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  1. #1
    Vern's Avatar
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    Check your pump tunnels ...

    I put a strong light under my ski and was looking at the pump tunnel while my pump is out at Skat. I noticed what I thought was a scratch ... after looking more closely at it and feeling it, I realized it was a crack in the gelcoat. No damage yet, but if I ran it another season at even higher speeds, I don't think it would survive too well.

    You may want to look closely at your skis. I am also wondering about fixes. I know I could bring it to a fiberglass shop but was also wondering about possibly laying in a couple layers of kevlar or carbon fiber with resin, or? Anybody have any other ideas?


  2. #2
    GTXX's Avatar
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    if it's just the gel coat cracking and not structural I would be tempted to use epoxy resin instead of gelcoat to repair it. It can be tinted with the same tint that is used in gel coat and is a lot tougher. There are several different fibers that can be mixed with it depending on what you are using it for that gives gives it different consistancies. If it's structural too you need to reinforce it on the inside of the hull with epoxy resin and a lighter guage woven roving.

  3. #3
    Underneath the hull, the tunnel, there will be some cracks, keep an eye out at different times, if anybodys engine is out now, now will be a good time to reinforce the tunnel, from the inside. Good luck.

  4. #4
    Site Admin MikeTrin's Avatar
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    yep!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #5
    Why does this happen?...PR...

  6. #6
    Nonstop, all day, everyday. 01xdime's Avatar
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    I just checked mine out and it seems ok.

  7. #7
    Vern's Avatar
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    My tunnel is very solid, but the crack is definitely there in the gelcoat. Not as bad as yours Mike, but in the same spot ... the gelcoat seems thin down there, altho the fiberglass on the tunnel itself seems fine.

    GTXX, thanks for the info, can you add anything to that? What company or brand, and how do you apply it? Do you soak roving in it, or just mix and apply with a spreader, or?

  8. #8
    GTXX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vern
    GTXX, thanks for the info, can you add anything to that? What company or brand, and how do you apply it? Do you soak roving in it, or just mix and apply with a spreader, or?
    You use epoxy resin in the place of fiberglass resin and handle it similarly when soaking fiberglass mat, cloth or woven roving. West Systems is the most commonly available brand and there are some no name brands out there that sound like they are the same stuff that are less expensive. West has a book that tells you almost everything you need to know to use the stuff and everything that you can use it for. By mixing different fillers you can do different things with it so it's very versitile. Without getting the book out I'm not sure which filler would be best to mix with it to thicken it a little to do a pump tunnel, probably the Fairing filler which is used when truing a hull. I would finish up with a couple of coats of straight tinted epoxy applied with a small disposable roller. This stuff is hard as heck if there are no fillers added, much harder than gel coat so you would need to have it shaped and sanded before rolling on the finish coats. I have never used it like the way I'm suggesting, only for big holes and hull truing before painting so I can't say for sure that it will work, but I feel that it would be good.
    Here's a link to West Systems which by the way is not associated to West Marine:

    http://www.westsystem.com/

  9. #9
    Vern's Avatar
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    Thanks for the input GTXX!

    Another question ... are our hulls two layer there? Are they double wall on the entire bottom of the hull? If so, adding cloth and resin INSIDE on top of the tunnel won't really help ... instead if it is double wall that would somewhat explain the weakness and we would then have to drill (carefully!) into the inner layer, then add pure resin into the void, or foam, or something, to add structural strength, then address any gelcoat cracks. Input anybody?

    Sorry for the sorta dup reply to this and the intake grate post ...

  10. #10
    GTXX's Avatar
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    no, it's not double layer there. The double layer starts where the tunnel meets the flat.

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