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Forums / Restoration / Deck Leaks  
The discussions for this thread include the following:

Posted: 23 Jun 2012 at 11:09pm
Hi I have done a quick look and not found anything on fixing and locating fresh water leaks.

I find Mandalay had about 5 galons of freah water today after less than an inch of rain last night. There was water showing on the cushions starboard 1/4 berth, port side behind the hanging locker, V berth and galley.

The toe rail is in pretty good condition and I am wondering if caulking the inside and out side of the toe rail with some thing like 3m 5200 might seal things up.

I also wonder if the port lights might be leaking between the liner and the deck unit. I have placed some collection plates beneath the ports to see if I get anything.

I will probably remove the grab rails form the cabin top to varnish and then re-bed them with silicone when I replace them as I think they may leak too. This boat has been neglected for many years.
Thanks for any help,

Posted: 23 Jun 2012 at 11:28pm
posted I have done more searching and found some good infomation. By the way I have a Pacific model looks to be the hull deck joint is all fiberglass.

Posted: 24 Jun 2012 at 7:10pm
Hi Charles
Maybe you found: http://dolphin24.org/leaks.html

5 gallons is a lot - for this kind of fresh water volume you have to look at drains - seat and cockpit floor drains. Water tank could be a problem.
Let us know,
Ron (webmaster)

Posted: 24 Jun 2012 at 8:53pm
Hi Ron,
Yes I did find that one after my post. I am anxious to get a good look at things under the deck and the drains. I am still dunging out junk. I did the the bottom done and polished the topsides. The center board was stuck about 12 inches down and is now all the way down. she handles better now.
I will keep you posted as to progress. Thanks for your reply.

Posted: 25 Jun 2012 at 1:41pm
Hi Char,

I'm assuming your dolphin was in the water at the time you discovered the water in the bilge. In addition to what you have already considered as the source and suggestions by Ron I would add to that the steering mechanism that is similar to a stuffing box and below the water line and the chain plates.

Look at the steering mechanism at the base of the tiller in the cockpit and what you should see are two nuts, a large nut on top of a smaller nut. (I'm assuming the teak plate is removed) The gap between the steering mechanism and the deck is a source of entry for water into the bilge. This part of the steering mechanism is of course above the water line but a source nonetheless for water ingress.

I have a Yankee Dolphin, #245 Windswept too, and this assumes our access to the steering mechanism below the water line where it enters the hull is similar. I'm six foot and have to slither through the small opening under the port cockpit seat cushion for access to the steering shaft of the steering mechanism and the two nuts that are identical to the same nuts above the water line.

You should be able to see the tell tail signs of water having entered from either the cockpit penetration of the steering shaft and through the stuffing nut where the steering shaft penetrates the hull portion below the water line. The larger nut and the smaller nut should be identical to the nuts found above in the cock pit.

Dolphin owners are fortunate to have access to these two nuts that we have because it could be a lot worse. If there is an indication of water ingress around the steering shaft then the stuffing in the larger of the two nuts needs to be replaced, the smaller of the two nuts is a locking nut.

The other area of water ingress I mentioned are the chain plates. I'm assuming the Pacific Dolphin has similar chain plates to the Yankee and similarly installed.

On the Windswept too the chain plate holes were drilled but the openings were not countersunk and this is the source of water ingress problem due to the poor design of the chain plate and stallation methods at the time.

Remove the chain plate and prior to reinstalling I suggest countersinking the hole which will allow the adhesive/sealant to act as an o-ring and add to the area being sealed. I recommend 3M 4200 or something similar but nothing greater because chainplates should be regularly inspected and maintained.

With respect to the portlights leaking I think the hand rails probably need to be rebedded as you stated. Which by the way Yankee attached the handrails from inside the cabin instead of through the tops of the handrails.

If this is the case with Pacific dolphins then be prepared to remove one or both bulkheads. Like the chain plate hole treatment I suggested above I would do the same with the holes used to fasten the handrail to the top of the cabin. Again, use a sealant/adhesive no greater than 3M 4200.

And finally, relative to the toe rail, Windswept toos' receiving new teak rails as we speak and I'm in the end process of preparing the clamp to receive them. This item is a topic for another discussion at another time.

One last thing, the portlights need to be sealed with a quality marine sealant and not an adhesive. While GRP does a fair amount of expanding and contracting I don't see this being an issue where the portlight frame meets the outside of the cabine.

Good luck and keep us posted on your quest to find leaks.

Posted: 25 Jun 2012 at 6:59pm
Not to hijack the thread, but I (and I'm sure others) look forward to your upcoming report on replacing the toe rail. That will be one of my first projects when I acquire #184 (f/k/a Icelander) next week. I've been looking at videos showing homemade steam chambers from PVC and wallpaper steamers, trying to decide whether to attempt this or contract it.

David Williams

Posted: 15 Jul 2012 at 11:59pm
David, the toe rails should be finished any day now and in a couple of weeks her deck will be soda blasted, epoxy primered, two coats of Brightside and then installation of the toe rails.
Relative to your concern I don't envision a situation requiring the use of steam as the extrusions are pretty flexible as-is and my scarf joints are in excess of 12" so splitting isn't a concern.
Wayne, my carpenter, used a small remnant of wood to get the daddo, angle of the base that meets the hull and 8 degree bevel as close as we can for close fittment.
Pictures will follow my progress.

Posted: 28 Aug 2012 at 2:28pm
I replaced the toe rails on Prodigal and even using 3M silicone sealer around each screw/bolt. Even after this, as the teak settled, gaps opened to allow water in on the deck side of the toe rail and water resulted in the V-berth on the cushions. We then ran a bead on the inside and outside all the way around and we have been dry ever since, except for water that has hit the deck and washed under the front hatch. Next project is to seal that gap. Story of replacing the teak can be found on Prodigal's (#204) page.

Posted: 29 Aug 2012 at 7:10pm
Here's a fix for leaking forward hatches - adhesive backed foam tape - 15+ years - no leaks

check out the Technical Section


Marionette, #12

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