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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all, To start I have a 19'6" aluminum fishing boat that was leaking fairly bad and decided to start from scratch so I gutted it and have many ideals but one issue I am having is that the bottom of the boat is kind of a mess. I am thinking of just fiberglassing it. Will this work hold out water? I have grinded the whole boat paint previous epoxy Im a professional metal fab,grinder/ fiberglasser and just need to know what kind do I use so it doesnt crack or leak. Also if I do this will it alter the total weight of my boat? Or me doing so will it raise the weight limit as I will be putting an industral foam in it that is eco friendly to replace the old foam it will be everywhere under floor in pannels. any help/opinions are appreciated.
 

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I don't think I would glass over an aluminum hull. Is it riveted or welded? Either way, I think the best bet is to repair the leaks in the same manner the boat was built (ie, rivets, welded), and seal it with a high grade marine sealant (if riveted).

Time consuming, yes, but I just gotta believe that the glass would delaminate from the alum hull if you tried it....

Either way, we like pics of your progress!!
 

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I agree on repair based on construction of the boat. I re-riveted an 18' Starcraft a few years back and it is leak free to this day. The epoxy/glass repairs I have seen on aluminum end up leaking anyway. My guess, it is due to the flexing of the hull when in use. You have the boat gutted so drilling out the faulty rivets and replacing using a pneumatic hammer and bucking bar should work wonders. It will also strengthen the boat. If the rivets are loose/leaking the area of weakness will increase as stress is put on adjacent rivets.

My opinion is fix it right the first time and avoid continuing headaches in the future. I am not a metal working guy but found the repair quite straight forward, and I replaced over 70 rivets.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
`Thanks for info yes fiberglass can fault if not properly done ie sandblasted aluminum will never giveway glass but your input may change my mind the thought of redoing 1000+ rivets is mind numbing as there are about half them done or needing repair but the right way as I see from you guys.I think i will follow your thoughts as that was my thought wont it breat hitting waves and flexing. yes it is rivited and I did some welding on it years ago as i am a cert. welder its just hard to reach areas pics willl be up soon gotta find my wifes camera and dont mind the mess in the pics garage is destroyed now while in this process
Plastic bag Mosquito net Tints and shades Plastic Plastic wrap

Just it enclosed so garage dont get totaly trashed

Gas Automotive exterior Motor vehicle Art Metal

grinded paint / epoxy and wire wheeled..
Gas Electrical wiring Auto part Wire Trunk


Automotive tire Grey Tread Rectangle Composite material

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior Electrical wiring

Wood Gas Flooring Composite material Glass

Automotive tire Wood Grey Composite material Motor vehicle

Water Automotive tire Wood Grey Tints and shades

one of the cracks by the rivets one of like 5 areas like this some one put devcon aluminum resitant putty to fill some areas
Automotive tire Automotive exterior Bumper Gas Auto part


Wood Gas Hardwood Rectangle Lumber

These are the live wells i built to put in also just in the making gonna be epoxy inners and finnished
 

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Nice pics, looks like an interesting project.

I know the feeling when looking at tackling the repair. When I did the Starcraft the floor was still good but the only way to repair it properly was to gut the boat. Tearing out the seats, console and floor and replacing the floor with new was a lot of work and overwhelming at first. It turned out very well and I have never regretted doing it right. My big concern was a weak rivet giving way and weakening the one next to it and then the next one and then the next etc. etc.

Sounds like you have a lot of work to do but all you can do is take it one stringer at a time and move on to the next. Of course it is easy for me to say when I'm not the guy on the hammer or the bucking bar.
 

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I know that overwhelmed feeling. I try to focus on small parts or areas when that feeling sets in. Seems to help.


Don't really know, but it would be my guess (as mentioned above) that a lasting repair would be done with like-materials. 5 or more years down the road, how will epoxy hold up???

Good luck. Nice project!
 

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MIG pulse weld everywhere. If you have a problem in the future-MIG pulse weld again. Forget rivets, and epoxy/resin-total waist of time IMHO. Most of the new aluminum boats are MIG pulse welded. I guess you could TIG too, if you want to spend the time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
to me Mig or pulse is somewhat the same just a lil less heating issue however has it advantages big ones
Humm tig is such a pain and waste of time as you stated. I did some tig repairs a few years ago and yay upsidedown welding is such a fun time
aside of the wire feeding unlike the mig machines which has auto feed.

Mig pulse welding is 6-10 times faster Precise control of a shorter controlled arc combined with a harmonized pulse current makes colder welding of the sheet metals possible and ensures perfect penetration also keeps deformation, warpage to a minimum

I really didnt think of that it is a good point to do so since I have one available to me at work
Humm now pondering when I can take it in to work..
 
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