Irwin - Bluewater Capable??? - Page 7 - SailNet Community
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post #61 of 79 Old 11-17-2012
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

yeah, after the slamming where the whole boat would vibrate the lake calmed somewhat and we were into some suprisingly large swells like the ocean.

I try not to respond to types of posts like this "xxxxx a blue water boat" . you typically get posts from owners of other boats trying to convince you that it and by inference their's is or armchairers

couldnt help myself on this one however. I guess they flew all those irwins around the world
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post #62 of 79 Old 01-28-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

I know this is an old thread, and I'm new to posting on any of these forums, but I would take my Irwin 65 anywhere in the world. In fact it's already been around the world, twice. Now to be fair there have been modifications, but any thirty year old boat gets upgraded over the years if its actively sailed anyway.
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post #63 of 79 Old 03-11-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

I actually wrote Gene Gammon, who was Ted Irwin's right hand man and now owns the re-launched Irwin company, about this. His exact quote to me was: we didn't fly the boats around the world to take those brochure pictures, nor did the owners who have posted pictures from all around the globe. The better question here is whether you, as a sailor, have enough experience with your boat and equipment as well as the training necessary to undertake a blue-water excursion.

The 37 and 38's are a nice size and configuration for cruising and you WILL see them all over the world. At their age, I completely recommend a thorough re-fit. Gene has posted extensive original engineering info on all the classics as well as re-fit solutions to common problems. The information he provides for free on the web site is incredible. He also will personally answer any questions you might have. Irwin, as a company, and Gene as a person are top-notch. I love my 1984 Irwin 38 Mk1. She was one of the last Mk1's, literally being made along side the new Mk2. The sailor that originally ordered mine in 1984 spared no detail and got all the worthwhile bells and whistles. What can I say, I am a fan of the brand.

One last thing... when reading any post on this thread from someone that bashes the Irwin hull joints, you can be guaranteed they have not the slightest clue on what they are talking about. Go read Gene's extensive article on the Irwin site. Basically people assume the rail stanchions are just bolted to the top teak toe-rail trim (LOL as-if). Truth is they are part of the hull joint system and they attach quite cleverly down through for another 8-12" to provide additional strength and stiffness to the mechanical and chemical bonding throughout the hull joint flange. See the irwinyachts website under engineering for the full truth. If you are seriously considering an Irwin you should read that site thoroughly, then you will understand what many of us see in them.

Last edited by gtfyre; 03-11-2014 at 01:55 PM. Reason: misspelling
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post #64 of 79 Old 03-11-2014
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Talking Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

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Originally Posted by gtfyre View Post
then you will understand what many of us see in them.
You said it right and some people think an O'day is better than an Irwin. I even found out that Irwins are pretty good sailing vessels as to speed, comfort, and built. Loved mine.
All old (10+ years) boats have some idiosyncrasies and problems that's what makes most of them Good Old Boats especially the irwins after some TLC.

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post #65 of 79 Old 03-11-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

Just a note on the hull deck joint. I really think the deck joint is where Irwin gets its bad wrap. Irwin used screws (yes screws) instead of bolts to mechanicaly fasten the the joint and the screws come into the joint from the side as well as the top. When these boats were newer the joint was actually fantastically strong, in fact Irwin was very proud of their hull deck joint, even diagraming it in the sales brochure. The fact is after 30 years these screws have likely suffered crevice corrsosion and could be dangerous. Through bolting the flange all the way through the block is the best idea, but will require a significant refit, as much of the joint is not accessable and requires replacing interior wood work.

The hull deck joint uses an overlaping flange that is chemically bonded, the flange on the bottom wraps and compelely incapsulates a solid ash block the full length of the joint. (Very strong) Holes are drilled through the flange and into the ash block to support the stantions and the ash was epoxy sealed and then adhesive was used to secure the stantion in the block. The whole joint was excellent when these boats were newer, but with water intrusion from lack of maitenance, the ash block around the stantions begins rotting and then the stantion is no longer strong. These are not difficult fixes, but will require some effort. The hull next to the joint is solid glass and there is no core, which means even with water intrusion from the joint, or the stantions, there should be NO core rot in the cored area, as there is no way for the water to get there.

Last edited by Total Chaos; 03-11-2014 at 11:31 PM. Reason: lef out the word NO in front of core rot.
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post #66 of 79 Old 03-11-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

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The fact is after 30 years these screws have likely suffered crevice corrsosion and could be dangerous.
Terms like "likely" and "could" are indicative of an unsurety of one's position in a debate. Given how strong the joints were initially as you definitively praise them for being, I would say that a properly maintained boat would retain a good portion of its strength.

As far as the crevice corrosion goes, I think they were sent through wet adhesive which should have encapsulated them for the most part, reducing or eliminating the chance of corrosion. I will actually email Gene sometime in the next couple of days about this issue, so we can lay this debate to rest once and for all.

Concerning the stanchion blocks, Gene has posted a rather thorough re-fit process for bringing them back to new or better condition. Those represent a substantial amount of strength in the joint design and a re-fit of those (as I am about to do before hitting the blue-water) will sure up things quite a bit.
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post #67 of 79 Old 03-11-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

Refirbing the stantion posts is not difficult, time consuming yes, difficult no. We did every single one of ours, and not all of them really needed done- this speeks highly of how well they were done in the first place. (at least on our boat) The key to geting it right is to make sure that your drill hole after dowling and refilling is at the correct angle. We customised a drill press that we could set at whatever angle and clamp onto the rail... flawless.

I would still repeat, could, maybe, might, on the crevise corrosion issue, I am not saying it's a fact that they are weekened. If there is any possibility of water ingress then there could be failure.

We stripped much of our interior so the additional reinforcement was not horribly difficicult just precautionary. We made access panels for chain plates as well that we have yet to replace, but probably will this year.

This stuff is not Irwin specific necessarily.

I will absolutely agree with you that a 30 year old boat that has been well maintained its whole life is a seriously different story than one which has not. That said, there are not to many of these boats out there that haven't seen some neglect.
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post #68 of 79 Old 03-12-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

Quote:
Originally Posted by gtfyre View Post
I actually wrote Gene Gammon, who was Ted Irwin's right hand man and now owns the re-launched Irwin company, about this. His exact quote to me was: we didn't fly the boats around the world to take those brochure pictures, nor did the owners who have posted pictures from all around the globe. The better question here is whether you, as a sailor, have enough experience with your boat and equipment as well as the training necessary to undertake a blue-water excursion.
This is exactly right. The whole "bluewater boat" debate is crap for the most part.


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post #69 of 79 Old 03-12-2014
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Re: Irwin - Bluewater Capable???

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Originally Posted by gtfyre View Post

One last thing... when reading any post on this thread from someone that bashes the Irwin hull joints, you can be guaranteed they have not the slightest clue on what they are talking about. Go read Gene's extensive article on the Irwin site. Basically people assume the rail stanchions are just bolted to the top teak toe-rail trim (LOL as-if). Truth is they are part of the hull joint system and they attach quite cleverly down through for another 8-12" to provide additional strength and stiffness to the mechanical and chemical bonding throughout the hull joint flange. See the irwinyachts website under engineering for the full truth. If you are seriously considering an Irwin you should read that site thoroughly, then you will understand what many of us see in them.
I've got pictures of mine doing just that - i.e. screwed through the teak toe rail and then the hull flange. They are not bonded, and are just screws, not bonded or caulked. Certainly not 8-12 inches long.

It's a 1987 38 CC

This is a picture from my recent chain plate re-do (there is a thread on it here on sailnet
Embedded Chain plate maint/replacement
You can see the stanchion screws pretty clearly (two sets, two screws) - this is looking up - the day light is where the chain plate penetrates.

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post #70 of 79 Old 03-12-2014
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My 1971 irwin 38 was through bolted with a teak toe rail.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Total Chaos:1617498
Just a note on the hull deck joint. I really think the deck joint is where Irwin gets its bad wrap. Irwin used screws (yes screws) instead of bolts to mechanicaly fasten the the joint and the screws come into the joint from the side as well as the top. When these boats were newer the joint was actually fantastically strong, in fact Irwin was very proud of their hull deck joint, even diagraming it in the sales brochure. The fact is after 30 years these screws have likely suffered crevice corrsosion and could be dangerous. Through bolting the flange all the way through the block is the best idea, but will require a significant refit, as much of the joint is not accessable and requires replacing interior wood work.

The hull deck joint uses an overlaping flange that is chemically bonded, the flange on the bottom wraps and compelely incapsulates a solid ash block the full length of the joint. (Very strong) Holes are drilled through the flange and into the ash block to support the stantions and the ash was epoxy sealed and then adhesive was used to secure the stantion in the block. The whole joint was excellent when these boats were newer, but with water intrusion from lack of maitenance, the ash block around the stantions begins rotting and then the stantion is no longer strong. These are not difficult fixes, but will require some effort. The hull next to the joint is solid glass and there is no core, which means even with water intrusion from the joint, or the stantions, there should be NO core rot in the cored area, as there is no way for the water to get there.
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