Topic: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Oh yuck!  I found a tiny bit o'wet when I rebed my bow pulpit. I let it dry out completely, and then re-drilled and epoxied and drilled a hole again...just like the book by Don Casey "Sailboat Hull and Deck Repair" tells you too.  And yes, I will re-do it again next year, as the first time one does it, it is not a perfect job, as you are learning.  I also re-caulk my chainplates at deck regularly, and pour acetone in first to chase water away from them...will rebed them in the next year during a major haulout...I agree, rebed often!  Side Stanchions are easy, as there is no core there.   But, pulpit & pushpit have no backing plates! Hard to believe!  I use either a backing plate or large washers on each one.  I do it all by myself, so it's tough with a backing plate, washers are easier to time and manage. 
Good luck, pray for sun.  I also put a bulb underneath with a yogurt dish on top of little holes to warm and dry them during our crappy weather here on the Wet Coast!

Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Did Taylor get smart and use solid glass underneath the stanchions on later boats?  Cause mine was all plywood....  And once you get plywood wet, there aint no way it's ever gonna dry out....  Cheers


Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Good day!  You guys are giving me nightmares!

Last season I replaced the ventillation cowls on my 1976 JJT only to find the plywood core exposed and wet.  However, there was no rot or significant degredation of the plywood.  My solution was to put a space heater in the lazarette for a week.  Once dry I sealed it up with epoxy and plugged in a new solar vent (less smelly bilges!). 

Good luck with the repair -- it is a bitch of a place to work in.

Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Oh!  Here is another place to check.  The hawse pipe on the foredeck on my 1976 JJT was installed the same way as the cowl vents on the poop deck.  That is, cut the hole and drop in the pipe -- no consideration given to sealing the core.

Aside -- the hawse pipe is another useles installation on my boat.  Not only is it a pain to stuff rope down the hole but it the rope tangles and jams on its way back up.  Still worse, the anchor well drains through the storage comparment under the V-berth, thereby soaking anything and everything stored there.

It is another job in my job jar!  I have to decide whether to retain the locker, in which case it must be much more appropriate for its use, or whether to seal the whole thing up and have a new place for lifejackets.

Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Thanks for all the sharing! ;-)  I will check my poopdeck cowls...never did trust them after I saw stanchions with NO backing washers from factory, SHAME! Yes, they must have used pure fibreglass at side stanchions on later boats...just that little triangle bit on the side decks, mind you, NOT the pushpit or pulpit stanchions...and duh, where we need the strength the most...I have just the two pushpit ones left...and will rebed the bow ones again in spring...they were that pulpit is so unwieldy...and everyone asks you what you are doing, and then they LEAN on the pulpit while talking to you while you are working RIGHT ON IT!!!  Sheesh!!

Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

plywood may be bad but I have seem some very nice cape dory 25d's that were cored with  balsa whose deck areas are cracking brcause of the swelling of the balsa.  At least we don't have that problem.
Good luck and keep posting. I have creaking issues on my side decks.

Re: Plywood Decks.... Yeck

Well.  It's done.  I cut into the deck....  From the bottom....  I've started the job of deck core replacement on my 74.  After some careful consideration, I decided to cut away at the liner inside to gain access to the deck underneath the chainplates and thru deck fitting area.  The good news:  the plywood coring is is segments.  So it all doesnt have to be replaced.  Doing it inside will make it easier than doing it fromt the outside, and I'll be able to hide the repair better.  The bad news:  the aft deck area - basically from the aft winch pad all the way to the transom (where there was standing water as the boat sat for 7 years) is not going to be accesible from the bottom.  These are the only trouble areas as found with a Sovereign Moisture meter and also a Wagner electronic  moisture meter.  Both gave very accurate readings as to the localized areas of moisture.

The plywood deck under the chainplates and thru deck fittings is wet.  Dripping wet.  Rotten wet.  REBED YOUR CHAINPLATES!  REBED YOUR THRU DECKS!  Often.  2 hours of work a year from previous owners would save this trouble for people like me.  Too bad not everyone thinks like me.  Too bad its a plywood core.  Good thing it's segmented......  Otherwise this boat would take 100 years to get done...

Anyways, some rainy day I'll post some pictures but for now, I'll just keep working on my boat.  Anyone done any repairs like this before?  Contessa related hints?  Cheers All...