Questions about Wet Core, Bulwarks, Stanchions, Headliner etc

Discussion in 'Main Morgan 38 Sailboat Forum' started by NorthChannel, May 28, 2017.

  1. NorthChannel

    NorthChannel Member

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    I have a couple of dumb questions. I have owned my 382 one season and am still feeling my way around. My previous boat did not have bulwarks and did not have a headliner (Alberg 30). Anyway, I have a leak down that runs down the inside of the hull about a foot back from the edge of the quarter berth. Now I know water can travel a long way, but it looks like the most likely culprit is either the stanchion which is mounted into the bulwark, the stanchion support directly into the deck, the deck drain, or the fuel or water fills. Perhaps the fixed port, but I think I could see that.

    Any way, my headliner has screws that appear to hold it up in places where there is no trim to do the function. A couple of questions:

    One, is it pretty easy to drop the headliner under the side decks to see where the intrusion is?

    Also, to rebed the hardware, I assume that once the headliner is dropped there is access to the backing plates and bolts. Is this correct?

    Finally, are the bulwarks solid and the stanchions just screwed in or is there a hollow cavity up there with backing plates and bolts for the stanchions? Would seem to me that this should be the case.

    Any wisdom or experience would be appreciated.

    Brian Zinser
     
  2. dave_a

    dave_a Dave Ahlers

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    The headliner comes down easily. Over time, the screws lose their bite in the trim wood. When you pull down the fiberboard you will see the wood grid work where you can screw the panel up. The challenge in my boat was the forward edge. Glue or glass a wood ledger to start over, so the screws can "bite". Some owners fab a new panel from home store sheet goods. Some good additional storage opportunities under the deck coming if you're creative. You might want to rebed, clean and service your starboard primary winches while you're in there. No headliner makes access to the winch base nuts easy.

    As to the leak: my boat leaked there from the deck scupper. Morgan (or PO) glassed in a PVC 90deg fitting to the deck drain. IMHO, a poor practice. I smeared some 5200 on the deck side (under the grate) and it worked as a temp repair. My real plan was to re-glass the whole area, and put a 90 deg. brass fitting in there. Treat it like a thru hull installation but that would be a major project.

    I can't answer your stanchion / bulwark question. It's not solid, not sure if there's bolts or screws on the stanchions.
    Dave
     
  3. NorthChannel

    NorthChannel Member

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    Thanks Dave for the information. I plan to dig into it later this week. Fortunately, the leak is very small.
     
  4. scupper

    scupper Vern Gliot

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    The stanchion base's are bolted through the bulwark. Stbd side easier to get to. Port side is a pain. Your leak hopefully is from the deck scupper. I had a leak there and also leaks from genoa track. Ended up removing cap rail on both sides. The original sealant was in pretty poor condition. But it's an old boat and that is expected.
    Vern
     
  5. NorthChannel

    NorthChannel Member

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    Thanks Vern for the information on the stanchion bases. I was planning on rebedding all of the deck hardware. Looks like it will be sooner than later.
     
  6. terry_thatcher

    terry_thatcher Terence Thatcher

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    Unfortunately, the stanchions have no backing plates. And at least on my boat, the way they installed interior caulking makes the nuts hard to remove. Good luck. Use butyl tape, rather than one of the soft caulking when you do it.
    I had a leak in the same spot and it turned out to be coming in the waste deck plate, running down under the deck. The deck plates are not bolted, just screwed and mine had screws going into the plywood. Not good and it took me years to track it all down. In the end, I had to replace about 3 square feet of the deck core, because the deck plate leak had migrated and rotted the core. The deck plates should be through solid fiberglass, but the final construction and core placement was flawed and allowed the screws to go into the core.
     
  7. NorthChannel

    NorthChannel Member

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    Terry, thanks for the response. Will try to do some testing this weekend. I already know that my core is wet for about 4-5 square feet on both sides. Discounted into the purchase price. Did you do your repair from underneath? Rolf Peterson had his done in Superior, WI and I have talked to them. Not an immediate concern if I can stop the intrusion of water.
     
  8. terry_thatcher

    terry_thatcher Terence Thatcher

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    We did it from the top. Easier because lots of cabinetry in the way. And I was redoing my nonskid anyway.
     
  9. mpearson

    mpearson Mark Pearson Staff Member

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    Brian - how did this repair go? I had a little water seeping out of a tiny crack just forward of the scupper. Starboard side. Got a moisture meter and I appear to have several square ft of wet core foreword of the scupper. I’m not keen on cutting into the deck so I am considering removing the headliner above the nav station and repairing from below instead. This is Starboard side only. Appear to have no problem on Port.

    But trying to figure out the source of the water first, since repairing it doesn’t do much good if there is still a water source.

    Prime Suspects:
    1. The stanchion bases in the area
    2. the water & waste deck port plates -sounds like Terry tracked his down to this
    3. the inside genoa track screws/holes
    4. the scupper - although the moist area appears to be ‘uphill’ (forward) from the scupper which makes it less likely, IMHO.
    The bulwarks/toe railing looks very solid & sealed. I also realize it could be a combination of the above suspects.

    Any pictures, descriptions, advise or tips that anyone has would be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks!
    -Mark
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2019
  10. rickdowe2

    rickdowe2 Richard Dowe

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    Morning Mark, in my post about the charcoal vent I showed a picture of the deck connections for the black water tank pumpout. The manufacturer never sealed the wood after drilling the hole. That would be my guess.
    Rick
     
  11. mpearson

    mpearson Mark Pearson Staff Member

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    Thanks, Rick. I missed the photos of your water & waste ports on the Charcoal post:
    https://www.morgan38.org/morgan38/index.php?threads/charcoal-vented.15604/

    The 1st photo looks like it is solid fiberglass, and the second one looks like there is at least some wood coring in there, but part of it looks solid too. Is that your recollection?

    Since this was also a water source for Terry, it makes them my #1 suspect. I’m going to do some more digging hopefully this weekend.
     
  12. rickdowe2

    rickdowe2 Richard Dowe

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    Hi Mark, the first photo was after I added epoxy and redrilled the hole slightly smaller. The other picture of the hole with the wood exposed is how both deck connections looked after digging out the wood. I also drilled and tapped the holes for machine threads and sealed with butyl caulking.
    I should have put the pictures in more of an order with explanations.
    Rick
     
  13. terry_thatcher

    terry_thatcher Terence Thatcher

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    mark, working from below will be hard, I think. Too much cabinetry in the way. My shipwright cut the deck open, replaced the core, and re-glassed the deck. He can get a good match of gelcoat colors from his supplier.
     
  14. mpearson

    mpearson Mark Pearson Staff Member

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    Hi Terry - was yours on the starboard side? Mine is, and I don’t think I’ll need to move cabinetry. I could be wrong. I’m going to email you ... curious who your shipwright is.
     

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