Thought you all might be interested to see my progress on replacing the cabin finish floor in my 1994 3200 SCR.
For a 23-year-old boat, the finishes have all held up remarkably well. But the carpet on the main cabin floor was getting worn and the wood floor by the galley had been water-damaged from numerous freezer defrostings leaking onto it over the years. It was starting to look a bit ratty.
I thought it would look better and be more practical if it was all one material instead of being divided into part wood and part carpet. I like the wood look, but don't want real wood floors in a boat (wood and water don't mix). So settled on wood-appearance heavy-duty strip vinyl as a reasonable substitute. It looks a lot like a wood floor, goes down easy, and (most importantly) is 100% waterproof.
The first step was ripping up the old floor.
I thought this was going to be a one-day project. That turns out not to be the case, and the demo of the existing floor is the reason. The carpet came up relatively easy, though the pad was glued down and had to be scraped off in little chunks.
The wood galley floor, on the other hand, was a real pain to get out. If you're considering doing this yourself, be aware that it's going to take a LOT of elbow grease.
The wood strips which make the finish surface are glued down onto a piece of subflooring, which is in turn glued down directly on the plywood-fiberglass sole below. The first layer of glue is not very sticky. But the glue between the subfloor and sole bulhead is another story. Maxum was not kidding around when they installed this stuff. I had to chisel it out in small pieces, which took five hours and broke TWO heavy-duty chisel knives.
You can see the subfloor about halfway out here. Notice all the little pieces of subflooring broken off in flakes as I had to chisel under the heavy lines of thick black marine adhesive holding the thing down. This picture was taken 4 hours into a 1-hour project which ultimate took 6.
After a lot of cursing, hammering, and sweat, I managed to get it all up and hauled off to the dumpster. The final bare sole is exposed here:
You can see in both those pictures that there is a bilge compartment access hatch under where the carpet used to be. It's stapled shut and I didn't really want to get down in there. I figured if nobody had looked down there for 23 years, it could probably wait another couple decades barring an emergency. But I am a little curious what its purpose is.
You can also see how much of that black glue was under the subfloor. A LOT. It was bonded permanently to both surfaces and had the consistency of vulcanized rubber. I didn't so much chisel it off as cut THROUGH it with the hammer and chisel very close to the surface of the sole bulkhead.
The good news is that this part is done. So up next I'll be epoxy-patching a couple of spots where the glue chiseling pulled some of the fiberglass off the plywood sole, then installing the vinyl plank floor down over all of it.
I am planning to glue down the new floor, just to keep it from moving around, but this experience has me thinking I'd better use something a little less intense than 3M marine adhesives, just in case I ever do need to get to that hatch again.
The plan is to put in the new floor this weekend. I'll post more pics and an update when I've got them.