Hobie Forums

H18 deck crack
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Author:  sejarboe [ Tue May 08, 2012 10:59 pm ]
Post subject:  H18 deck crack

I found a crack in the deck between the inspection port and the crossbar. Wondering if it can be fixed well and how. Starts at the porthole and goes about 2" toward cross bar. When the boat is moving it opened up to 1/32" or slightly more. Flexes when pushed on. There are other small cracks that partially circle around the porthole but I believe they are just in the gelcoat.

I'm thinking I could put 4 or 5 layers of glass under all around the porthole from the inside, then grind out anything lose from the top, glass and gelcoat?

Also, I have wrinkles on the deck glass on the inside deck just behind forward crossbar. Was told they are due to stress from overloading and hull will eventually fail. Can I do something about it at the same time? (When it's blowing 25-35 I put 3 or even 4 of us on and scream along having a blast.)

I'm wondering if it will help to add a few layers of glass on the inside all around the crossbar attachment area - deck and sides? Or should I spend my time looking for a good set of hulls?

(Sorry no photos yet. Can't see how to attach them.)


Author:  srm [ Wed May 09, 2012 8:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: H18 deck crack

Yes, you have the right idea about how to fix the cracks in around the porthole. The laminate is pretty thin in that area and eventually it cracks from flexing (especially if you have the old style pop-out hatches). I have some similar cracks on my older boat. I would suggest you grind out the cracks from the top of the deck, then glass and gelcoat. If you want to make it extra strong, you can add glass inside the hull too, but I'd do the outside repair first as it will be easier.

As far as deformation in the hull behind the front crossbar, I would repair the wrinkles (pics would be good), but wouldn't be overly concerned with it. The highest stress on the hull is at the front crossbar and the area in front of it. Behind the crossbar is much less stressed. I would just keep an eye on it. And yes, there are ways that you can reinforce the hull, do a search on this site. Adding the upgraded crossbar anchor plates is the best thing you can do (if not already done).


Author:  sejarboe [ Wed May 09, 2012 7:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: H18 deck crack

Here's some photos.

Can see the wrinkles top left, crack is about 11:00 next to porthole. Other presumably superficial gelcoat cracks various places around.


Close-up of wrinkles, crack seen on the right.


Close-up of the crack.


I put the crossbar anchor plates on both inboard and outboard bolts of the crossbar on both hulls when I bought the boat new in 1988. I don't know when the wrinkles occurred - they've been there as long as I can remember. I also have the plates on the outboard bolts of the rear crossbar as of 2 years ago when the hulls cracked there.

I had also replaced the pop-up covers with the screw-in almost immediately. But it is right where crew normally ends up sitting.

Sure hope I can repair and get a few more years from her. Then it will be worth a new set of sails. Love the 18!

Author:  srm [ Thu May 10, 2012 4:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: H18 deck crack

My '85 had a crack around the porthole in almost the exact same spot. I ground it out and glassed it, seems fine. The whole port hole area is a little flexible and could probably use some reinforcement after 27 years.

I doubt the wrinkles are a real big deal. My boat has some waves in the deck in that general area too, although not as severe. I always assumed they happened when the crossbar bolts were tightened down hard. I doubt they're really much to worry about, but if you're concerned, the first thing I would do would be a coin tap test to check for delam. The other thing would be to sand back the gelcoat to see if the glass is fractured. It would be a pretty easy spot to reinforce both inside and out.


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