Plastic Boat Wet Foam

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by SGT Rud, May 5, 2016.

  1. SGT Rud
    Joined: May 2016
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    Regarding this project. Since its pretty much useless at this point and possibly unsafe? to have on the water. I am going to try and split the two sections of the boat, scoop the wet foam out, re-glue it back together and re-foam it. I can find a billion products online. Which product would be best suited. I know I would need closed cell. I can find a kit online with resin and activator. The two kits are 2 gallon or 2 quart. How much would I need for a boat this size? What kind of glue would you recommend to re-seal the two halves back together.

    The two halves are not riveted together, looks like the bottom had had holes drilled into its lip so that when the top was pressed on with glue, glue was pressed out of the holes. the glue was then painted over.

    Ideally, after I get the two halves back together, I would like to hoist the bow up in the air and rest the boat on its stern. Hill a hole in the bow and fill it with the foam. Would this be the best course to add the foam into the boat?
     
  2. 1blueheron
    Joined: May 2016
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    1blueheron New Member

    you eat an elephant one bite at a time. first get the boat apart and the foam out. then post some pictures of what remains.
     
  3. SGT Rud
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    Well, I've taken the three drain plugs out, well the screw in pvc housing that the plugs go into. The top shell is flush with the bottom shell through the whole center of the boat except for the live well. Means the foam is only in the two sides that resemble the pontoons. There are 4 bolts (2 front, 2 back) where the trailer chains clip on, I removed these, and they were pretty rusted out. I tilted the boat upright, and maybe 10-15 gallons of water poured out. Haven't split the two halves yet, will do that tomorrow. Might be an easier project that I originally thought.

    Also, someone told me that I could buy blocks of dock foam and carve it up to the shape that I needed, he said this would be easier than pouring in the liquid foam.
     
  4. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    If you prevent water from getting in, you don't need the foam. Additionally, if you have a reliable way to remove any water that gets in, you don't need the foam. Breaking the top to hull seal shouldn't be a big issue. A carefully used multi tool can do it, without much damage. Once apart, you'll see what you have to seal up and once sealed, the problem is solved. A drain hole or two is a good idea. Simply put, you've removed 120 pounds of water, this might be all you need, after fixing the leak points.
     
  5. SGT Rud
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    image.jpg looks like regular styrofoam. There is a very skinny slabs of wood across the floor. Had to use a flathead to hammer and pry the two halves apart. The heat gun was melting the plastic boat also.
     
  6. SGT Rud
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    The rear transom is a chunk of 2x4. It is water logged. The front is fine, but I'm about to cut and replace the rear.
     
  7. BertKu
    Joined: May 2009
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    Location: South Africa Little Brak River

    BertKu Senior Member

    I like to agree with Porta. Just to connect a vacuum cleaner on a heavy duty dimmer and drill two holes at opposite position. Weigh the boat with 4 bathroom scales. Then let it circulate the waterlogged air in the foam, may be the easiest and to do this for a couple of days, Thereafter weigh it again, as soon the weight is lower you know it works, then carry on. If not, you have not lost much, only some electricity. I am on my way back home tomorrow, love to hear what you have decided, let us know. Bert
     
  8. SGT Rud
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    Already pulled it apart. The foam is in the bed of my truck. Trying to find a dump right now. Have a new rear transom cut. Had to hose out the inside of the two shells. Waiting for that to finish drying. Need to get 4 new screws to hold the transom in, as the old ones were rusted out and have almost no threads left.
     
  9. BertKu
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    Location: South Africa Little Brak River

    BertKu Senior Member

    Sorry I was too late, I see you have already made some progress and opened the unit open. At the end it may even be better. Bert
     
  10. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Having killed a few shop vacs trying what you're suggesting, a vacuum pump is the way to go. An old A/C compressor is a good substitute if you don't have one. Even at this, I doubt you'll suck out all the moisture in the foam.

    It sounds like you've already removed the foam, which is good. Replace what you need to, put in more foam if you want or just leave the compartments open and sealed.
     
  11. SGT Rud
    Joined: May 2016
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    SGT Rud Junior Member

    It's basically one big compartment. I think the foam had some part of the structural integrity. I'll never be able to cut the new foam exactly to the size I need, so I will need some kind of spray in or pour in.

    I just installed the new rear transom. Used silicone to seal up a bunch of the cracks I seen. Also threaded the new screws holding the plate over the transom. Once I reseal the top and bottom, there will be no leaks. Have to get some kind of adhesive. Dad says its two part epoxy. Napa auto is closed today and so is the boat shop. I'm not keen on the boat shop since they told me this project was impossible for me or their professional repair shop, so I should just buy a new boat from them.
     
  12. SukiSolo
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    SukiSolo Senior Member

    Personally I'd probably get some EPS (expanded Polystyrene) cut with a hot wire to various shapes that you can stuff in the hull. Saves any aggro with 'blowing' foam and it later breaking down...and will keep the hull floating should it puncture anywhere. Either that or leave empty with a couple of hatches you can open and close, but big enough to bail water out of.

    Silicone will only be a temporary 'fix', any real through cracks should have been remelted with a propane torch or similar. This should have been easy with the two parts separated.
     
  13. Dustin Roberts
    Joined: Apr 2019
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    Location: Baton Rouge, la

    Dustin Roberts New Member

    I recently tackled a projector of a 10’ pelican bass raider that was waterlogged. It turns out the two halves had about 8 rivets and about 200 staples which was a nightmare to take apart. Now that I have it apart, the problem was the board between the two pieces of plastic! It weighed almost 70 lbs, waterlogged! The foam was totally fine.

    Now all I have to do is figure out how to put the two halves back together. I’m thinking either rivets or maybe stainless steel bolts with some adhesive between the two layers. Don’t give up on the old 2 man bass boat, if yours was in a flood like mine, it could be as easy as replacing a board that supports the floor of the boat!
     

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  14. JSL
    Joined: Nov 2012
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    JSL Senior Member

    Looks like a labor of love
     

  15. Six Pack
    Joined: Apr 2019
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    Location: Italy - Lake Como

    Six Pack Junior Member

    I believe this is "RAM-X" Material. 2 Layers of thermoplastics (potentially PE) with a layer of reinforcement fiber in between if I understand correctly. I would try to find a local company that welds thermoplastic tanks and the like and see if they can weld it together for you. Should be a job of not more than an hour.
     
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