Hunter Sailboat Fiberglass Damage

This is about a Hunter Sailboat that was in an accident with another sailboat. One day, a Hunter Sailboat was sitting at the dock minding its own business, while another sailboat was pulling into the dock, when all of a sudden, the owner of the second sailboat lost control, running his anchor into the side of the Hunter.

So the owner of the Hunter Sailboat started checking out repair shops in the upper NY area to take care of his boat, after the insurance company settled the claim. He was ready to give it to one repair shop, until he started asking questions. This particular shop promised him a beautiful repair job. "You'll never know it was hit," is what he was told.

Then the Hunter owner asked a question about the non-skid pattern on top of the deck, and how that was going to be repaired. The repair guy said, "Thats easy. I'm going to get a roller, mix some gel coat, add some sand into it, and roll it onto your deck." The boat owner said, "It won't match the diamond pattern that's on the boat now, and it's not going to match the other side either." The repair guy said, "Thats not a problem. I'll roll the other side too, so it matches." Can you believe that?

The boat owner pulled his boat out of that shop and checked out another shop. They told him the same thing.

So he started asking friends and other boat owners, "Who's a good guy to repair my boat?" He was told to check out Custom Boat Repairs (me). Well, he got in touch with me and I saw his concern about the non-skid surface. I told him that I'd make a sample of the pattern and if he liked it, I'd do the job, and if he didn't like the result, there would be no charge for my time. He saw the sample and gave me the job that day -- it was a big job! Check out the photos of what I had to do to get this Hunter Sailboat back in tip-top shape again.

Here, you can see how the anchor ripped open the fiberglass.

I had to build a scaffold along the side of the boat, and enclose the structure with shrink wrap to contain the dust and heat.

You can see that the rub rail was split, and the fiberglass was in bad shape.

Hunter sailboats use plywood sections to give strength to the deck, but all of it got wet and had to be removed.

The right way to repair this was by access through the inside, so I could lay sheets of fiberglass to reinforce the area. To do that, I had to remove the wooden cabinets and shelves that were inside the cabin.

I removed the plywood sections under the non-skid section and cleaned it up, so it was ready for the fiberglass.

I laid up the area with high-strength fiberglass and cut away the delaminated fiberglass on the round edge.

I then placed a mold on the edge, and laid fiberglass on the inside.

Checking to make sure everything comes out to the original contour of the hull.

Applying multiple layers of fiberglass to the area.

Ground and tapered fiberglass edge, then laid high-strength fiberglass in place.

Shaped fiberglass to the contour of the hull.

Inside of the hull repair area.

Area flared off to the contour of the hull.

Gel coat sprayed over the repair area.

PVA applied over gel coat to cure it.

Sprayed grey gel coat base for the non-skid surface.

Blending in white gel coat with PVA covering.

Outlining the non-skid area.

Pattern laid in place.

This is what it looked like when it was done. I'd say its better than a roller what the other guys were going to use, wouldn't you?

Here's how it looked all done, with the new rub rail.

Another view of the side.

Next, I had to repair the inside woodwork. The plywood panel got crushed from the anchor crash. This is a new fabricated wood panel.

Coating the wood panel with resin to protect it, and so that the liner material will adhere to it.

Lining up material; getting ready to cut to size.

Outlining the windows on the material.

Cutting out the material for the windows.

Overlapped the material onto the wooden panel, and glued in place.

Material attached to panel.

Test fitting the aluminum window frames.

Tracing out a shelf for the inside of the boat.

Cutting out the shelf.

The top shelf was cracked. I cut the bottom shelf and applied a cherry formica finish.

Mounting the new shelf.

Installing the cabinets.

Getting the inside together.

Most of the shelves in place. You can see the fiberglass repair, and how the damage impacted the woodwork.

All of the cabinets put back together again. Looks good!

Now the hard part -- replacing the material headliner. I had to seal up all of the holes in the fiberglass that the factory missed. The old headliner had many stains on it from the handrails on the top deck leaking.

Here, I'm tacking the material to the ceiling.

Cutting the excess material from ceiling.

Tucking material into the channel.

This is looking good!

Look how tight I got the material -- no wrinkles.

Here's the inside finish.

Inside complete! The cabinets work like new, and cushions in place. You can't even tell that the entire inside was taken apart. I'm proud of this job and the customer was very happy.


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