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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 5:27 am 
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Joined: Fri Jun 25, 2004 8:01 am
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I am relatively new to Hobies, just picked one up a week or so ago. And Yesterday I flew my first hull out in Long Island Sound!!!! What a rush and consequently had my first righting lesson. All fun stuff

Anyway My "new" 81 Hobie 16's port hull is taking on water, though not quickly, it adds up. The bottoms are a bit warn, you can easily see the fiberglass but it is strong, at least I think they are solid. What are the chances that it is coming from the bottom or could it be some other entrance point, castings, throughull hatches? Before I go out and purchase equipment I would like to know exactly where it is coming from and how one fixes it.

Thanks for your time,


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 5:32 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 5:52 am
Posts: 95
Location: Underwater in Mid-Michigan
The best way to figure out where your leak(s) is coming from is to take a shop vac, set it to blow air out, and direct the air through your drain hole on the stern of the hull. Be careful not to put too much pressure through the hull, you don't need a lot. Then use dish soap around any suspect areas and look for bubbles.

Hope this helps.

How much water are the hulls taking on? It's not unusual for a Hobie to slurp up maybe a cup or two during the course of a sail.

Fair Winds,
Nick

1978 H16 "Burt the Cat"

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1978 H16 "Burt The Cat"


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 7:12 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 30, 2004 9:32 pm
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Location: West Texas
If you can actually see the weave of the fiberglass, I'd recommend getting some marine epoxy and flox (high density filler), and mixing them up to create a spackle-like consistancy. Then apply a coat over the exposed weave to protect it. You don't want to start grinding away the glass with beach sand and then weaken the structure.

Warm regards,

Jim


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 11:09 am 
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Great Ideas, thanks. In regards to making the repair on the hull bottom, you recomend marine epoxy and flox, both readily available I assume. I am not terribly handy, though I think I could tackle this. Could you go into a bit more detail? Do you use equal parts? How thick of a coat to you put on? How long till it drys? Sand down afterwords? Is this beter than putting down gel coat, or even fibergalss tape? Sorry for all the questions. I guess for a proper diagnosis you would need to see the hull. I see if I can get some pics up.

thank again,


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 11:12 am 
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BTW, Usually I am getting 3-4 cups of water after a long sail, but when I sailed all day, and capsized I got about a gallon.


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 09, 2004 1:36 pm 
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Location: West Texas
If you go to www.westsystem.com and look under products, I believe the "A" sized kit should be plenty for you. You'll want slow hardener becuase the cure time will make it easier to do a large area with one batch of epoxy. Wear tight fitting rubber gloves as some people have (or can develop) an allergic reaction to uncured epoxy. The mixing ratio depends on what brand of epoxy you buy so be sure to read the directions and measure carefully. (My friend has built a custom scale balance just for epoxy since the brand he uses is like a 53:104 ratio or something bizarre like that.) You'll probably want to flip the boat upside-down first, then use a grinder to make a nice edge all the way around the damaged area to fill so you know exactly where to fill and where not to fill. Then mask off the areas of the hull you don't want to get epoxy on.

When you're ready for the epoxy, mix the resin and hardener, (a clean plastic cup and a new tongue depressor will work fine for this) then slowly add and mix in flox until it's a consistancy you can spread. Actually more like peanut butter than spackle. YOU ALSO NEED LOTS AND LOTS OF PAPER TOWELS. Lots.
Spread this over the area to build up and use a small rubber squeegee (like for caulking) to do your best to work out air bubbles during application and create an even seam with the surrounding gelcoat. You can also use an adjustable-setting hair dryer (set on high heat but low fan speed) to soften and further shape the epoxy as it begins to cure. Let it cure overnight, then sand the surface to your satisfaction. You can buy epoxy tint to color it but it might be hard to color-match to your hull, or paint over it if you're so inclined.

One thing to beware (or just be aware) of - epoxy warms up as it cures. The stuff you've applied to your boat will have plenty of surface area to cool, but if you make too *much* then the stuff in the cup will begin to heat up pretty good, so once the epoxy is mixed you're working against time, see? Don't mix it and then go get a soda and answer the phone. lol The stuff in the cup will begin to "exortherm," that is when it reaches a certain temperature it becomes a positive feedback loop and it'll melt the plastic cup. Once you see bubbles forming IN the epoxy in the cup you might be able to get a tiny bit more out of there but that batch is pretty much finished and you'll have to make more. (That's why I said to use slow hardener - it'll take 20 minutes or so to get to that point.)
See attached pics where we used this method to repair my buddy's damaged Sunfish:


Image of mixing up some epoxy. As I recall we only used about 2/3 of this cup before it exothermed in the bottom. Heh sorry about the focus.
Image



Here you see what epoxy with flox in it looks like. You can't really see the large paper cup very well, but you can see the consistancy of the mixture on the tongue depressor. You can also see how we ground out the gelcoat a little bit to make fairing easier:
Image



In case you were wondering, the damage there was all-the-way through the hull so we ground out all the glass and glued in that oak insert, then laid glass over the top of it. You can also see there the peel-ply on top of the top layer of epoxy. This is another thing you can use to help with fairing.
Image


If it looks like some glass has ground away then you could put some more in under the flox to add strength. :)


Hope that was helpful. =)~


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 5:39 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 09, 2003 5:52 am
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Location: Underwater in Mid-Michigan
jaime IS the 'fiberglass/epoxy" man!
:D

Good luck and Fair Winds,
Nick
1978H16 "Burt the Cat"

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1978 H16 "Burt The Cat"


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 1:57 pm 
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Yes He is!!!!

thank you very much.

good stuff


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 Post subject: Leak detection
PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 5:20 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
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Location: Oceanside, California
Leak detection.

See the FAQ section:

http://www.hobiecat.com/community/viewtopic.php?t=169

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Matt Miller
Director of Parts and Accessory Sales
Hobie Cat USA


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 21, 2004 10:53 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2004 9:46 am
Posts: 1
Location: Bay City, Michigan
I've had a fair amount of experience working with West System epoxy on boats ranging from an 11' Snark to a 38' wooden catamaran (not to mention my Hobie 16), and it's the perfect product for this type of repair.

Good surfice preparation is supremely important before applying epoxy and glass fabric. That'll all be explained in the West System instructions.

Good luck!

Matt Turner
1983 Hobie 16
Sail# 78995
Bay City, Michigan, USA


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