Prop Strut Construction? E35-3

Prairie Schooner

Jeff & Donna, new owners 7/21
We have a deposit on a 1986 E35-3. One of the things uncovered by the survey is a loose strut. It wiggles side to side perhaps .125" max. A little water oozed out when this happened. The hull seems solid all around the strut. Inside, we couldn't see the top of the strut due to the platform for the water heater (or whatever that is on top). There doesn't seem to be any leakage. I purchased a modest endoscope camera and will have another look at it.
I've read as much as I can find in this site on struts. Very helpful but I didn't see anything on the 35-3.
Does anyone have images, or at least verbiage, describing what type of structure is inside the fiberglass for this particular model that you can share? Thanks

Kenneth K

Contributing Partner
Blogs Author
Others on this site who've replaced struts will know more, but I believe there are a lot of construction similarities in the late model Ericsons as to strut mounting.

If you remove the water heater and the plywood platform that it mounts to, I believe you'll see this (from my '85 32-3):

That lump of fiberglass is the heavily glassed-in area where the strut is mounted. It requires significant cutting/grinding and re-glassing to replace/remount.

Others have done it, bit it's not a simple fix. Get some good yard estimates before you make your final offer on the boat.

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
This thread might be helpful / useful.
Also see the embedded link in reply 8.

Prairie Schooner

Jeff & Donna, new owners 7/21
Thanks folks. Those links and others in the site have been helpful. I used an endoscope camera to look around under the panel and though couldn't get as comprehensive a view as I'd like, didn't see any signs of water leaking in. The cutlass bearing is in very good condition. We're moving ahead with the purchase. This will be one of my first off-season projects. (I've been manically bookmarking pages for all the upcoming work to be done.)