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 bilge area

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irishguy
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PostSubject: bilge area   Wed May 08, 2013 9:56 am

hello, i started working on some bad wood and glass directly behind the keel housing, ice and water grief from the PO,there is a tapered wall about 12 in behind the housing that i thought was the original bilge area but after i removed the rotted out wood etc it was full of water. i can now see the back of the housing,and the 2 "false" bilge areas running up the side. i was wandering what the original set up was and are there any stuctural issues if i redo it to what seems to make more sense, not trapping 15 gal of water in the floor. the old wood spanned the area directly behind the housing for about a foot and the tappered down aft, trapping any water that had come in around the keel etc. thanks
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Wed May 08, 2013 10:07 pm

A classic problem with these ships is the keel winch cable breaking or coming loose. The keel then swings down and bags into the front of the keel well breaking up/through the fiberglass and letting in water. You should take a look at the front of the well (from the bottom side) and see what shape it is in. That may have been the source of your water. If som you will need to fix that end as well. I'm trying to figure out how best to deal with mine at this point.
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Wed May 08, 2013 10:33 pm

Here is a picture of the front of my keel well.

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Tiny Dancer
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Wed May 08, 2013 10:54 pm

Not pretty!
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irishguy
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Fri May 10, 2013 9:45 am

i see, thanks for the pic, my boat has had some repair there and it looks pretty good other than the holes up at the top that i'm not sure what they were,(last post). does your bilge area start directly behind the keel trunk or is there some cabin floor aft and then the the bilge area. sorry but i can't seem to get pics to work . i am about to redo that area and i don't understand why the lowest part of the boat would have been seeled off to hold any water that got in. kind of wandering if it was original or if the PO did it that way. thanks
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Fri May 10, 2013 4:11 pm

The original design had several sealed areas. I think the boat would float even if it is filled with water. There is/was a false floor which is clearly visible under the table where it meets the hull. It goes from the side of the ship to the side of the keel well. and extends from pretty far up front back to just behind the front of the cockpit.



On my ship, there is an obvious slope that the the back end of the false bottom. Just behind that is where my bilge pump is located.



Since the entire space was sealed, the expectation was that there wouldn't be any water in the false bottom. This assumption goes out the window when the keel cable snaps and it drops free and crunches the front of the well. Reading your description, I'm wondering just what you are encountering so I've added some pictures of the inside of my ship. When I host pictures, I get stuck on the host window, clicking on Preview gets you past that window.
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irishguy
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 12, 2013 8:20 am

ok, thanks a bunch, that small floor behind the keel well is what i just cut out, the glass was gone and wood all rotten. this opened up the sealed off area which was full of water. 2 thoughts, one is to finish off directly behind the well and leave a drain hole and move my bilge forward a little to that spot? my concern being that if it was sealed off the plus is water won't enter the cabin if i am leaking somewhere , the bad is u can't get the water out once it's in there, (maybe just a removeable plug instead of instead of a drain hole). i don't see any reason why the bilge wouldn't have been put there in the first place, the lowest spot. 2nd, if that false floor area is sealed or mostly so and u do get a leak will it only fill that area and stop with pressure, keeping the boat afloat, and if i open up for draining would the cabin then fill! thanks again for the pics,, very helpful, any insight would be great Very Happy
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 12, 2013 11:39 am

I'm in the same general decision point. With the damage to the keel well, I know the space is wet and won't dry if I seal it up. I'm still going to patch the outer hull. Once I do that I'm toying with a concept. If I drill a 1 1/2 hole in the false bottom in the floor of the V birth and then one in the false bottom somewhere aft of the keel well, I can hook up an old fashoined bonnet hair dryer and run it on low for a couple of days. Having both an input and output should allow the air to flow much easier. This should dry out the space and since the holes would be drilled in flat surfaces that are easily reached, they would be pretty easy to fix later. I could get extravagant and buy a couple of gas fill fittings and use them to close up the holes. That way I could do this again the next time the keel cable breaks... I may be able to do the same thing by using a stainless steel disk and gluing it in place with silicone.
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irishguy
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Mon May 13, 2013 8:57 am

thats a good idea i think however i decide to fix my problem i think it would be a good idea to try to seal it all back up with some sort of access put in, thanks again for the reply. i see that you are in sandpoint, have you ever been over to flathead lake, thats the only time i was on a sailboat about 10 years ago, and have been hooked ever since on trying to learn how to sail, hopefully this will be the year to start!
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Thu May 16, 2013 11:24 pm

It's raining again.... Of course this is the pacific northwest. I'd probably be a bit less grumpy if it hadn't started when I was under the boat with my legs sticking out...

I've had a couple of fiberglass sessions devoted to patching up the damage at the front of the keel well. I'm not trying to build it up at this point. In fact I'm not of the opinion that it can be built strong enough to resist the keel. I'm going for basic water tightness for a change. Getting up in the well is a pain in the *&&. I really would like to have glass laid smooth about 10 inches up the well from the bottom. Much easier said that done. It is really hard to get something in that far to sand the walls.

It is looking much better. I think it's water tight except for the top edge. No clue what is going on that high... Ill probably lay another couple of layers on anyway. I should put a couple drops of color into the next batch and take another picture for comparison.
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frelichth
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Fri May 17, 2013 9:06 pm

Thought I'd throw my tow cents worth in on the bilge draining problem. I drilled a 1" hole at the back of the false bilge ( where the bilge pump is ) and tipped the boat back and drained out the water from the false bilge. I then installed a bronze garboard plug in the hole. This prevents incursion of water from the bilge and allows removal for quick drainage of the false bilge anytime it needs it.
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Diggs
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Fri May 17, 2013 10:03 pm

Could you post a picture of that modification. I am sure mine is full of water right now and I am trying to think of a clever way to drain it. I was going to pull it onto the trailer, drain it from the outside and repair the drain hole in addition to whatever crack is allowing the water into the boat. I like your idea of having easy access to draining the water anytime.
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frelichth
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sat May 18, 2013 2:17 am

I'll try and get you a picture on my weekend. Stuck at work right now.
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Triticum
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 19, 2013 2:02 am

Triticum was out Friday. Much less water on the inside this time.... That implies I haven't manage to seal all of the hole. Sigh.
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frelichth
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 19, 2013 3:35 pm

Here's a fuzzy pic of what I did. Gotta lay off the coffee. Shaking like a whore in church. Hope it gets the idea through. I'll get a clearer one later.
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frelichth
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Wed May 22, 2013 3:07 pm

Got a better pic. Should be a little clearer what I did.
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Diggs
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Wed May 22, 2013 7:00 pm

Thanks, I am going to give it a shot.
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irishguy
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 26, 2013 9:38 am

thanks for the pics,that looks like it will work great. any thoughts on leaving the false bilge area open? was thinking about doing that for now to see how much water i am getting in. not sure if sealing that area up will really keep the amount of water coming in down?
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frelichth
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Sun May 26, 2013 6:40 pm

I sealed up the area because it rains here in WA a lot and I have a small constant incursion of water into the interior of the boat. The water accumulates in the rear bilge area where the pump is and if its not sealed up the water runs into the false bilge from there. As for keeping the incursion of water into the false bilge, this remains to be discovered. In any case the addition of the plug allows for expeditious removal of water from this area. It has also reduced the odors in the cabin due to stale water remaining in the crannies.
Terry
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irishguy
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Mon May 27, 2013 8:38 am

ok, thanks for the input, its really appreciated. happy sailing Very Happy
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Diggs
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PostSubject: Re: bilge area   Mon May 27, 2013 1:36 pm

I think the biggest potential problem with keeping that false bilge unsealed is this: If you break your cable and have a good keel crunch, water will continue to come into your boat. If you seal it up then it will only fill the false bilge and not your entire boat. If you leave your boat in the water like I do then you have potential sinking issues.
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