SailNet Community - Reply to Topic
Thread: Sailboat bulkhead material and Location Reply to Thread
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :
Post Icons
You may choose an icon for your message from the following list:

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

  Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

Click here to view the posting rules you are bound to when clicking the
'Submit Reply' button below

  Topic Review (Newest First)
05-06-2008 01:54 PM
jbibb Great stuff guys....thank you very much. Marine Ply it is an take my time.
05-06-2008 01:31 PM
feetup I can understand the difficulty you face, if the proper material is not available. Would your supplier be willing to put a few sheets of marine ply on his next shipment of material, and perhaps split the freight with you?
Whatever you use, I would echo the others and say use the best you can get your hands on. It isn't an easy job to begin with, and it would be a shame to see first class labor with second rate materials.
From my own expierience I would advise that once the piece is cut and test fit that you seal all the edges with thickened epoxy, two coats is best, and then tab to the hull well. Your bulkheads may never have rotted if the edges were sealed well. Wooden boats can funcion well indefinately with water inside, but plywood fairs poorly to being even damp for long periods.

Do the job well and be pleased with the result.

05-06-2008 01:12 PM
Lion35 My feeling on these type of questions is that the labor of the job (your time)is exponentially more expensive than the materials and often you are short changing yourself by choosing a less expensive material over the one you know is better. Just my two cents but I have found that after spending 80 or so hours (WAG) on a job like this it's easy to regret saving $50-75 or so bucks for cheaper materials.

Good marine plywood cuts much cleaner, the plys are usually finer grain, is vastly stiffer as Stillraing points out, has no voids, and will provide the right answer for the next potential owners survey.

Whichever way you go, good luck with the project
05-06-2008 02:57 AM
Stillraining Marine plywood has a couple advantages ...extra ply and no voids..been told same glue is in exterior ply so thats no better...but for a bulkhead that will be reinforced anyway I would not pay special fright and or wait for it to arrive just to have it but would go with 3/4 inch cc plugged ex tier...

Pressure treated ply also is not as stiff due to the impregnation warps a lot easier under I would not use it for a bulk head...I wish Bayliner would have used it for transoms in their boats though...they would not have such a rot issue...

You will be fine pulling your main bulk head under the conditions you listed still in the water...
05-06-2008 02:38 AM
jbibb Thanks Sailingdog. Great point on the toxicity. I was thinking simply on durability and not that I'd have to be living next to it.
05-05-2008 05:55 PM
sailingdog Jbibb-

You are aware that pressure treated woods, including pressure treated plywood, are fairly toxic, since they are basically saturated with toxic heavy metal poisons as a preservative technique. Using them on the interior of a sailboat is probably not a great idea, and if you are going to work with them, wear a very good dust mask, as the dust is rather nastier than what normal marine plywood would create, having arsenic-related compounds in it IIRC.
05-05-2008 02:43 PM
jbibb Yes, I read that article and looked at the composite board material! $$ is right....but bulletproof. Thanks.
05-05-2008 02:38 PM
dakuehn I replaced my starboard side bulkhead recently and used marine plywood because I had ready access to it for a fair price. In retrospect, I am not sure it was necessary because I ended up coating the piece with epoxy and strengthing areas with additional layers of fabric. The marine ply is clearly superior to the standard and I have a greater level of confidence in the repair. Also my boat is 7.3 meter and will not have the same load as your Cal. West Systems Epoxy Works had a good article on a bulkhead repair where an even more $$ and exotic material was used
05-05-2008 01:58 PM
Sailboat bulkhead material and Location

I'm really using this forum to gear up for a project, thank you very much.

Marine plywood versus standard pressure treated plywood as an alternative for a bulkhead material? Marine plywood needs to be shipped in from Seattle...I can grab a sheet of 3/4" pressure treated right off of the shelf. Any issues with this that folks can comment on?

Follow up, I've been reading about some folks using a fiberglass G-10 panels in a West System write-up as well for an alternative.

Also, there any reason not to remove a bulkhead while the boat is in the water....structurally or is this a boatyard repair. I can shore up the lateral as required, however without load...mast removed and shrouds not connected, cabin deck supported there a flex issue with the boat simply floating without a main bulkhead?

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome