plugging holes in deck for winter storage - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance
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  #1  
Old 10-14-2011
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plugging holes in deck for winter storage

Hello all

I will be pulling my boat out of the water next weekend and want to remove the stanchion bases so I can re-paint them over the winter months. This will leave the bolt holes exposed on the deck. The boat will be covered but I want to plug the holes to prevent any water entering the cabin.
I was thinking of putting a tab of silicon into and around the hole, good/bad idea? It could then be removed next spring.

Over the last two seasons the bolt holes have all been drilled out, filled with epoxy and re-drilled, so I am not concerned about any deck core being exposed to the elements. I just don't like the idea of open holes in the deck.

Thanks,
John
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Old 10-14-2011
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I got a couple of holes that I plugged with butyl tape, as a temporary measure. No water got in the boat.
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Old 10-14-2011
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It can't hurt to plug but During the two years of repair I never had issues with water running through the several hundred holes



Even the giant ones
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Last edited by tommays; 10-14-2011 at 08:35 PM.
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Old 10-14-2011
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Butyl tape rolled up and pushed into the hole works. if you want to stop the water completely then reinstall the bolts with a large washer and butyl tape under the washer (less the stanchion).
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Old 10-15-2011
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Butyl is a good choice, as would be duct tape - remove the tape residue with acetone in the spring.

Do not use silicone as it will leave a residue that you can only remove with sanding. If it is not removed any future sealant will not adhere.
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Old 10-15-2011
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I plug the screw/bolt holes in my project boats with seam tape, it's butyl with a cloth or felt backing. For screwed in things, I simply clean the surface and apply the tape, for through bolted things, I use panhead type bolts, put the tape on, cut an X for the hole then place bolts in and snug them down from below.
I experimented with caulk and other things, but the seam tape is the best method I've found. caulk shrinks up and leaks after a short while, but the butyl seam tape lasts.
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Old 10-15-2011
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Do not use silicone. Duct tape is the best for temporary use.
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Old 10-15-2011
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Just get it done now. Why wait?

How long could it take?
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Old 10-15-2011
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As others have advised, DON'T use silicone sealant.

Wadded up balls of butyl tape could work, but I'd be a little concerned that without compression they won't seal that well.

My preference would be aluminum HVAC duct tape. It has a good adhesive -- not too weak and not too strong. It comes off cleanly, but it'll stick well regardless of temps. The aluminum backing has better weather resistant benefits than a cloth backed tape. I've covered everything from screw holes to holes for deck fills with this tape -- it really does the trick. I've got a few places on deck that I covered over a year ago, and they are still bone dry.

My second choice would be Gorilla Tape -- a much superior product to generic duct tape (which is pretty worthless.) The adhesive has a tendency to stick to the surface even when you remove the tape, which takes a little more work to clean up. A fresh peice of tape can be used to tack off most of the old adhesive, but a remover like 3M General Purpose is usually needed.
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Old 10-15-2011
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Thanks for all of the replies, it looks like silicone is out and tape is in. I'll try both the regular and HVAC duct tape.

As to getting it done now, it is a fair comment. Problem is the boat comes out in a week and the forecast is for rain for the next several days. I may just leave things in place until the spring then get it done on a warm weekend.

tommys
That first pic is depressing, it won't be long before my boat will look the same.

John
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