We recommend to repair your boat quickly.
Severe damage to boats often require structural repairs. An expert like Scott can help you determine if your damage is structural or cosmetic. In general, structural damage involves the disruption of the laminate system of the boat’s construction. This can be observed as major cracking or gouging. This damage may also be a result of major impacts or abrasions. In order for these to be considered structural, they must compromise the integrity of the hull.
Cracking- Cracks may appear in fiberglass yacht or boat hulls in regions of abnormally high flexing. First, the hull might have been overloaded, or caused to bear an unintended heavy load. Heavy duty accessories like outriggers, seats, and T-Tops are intended to be located on properly reinforced areas of the hull. If they are improperly installed the fiberlass may be unable to support the additional load and cracks can appear.
Gouges- Gouges are normally the result of a sharp object scraping the hull. For gouges to be considered structural damange, they must be deep enough to have broken a considerable portion of the fiberglass cloth strands and be long enough to affect a major load-bearing portion of the boat. It is recommended to repair immediately.
Impacts- Many things tend to hit the hull frequently. Impact damage should be considered structural if it penetrates the laminate and exposes more than a few inches of the hull’s core. Cracks often appear near impact sites, and should be dealt with quickly.
Abrasions- Abrasions typically also occur very frequently. From beaching runabouts in high surf to misplacing a fender while docking – abrasions can do massively unsightly damage to our yachts and boats. Serious abrasion is a double-threat to the integrity of our boats’ structure. Breaking down the barrier of gel-coat or paint exposes the hull’s fiberglass to damage. Water and sunlight can quickly break down unprotected fiberglass. Also, abrasions sometimes go all the way through the fiberglass and damage the hull’s core, be it wood or foam.
In conclusion, it is important to reduce the exposure by beginning fiberglass repair quickly!
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