Pacific Seacraft 31-Water Tank Leak
I have a 1989 Pacific Seacraft 31. It has two water tanks. The bow tank has a plexiglas cover over the entire tank that is siliconed in place as an observation port and then a loose plywood cover is fitted over the plexiglass.
However, on the aft water tank the plywood cover is also siliconed in place on top of the plexi-glass. This eliminates the ability to view inside the tank. This tank leaks from the top when on a starboard tack despite having both the plexi-glass and plywood panel siliconed in place.
Of course the easiest solution is to never sail on a starboard tack . . .:), but we are looking for a better solution. Any suggestions on how to separate a phywood panel from silicone and/or a better sealant. The leak is on the port side midway on the full curve.
I also have a PSC, and have recently done alot of work to my aft water tank.
I have an Orion, and the aft tank is under the sea berth in the port quarter, I think yours would be aft of the galley under the cockpit on the port side, correct? Anyway, my aft tank vent had began leaking, and to repair the leak I had to remove the lid. My tank lids are plywood with a hard water proof coating on the underside (can't remember the trade name for this board right now), the face that is in the watertank. Mine also have clear screw on hatches that are about 6 inchs across for tank cleaning and accessability. I had use a razor knife to work all the way around the seam for the hatch, and then slowly go around the edges prying the lid off with acouple of thin pry bars and flat head screw drivers. I went really slowly so as not to delaminate the plywood cover. If its just the cover that is leaking , then you should remove ALL of the old silicone, so you have good clean faces when you go to rebed the lid. Apply planty of new silicone and clean up the excess that oozes out as you go. I left some heavy items around the lids rim after reinstalling so that the lid was well set in place whille the silicone set.
If you don't have the same type of access hatches that I have,or something similar, it is something to consider installing once you get the tank lid off. They are about 6, maybe 8 inches across, and they make cleaning and inspecting the tanks a breeze.
I do not have full plexiglass covers with plywood inserts like you do, but I imagine that the lid removal procedure would be about the same for both of us though. Rebedding the whole thing would cure the leak I bet.
If you decide to install inspection ports (or re-install existing ones like in my case after cleaning) I found that using silicone sheet stock available from McMaster worked very well as a gasket.
We had to replace the bow water tank top on a 31. Ended up using Starboard - more expensive but easy to work and stronger than PVC. Here is some handy instructions provided by Robin at PSC a couple months ago.
Thanks to the group and particularly to Sapperwhite for his detailed response. It's nice to know your not alone or the only one with a particular boat problem.
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