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post #8 of Old 02-24-2011
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I installed a Lewmar V3 winch 3 years ago on a balsa cored deck. Given the compression loads provided by the mounting studs, and the notion that water will eventually find them (a rot issue), I decided to replace the coring around the holes with a filled epoxy (West system). The trick was to make sure the stud holes did not fill in and make it difficult to redrill them accurately.

For once Murphy was asleep. It turns out the stud clearance holes were a perfect match for blackboard chalk, which I bought at a local CVS. So I scooped out the balsa, plugged the stud holes with chalk, and backfilled the voids with thickened epoxy, which was worked in from the larger hole for the motor shaft. I did this in a 2 or 3 step process to keep the mess under control. When the epoxy was cured, I simply hand sanded the motor clearance hole and punched out the chalk. I then lined the larger holes with several layers of fiberglass for insurance.
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