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  #1  
Old 12-15-2010
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Bent Wing Keel

I have a 2003 Hunter 326 with bent wings on the keel. The keel is made of lead. The question is should I attempt to straighten out the wings or as someone else suggested just cut them off?
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Old 12-15-2010
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If they are lead, they should be relatively easy to bend back into place. I wouldn't cut them off, that doesn't make sense to me.
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Old 12-15-2010
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Cutting them off is a really dumb idea...and whoever suggested that doesn't have any clue about sailboats. Cutting the wings off would reduce the boat's stability by removing a large portion of the keel's ballast weight and make the boat very tender and make it perform very poorly in stronger winds. It'd be lying on its side most of the time.

Bend them back into shape or leave them as is... either or.
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Old 12-15-2010
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Don't cut them off, they're there for a reason. They are part of the design of the boat's underbody, and serve a purpose in both ballast weight and foil performance. Straighten them if possible.
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Old 12-15-2010
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A dead blow hammer & a wet sandbag bucker to strighten would be the tools of my choise depending on your level of skill you may even want to warm it up first ..... Note:I have NO boat experience but have worked with lead , aluminum & magnesium..
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Old 12-15-2010
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T34C has a spectacular aura about T34C has a spectacular aura about T34C has a spectacular aura about
How badly are they bent? Got any pictures?
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Old 12-15-2010
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Cut em off??? LOL What red neck said that?

I only say that because my boats previous owners either were, or let them do all the maintenance. I'm now in the process of un-doing all their "fixes"....
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Whomever suggested you cut 'em off: Absolutely DO NOT EVER allow them to work on your boat, and regard with great skepticism any other advice they may give you.

Jim
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Depending on how badly the wings are mangled,
the easiest option would be to reshape them.
Lead is fairly easy to work, and can be pounded
into shape and faired with a rasp file.
If I understand the keel configuration of the 326
correctly, it is really a bulb fin keel with some
small winglets tacked on for hydrodynamic effect.
If the winglets are truly damaged beyond repair,
cutting them off may not have a dramatic effect
on righting moment, if they only weigh a couple
of hundred pounds on a 3200lb keel. This operation
could not be easily reversed however, and although
the lead that was removed could be fashioned into a shoe
and lagged to the bottom of the bulb you are likely looking
at a much larger project that reshaping the winglets.
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Old 12-15-2010
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silly of me to ask... how did a wing keel get so badly bent? Just gotta wonder if the keel stub, bolts and lead to fg joint has been compromised from the stress.

I love winglets! with celery and blue cheese dressing.. ummm
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