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Keel questions

Jan 11, 2014
7,412
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
Welcome to the forum Lakeskiier.

Photos would be helpful.

If you have an encapsulated keel, this article should be informative.

 
Nov 6, 2006
9,059
Hunter 34 Mandeville Louisiana
Welcome!
The keel is cast iron and without pictures of your area of concern. May be cracks in faring materials or may be something else..
 
Jun 9, 2021
5
Hunter 31 Bayview
Thank you for the reply. I have asked and will post those pictures as quickly as I can gain access from the diver.
Much appreciated
 
Jan 1, 2006
5,734
Slickcraft 26 Greenport, NY
Do you know the keel material? It matters due to construction technique.
Those cracks don't seem to me to be that significant. The ...1C14 phots looks like a typical keel/stub fairing crack. The ...045F-4 photo doesn't help me because I can't orient my eye to where that is on the keel. But it doesn't look very big - a few inches?
 
Jun 9, 2021
5
Hunter 31 Bayview
I understand the keel is cast iron then covered with a thin layer of gelcoat at the factory. The cracks found would be shaped the same as if you put your hand on the hull in that area and spread your fingers out wide and then drew a line from finger tip to finger tip. There is similar creaking on other Hunter 31's on the stub to keel joint on the conventional keels but have not seen these on the tab areas. As these were found on either side of the forward part of the keel.
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,412
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
The cracks have all the appearance of the common keel to keel stub joint crack. Affectionately know as [insert boat brand] smile.

Keels are usually set into the stump with a generous layer of a bedding compound (often 5200) and then some fairing compound around the joint. Over time the fairing compound fails due to the different expansion rates of iron and fiberglass and is not a structural issue. However, the only way to be certain that this is the problem is to haul the boat, inspect the joint, and re-torque the keel bolts.
 
Jun 9, 2021
5
Hunter 31 Bayview
The cracks have all the appearance of the common keel to keel stub joint crack. Affectionately know as [insert boat brand] smile.

Keels are usually set into the stump with a generous layer of a bedding compound (often 5200) and then some fairing compound around the joint. Over time the fairing compound fails due to the different expansion rates of iron and fiberglass and is not a structural issue. However, the only way to be certain that this is the problem is to haul the boat, inspect the joint, and re-torque the keel bolts.
This helps greatly. Unless you would advise I'll use her this season (4 months remaining) then put her inline to be inspected. The last bottom painting was 2009 and remains largely in great shape. But this will give me the nudge to lift her condition.

Your thoughts please and thanks again for your insight.

Much appreciated.
 
Jan 11, 2014
7,412
Sabre 362 113 Fair Haven, NY
Unless you would advise I'll use her this season (4 months remaining) then put her inline to be inspected.
Without seeing the crack up close and personal, I really can't give you any advise on the safety of sailing the boat this summer. The photos seem to suggest the crack is benign, however, it could also be the result of a grounding or there could be additional damage.
 
Oct 22, 2014
15,010
CAL 35 Cruiser moored EVERETT WA
@Lakeskiier
As @dlochner has shared, a decision to use the boat or not is the owners and should not be influenced by boat owners thousands of miles away based on a couple of underwater images.

The type of evidence you presented would lead me to ask questions and "inspect" many areas of the boat before hazarding a guess that it was "ok" to "Sail the boat another 4 months".

Some ideas to help you reach a conclusion:
  1. Is there water in the bilge?
  2. What do the keel bolts look like?
  3. How will the boat be used?
  4. Are there cracks in the bilge?
  5. Was the boat grounded?
  6. Does the boat have any unusual list or sounds when sailing?
  7. Does the boat drift when trying to follow a chosen bearing?
  8. Do I want to prevent further damage?
  9. Will pushing one more season cause me to have a greater repair?
There are quite a few more. One answer leads to another question, which leads to a decision.