Pre-project fiberglass boat structural repair planning questions

havoc_squad

Senior Chief Petty Officer
Joined
Mar 5, 2011
Messages
709
I've got a recent acquisition that I know I'm going to need to do at minimum deck replacement and very likely some stringer work. Hopefully I can avoid the transom if it escapes the rot. The transom condition currently is acting solid with no stress cracks found anywhere around the motor mounting.

It is a 1991 18ft/19ft Sunbird Barletta cuddy with good interior overall for its age with a 90 HP OMC outboard that checked out regarding the normal compression, listen test on muffs and see it shift properly. Not my first rodeo rebuilding one of those OMC crossflow powerheads if it needs it.

I got a fair for its condition but not great price given these are very hard to find in my area that are built for outboards.

Summer time is nearly at end and fall weather is fast approaching. So that means the window for fiberglass work will close very soon and will have to resume late next spring when temperatures get to the needed 70 degrees F or above.

I'm needing to figure out other than being meticulous in detail of my measurements and photographs, roughly how much pre-work I can do during the fall and winter on inspection and demolition work without causing serious issues leaving the boat deck cut out with exposed stringers.

I am not able to put this in a garage but I have a reasonably good condition boat cover. However, boat covers can cave in even with supports and thus things get wet especially under snow causing the supports to collaspe. That's why I am trying to be careful on how much I gut during the fall and winter.

In short, I'd like to get a plan together on getting as much accomplished that I can in the cold periods.

Once the plan is figured out, I'll start a restoration thread where I can go over the details.
 

airshot

Rear Admiral
Joined
Jul 22, 2008
Messages
4,427
If the stringers are bad...so will the transom be bad...sorry, but just the way it is !! Your best bet is to do some real testing so you know what will need repaired for sure.
 

havoc_squad

Senior Chief Petty Officer
Joined
Mar 5, 2011
Messages
709
If the stringers are bad...so will the transom be bad...sorry, but just the way it is !! Your best bet is to do some real testing so you know what will need repaired for sure.
I am aware of how it goes. I know there will need to be extensive inspection with several test holes and I know the percentages of how much and how likely the rot will have reached from deck to stringers to transom.

Assuming nothing here on condition.

Again, going to repeat my question, asking for experienced tips for determining how much removal do you perform while the weather is too cold for fiberglass layup?
 

JASinIL2006

Vice Admiral
Joined
Feb 10, 2012
Messages
5,566
Personally, I would get as much removal and grinding as possible during cool/cold weather. Doing the demo work when it’s warm out is really not much fun, especially when you’re wearing full Tyvek suit, respirator, rubber, gloves, etc..

Building a secure frame, so you can cover your boat during inclement weather is not impossible. You just need to take care and do a good job. I will try to get as much done so that when the weather warms again, you can just start glassing immediately.
 

stresspoint

Lieutenant Junior Grade
Joined
Sep 19, 2022
Messages
1,006
as above , building a structure that will allow you to do demo work in the cooler time is a better idea than work in in the hot .
water and other elements will not cause any problems as you will be going too bare bones anyway,
when the warmer comes a good clean up with a pressure wash, vacuum and a few days in the sun and fiber glassing will be good for a go.

your think ahead is a good move , rugging up to stay warm is easier than trying to cool down with all the clobber in the hot :).
scraps of building materials can easily be used to build a suitable structure to work under .
 

Scott Danforth

Grumpy Vintage Moderator still playing with boats
Staff member
Joined
Jul 23, 2011
Messages
47,700
The floor is the last thing to rot after the transom and stringers

Since your deck is bad, consider it a complete gut and restoration.

Plan on pulling the cap

Pull motor
Pull interior
Build cradle
Pull cap
Fire up sawzall
 
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