Cracked cast iron Keel - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 01-20-2010
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Cracked cast iron Keel

bad bad news. Yahoo! Groups
REF:1983 37' Kiryie Elite (kinda like the successor Feeling french boat)

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
p: 281.654.1766
c: 832.814.3657
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Old 01-20-2010
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I had a boat with a cast iron keel, and it's hard to imagine it developing a major crack that requires replacing the entire keel. Cast iron keels are often crude castings that must be faired to make them smooth. The cast iron keel on my boat occasionally developed long cracks in the fairing materials, but the crack was only in the fairing material, and not in the keel itself. If you haven't already done so, I'd suggest you chisel away any fairing materials around the crack, down to the bare metal, and see if the crack is in the casting itself. If not, then all you have to do is remove all loose materials and re-fair it. I tapped on the keel with a hammer to find the loose materials. If it had a ringing sound, the material was not loose. If it sounded dull, it needed to be removed. I used a chisel to cut away the loose material.
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Old 01-20-2010
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Agree completely with Sailormon6. I can think of no reason why a cast iron keel would crack. Pictures will help.
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Old 01-20-2010
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If the keel is cracked (hard to believe) then I'm not sure what can be done about it. I would not cast another w/ lead, this would be pricy and change how the boat handles.

If the crack is all the way through, you're kinda screwed. You can try welding but penetration isn't going to happen and it will crack again. You can also try pinning the cast iron, but if it's cracked all the way through this probably won't work either, even if it did, its very expensive and time consuming. I would not bolt it together using straps or other means. The bolt heads would stick out and screw up any shape you previously had. Even if you somehow countersunk the bolts and strap, still wouldn't make me feel good about the repair.

Chances are it's just the fairing compound. Redo that and it'll be fine.
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Old 01-20-2010
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If it was a flawed casting it is possible for it to crack. Keelbolt force and sailing forces would cause the flaw to open possibly. But agree with the above - confirm it is really the keel not the fairing first.
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Old 01-20-2010
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If there is a crack in the cast it will need to be gouged out (carbon arc) or grind out till bottom of crack. Can be filled (welded) with correct rod and procedure. Also maybe an epoxy type product that could be used for the repair.
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