Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: New England
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LOL... yes, this is a very well known issue. IIRC, in many cases, it was due to the fact that Catalina, in a less than wise move, used plywood in the bilge for the keel support. Maine Sail has some very disturbing photos of what happens to plywood in a bilge.. .... it ain't pretty.
C&C may have had the same issues with some of their boats.
Yes, there is a proper fix, but it involves dropping the keel, removing the rotted plywood and rebuilding the keel support area with a very thick layer of fiberglass, and then rebedding the keel. While you're at it, you should probably inspect the 30 year old keel bolts and replace them as necessary.
Filling the crack with filler compound is going to look like a repair, but it really isn't—it's just a cosmetic cover up of the problem.
Without rebuilding the keel support inside the hull, rebedding the keel and torquing the keel bolts to the proper specification, you run the risk of losing the keel and if that happens you could be killed, as happened in the Cynthia Woods sailboat case, when it lost its keel.
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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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