E39 - What's the purpose of the structures in the bilge?

Bill K.

Junior Member
What are the iron support-like structures in the bilge? They're like what are called "floors" in wooden boats, and run athwart the bilge. Does anyone know what their purpose is, and how to repair? All info would be appreciated. Please see photos. Thanks!
 

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Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Welcome aboard, Bill. Please update your profile and add info to the Signature line.

The structures of Ericsons changed radically in the 1980s with the advent of the so-called Tri-Axial Force Grib (TAFG). E39 owners will know more.
 

Alan Gomes

Contributing Partner
What are the iron support-like structures in the bilge? They're like what are called "floors" in wooden boats, and run athwart the bilge. Does anyone know what their purpose is, and how to repair? All info would be appreciated. Please see photos. Thanks!
I can't tell from the photo, but where is that structure in relation to the mast? I don't know about what Ericson might have done, but I do know that quite a few Cal boats (Jensen Marine) used a mild steel team to support the downward mast loads. It is very common for this beam to rot out over many years and require replacement, which is not a trivial job.

I see that you referred to "structures" in the plural. Is there more than one of these? On the Cal boats there was only one, and it was located directly underneath a wooden compression post in the cabin that took the mast load for the deck-stepped mast.
 

G Kiba

Sustaining Member
Like Alan, I have seen a structure and damage like that on a Cal 30-3. A previous owner of that boat encapsulated the structure in what looked like ferro-cement. Boat sails well and the current owner takes good care of her.
 

Bill K.

Junior Member
I can't tell from the photo, but where is that structure in relation to the mast? I don't know about what Ericson might have done, but I do know that quite a few Cal boats (Jensen Marine) used a mild steel team to support the downward mast loads. It is very common for this beam to rot out over many years and require replacement, which is not a trivial job.

I see that you referred to "structures" in the plural. Is there more than one of these? On the Cal boats there was only one, and it was located directly underneath a wooden compression post in the cabin that took the mast load for the deck-stepped mast.
Thanks for your comments. No, this is not the mast step. It was replaced some time ago. So far as I can tell, there are two of these structures in the bilge.
 

Bill K.

Junior Member
We have five albums by E39 owners. You might try consulting via private message (click on User Name).


Moderator Guy Stevens (E46) formerly owned an E39 and has extensive knowledge.

Thanks so much, Christian. I've already sent a message directly to Guy, but have yet to hear back. I'll definitely check out the albums. This has to be a common issue, as iron in the bilge would be universally problematic sooner or later. I appreciate your input.
 
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