boat help!?!? please? fiberglass bass boat

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by nlange, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. nlange
    Joined: Feb 2009
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    Location: white bear lake, Mn

    nlange New Member

    Hi im new to this but i just have a few questions that may lead to a lot. I just recently bought a boat but i did not relize that the back of the boat is cracked on the left side where the motor mounts right next to the transom. I have a picture to show you that ill attach. But the boat i bought for fishing, its a bass boat so it sits really close to the water so i belive that part is pretty much underwater. Is that pretty bad?is the water going in the cracks and ruining anything? The boat is fiberglass also. its also a 1979 but looks new sort of. I like it alot and i got a really good deal on the boat all i need is to fix the 120 horse i got on her to get her going for opener this spring. I just need to know if thats bad?, if its a hard fix?, if youd have a ball park range on how much it would get fixed by somone, if my motor is going to fall off if i gun it across the lake, and also if i could do it myself if its bad, well if you guys think its bad or not? i hope its not bad but take a look. Thanks!
     

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    Last edited: Feb 23, 2009
  2. nlange
    Joined: Feb 2009
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    Location: white bear lake, Mn

    nlange New Member

    i dont know how to add another pic but i can make a new thread and post more if you guys dont get where the motor mounts on. but i hope these pics help. let me know. thanks much!!
     
  3. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    It would appear your transom needs a new core, but you need to perform a simple test.

    With the engine locked in the up or down position, lift on the lower leg. Yep, it's heavy, but you'll have a fair bit of leverage, now look at the mounting bolts. What you're looking for is puckering, dimples and movement as you lift up on the engine. The mount should be rock solid, zero movement, etc.

    If there is any movement, puckers or dimples, you need to check further. This requires the engine off the boat. It's not hard to pull an engine, just disconnect the cables, wires and stuff then using a engine hoist (preferred) or a come-a-long attached to a handy tree branch, snatch it right off the transom.

    The holes for the lower mounting bolts need to be checked. Stick your finger in there (one of the holes). You've had your finger in worse places, get over it. If the inside of the hole is wet, soft and gooey, then it's very likely your transom is shot and its core needs to be replaced. On a boat the age of yours it's a very common issue. It's a nasty, dirty, itchy job, but you can do it if you're reasonably handy. Use the search thingie on this site and look up transom replacement. There are many previous threads covering the problem and associated issues.
     
  4. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Colonial "Sick Africa"

    Fanie Fanie

    Par is far too subtle with this.

    On the inside drill some holes in the transom in various places, about 16mm dia. Don't drill right through.

    The transom inside must be hard and dry everywhere. If it is not, you may have to replace it. Easy to seal again with resin and glassfiber powder mixed.

    His description of what is involved is about right. If you do not fix it you may get a nasty surprise. If the transom breaks the motor may break free and become a life threatening shredder besides that everything could sink.

    There is one up side to all this. If you do it right, you could save a bit of weight there besides have a reliable transom.
     
  5. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I was trying to be nice Fanie, these are his first posts. Actually you don't have to drill a bunch of holes, you can drill just one.

    If the transom shows signs of puckers, bulges or softness when lifting the motor, don't bother with the holes, you need a new transom core.

    If still not sure, then drill one hole about an inch above the transom drain and check to see if the core is punky, wet and soft. You'll know punky when your finger hits it and it doesn't feel good, considering the core is supposed to be rock hard. If you have had some leaking into the core from anywhere, motor mount holes, leaking cap, shot bedding, etc., the moisture will eventually drain to the bottom of the transom and this is where the core will remain soaked, rotting and spoiling your weekend plans.

    It's possible you could find a dry spot above the drain hole from drilling just a single hole, but it would be fairly rare.

    I'll bet you'll see the transom moving around a good bit when you lift the engine up. These cracks don't show up until things start "swimming" around inside the hull shell forming all sorts of stress risers.
     
  6. Fanie
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    Location: Colonial "Sick Africa"

    Fanie Fanie

    nlange,

    Par is just too nice.

    You're going to start this fiberglassing thing and you're going to get full of glass, you're going to itch, start scratching, sweat, swear and carry the stuff into the house in your clothes. The wife is going to hate it and pretty soon she is going to leave you.

    It's something in fiberglass that when it comes into contact with men they get addicted to the bloody stuff. When it comes into contact with wiemen they want to move away from it.

    If you get exposed to it enough then pretty soon you are going to lose your marbles all together and start building boats like the rest of the lunies on this forum :rolleyes:

    Now that you have been warned, what's holding you back :D Fix the boat up and go fishing. It's good for you ;)
     
  7. nlange
    Joined: Feb 2009
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    Location: white bear lake, Mn

    nlange New Member

    thanks so much for the replys and the help! i plan on doing it myself if it needs to be done. I have not yet checked if the transom gives at all once i move the motor because we just got a ton of snow. once i thought it all melted it comes back. but if it is bad i will take off the motor and do that drilling or just check the existing holes but would i have to cut the WHOLE like flat back part of the boat. the hole back part down to the hull, top to bottom? then like cut that inhalf? and then put some plywood and apoxy it all back together? ill post another pic of the boat later on in the week to explain more on what i mean by the whole back of the boat.
     

  8. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    There are a few different approaches you can take to repairing a transom. Some, you cut the outside skin, others the inside skin, but all include exposing the core, so you can hack the rotted mess out of there.

    Your boat is too old to have a full liner, so a pour in transom, which will eventually get suggested, will not work, without a fair amount of additional structural 'glass work (building a complete inner skin, that is well tabbed into the hull shell, with sufficient thickness to participate in a sandwich laminate).

    This leaves you with core replacement of plywood (what's already there) or other material (foam, honeycomb, etc.).

    My usual recommendation is plywood and quite simply because it's easy to find, easy to work with, easy to understand and less costly then other methods. The original plywood core lasted 30 years, so you'll get at least another 30 out of it, which isn't bad. If you use better materials and technique then the manufacture (which is pretty easy to do with modern resins) then it'll last longer. So, how long do you want to own this boat?

    Sweep the snow off your boat and have a good look see or wait until spring. You see, I have to remember people have winter. Where I'm at it's in the 70's and we can work outside all year long. Yea, I know it sucks, but someone has to do it.
     
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