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repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float

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repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float
Happy 4th of July all,

I have an old scull float that was built in 1980. I would like to repair and repaint this old boat. It is a fiberglass over wood boat. I do not feel any soft spots and I am pleasantly surprised as to how solid the stern feels.

The boat does not leak water except if I lean on the starboard side of the stern where the waterline passes over a section of fiberglass that has worn away at the corner of the starboard hull and the stern. I have a picture of that damage below.

I know next to nothing about fiberglass repair except for what I have watched on You Tube. None of the videos I have watched show me how to refurbish an old fiberglass over wood boat.

I do not even know how to remove old fiberglass or if removing fiberglass requires that I remove the entire skin. Can I can "get away" with patching things using pieces of chopped strand fiberglass matt and covering the patches with fiberglass weave and resin?

How long might such a job take on a 16 foot narrow scull float? 100 hours? 200 hours? (I realize variables such as degree of damage are a factor. I have included pictures below to show the worst spots.)

I am trying to figure out how big of a job I maybe getting into here.

Does anyone here have experience with refurbishing an old duck hunting boat with fiberglass over wood? Would anyone wish to give this newbie guidance on rehabbing his classic scull float? (I imagine the project would take time and I would need pointers as I progressed along.)

Below are some pictures as to some of the major flaws "that I know of" on this old boat.


The stern shows sign of fiberglass delamination.


This is most pronounced at the scull port.



The builder of my boat appears to have used metal reinforcement at the stern for the outboard motor clamps.






Moreover, you can see where some of the fiberglass weave failed to seat against the gunwale near the stern on the port side of the scull float.





Also, the fiberglass skin has completely worn away at the corner of the hull and stern on the port side of the float. This is were the water leak can come if I lean on the stern on the starboard side of the float.




Below is the picture of the stern where I "think" most of the repair is needed. Thanks in advance for any input.



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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Message me.... you can either bring it over, or I can swing by and help you with a plan. If it only needs spot repairs, I have the materials you need.

Dave Diefenderfer
Manassas, VA

"Once you set out to build a boat, throw away your square. And if you work on her after she's launched, throw away your level." author unknown

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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Good morning, Werner~


You are in fine hands with Mr. Diefenderfer.


This sure looks like a "spot repair" project to my eyes. A couple of days before it's ready for paint. Probably lots of grinding with 40-grit, then making sure the wood is dry and sound. Repair with epoxy resin and cloth. I like to use my first resin coat as a sealer coat. I apply the cloth and more resin when the first coat is just tacky. (If you wait 'til it's fully hardened, you should sand before applying more resin.)



FYI: Most 'glass mat is chemically incompatible with epoxy resin.


All the best,


SJS

Steven Jay Sanford
Pencil Brook Farm
South Cambridge, NY
http://www.stevenjaysanford.com


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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Dave,

I will humble myself and upload my pictures of my transom after removing the delaminated fiberglass. You can see that there was a scull port for a left handed sculler that has been plugged. Also note the dowel. There are about six dowels in the hull but most of these have been cut because of various modifications on the transom.





Here is a close up of the port side of the stern.






Here is the inside of the transom after removing the glass, hardware, and seat.






The port side of the transom after pulling off the fiberglass and discovering this side of the transom was soaking wet. I used a heat gun and some tools to dig away the rot until I got to hard wood or as this shows came right through the other side of the transom.



I "think" the core material is plywood after stripping away some of the fiberglass as the pictures below suggest to my untrained eye. I hope I am wrong but....





Below is a close up of the port side of the transom looking into the hull. It looks like wood to me. You maybe able to make out a nail and a screw.




Below is another shot along the starboard side of the hull closer to the bow where the fiberglass easily peeled away. It appears to me that here that the hull core is peeking out above the fiberglass just before it joins the deck.





One more picture where I sanded away inside the boat.




To round out the photographs here are some other pictures of where large portions of the fiberglass easily pulled away. I did not need to use a heat gun to remove the fiberglass and I did notice the "bondo" odor as I removed some of the glass. So I guess I am not dealing with epoxy resign.




If the hull is fiberglass then I am not too worried about tearing out the rotten transom and replacing this with Coosa board. However if this is wood, I am worried that doing such a job might be more tricky as the hull is not that thick. For example, how do I get out the nails attaching a thin plywood hull to a wood transom? (Unless I cut the hull 1 1/2 inches?) A bit tricky to me.

Thanks
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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Steve,

Thanks for your input. I did get the 40 grit sandpaper and started sanding. However, as you will see from pictures that I attached to my reply to Dave I am afraid I ran into a major snag with the transom.

I would like to either repair the damaged transom with Abatron wood rot repair products that I have used in the past (all be-it on my home doing major rot/wood damage repair) or use Coosa Board. I worry that the hull maybe made thin plywood. Please have a look at the pictures I showed Dave. I would appreciate your input very much.

We thought the hull might be made of fiberglass only but the transom pictures suggest otherwise to me -but I am a novice.

I am concerned about damaging the hull. I lack the confidence in tackling the art of making an accurate copy of the existing transom as I am not as confident in my carpentry skills as I am with my mechanical abilities. It is night and day where those two are concerned.

Thanks again.
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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Not to worry! You have not exposed anything that we can't fix right. I may have a piece of 3/4" Marine plywood that would be large enough for the transom. Make a good cardboard template of the shape now before you lose any shape when it is cut out. I can't tell in your pictures if there really is plywood in the hull, if it is, I didn't see anything that suggested there was any real areas compromised.

Give me the width and height dimensions and I will see if I have plywood to fit a new transom. We can double it to make it enough to hang your outboard off.

Dave Diefenderfer
Manassas, VA

"Once you set out to build a boat, throw away your square. And if you work on her after she's launched, throw away your level." author unknown

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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Looks like a fun project Werner, keep the pictures of your rebuild coming.
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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Nice boat. There?s a few rebuilds in the archives of this site. Dave did a nice rebuild on a Sam hunt, I did a few of them the most recent my Garvey. Search NJ Garvey restoration under my name and also Heinrichs sneakbox renovation for pics and progress shots of what I did. Both are glass over cedar. I learned everything I know from this site and trial and error. Steve Sanford?s site is also a wealth of knowledge and inspiration.
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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Just an FYI, I dropped off my epoxy supplies to a co-worker restoring his outdoor bar surface.... should have them back in a week. Will check on Marine Plywood this evening and let you know what I have on hand.

Dave Diefenderfer
Manassas, VA

"Once you set out to build a boat, throw away your square. And if you work on her after she's launched, throw away your level." author unknown

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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
I just checked, I have a couple pieces of 3/4" Marine plywood for your transom if you want to use it.

Dave Diefenderfer
Manassas, VA

"Once you set out to build a boat, throw away your square. And if you work on her after she's launched, throw away your level." author unknown

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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
Hello All,

Update. I spent much of one day sanding and removing more fiberglass. Also, I had to use goof-off to remove the glue residue from the tape that the previous owner rapped the gunwale with. I sanded the inside of the boat, the deck, and the gunwale. I still have to flip the boat over and sand the outer hull.


In trying to remove the glue residue along the gunwale using a heat gun, I managed to lift some more fiberglass which ended in me removing most of the fiberglass from the foredeck.


I "think" the builder of my boat used bondo over the wood deck along the side of the boat. There was a thick plastic like residue below the fiberglass. I could smell the bondo when I used my heat gun to pry away the fiberglass. Below is a picture of the deck with the sanded residue.




Perhaps the hull is made of fiberglass after all? When I was sanding the inside of the boat I inadvertently sanded a patch of the hull down to a white substance that looks like straight fiberglass to me.




I do not know what was going on when the builder smeared on this plastic substance. Maybe he was cleaning off left over bondo?




It is a good thing I was able to pull up the fiberglass from the deck and the gunwale. The picture below reveals a gap between the two.




Below you can see a wood rib just behind the seat after my sanding. These ribs run along the inside of the hull and are used to anchor the deck, gunwale, and hull to each other. I think I may need to hammer in the nails with some strong adhesive to eliminate the gap between the gunwale and deck.

(Or perhaps I should not? Maybe it is a good idea to have a tiny space to allow for expansion and contraction due to heat, cold, and moisture?) Does someone have any ideas on this?

I still need to figure out how to unscrew the very rusty screws holding the hinges to the shelf door. They are stuck fast.



Below are some random pictures showing more of the scull float after sanding.


Port Side.





Starboard side.





Thanks all for your interest and encouragement.
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Re: repairing old glass on a merrymeeting bay scull float In reply to
I think we will put some tape behind those spaces between the coaming and the side decks, and will fillet and then glass the joint. It will stiffen everything up and seal it off that way. My co-worker did this outdoor bar this weekend, and is quite pleased with how well the epoxy flowed out... it helps that is was so hot out!

I should have the epoxy supplies back this week.

You can stop and grab the plywood if you like, or bring the template and we can cut it here on the bandsaw. Though a jigsaw would work if you have that.

Dave Diefenderfer
Manassas, VA

"Once you set out to build a boat, throw away your square. And if you work on her after she's launched, throw away your level." author unknown