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post #41 of 88 Old 05-20-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

Installing the bilge pump on Wednesday. Got too busy this weekend. Had a great sail yesterday morning. Still falling in love with this new-to-me boat, even despite this very annoying leak.

I'm going to try tightening the keel boats. I have a freind who has access to a torque wrench, the only problem might be finding an extension to get to the nut in the deepest part of the sump (it's over 2 feet).

At this point I'm a hundred percent positive I've ruled out any tanks, thru hulls, stuffing boxes, etc. I've had two guys that work on sailboats for a living confirm exactly what I thought I was seeing, the water is coming from underneath that stringer. The only way to truly see where it's entering the boat now is too cut some access into that stringer and probably remove the foam that is ruined.

I'm hoping the tightening the bolts works.

BTW, it's hard to see in the pics, but the aft most keel bolt (the only one visible in the zoomed out pic) has about a dozen washers between the nut and the hull of the boat. Why didn't they just use a shorter keel bolt...? Is it possible the threads were damaged at somepoint and the washers were placed there to move the nut above the damaged area so it could still be torqued?

I've also seen opinions vary almost 50/50 all over the web about whether bolts are effectively tightened in the water as opposed to the hard.

Thanks!
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post #42 of 88 Old 05-22-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

Bilge pump and float switch is installed, so I have some piece of mind again.

I'm trying to work with the yard to see if I could come up one night after busy season and just haul it quickly, tighten the bolts, and see if that helps. If I notice something that needs immediate attention then suck it up and put it back in the cradle for repair. They are going to try and help me out, but said it will probably be "a couple hundred" for the haul out...
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post #43 of 88 Old 06-11-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

So we hauled out yesterday - exactly one month after launch. The bilge pump I installed kept us sailing during this time but I would guess the leak increased to about 3 gallons a day during this time. I attached some picks of what I saw today at the yard. The yard is recommending rebedding the keel. Given how backed up they are and the fact that a few high performance race boats came in a few days before us that need to be repaird by the Mac race we are looking at probably several weeks turn time on the repair. I did not see the boat until it was back in the cradle, but they tell keel was alarmingly loose when it was in the lift. I'm wondering if instead of rebedding we would be okay grinding that smile out and filling with 5200. The sailing season here ends in October and I can't imagine being hauled out for a month in June and July. August will be hot with no wind and we want to sail to Milwaukee for July 4th and anchor off Northerly Island for the Jimmy Buffett show here in Chicago, as well as start beer can racing. This ruins a great deal of the season of us and I'm heart broken. After seeing it today I'm glad we hauled, this seems to me to be stress fracture - the sump is not taking any of the load and it's all on the bolts IMHO.
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post #44 of 88 Old 06-11-2013
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

"but they tell keel was alarmingly loose when it was in the lift. I'm wondering if instead of rebedding we would be okay grinding that smile out and filling with 5200. "

If the keel is indeed "loose" that is a serious structural issue and you'd want to find out what has failed, whether it is part of the hull structure, or the keel bolts, etc. and then make sure a proper structural repair is made if needed.

If the keel actually needs to be dropped and rebedded, using 5200 as the bedding compound can actually structurally adhere the keel to the hull. Not that you'd want to skip keel bolts--but a proper 5200 bond can make the keel bolts superfluous. Or redundant.

You may want to eyeball this yourself, and get a second professional opinion.
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post #45 of 88 Old 06-11-2013
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that sucks. sorry to hear. did surveyor not see This

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post #46 of 88 Old 06-11-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: that sucks. sorry to hear. did surveyor not see This

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Damn
I'm disappointed not only in the surveyor, but the yard as well. I noticed a weep after we put our bottom paint on - it was not very large, but I brought it to the yard's attention twice and they still launched and said it could be dealt with next season. I should have gone with my instinct and delayed, but we were so anxious to get her in the water. Twice since launching we sailed in 35 knot winds and lovely lake Michigan chop (50 degrees heel at one point) and I'm surprised that when really loading up the keel like that I did not notice an increase in the ingress of water while under sail.

Regardless, yard is going to try and help me out now and get this done next week. So hopefully we are not out of the water to long. I'm still not convinced this is the whole story. The location of the leak under that stringer still doesn't make sense to me unless there is an actual crack in the hull that we won't see until the keel is dropped.
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post #47 of 88 Old 06-11-2013
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Re: that sucks. sorry to hear. did surveyor not see This

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Originally Posted by hillenme View Post
I'm disappointed not only in the surveyor, but the yard as well. I noticed a weep after we put our bottom paint on - it was not very large, but I brought it to the yard's attention twice and they still launched and said it could be dealt with next season. I should have gone with my instinct and delayed, but we were so anxious to get her in the water. Twice since launching we sailed in 35 knot winds and lovely lake Michigan chop (50 degrees heel at one point) and I'm surprised that when really loading up the keel like that I did not notice an increase in the ingress of water while under sail.

Regardless, yard is going to try and help me out now and get this done next week. So hopefully we are not out of the water to long. I'm still not convinced this is the whole story. The location of the leak under that stringer still doesn't make sense to me unless there is an actual crack in the hull that we won't see until the keel is dropped.
You're wise to keep an eye out for more problems but also don't underestimate the ability of water to migrate to/through weird places. I appear to have fixed a leak that exited my stanchion base hardware by rebedding the chainplates 2' away. You'd think the water would have exited the cleat hardware that was in between the two, but apparently not.
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post #48 of 88 Old 06-11-2013
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

Not sure I would go sailing on a boat with a keel that the yard described as " alarmingly loose ".

Gotta bite the bullet and drop that keel.

If you still have a leak issue dry the bilges and sprinkle lots of talcum powder around. that will help you trace the water flow.
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post #49 of 88 Old 06-11-2013 Thread Starter
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

$3,500 sound like a reasonable estimate for this? I'm sure it's 10x the actual cost of some 5200 and labor to drop the keel, torque the bolts and clean up the joint when finished, but backs against the wall, I don't have the time or equipment to figure this one out on my own. This is Chicago where everything is more expensive as well.
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Re: Help pinpointing a leak

hill, there's no such thing as "reasonable" until you find out what the problem is. In general, keels don't just get loose, something has to cause the problem.

If they lower the keel and find damage...what's reasonable? What's the extent of the damage? Cracked hull? Keelbolts eaten by electrolysis and needing replacement? No one knows until the keel is down, or at least until the boat is hauled.
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