Delaminating rudder

Discussion in 'Wooden Boat Building and Restoration' started by newsailer, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. newsailer
    Joined: Nov 2012
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    Location: Melbourne Australia

    newsailer New Member


    I've just thrown myself in the deep end and bought a sailing dinghy and it seems that I've got a lot to learn in both sail the boat and repairing it.

    I figured I'd start with the rudder that seems to be delaminating. I've been searching the net to figure out how to fix this and have been left more confused than when I started.

    It looks like the whole boat has had a figbreglass sheet applied to it and now some parts are delaminating. On the rudder its coming off in a sheet.

    So the question is what to do? Do I remove all the fibreglass and redo it or can I cut off the bits that have come away and apply patches.

    Also what products and tools will I need?

    Also as a side question is it worth painting the whole boat, over the fibreglass, as an extra layer of protection.

    I know I'm asking a lot but any infomation would help.

    Attached Files:

  2. Landlubber
    Joined: Jun 2007
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    Landlubber Senior Member

    ....emmm, looks like the person that did the work has no idea how to do the work, it is massively resin rich, most likely polyester resin. Yep get it off the rudders, and redo with epoxy resin and class woven cloth, very light. Do not use any more resin than is needed to wet the job out, remove any excess.

    Sand the wooden rudders down with 60 or 80 grit before application. WEt the wood down with the resin mix and apply dry cloth over the wet wood coating, roll out the resin , you will expectedly need more, so add with your brush just enough to be able to roll out the cloth well, if there is excess, remove it, the cloth eave should be showing after the job is done. It can be filled later.
  3. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    Epoxy is the key. Delamination is often a result of polyester resin being used to sheathe wood. In your case this appears to be what happened.
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    That doesn't look like polyester to me (hard to tell with the quality of images), but it does look like it needs to come off, at least in several places. If it's still good an stuck, there's no sense in ripping it off and causing more damage than necessary. Grind off the delaminated areas. Grind back to good laminate and patch the areas.
  5. tunnels

    tunnels Previous Member

    Yip rip it off carefully !! and yes good epoxy resin and give the wood a good sand back to the bare wood and so the new will stick better . see what light glass you can buy !
    On a rudder blade the joins should always be towards the back of the blade !:D
  6. sean-nós
    Joined: May 2010
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    Location: Dublin,Ireland

    sean-nós Senior Member

    Yep take it off with a heat gun and scraper and cover up well with gloves and a face shield as little splinters of glass spit out as you lift it. If you try and patch it you will have a white mark where you sanded down to the cloth that will show through the finish. West systems epoxy comes with pumps that make it easy for a beginner to mix the right amount and there web site is a great help ........ 6oz or 8oz cloth will give a good transparent finish.

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

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    I don't think there's any way he'll be able to remove the whole of the sheathing and still have a surface worth finishing bright. I also don't see a need in removing more than he has to. In other words, if it's well stuck, leave it and patch it.
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