Bulkhead Repair

Discussion in 'Boatbuilding' started by ezeb1473, May 2, 2014.

  1. ezeb1473
    Joined: Mar 2008
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    Location: Long Island NY

    ezeb1473 Junior Member

    I have a 1974 35ft Viking Sportfisher. Currently the engines are removed in order the replace the 4 steel engine rails due to holes rotted thru that I can place my fist thru. While I have everything removed and full access to the space I am concerned about the two bulkheads that support the four steel engine rails and gear. I am debating if I should replace the two bulkheads or at the least the forward one. You can move the forward bulkhead fore and aft when grabbed with your hand. There is some rot and flaking of the wood in the areas where the engine rail face was secured against the bulkhead.

    The first picture is the forward bulkhead looking fore. You can see where the rails were bolted to the bulkhead.

    In the second picture you are looking at the forward side of the same bulkhead. Can see some of the wood flaking off.

    The last picture is looking along the bulkhead running from starboard to port.

    Anyone have experience with this before, that cares to chime in?
    Thanks
    Ed
     

    Attached Files:

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

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Those metal stringer caps (mild steel?) aren't the way the boat was built, but appears an after thought, probably a hope they would fix a problem. They maybe saved the work you're looking at for a few years, but now the jig is up and you need to make stringer and probably bulkhead repairs/replacements.

    If you have that much movement and punky wood, there's just no sense trying to save any of it. Cut it out and replace it. This apples to the stringers and the athwart stiffeners (bulkheads, partitions, etc.).

    They failed because the manufacture cut some corners on resin and fabric amounts used during the build, then a previous owner tried a bandaid job. You have the advantage of not requiring to build to price point, so you can use enough resin and fabrics to make this a bullet proof repair.
     
  3. ezeb1473
    Joined: Mar 2008
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    ezeb1473 Junior Member

    Those are not metal caps. Those are c-channel steel beams that were supported between two wooden bulkheads that run from the starboard side to the port side. The steel beams run fore and aft. On these the engines and gear were secured on. From what I understand that is how Viking yachts build there hulls.
     
  4. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: hawaii, usa

    kapnD Senior Member

    It's demolition time!
    Those bulkheads are toast, dont even consider reusing them, they are barely even tabbed to the hull.
    You need to have engine beds glassed directly to the hull and tied into solid bulkheads fore and aft of them that are also fully glassed to the hull.
    Its a wonder the engines are not residing in the forward cabin!
     
  5. ezeb1473
    Joined: Mar 2008
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    Location: Long Island NY

    ezeb1473 Junior Member

    In the first picture are three of the 4 steel rails that sit a foot above the bilge. The engine rails are not directly fiberglassed to the hull. There are four bolts at the fore and aft end of the rails that secure them to the bulkheads. I simply unbolted them from the bulkheads for removal.
     
  6. missinginaction
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: New York

    missinginaction Senior Member

    A long time ago I was working down in the bowels of my boat restoring rotted engine stringers and the floor that supports the aft wall of the cabin and the inside cabin sole. It looked a lot like what you're facing. I took a few minutes to find an old post that has some information you might find useful. You'll find the discussion is about stringer replacement but floors and stringers are similar in the way they are fabricated and installed. Stringers are fore and aft elements versus side to side for the floors.

    http://www.boatdesign.net/forums/fiberglass-composite-boat-building/stringer-deck-repair-29459.html
     

  7. kapnD
    Joined: Jan 2003
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    Location: hawaii, usa

    kapnD Senior Member

    Just because the boat was built that way does not make it the only way or the best way to repair it.
    I am in the habit of overbuilding structural items aboard boats in the interest of my own good name and the possibility that my customer's lives may be at stake on the integrity of my work.
    If it were in my shop, all that you show in those pictures would be coming out, and probably a lot more, as this area is indicative of the condition of the rest of the boat's structure.
     
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