The season starts ….. or not, depending on how you look at it. What work has been done over the winter, new raymarine auto helm, new wireless radar, new wind generator with mppt controller, various re-wiring and new switch panels – notably a switch on each usb socket as the 12v to 5 v converters draw power even if nothing is plugged in.
You would think we were all set to sail … alas not just yet. When the pole mounts for the old radar and wind generator were removed there were signs of trouble ….
Investigation of the bolt holes on the deck side revealed there was ‘balsa rot’, initial thoughts of pouring epoxy into the holes to fill the void were soon dispelled after reading arround and finding the options were to remove the upper deck or the underside to replace the balsa. In a nutshell the advantage of removing te upper deck is ease of working particularly in re laminating. The drawback being you have to re-gelcoat and replace whatever anti slip surface you have. The advantage of removing the underside is you don’t have to worry about the cosmetic appearance of the deck, the major drawback is having to work and laminate upside down.
A Tramex moisture meter was purchased and it seemed to indicate extensive damp or wet readings. Every effort was made to consider how such readings could be false, e.g. from metal plates etc. Sadly as these were removed the meter almost joyfully and certainly beeped to reaffirm its initial view.
So what do you do with a big problem, break it down into a smaller one ….. lets start with the pads under the legs.
A hole saw was used to explore, yep that definitely rotten balsa 🙁 . The interesting thing was the amount of effort required to separate the laminate from the wet balsa …. not easy. All the you tube videos and text books appear to make light of that step.
The next step was to cut back to dry, well relatively dry balsa. The first image below shows the partial removal of the balsa from the starboard side. The second image shows the work so far on the port side.
So if anyone thinks we are sat with a G and T, you might be right but not in the setting you might imagine …. I have spent several days in my new home below and expect that will extend to weeks … if not months 🙂