injectadeck - Thoughts and Experiences

bigd14

Sustaining Member
Blogs Author
RE replacing the top skin. I originally thought I would do that but it turns out the top skin is usually still attached in some areas and is destroyed during removal. It would be difficult to get a solid bond between the removed top skin and the new core material anyway. You have to cut it entirely out, leaving 2-3 inches all around the cutout area to tie new fiberglass cloth into. Once these edges are tapered with a grinder or sander and the new core is in place, 2-3 layers of 1708 biaxial cloth is layered over the entire repair area. Then paint.
 

trickdhat

Member III
Blogs Author
I went at if from below. Like everything else, it's a compromise. There's no one way fits all solution. For me, the difficulty working overhead was worth it to avoid matching gel coat and recreating the structure of the cabin top. I even had to scrap a large section of fiberglass due to it being too large and difficult to deal with after I wetted it out with epoxy. If I had to do it again, I'd do the same thing. As far as reusing the top skin, I don't see the advantage. If you have to glass and fair the seam, you might as well glass the whole area. I can see how some might try to keep the glass work in the area between non skid, but if you're using a proper 12:1 ratio, you're going to end up in the non skid regardless of where the repair is located. On the other hand, if you have a fiberglass headliner the compromise may weigh in favor of going from above.
 

garryh

Member III
the top skin just does not come up easily unless the area is total mush; so when prying it up you can easily deform it and will not go back down flat. Also getting it laid in into bedding compound and arriving at the right height vivavis the surrounding deck areas is very very difficult. I had dreams of laying it back down again and just repairing the seams, but unless a small area around a cleat or stanchion... best to save all the pain and suffering and bite the bullet and lay down new glass. I'd recommend two layers of 1708 for strength and then two layers of matt for sanding to fair. The 1708 goes down matt side first, and you don't want the cloth side being on the top surface because you will get print through.
this was for side decks... really hoping to do cabin top from below, as ugly as that will be.
 

Tin Kicker

Member III
I'll second the thought that any of the resin/epoxy/foam injection schemes leave the original moisture problem trapped in the balsa, which is like a cancer.
 

wynkoop

Member III
I suspect the fiberglass headliner in my E-27 is a bear to take down? Has anyone done that?

Also some photos earlier in the thread seem to show that core is a sandwich of thin fiberglass sheets with balsa between. Is that correct?
 

wynkoop

Member III
Not at the boat now, but as I recall there are some big bolts at the forward end that seem to hold the headliner in place there. I think the rest is molded right down the fiberglass bulkheads port and starbord.....Not sure where the aft is held in place, but as I recall the headliner includes the cubbies above the sink and quarter berth. UGH I am seeing no way forward that makes me happy.
 

tenders

Innocent Bystander
My question is, once the cut-out portion of the deck is made and internal repairs completed, putting back the cut-out portion of the deck...what do you use to mend the cut-out edges to blend in with the rest of the deck so it does not look like a stitched patch??
If you get into my part of the writeup from that link, you'll see that I (1) Make the cut a little more than 2" inside of a paint or nonskid border, (2) bevel that edge 2", and 2" the edge of the NEW deck plate (I don't use the old nonskid, it's garbage by this point), (3) layer fiberglass cloth over the joint formed by the beveled edges, building up cloth with layers of decreasing width, and (4) recoat the entire area with Kiwi Grip. The patched bevels are then invisible, although the Kiwi Grip is not.
 

garryh

Member III
as above... there is just no quick fix. Gotta bite the bullet and lay in new material.
"the edge of the NEW deck plate ".... do you lay up a new of plate with glass in the same shape as the cutout vs laying up glass on top of the new core..?
 

wynkoop

Member III
In speaking the the injectadeck fellow he said that the formula actually needs water to react and foam. It gets the water either from humidity in the air or soggy decks or both.

This does not sound too far fetched to me as if you look at the Gorilla Glue instructions and videos that product also needs moisture and they suggest making areas to be glued damp for better results.

All I can say is this deck repair is more frightening to me than was the swap out of the power plant!

I did collect a number of 2 inch furring strips that were left over from a project of my father's for purposes of laying in to replace bad balsa core if I cut the deck open, but it is starting to look like I will need to become a fiberglass master to do this job. Pretty much all the talk of different types of material needed to do the job sounds like gibberish to me. I suppose I need to read up on glass repair when I get Silver Maiden swimming again.

I do have a practice boat to try things out on first. This Saturday I am picking up a 12 foot rowing/sailing dinghy that has a chunk out of the transom that looks like a shark bite and some cracks along the keel fore and aft of the centerboard trunk. Not sure how much will transfer, but if that job turns out ugly I really do not care as that boat was destined to be crunched if I did not step in to save it.
 

wynkoop

Member III
BTW I got the strips of plywood idea from an article I read on line about a deck fix done by someone else. Does anyone have any thoughts on putting plywood into the deck to replace the balsa?
 

Geoff W.

Makes Up For It With Enthusiasm
Blogs Author
BTW I got the strips of plywood idea from an article I read on line about a deck fix done by someone else. Does anyone have any thoughts on putting plywood into the deck to replace the balsa?
I did strips of foam core and even though it seems structurally sound for now, I can guarantee you won't be 100% sure you've filled in the gaps in the deck. I think it's a multi-year repair, likely a many-year repair, but probably not a til-the-end-of-time repair. If I was doing it right, I'd pull the headliner and cut the deck out from the bottom, to preserve how the top of the deck looks.
 

wynkoop

Member III
Headliner on the E27 seems to be damn near impossible to pull, but will check it more closely Friday when I attempt to install the stuffing box.

I did find this thread where a power boat owner reports success with injectadeck.

 

Geoff W.

Makes Up For It With Enthusiasm
Blogs Author
If you need an opinion from the other side of the DIY spectrum - this forum is full of guys who know what they're doing, and do it well, and have been doing work like this for a long time. They're 100% correct in that doing the work "right" means doing the extensive project, deconstructing and reconstructing the core.

I liveaboard and can't do (and didn't want to, tbh) so much work to deconstruct the boat, so I went my way. It works and will hold for a long time. I think the injectadeck will ultimately be a functional repair and last you a while, though maybe not forever. If it ends up failing down the road you can do the whole rip-it-apart-and-rebuild project then, but until then, you can go sailing.
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
I think I'd give Injectadeck a try. The producer is aware of the deck sandwich/ rotted waterlogged core issue and the foam is specifically supposed to deal with that.

Does the product really absorb water, penetrate old balsa, and do what it says it does? Probably, to some extent. The alternatives are sorta onerous and a lot of work for a casual daysailer .
 

tenders

Innocent Bystander
If you need an opinion from the other side of the DIY spectrum - this forum is full of guys who know what they're doing, and do it well, and have been doing work like this for a long time. They're 100% correct in that doing the work "right" means doing the extensive project, deconstructing and reconstructing the core.
Please don't accuse me of knowing what I'm doing. Sorry, that link I provided to the two core repairs is really long and winding. My description starts on post #72 from here:

What I've learned from my repairs is that if you plan the initial cuts into the deck carefully, and are willing to apply KiwiGrip over the entire panel (both old and replaced parts of it), you can make a very solid repair that is decent-looking without a lot of cosmetic futzing. And it doesn't require much in tools - a grinder, an oscillating saw, some way of cutting G10 (a borrowed table saw, for example), and a pair of scissors - none of which are expensive.

You could use plywood as a replacement core, but I wouldn't.
I think people who do this repair from below are clinically insane.
The only trick to the use of epoxy in this repair is how to keep it off of everything.

Let me know if you'd like to see my fixes on City Island. I have a bunch of foam and epoxy cloth pieces left over that I may or may not eventually use, but would prefer to see at work in your fix if you can use them.
 

wynkoop

Member III
Tenders that is a most kind offer. I suspect after she is swimming again I would love to drive up to City Island and have a little show and tell.

Do I gather that you reused your deck skins like I have seen a few others claim they did?
 

garryh

Member III
the only way you can 'know what you are doing' is to get all the facts and opinions and sift through them, understand, discard as you will... and then do it. Then you will know, by trial and error. It is not rocket science, but it is tedious and ugly. The guys who do this for a living had to start somewhere. They also often do not do it right... I have watched it.
This was my first foray into deck work... it was a steep learning curve and learned a lot by doing it less-than-ideal the first time... I will do the other side differently armed with that experience.
The problem with using plywood as a core material is that any moisture that does penetrate into the core is quickly transmitted throughout the plies. If no moisture gets in, it will last forever. There were some places where I simply had to use plywood... there was no way I could get 1/2" Nidacore into a cavity where 1/2" balsa came out. I had to use 1/2" ply sanded down a 32nd or 1/16 or so. Any hardware I mount in those areas will be over-drilled and epoxied, then drilled for fasteners. I will also add a flat mounting plate wherever I install hardware... you cannot successfully mount and seal flat hardware to a not-so-flat surface and expect it to seal properly.
Someone above mentioned using a circ saw to cut through the top laminate... that is a bulky unwieldy tool for this work. I strongly suggest a grinder with a cutting wheel (vs a grinding wheel)... goes through it like butter. And do not worry about going too deep... you will know. Start with a scoring pass on the pencilled outline, then a few passes a little deeper each time and you are through. Using an oscillating tool is a retirement project unless in a spot where you can't get the grinder in and accuracy is important.
 
Top