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Old 06-03-2010, 11:58 AM   #1
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Default Stringers, moisture & delamination

Well the 1998, 30' SCR we were looking at failed on the survey. The stringers in the engine compartment were very moist and in some places the fiberglass had delaminated from the wood. We stopped the survey and decided it was not worth the time and money to conduct the haul out. See my last post under "Sounder Problems". Needless to say there was plenty of disappointment to go around since the boat appeared to be a good catch given some of the amenities such as the Garmin 3210 integrated radar/GPS.

I am interested in learning from forum members any experience with stringers going bad, delamination, and anything related to this. The repairs appear to be rather time consuming and expensive given what needs to be done, i.e. pulling engines, outdrives, opening existing fiberglass, digging out and replacing wood core, re-fiber glassing, etc. Conversely, it appears very expensive and risky to ignore.

Because we did not do the haul out, we were not able to check the hull for moisture. On the transom we did get a positive moisture reading between the engines. Additionally you could see where two bolts, the bolts that hold the transom zinc, had been pulled into the fiberglass.

At this time we are not pursuing this boat. We have one other identical boat that we have seen plus a 30 Cruiser, both of which we may revisit.

Thank you.
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Old 06-03-2010, 01:35 PM   #2
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Though I have no first hand experience, from what I've read and can easily surmise, it is an expensive and time consumming proposition to find all the wet wood and replace it. It's doable of course, and if the repairs are done correctly they are sound.

That SCR you looked at must have been seriously neglected, the warning signs it must have offered the owner were ignored. You mentioned the zinc being pulled into the FG. When I drilled into the transom of my boat to install trim tabs I found the wood core to be approx 2" thick and I suspect it would be a similar thickness on that SCR. For the wood to have absorbed that much moisture to the point it would collapse would suggest to me on-going, long term, water intrusion that was left unaddressed. The entire transom would have to be cut off and replaced. It's quite likely that other issues would be found once it was opened up. Then there's the amount of time needed to make such repairs.

If you can purchase such a boat for half its normal market value, and if the cost of the repairs + cost of the boat don't end up exceeding its market value, one might do alright.

But why bother? There are so many good, structurally sound, boats on the market they render that SCR almost un-sellable. I'd run quickly away from any boat that was carrying around hundreds of pounds of absorbed water. I'd much rather replace an engine or two, have the seats recovered, or add electronics and amenities than deal with structural problems.

Keep at the search MM, you'll find one.

Dan
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