Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign.. - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Boat Review and Purchase Forum > Sailboat Design and Construction
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Old 05-28-2012
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Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

I am presently working on a 76 Oday 22 and to put it bluntly I hate the interior.
I'm reasonably convinced that about 25% of the interior volume at least has been hogged up by a pallet full of cheap open cell foam, its taking up the whole space under the forward berth, one of the side berths and the entire area under the lower cockpit which is rather huge. I also have a floor which is starting to get soft in a few places, and blocks off a large gap on top of the keel that water can get into and then seep in around the keel weight which seems to have separated from the outer keel fiberglass. My cabin roof feels fairly solid but it is rather creaky in the fiberglass around the mast step and its showing signs of stress cracks in various places, seems to be more delaminating from hull stress than rot at this point, likely due to the support in the cabin slowly getting pushed into the floor.

I would rather like to rip possibly the whole fiberglass interior out, put in a proper mast support that goes from the keel to the cabin top and through bolts to the mast step (which I would have to replace with a better one) and then use the thin sheets of closed cell foam of the sort they use in building houses, and line the whole interior of the lower hull to free up large amounts of the spaces the cheap open cell pile currently occupies. I would probably simply paint epoxy onto the fiberglass walls put up the foam, hopefully thin enough to mold when cut into chunks, and then epoxy carpet over that.

I haven't decided how the new interior layout would be, but since this is clearly not a live aboard the kitchen can go since it was a joke to start with and I want to massively expand the forward berth so that 2 people can fit into it without being jammed into the forepeak.

Anyone have any suggestions on foam panel types and using them in this way?

Last edited by PPPPPP42; 05-28-2012 at 09:25 PM.
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Old 05-31-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

I don't understand what the foam is for. If it was for full floatation, it would have had to been closed cell foam, and lots of it. Possibly just go without? Not too many keel boats have positive buoyancy.
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Old 05-31-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

The previous owner of my daysailer had found a brilliant and cheap way of providing floatation. Inflatable beach balls. The forward locker was full of them. Inflate them partially then stuff them wherever.
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Old 05-31-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkSF View Post
The previous owner of my daysailer had found a brilliant and cheap way of providing floatation. Inflatable beach balls. The forward locker was full of them. Inflate them partially then stuff them wherever.
Are you sure they aren't just forgotten souvenirs from a buffett concert?
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Old 05-31-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

The foam in the boat actually weighs equal to the same volume in water after sitting in water long enough and it takes FOREVER to dry. I don't think the boat builders intended it do get wet in the first place, at least not for more than a day. I've never tried to see how long it takes to fully saturate a piece but its the original foam since both boats 73&76 had the same foam.

Last edited by PPPPPP42; 05-31-2012 at 10:58 PM.
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Old 06-07-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

I would remove the foam and not replace it.

Carpet is not a great idea - it holds moisture and mildews, also taking forever to dry. If you use any carpet make it easily removable so it can be dried, cleaned, or thrown out.
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Old 07-22-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

I am amazed by the dis-information on foam used for flotation. First of all that 'cheap' foam isn't open cell, it is styrofoam and floats really well. Secondly the foam does NOT get waterlogged! Take my Etap 26 for instance. How do I know the flotation foam is not waterlogged? Very simple, my boat displaces 5,000 lb. So there is enough foam to float 5,000 lb. So if it were waterlogged my boat would weigh 10,000 lb! With an extra 5,000 lb my boat would sit kinda low in the water, like I'd have to at least repaint the waterline, and I can still see that he factory line is above water.

So if the foam isn't waterlogged, cause the boat floats properly, then exactly how long do you need to boat to stay afloat until you are rescued? I would seriously hope it is less than a year!

If the manufacturer made your boat essentially unsinkable, why not just leave it that way? Is a boat that can sink better than one that can't?

Gary H. Lucas
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Old 07-25-2012
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Re: Questions about closed cell foam panels and interior redesign..

I ripped out all of the foam I could reach--and repaired the rot it caused by holding water against the plywood. The foam did not absorb water--it just stopped air circulating and allowed the fungus to spread along the sides in contact with the timber. I like the idea of inflatable bladders with a compressed air source to inflate them quickly--such as a scuba bottle.
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