember about System 3.

That aside, the West site is a valuable resource.
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Old 11-06-2007
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Hi,
I bought the MAS expoxy. Got some Flag resin, medium hardener and the micro balloons for thickening. Does that sound right Sailingdog??

Right now the weather where I keep my boat (mid Chesepeake Bay on the Potomac River) is getting cold fast. Highs are in the low 50's and lows are in the mid to upper 30's. Do you think it's too cold for me to do this repair as far as getting it to cure properly??

Based on the picture do you think this is a repair that needs to be done before Spring or should I wait??

Thanks again for all the help. Any additional advice you have for prepping the repair site, making the epoxy and applying are appreciated.

thanks,
Jon

Last edited by jobrantley; 11-06-2007 at 10:44 PM.
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Old 11-06-2007
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Jon,

You should be fine temperature-wise. The epoxy won't cure immediately, but it should be okay to sand within a few days, especially if it gets up into the upper 50's for 4-6 hours a day.

Congrats on your new (?) boat. By the way, what is it? The diamond non-skid looks very similar to what we have on our Pacific Seacraft.
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Thanks John, I'm going to do it on Thursday then.

Your spot on with the non skid, my new to me boat is a Dana. I'm loving it. I brought it back up from Oriental, NC the first week in September with the gracious help of PBeezer.

What kind of Pacific Seacraft do you have?

thanks,
Jon
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Don't forget to clean the area with acetone or some other solvent prep wash to get rid of any wax, oil, dirt or other surface contaminants before sanding the area. If you don't you risk grinding the contaminants into the underlying laminate and then the repair won't stick properly.

Otherwise, what you've got sounds good. It would help if you pre-heat the area with heat lamps.... otherwise the epoxy might have trouble bonding properly.

Let us know how it goes or if you have any other questions.
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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
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