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post #1 of 12 Old 03-14-2008 Thread Starter
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keel cracks

I have cracks visible in the aft area where the keel joins the hull. The keel nuts are encapsulated and everything there seems to be in good shape.
What is the best way to repair this?
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post #2 of 12 Old 03-14-2008
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Again, it would help if you said what kind of boat it was. It looks like there is some corrosion along the edge of the cracked area. Is the keel steel, cast iron or lead?

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post #3 of 12 Old 03-14-2008
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Lacking more info, I'd venture a guess that this is a cast iron keel and the "crack" we see is a seam between the keel and the hull. It was filled/faired with some sort of compound (perhaps polyurethane) and that's coming off of the hull.
On my previous boat that had a cast iron keel, this area was cleaned out completely of any sealant every few years, together with the keel paint. Keel was epoxied and the seam area rebedded with sealant (whatever yard liked at the time, usually 5200) and then painted.

The keel is (usually) attached well enough to the hull so it's not that it is fixin to fall off (though it is worth checking the bolts anyway). There is still a certain amount of flex in this joint, especially with narrower Hunter type keels, that will cause almost any joint fairing to fail eventually. A few groundings would help the process along.
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post #4 of 12 Old 03-14-2008 Thread Starter
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boat type

My apologies, but I should have said that the boat is a 1984 Jeanneau Fantasia. I believe that it is a cast iron external type keel.
Thanks for the assistance.
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post #5 of 12 Old 03-14-2008
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It might be worth dropping the keel to check the keel bolts, if they haven't been replaced on a boat that is 23 years old. Replace the keel bolts if they need it, or if they're okay, just clean the hull and keel off and re-bed the keel and tighten the bolts back up.

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post #6 of 12 Old 03-16-2008
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SD, dropping the keel is no small job. That's many boat bucks, and that's often not done even in serious groundings absent evidence of damage.

Peter, have someone at your yard take a peak at the situation. It's impossible to know for sure from the picture, but it likely is just fairing compound or sealant that has worn over the years. On some boats, fairing and filling the keel joint is an annual maintenance job. If the keel bolts are tight, you're not getting leakage, there's no damage to the keel boss (the glass part of the hull to which the keel is attached), and you haven't had a major grounding causing you to think that there's damage, I bet that's what you're looking at.

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post #7 of 12 Old 03-16-2008
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Dan-

If the corrosion is from the keel bolts, and the boat is older than 10 years, or hasn't had the keel bolts replaced in that amount of time, then it might well be time to inspect the keelbolts. If you're removing the keel to check the keelbolts, it probably would be a good idea to re-bed the keel.

I didn't say this had to be done...just that it might be a good idea.

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SD, I hear that. I wasn't taking a shot at you at all. All else being equal it would be great to drop the keel periodically to make sure all's well. The practical reality though is that it's a very expensive and inveasive proposition, and not one to be taken likely. I do agree that if you do drop the keel, you should closely inspect the bolts and replace if at all in doubt (if that too doesn't turn into a nightmare all on its own). If you drop the keel you will be required to rebed as part of the project, so that sort of takes care of itself.

Sheesh, this is what happens when a multi-huller tries to talk about keels.

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Yes, it is a relief not having to worry about keel bolts or that big chunk of metal that a monohull depends on to stay upright.

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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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post #10 of 12 Old 01-20-2010
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Cracked Cast iron keel in my 1983 37' Kyrie Elite (~Feeeling.french)

bad bad news. Yahoo! Groups

Finally I was able to pull out the boat today onto the haul out for much needed repairs and paint, etc to see that there is a vertical crack in the cast iron keel that runs from top to bottom
it runs pretty much vertical with with a bent 30
degreeincline 10" from the bottom of the keel and then has a +75 degree brake in the opposite direction leaving it at 45 from the vertical.
Does anybody have or know how the metal mass is supported? what else should I inspect? remeber that this is the boat that sit during low and normal tides on the mud for the better part of 9 years.

1-does anybody know where can I get drwgs to make a new [lead]keel?
2-does it have a ballast inside or is it solid cast iron"?
2-do you know of any precedent similar fixes?
3-who could make an adapt the design for a new [lead] keel ?
3- It seems to me that iot should be possible to repair the keel in place by bolting through 3 or 4" longitudinal flat steel 2 or three plates and injstalling a "shoe at the bottom to make it rigid enough to not change the sttresses in the boat.
3-and then, since i am planning to race it, maybe apply a few layers of fiberglass to smoothen up the surface?
4- does anybody know how to get a hold of Ron Holland. I am told he is still alive
5-does anybody know of a junk keel I can buy?

I'll try to send pictures tonight if you send me your cellphone numbers or take some with own camera and post them here.pls help!!. Regards,

Alex Rosental
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c: 832.814.3657
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