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removing flotation foam ( to replace it)

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removing flotation foam ( to replace it)
So I have a canoe that has managed to absorb water in the flotation foam over the winter. I want to remove it and re-pour with closed cell. Does anyone know of a chemical way to remove the old style foam? I can cut it open and pull it out but its going to be a mess and I would like to avoid it.

Thanks,
Brandon

p.s. Yes I am still alive. I check in from time to time but don't have any decoys to share.

"UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."

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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Brandon Yuchasz wrote:
So I have a canoe that has managed to absorb water in the flotation foam over the winter. I want to remove it and re-pour with closed cell. Does anyone know of a chemical way to remove the old style foam? I can cut it open and pull it out but its going to be a mess and I would like to avoid it.

Thanks,
Brandon

p.s. Yes I am still alive. I check in from time to time but don't have any decoys to share.



Acetone will dissolve most foams,,,,,,,,,,,, however,,,,,,,,,, it will make a way bigger mess than the mess you wish to avoid. Try some on a small sample and you will see what I mean. Might be able to see acetone/ foam results on a you tube video.

Is it an aluminum canoe? reason I ask is a power washer does a respectable job of slicing thru old foam as long as you are not cutting thru the substrate at the same time.

Take care, Huntindave McCann Smile SHELL ROCK IA “As sailors grow older, the wiser ones move to smaller boats.” —Thomas Firth Jones, Multihull Voyaging

Last edited by:

Huntindave McCann: Aug 8, 2019, 3:39 PM
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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
It's a fiberglass. Thanks for the warning on melting it.

"UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."

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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Brandon Yuchasz wrote:
It's a fiberglass. Thanks for the warning on melting it.


You should be good to use a power washer on a glass hull without risk of damage. Although the high pressure may also expose any chopper gun voids in the layup. There may be no gel coat in the areas with foam.

Take care, Huntindave McCann Smile SHELL ROCK IA “As sailors grow older, the wiser ones move to smaller boats.” —Thomas Firth Jones, Multihull Voyaging
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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Ill give it a try. Thanks.

"UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."

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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Brandon~


Good to see you back!


I've always used just a sharp putty knife. I keep a big garbage bag handy AND my shop vac.


Not sure where your foam is on the canoe. On mine that have "sealed" chambers bow and stern, I always install Beckson deck plates - for easy access and future monitoring.


Be sure to pour the new foam (2 lbs/cu. ft) when you still have warm weather. Stand the canoe on its end each time. Also, do a few small pours - not one big one - to avoid damage.



All the best,


SJS

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


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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Thanks Steve. I was working on it this afternoon sanding to repair the keel and thinking about the foam. I had settled on cutting a hatch into the chamber to access it.

"UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."

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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Brandon~


I use the 4-inch Becksons. Note that they need to be bedded in a silicone - and not 3M 5200.


All the best,


SJS

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


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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Silicone is essentially my last choice as a sealant for a fiberglass to plastic mastic bond. Good electrical sealant IF you ventilate the space while it is curing. It leaches over time into the laminate in the surrounding area, making it impossible to paint and it actually doesn't bond all that well, as well as having a relatively short life-span prior degradation and need for replacement, which, now obligates you to use only silicone, since nothing else will stick.

https://goodoldboat.com/sealant/

Last edited by:

RLLigman: Aug 12, 2019, 5:19 AM
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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Good morning, Ric~


hmmm....I'm not sure what you're saying here. The excellent article you reference points to silicone for my deck plate-to-'glass bulkead application. As the article correctly interprets, it functions as a gasket, with mechanical fasteners (usually s/s screws) doing the hard work. If I recall correctly, I first used silicone on the advice of Beckson. I also use it for nylon cleats - I believe on the advice of 3M.



All the best,


SJS

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


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Re: removing flotation foam ( to replace it) In reply to
Pretty self-explanatory...I did not state never use it, but seldom use it, particularly on fiberglass. I would opt for an elastomeric compound in both your cleat and Beckson deck plate examples. The surrounding fiberglass will continue to hold paint and still be sealed a couple of decades down-the-road.

Here in the Great Lakes, a sizeable number of Cannon downrigger circuit boards have been fried by silicone out-gassing during the cure process when it was applied to the side plates...per the previous owner's recommendations when their owners replaced their power supply cords due to UV rot.