from Nick P*****
date Wed, Mar 4, 2009 at 12:07 AM
subject Greetings fellow transom rot repair novice
Hello, we haven't met before but my name is Nick P*****. A long time boat lover, first time boat owner. My wife and I have owned a boat now for less than a month. The boat hasn't left the driveway since we brought it home. I'm sure the story is quite common, we bring her home, clean her up, do some minor repairs here and there -- we could almost smell the lake water (even bought a bunch of Sun screen). But....
I was replacing a blower motor, the kind that keeps the engine compartment free of gas fumes or any other flammable fumes, and then I noticed a part of the transom wood was just falling out like pieces of kindling, wet kindling that is. So I came back inside, broke the bad news to my wife and started searching online for some ideas of what the hell we do now. I then found a link to your site from the iboats Boating Forum. After taking a good look at your site I can visualize what it is below the deck of our 1988 Glastron SSV-199. It's an I/O open bowrider style boat. The engine runs great, the outdrive checks out fine too. If it weren't for the condition of the wood, we would planning our trip in the next couple weeks. We're going to get a 2nd or 3rd opinion to check it out and make sure it's possible to fix the darn thing.
I mainly wanted to introduce myself and this situation I now find myself in. I also wanted to thank you for sharing your experiences here on your web site. Please continue to do so, it has helped us tremendously already. Looks like I might have at least one stringer that's rotten too. I hope you continue to share your experiences, and any lessons learned along the way.
Thanks and good luck with the step(s) you're currently working on, same to any future steps you plan on doing.
Nick's site chronicling his boat repair: http://boatrepair.sci-fer.com
from Scott D*****
subject Your an answer to my issues!
First off, let me tell you how appreciative i am for your time and effort you put into your site! I have an 83 18 ft cobalt im actually begginning to do the same work to. I have it sitting under the "A" frame as i speak, ready for this weekend to pull the engine. My boat is a bit different... it has a "stepped" transom. Meaning it has the outer wood layer, then another layer that has about 3 inches smaller outer edges, then a third layer about 1.5' x 1.5' where the gimbal housing mounts to. Im not sure of the condition of the stringers, but im affraid its going to be ugly! You seem very knowledgeable with what you are doing so im thinking of doing something simalar to what you are, instead of using the seacast.
Question, why did you install one layer at a time on the boat? Why not build up the transom layers out of the boat then install it all at once?
Again thanks for all of your dedication!!
My answer to Scott:
I layered them in one at a time because that way I didn't have to worry about any of the boards not being straight and warping the back of the boat when I snugged them down. Once 3 layers of 1/2" MDO have glass and epoxy between all the layers, it will not bend. Not at all! I knew that would be a problem as I have yet to see a straight piece of plywood, no matter how expensive it is.
from Guy B****
subject rotten transom
Hi Dan, love your site. My friend Bill and I just bought a 79 grady 201 marlin i/o. When in the boat looking at inner transom we've found rot but only on the left side of gimbal and up a little.
Below,and right side are dry & tight. Do you think removing some of the rotted wood and patching w/epoxy/resin could buy us more time. It looks like entire outside of transom has been
re-gelled and feels pretty good.
My answer to Guy:
Hi Guy! Thanks for the compliments on the site. It's been fun so far. One thing I know about rot is it typically exists where you don't expect. Here's my recommendations for you:
from Danny F****
date Tue, Apr 28, 2009 at 3:36 PM
subject Nice web site
I found your transom repair part of your site very informative. I just bought my first boat a couple weeks ago, and yeah, now appears that I have some repairs to do. There was caulking around the outdrive and was told it was there because the proper seal was not in place. Well, after nearly sinking the boat, I got it back home and cut off the caulk and it appears the somebody had tried to maybe use jb weld to fill the gap between the outdrive and maybe some rotten transom. I will have to tear this all apart because I can't sell it and sleep at night. I was wondering what exactly you used to pull the motor? Home made set-up? Also would you mind a few emails as I get into this transom patch? Thanks for the site and your time.
My answer to Danny:
Fire away, Danny. I enjoy reading other people's stories and love hearing about the progress. I'm glad you didn't sink! The caulking around the outdrive is a very common item to watch out for (I know this now) as it's a dead ringer for a rotten transom.
I didn't use anything magical for pulling my motor. A friend has an A-frame hoist at his shop. Other people have built large A and Box frame structures that they leaned up against their garages, pushed the boat into the garage a bit, and attached a lift pulley to the center of the frame and pulled the engine that way. Still others used the rafters in their garage and attached a lift pulley. Sometimes you can get it out if you tilt the front of the boat in the air until a cherry picker can lift it high enough to clear the stern, but that's a long shot and it lifts the engine out at a wonky angle.
I'd suggest calling around until you find someone with an A frame hoist. It's quick and painless (and most importantly very safe).
You can definitely do this, it's not hard and you'll learn quite a bit. Keep me posted, and good luck!