the deck on my Pearson Ensign

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by LeRi222, Apr 2, 2010.

  1. seasailor55
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: Lake Charles, LA.

    seasailor55 Senior Member

    "After that, 10 oz cloth set in epoxy and three coats min. neat epoxy over the deck and a couple of interior coats of the same."

    Alan,

    Please excuse my ignorance, but what is neat epoxy, and when you mention a couple of interior coats of the same, would you use the 10 oz cloth in the interior also, or just epoxy and paint?

    seasailor55
     
  2. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    Neat is like whiskey--- without any other ingredients. No need to use cloth inside. Plywood needs a tough surface to resist wear on the outside but epoxy alone is more than enough protection inside where there's no weather or foot traffic.
     
  3. Paul B

    Paul B Previous Member

    You need to do some reading and research and be careful not to follow what you read on the internet as gospel.

    For example: Your boat is pretty small. You might have a look around and find that 1/2" plywood for the deck just might be gross overkill for your application, especially if you were to use framing on 12" centers.
     
  4. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Stumble Senior Member

    Seasailor,

    If you run into any problems specific to the Ensign, I would highly recommend getting in touch with Benz Faget at North Sails in Metairie LA. He is a 11 time Ensign Nationals champ and is in the process of trying to build a fleet of them here in New Orleans. Really nice guy, helpful, and knows the boat inside and out.
     
  5. alan white
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    alan white Senior Member

    I agree. 3/8" would be adequate.
    You know, Paul, even though you're a giant negative assh*le, I still have to admit you are right. You are right by a full 1/8".
    Now, why don't you spec out the job yourself. Since you can't help but find fault in the most microscopic places, it only makes sense that everyone hears how you would do it. And then I'll critique your design and ask a lot of detailed questions. Let's see how good you really are. I think you have to look things up.
     
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  6. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    1/4" plywood will be fine and preferred on an Ensign, for it's weight, particularly with this beam spacing and if bonded to them. 3/8" ply for the seat tops is good. Naturally, this means at least a BS-6566 sheet of plywood or it will not be strong enough. Okoume would be the choice, though difficult to find in 6566, so settle for Meranti (Hydrocore).

    Seasailor55, you'd be best advised to download the user's and product guides from www.westsystem.com and www.systemthree.com. These will nurse you though the methods and techniques that you'll be preforming and also familiarize you with the materials and products available. The Gougeon boatbuilding reference is much more then necessary for a repair like this and much of the information wholly inappropriate for this boat.

    I didn't get into this discussion from the beginning, but a question I'd ask would be "is the fore deck soft?" The next question is the integrity of the cabin bulkhead, both of these are common issues with the older Ensigns. Other issues are rotten king planks and naturally the cockpit furniture. Should be quite an adventure for a teenager.
     
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  7. seasailor55
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: Lake Charles, LA.

    seasailor55 Senior Member

    The deck and cabin are gone. Someone removed the original fiberglass deck at some point in the past and replaced it with untreated plywood, fiberglass sheathing, tar paper, epoxy putty, pressure treated pine 1x4 planking with nylon rope and latex caulking between the planks, along with hundreds of stainless screws. It leaked, was rotted in several areas and quite frankly was ugly (no crown to the deck, boxy half cabin, etc.)

    We took a sawzall to the whole thing, which is why I inquired regarding construction of a new wooden deck, cabin, and cockpit. Fiberglass Ensign decks are as hard to find as hen's teeth (believe me, I've been searching for one for months) unless you spend 5K (plus shipping) for a new one from Ensign Spars. This boat is for a non-profit youth sailing program, (as in limited budget, do as much of the work as we can ourselves, donated materials if possible, etc.) I don't mind doing the labor, as restoring old sailboats is my hobby but I'd like to do a nice job that is strong, presentable, functional, and durable.

    The cabin bulkhead is toast. It is rotted at the bottom, and was sawn off at deck level before I got the boat. That will need to be replaced, too. No cockpit furniture, unless you count squared off treated 1x4 pine "benches" as furniture. I realize that all this sounds like mission impossible and impractical for a 47 year old boat, but I really like Ensigns and the boat has a good hull, rig, complete set of sails, outboard, trailer, winches, opening ports, and boxes of spare parts that were donated along with it.

    Thank you for the advice regarding the the plywood and the epoxy materials. I've done quite a bit of fiberglass repair, sailed and maintained boats for years, and done my fair share of woodworking, but never tackled complete from scratch wooden decks, cabins and bulkheads.

    BTW, I'm not a teenager. That was another member who was also seeking advice about restoring a 1963 Ensign.

    "The best bilge pump is a frightened man with a horse bucket!"
     
  8. Paul B

    Paul B Previous Member

    You seem to be angry with me for helping the guy who had a question and was given questionable advice.

    I can see why you would be embarassed. Where you might see an additional 1/8” you could also think of it as an excess 33% in material weight and cost, let alone the ease of working with the thinner material.

    Of course it is possible you work from the “if you don’t know how to tie knots tie lots of ‘em” school. In that case 1/2” or even 5/8” ply would be fine..on YOUR boat.


    Is your pal PAR an expletive for pointing out your spec was double what he thinks is required? I would probably be just as embarassed if I missed a spec by 100%.


    Look things up? What, use book larnin’?

    I look things up all the time, everyday. In this case I didn’t need to. FYI, my boat is much larger and more loaded than an Ensign and we used 6mm ply for the deck on similarly spaced framing. I'll let you look up the conversion of that metric dimension.
     
  9. Stumble
    Joined: Oct 2008
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    Stumble Senior Member

    Sea,

    I took a look, and sail ready ensigns are selling as cheap at $700 if you are willing to go pick them up.

    The more I think of your project the more convinced I am that the amount of work it would take to restore ths boat probably isn't justified relative to the cost of something else. Particularly since you don't sound concerned with having a race ready boat for the one design class.

    To be honest I think your best bet would be to part out the hardware that you don't need, and take that money and buy something that is ready to go now.
     
  10. seasailor55
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    seasailor55 Senior Member

    Stumble,

    That thought has certainly crossed my mind many times, and I've seen similar discussions on other forums: (i.e. "Use the PI formula -whatever you think your project will take, multiply the time and cost by 3.14". "It doesn't make sense to pour time and money into a 50 year old design when you could go buy a used Sonar or a J-22 ready to go for $8000", etc.)

    With new ones costing $27,000 to $30,000 without a trailer, I wish I could find an Ensign for $700. It would be worth it just for parts. I've searched e-bay, Craiglist, etc. for Ensigns or Electras and I haven't run across any at close to that price, except for a Hurricane Ike victim that sold last year at salvage for $35 after being sunk and dismasted. (Missed the auction, sorry to say)

    I guess I could just part it out and look for something else, but I've already informed the sailing program group that we would get the boat finished and back in the water. They're looking forward to learning, sailing, and racing it. Even if we don't plan on a full one design race campaign, I'm sure they'll want to "informally" race almost everything in the boat's class when out and the opportunity presents itself!

    Besides, I hope to build a boat someday, and rebuilding part of a well designed small boat seems like a reasonable path that's within my abilities and time schedule. But maybe I'm a little naive about all of this.


    "The best bilge pump is a frightened man with a horse bucket!"
     
  11. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    alan white Senior Member

    I'm already sorry I didn't erase the post. What is the benefit in telling you something you already must know about yourself--- that rather than constructive help, you always insult or attempt to insult anyone who has offered to help already. You never simply add your opinion innocuously.

    Any case, while I very much respect PAR's knowledge and almost always agree with him, I would not install 1/4" plywood for the deck. For one thing, I like good holding if using screws (though ring shank bronze nails would work with thinner stuff). I like screws though, stainless screws are available anywhere and the nails are not, and 3/8" has enough depth to allow a countersunk screw head to hold well.
    But I'm not going to insult PAR just because we do things a little differently. The Ensign is somewhere around 3500# displacement and while 1/4" plywood would work, I feel that 3/8" at about twice the stiffness will better absorb dropping an anchor or a jumping sailor. In addition, the thicker plywood will fair better. At its widest, I bet the deck is seven feet, and (from memory) probably at least ten feet long. I see 1/4" plywood (for a deck) as belonging to a class of smaller and lighter boats. Certainly this "overkill" is harmless enough for its 4.5 or whatever lbs extra weight! Add a solar vent? No backer needed to mount it or any similar item.
    Notice, Paul, that PAR disagreed with me and yet didn't add, "So don't believe what "some people" (Alan) say on the internet".
    not because we are in collusion, but because we are respectful of others and do not need to build ourselves up by dressing down others publicly.
    I apologize for calling you an assh*le, by the way. It's not my style, as you know, but hey, we all have our moments.
     
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  12. BobBill
    Joined: Oct 2009
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    Location: Minnesotan wakes up daily, in SE MN, a good start,

    BobBill Senior Member

    Ensign Refurnbish

    No doubt contacting the NOLA sailor is excellent advice and Par's assessments are always keen. I had one for a time and this boat does not sound like the one I sailed. Pics say much.
     
  13. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
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    alan white Senior Member

  14. seasailor55
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: Lake Charles, LA.

    seasailor55 Senior Member

    FYI,

    Pearson Ensign:

    Displacement: 3000 lbs
    Ballast: 1200 lbs
    L.O.A.: 22'6"
    L.W.L.: 16'9"
    Beam: 7'0"
    Draft: 3'0"
    Foredeck: 6'0" from bow to front of cabin
    Cabin: 5'0" from cabin front to aft bulkhead, 4' across to 5' across
    Rear deck: 2'6" from forward bulkhead to stern, 5' beam tapering to 4'
    Side decks: 6" alongside cockpit
    Mast height: 32' step to masthead
    Sail area: 201 (Main and working jib)
    226 (Main and blade jib)
    251 (Main and #2 genoa)
    290 (Main and #1 genoa)
    375 (Spinnaker)
     

  15. seasailor55
    Joined: Oct 2010
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    Location: Lake Charles, LA.

    seasailor55 Senior Member

    Alan,

    I can tell I'll be visiting that website frequently.

    Thanks again for the excellent advice and comments.

    Seasailor
     
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