A LITTLE PLASTIC SURGERY?
I want to repair existing carpet-snap holes in the nonskid of my Sea Ray. I have
to move all of them because the replacement carpet is about half an inch off.
What’s the best way to plug those holes? A. Clark Hoyle
DON CASEY: Epoxy putty is the best choice for filling screw holes in fiberglass. You can
mix your own, but for your use, a pre-mixed epoxy paste such as white Marine-Tex will be
easier and result in a less-visible repair. If your nonskid isn’t white, tint the paste with a coloring agent. The process is easy. Use a countersink bit to chamfer the top of each hole. This
cleans up the contact area and makes the repair stronger by giving the
epoxy a larger and more horizontal surface to which to adhere. If you
don’t have access to the bottom of the hole to seal it with tape, you
may want to fill the holes in two steps. First, put just enough epoxy
putty into the hole to seal the bottom. When holes are large, the putty
can tend to drain through, so use a bit of dowel to create a plug, or
stiffen the paste with sawdust, talc, silica, or even a bit of wadded tissue. You’re just trying to close the bottom of the hole.
When your plug has set, or if you haven’t needed to use a plug, fill
the hole completely with your epoxy putty, making it level at the top
with the surrounding surface. Epoxy doesn’t shrink during cure. Match
the texture of your nonskid by stippling the
putty with a finger, a cloth, or some other
tool that gives you the desired effect. When
the epoxy has cured fully, you’ll have a permanent repair.
My Wellcraft takes in water through the bow.
There’s a vent in the anchor locker that’s just
a hole with a clamshell cover over it. Is there
something else that’s supposed to be in the
hole to prevent water from coming in?
TOM NEALE: Many anchor lockers are
drained as you describe, with no other measures taken to keep water out of the drain
hole. The aft-facing vent should keep water
out as the boat moves forward, and the hole
should be well above the waterline so no
water enters when at rest, or reversing. You
didn’t mention the quantity of water or the
A stiff gear
shift could be
corrosion. Try a
blast of WD- 40
to the inside of
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