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PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2009 6:21 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:39 am
Posts: 38
Location: Parry Sound, Canada
Hi all,

I picked up a mid-70's H14 last summer in decent condition (newish main sail, newish tramp - but stained, mast/rigging in good condition). I think a proud owner once owned the boat and for whatever reason the boat was passed on to a not-so-loving owner who kept the boat in the water all summer.

In any case, the hulls have a few scratches / small gouges from neglect, so I got some aqua mend rub putty and filled any knick or scratch I could find as I assume water would penetrate the gelcoat/fiberglass through a scratch or knick easily. I know boats left in water = very bad, so I have built a cradle to keep the boat out of the water other than for ~10 weekends per year when I leave it in the water Friday and Saturday night. For whatever reason, one of the hulls has probably 50-100 small sized blisters, the other hull has none (possibly it was replaced..). Last time I checked there were no soft spots or delamination. Although when I was righting the boat I was standing on the hull and I think it could have been a little soft :x (i sure hope not, maybe my 170 pounds concentrated on my heels was enough to make the hull walls flex a bit)....

I dont know much about gel coats/top coats but I want to dremel/sand down the blisters to get out any liquid then sand it down and put a new layer of gel coat and paint on. I want to paint the hulls black or yellow, they are white right now and stain too easy, even after only a day of sailing.

Can someone please point me in the right direction? I have no idea where to start. I went to westmarine and their little how-to guide for paint/gelcoat repair made me even more confused. Our cottage is a little rustic so controlling the humidity in the garage might be an issue. Please assume I know nothing more than a child about repairing a hull..

This might be a good project for the October-May Canadian off season.

Thanks very much for your help in advance.

Chris


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 20, 2009 7:16 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2003 7:11 pm
Posts: 4583
Location: Detroit, MI
Repairing Gelcoat Blisters


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:40 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 12:11 pm
Posts: 276
Are the blisters below waterline or from the sun beating down on the deck? If below the waterline, what type of water, salt / fresh?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2009 11:23 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2008 8:39 am
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Location: Parry Sound, Canada
Rick Buchanan wrote:
Are the blisters below waterline or from the sun beating down on the deck? If below the waterline, what type of water, salt / fresh?


Sorry for the delay. The blisters are below the waterline and as far as I know, the boat has never seen salt water, only fresh water.

I want the boat to last at least another 5 seasons, at that point I think I will get a Hobie Wave if they have normal looking sail patters by that time (NOT rainbows). Im not sure If I should risk doing these blister spot repairs as mentioned in the link by Mbounds or if I should just leave the blisters and keep the boat out of the water and well ventilated.

Chris


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 04, 2009 4:09 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:34 pm
Posts: 16
I had about 20 dime sized blisters on one hull of my old H-16 about 4 years ago, when I got it. (below the waterline). Ugly, open wound things. After reading about fiberglass repair in a few books and things, I did not use epoxy to do the repairs. I used the regular fiberglass resin and hardener, ( polyester??? stuff? ), to do the fixes. Just lightly ground out the blister to bare fiberglass, hand sanded them clean, let dry for several weeks( these blisters had water in them), applied the mixed polyester stuff, and sanded smooth with dry sand paper, about 100 grit, if I recall. Then, move up to about 800 wet/dry sandpaper, and wet sand the whole bottom of the hull. 4 years later, still perfect condition and I can keep up with the newer H-16's :) . At the same time, you can fare out any gouges on the bottom of the hulls, just quick sand the gouge by hand, no grinding needed.
Personally, I wouldnt paint your hulls. Amazing what you can buff out with compound, etc. White hulls are a great colour. And you can dab your repairs with some good quality white marine paint, and blend it in , etc. Your boat will look almost new. Get sailing.........


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2009 9:44 pm 
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Site Rank - Deck Hand

Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 3:08 pm
Posts: 15
Location: London, Ontario
You've already received lots of info re the 'Osmosis' problem (fiberglass rust), now just a note on your choice of hull colors.... maybe not Black. Somewhere on this forum is the sad story of someone else who painted their hulls black and after leaving them out in the full sun found his hulls permamently twisted out of shape. No idea why, presuming the breather hole on the rear hull post was not clogged. A black mesh tramp does not get hot, but I suppose a black hull might. To set the colours off on your boat, maybe just paint the mast, boom and tramp frame flat black. I've done it on numerous boats with metal paint (BBQ paint works as well) and it makes even the most sun bleached sail looks good. Just a 'heads up' from balmy London, ON.

RK
Live slow, sail fast

H14t
H16


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2009 10:00 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 11:26 am
Posts: 310
Does the black paint scratch easily? Are you applying clear coat over it?


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 09, 2009 10:45 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 11, 2005 3:08 pm
Posts: 15
Location: London, Ontario
It takes a few days for the paint to really set /dry on teh metal, but I've never had a noticeable problem with scratching. At the beginning of the season, it's nothing to bring out the spray can and touch up the few spots that may have worn a little relative to the rest of the metal. So far as the side rails go, the bulk (tops) of mine are covered with rugs so it's only the very edge and underneath of the side rails that are painted and front / rear crossbars and posts down to the hulls (corners I usually leave alone). I like the look of the flat black - no laquers on top. The contrast with the sail colours and shiny hulls look great. Send me your email, and I might be able to come up with a few pics.

Ralph
Keep the shiny side up.


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