I decided to keep my little 22 footer for a couple of more seasons until i can save some more money for a bigger boat...
Good idea - you'd be surprised what big adventures you can have in a small boat.
That means I need to do some renovations...
...part of boat ownership... we all have to do it
My guard rail posts are shaky... No stress cracks around the base, assuming there is no back plate under the fg... What's you opinion for making them stronger? Simply adding a backing or something fancier?
Start by taking the posts (which are properly called "stantions") off. Then take a nail or something similar and see if the deck area where the bolts go through is solid fibreglass, or if it has a balsa core.
If it has a core, then try digging into it a litle bit. If it is soft and wet, you need to get the soft stuff out and replace it with epoxy. There are several books and internet articles that explain how to do this, so I won't go into it here. If you can't find one then PM me and I will email you one.
Once you know that your deck is okay, then you need to get backing plates for all of your stantions. Get the biggest, thickest ones that you can. The bigger they are, the better they will work. They idea is that you want the plates to disperse the force exerted on the deck by the bolts and washers, so the larger it is the less deterioration your deck will experience.
Ideally, you will get pieces of stainless steel cut to shape and drilled, 1/4 inch is nice. If you can't afford that, then you can try 3/16" or 1/8". There are gauge numbers that correpsond to those thicnesses, but I am too lazy to look them up.
If you can't/won't spend the money getting the stainless ones made, then you can make some with strong plywood and big washers. These are not going to be ast strong, or last as long, but they will be an imporvement over what you have now. Make sure that you seal the wood properly, everywhere. The organism that causes rot is alive and can migrate from your backing plates and into your deck and cause no end of problems.
When you put your stantions back on, make sure that you first seal the hole through your deck with an epoxy plug (something else that you can find many references to on the internet, in magazines and in books - or PM me)and use a good, long term sealant. I like Life Caulk, but others swear by different products. DON'T use epoxy or any other adhesive to seal and bed your fittings. You are going to have to remove them every few years for general maintenance.
This should solve your problem.
My portholes are attached with bolts... To stop them from leaking I did a really cheap craftsmanship 4200 covering... I'd like to fix them, I can get some custom cut plexiglass for them but how I'm gonna do the framing? Any ideas?
Do you have actual opening ports or do you have openings in the side of the boat that are covered with plexiglass ?
If you have opening ports, then the thing I would suggest doing is buying new Lewmar or similar items and replacing what you have. If you can't find ones that fit the holes properly, then enlarge the holes to fit the next closest size up. Don't try to make the existing hole smaller to hold a port. It won't work.
If you have plexiglass that is fixed to the outside of the openings, take it off and clean it up nicely. Then you can buy a gasket or some weatherstripping and run it along the perimeter of the opening.
Cut your new plexiglass so that it has a margin of about 3/4" - i.e.: so that it has a 3/4" overlap everywhere. Draw the outline of the plexiglass on the side of the cabin, around the opening with a light pencil so that you can rub it off when you are finished.
Now tape around the outline that you just drawn. Take your time and go carefully. Protect everything else that could be damaged with tape and plastic as well. You are going to have to spend some time thinking about the next step.
You are going to run some sealant (Life Caulk, 4200, whatever) around the opening between your weatherstripping and the tape outline. Then you are going to put the new plexiglass piece on. It is going to want to fall off though, so figure out some way of holding it in place until it dries.
Once you have figured that out, then go ahead and apply the sealant, and put the plexiglass in place. Support it until it dries.
Once it has dried, mark spots for drill holes around the perimeter of the plexiglass, about 1 and 1/2 to 2 inches apart. Now drill through and put in bolts with washers. Secure them on the inside of the cabin with washers and nuts. Make sure you use stainless.
Now, VERY CAREFULLY tighten the bolts. Work your way around and take your time. Do a couple of turns on each bolt and then move on to the next one. The plexiglass can break if you apply uneven pressure, expecially near the edge.
WHen you are tightened up, cut away the excess sealant with a razor blade and wash off any pencil maks that you might still see.
The front hatch is broken, there are no more Reinell sailboats in production line and i cannot find any aftermarket replacements for the size of the hatch... It's an oversize hatch. Should I build a custom fiberglass hatch or do you have a good idea on that?
I would suggest that youfind the next largest stock one and enlarge the opening in the deck a little bit. It will cost you an awful lot of money to have a custom hatch built, and probably cost you more to make one yourself than it would to buy a new one.