Re-Repairing A Crack In The Hull
20 June 2008 | Oriental, NC
I've gotten pretty up and personal with Tropical Dreamer during the last few weeks. Thanks to the refit, I've explored parts of the boat I hadn't been in previously (like fuel and water tank compartments, steering works, along the hull in various places usually covered by hatches, behind wood paneling...). Among several other projects, I've sanded (with my hands and not a machine) every inch of the hull to prep it for new bottom paint. Several times over to ensure a smooth hull and good adhesion. One could not help but catch the 2 inch slight discoloration near the waterline that had evidently been repaired with marine tex or gel coat. The repair or whatever it was was now cracking at the edges and became the subject of concern around the yard. It's just not cool to embark on a long sailing voyage with questions about the integrity of the hull. A hole near the waterline can let in water under a variety of twisted scenarios, all of which will make the waterline higher and higher as more water comes into the boat, until the waterline reaches the top of the mast. So Jeff (whole 'nother story about that guy and the timber pads he still hasn't painted) drilled into it like a dentist, concluded it was a poorly repaired small impact (probably with a pylon or a nail while docked), and re-fixed it better than new with successive layers of fiberglass and resin and then a proper white gel coat. It should be finished in a day or two. Now we can all sleep better at night.