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Hunter 34 Keel to Hull smile cracks

Discussion in 'Ask A Hunter Owner' started by Barn-dog, Dec 31, 2017. Add this thread to a FAQ

  1. Barn-dog

    Barn-dog

    Joined Dec 28, 2016
    16 posts, 2 likes
    Hunter 34
    US MiddleR
    When my 87 Hunter 34 was hauled for Winter storage, I saw a crack at the forward end of the cast iron keel and also at the rear of the keel. Both cracks are where the keel meets the hull, and are about 10 inches long, around each end of the keel. Except for those cracks at each end of the keel, there are no other visible cracks along that seam. FYI, last year, I had the marina grind out and re-lay/fill the entire seam. Then the keel was blasted and sealed with Rust-Lok. They also re-tightened the keel bolts. Finally, I stripped and coated the entire hull and keel with four coats of barrier coating, prior to bottom painting. Late last Summer, some water (not much) started leaking into the bilge from where the rear area of the keel would be. The leak was small but continued until the boat was hauled-out in the Fall.

    I have already dug-out the two cracks. How should I fill and fair out, and what would be the best filler material ? 3M- 5200 or something like West System G-Flex epoxy ? Thanks and
    HAPPY NEW YEAR !! Barn-dog
     


  2. Capt Robbie

    Capt Robbie

    Joined Jan 24, 2017
    242 posts, 89 likes
    Hunter 34
    Us Red Bank NJ
    I am the original owner 1983 Hunter 34 and every few years I would get a hair line crack at the keel joint at the leading edge.
    I used fairing compound for years, however it would just about every other year develop small hair line stress cracks due to the slight keel flex. I don't think that there is a way to keep this from happening no matter how tight the keel bolts are.

    I have used 5200 on this joint for the past few years now and it seems to have worked so far.
    Hope this helps
     


    Allan12210 likes this.
  3. Allan12210

    Allan12210

    Joined Jan 22, 2008
    1,391 posts, 137 likes
    Hunter 34
    US Alameda CA
    I haven't owned my H34 anywhere as long as Capt Robbie. We bought ours new in 1985. ;):biggrin: However we've addressed the same issue periodically like he has. I used 5200 for a few haulouts as it is flexible and withstands long duration immersion. But it would eventually disappear and the cracks would come back. In 2007 we bit the bullet and stripped all the paint and barrier coatings off right around the crack (not the whole thing). Then we ground some of the exposed keel to bare metal and treated it with Ospho to pickle it. After that it was about 4 layers of glass cloth with West systems epoxy followed by 3 coats of Interlux 3000 barrier coat to join the keel to the hull stub. Last year it finally showed the cracks again (9 year run). It was a matter of sanding into the previous mat to get through the paints and lay it up once more. The question is: will it last 9 more years? Will I last 9 more years? Hope so. The pictures are a bit out of order. There is the 2007 bare, then 2007 primed and ready for bottom paint then the 2011 haul with no crack for the first time.
    2007 Port Bare Keel.jpg
    2007 Stbd After Prime.jpg
    2011-05-20 09.26.19.jpg
     


    Last edited: Dec 31, 2017
    Will Gilmore likes this.
  4. Rich Stidger

    Rich Stidger

    Joined Feb 10, 2004
    2,724 posts, 202 likes
    Hunter 40.5
    US 1997 h40.5 Bristol, RI
    I have similar cracks at the aft end of my keel. When I asked Hunter what to do about them the reply was that I could grind out and fill. But they promised that the cracks would return and that they are cosmetic. Their advice was to wipe the area with a solvent to clean out the crack and then wipe a bit of under-water rated caulk into the crack. Then forget about it and go sailing.
     

    Attached Files:



  5. 40Grit

    40Grit

    Joined Oct 14, 2013
    2 posts, 0 likes
    Express37 37
    US Long beach
    The local yard here in Long Beach refuses to haul Hunters. Too many claims for keel damage.
    Here at my glass shop we would reef and glass like some of the earlier posts.
    Using caulk as glass isn’t waterproof
     

    Attached Files:



  6. Hunter Ad Bot

    Hunter Ad Bot

    Joined Oct 27, 2016
    0 posts, 10 likes
    US Seattle
    Hunter striping decals

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    See the product
     


  7. Will Gilmore

    Will Gilmore

    Joined Oct 19, 2017
    2,397 posts, 977 likes
    O'Day 19
    US Littleton, NH


  8. Rich Stidger

    Rich Stidger

    Joined Feb 10, 2004
    2,724 posts, 202 likes
    Hunter 40.5
    US 1997 h40.5 Bristol, RI
    I think that Hunter's advice to me was that these surface cracks really can't be stopped because of the normal flexing of the hull. So the choice is to repeatedly grind and fill, or just fill with a flexible under-water caulk. I chose to caulk back in 2002 with no ill effects, no progressive increase in opening, and no leaks. But as Stu says, "Your boat, your choice". YMMV.
     


  9. Barn-dog

    Barn-dog

    Joined Dec 28, 2016
    16 posts, 2 likes
    Hunter 34
    US MiddleR
    Thanks guys, for your insights. I think I'll try applying a good underwater caulk to the crack, cover it with barrier coatings and bottom paint, and as you said: "Go Sailing" !
     


  10. Barn-dog

    Barn-dog

    Joined Dec 28, 2016
    16 posts, 2 likes
    Hunter 34
    US MiddleR
    My Fellow sailors,
    I have to say, that it's great to a have forum like this where we sailors can communicate and exchange ideas and experiences !
    Being retired, I work part-time at West Marine, where I'm called "blow-boat Barney". Also, some customers are noticeably disappointed to learn that I have a sailboat; most are power-boaters, aka "stinkpotters". I recently joined a yacht club, having over 60 members; with only three of those (including me) being sailors. When I was originally introduced to the general membership at a meeting, and it was announced that I had a sailboat, groans and grumbles came from all around me.
    " Not Another Sail-boater ! " , they said. "How many of 'em do we have now ? " they asked. But now, they're fine
    towards me. Cocktails and beers have a funny way of improving opinions and making people feel better..
    But, I don't care. I love my boat (even though she drives me broke) and I LOVE SAILING ! Can't wait till Spring ! Barn-dog
     


    Will Gilmore and jon hansen like this.
  11. Capt Robbie

    Capt Robbie

    Joined Jan 24, 2017
    242 posts, 89 likes
    Hunter 34
    Us Red Bank NJ
    Barn dog is right
    Seam like sail boaters are heavily out numbered here in New Jersey.
    I guess it's just a sign of the times. No disrespect to power boaters but it seems to me that it's much easier to just turn a key and go for the average new boater. Not much skill set in that.

    Sailing is much more complex then turning the key.
    It takes quite a bit more skill to move the boat thru the water with just the power of the wind. Setting the sails, plotting a course based on wind and tide, reacting to ever changing conditions the name a few. As much work as it can be I am sure that all sailboaters would agree is there is nothing more relaxing than a great day on the water with a stiff wind.
     


    jon hansen likes this.
  12. Barn-dog

    Barn-dog

    Joined Dec 28, 2016
    16 posts, 2 likes
    Hunter 34
    US MiddleR
    I totally agree, Captain !
    Barn-dog