Paul, 30 pounds is a lot of water - about 4 gals. I'd think you'd hear it sloshing around. I doubt that much is absorbed anwhere. How about your mast? To keep my hulls dry I got a couple galvanized chimney caps, for 6" diameter stovepipe. Drilled the rivets out on the 6" base and resized the diameter to fit the rear port holes and redrilled/riveted. Taped the bottom with teflon tape. The chimney cap fits into the port holes, and the large cap on top sheds rain water. When the boat is on the trailer waiting to go somewhere it sits with the bows up high so if there is any water it puddles in the stern. I also put them in when the boat is sitting idle on the lift - allows the hulls to breath. My 2000 has hovered around minimum weight since new. Also, you may want to pull the rear crossbar off and check your original hull weight. If I remember correctly it is dremeled into the hull under the crossbar. I normally disassemble mine for winter storage and recall seeing the weight - it might be under the front crossbar, I don't remember. I haven't taken mine apart this year yet so can't verify. When we built our 5 boats back in 2000 they were all within a few pounds of each other. Of course Brent got their first and chose the lightest pair, but at Nationals they all weighed within a couple pounds of each other. And then there is the argument that if 30 pounds made that much difference we wouldn't be able to beat you with our 380 lb crew weight! I'm not in favor of portholes by the front beam - put my (or crew's) knee through them too many times on the 18.