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: Frustrating Day Installing Snaps  ( 2572 )
regalman190
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Custom Marine Canvas Rochester, NY


« : May 01, 2013, 08:11:51 PM »

Don't know if anyone has encountered this before. It's a first for me.

I am making a cockpit cover for a 16' Seadoo Speedster and needed to install snaps on the boat. As I have done a thousand times before, I prefer rivet studs to the screw studs. Makes for a cleaner, quicker job. As I layout the stud locations, I'm noticing massive amounts of de-lamination or "spider cracking". I mean a lot! And in the vicinity of where the studs have to be.

Well, I call the client to ask if he knows about these and he says absolutely. I told him, that adding the studs could increase the cracking and possibly add more, but I would be extremely careful, but could not guarantee "no more cracking". He understands and is completely OK with it.

Now begins the frustration. When it comes to drilling into boats, I am extremely cautious. I center punch the location first, then reverse drill a countersink and then drill through. So I start adding the studs....carefully. Well.....every fourth or fifth stud, I hear the cracking around the hole. Small bits crack off, and of course I begin to cuss....like that will help! I try a few screw studs thinking these might be better. Not a chance. So, I continue with the rivet studs, All the while, biting my lip. At one location, a chunk about 1/4" by 1/2" just blows out next to the stud. I don't think I have ever heard myself spew out so many cuss words. I even thought maybe the rivets weren't long enough, but that means every one would crack. Also when a rivet stud isn't long enough, you can't get the mandrel to break off. I had no problems with the mandrels.

After installing almost 40 studs, about a half dozen of them have cracking around them. I'll be patching those with 3m 5200 or MarineTex.

I have never experienced anything like this in all my years of making canvas. It was like the gel coat was disintegrating. So badly, it didn't take much to crack. I'm beginning to wonder if that boat should even go in the water.

Talked to the customer and he was OK with it, but I'm not. I keep going over and over it in my head thinking I must have done something wrong. But I didn't. I guess I'll just have to stop beating myself up.

Has anyone else encountered this?


« : May 01, 2013, 08:24:27 PM regalman190 »

Regal Canvas
JuneC
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« #1 : May 01, 2013, 08:36:21 PM »

I've had the odd gelcoat chip here and there, but nothing like you describe.  I always countersink the holes to avoid chipping, but on occasion one will still chip - usually because I'm in a hurry and don't countersink deep enough.  I use screws - don't like rivets, but it shouldn't make a difference.  How old is the boat?  The pre-existing spider cracking is probably a warning though....  I've never encountered that. 

Two things on my to-be-acquired skills list is gelcoat repair and vinyl repair.  I believe the gelcoat to be the easier of the two.

June

"Horse sense is the thing a horse has which keeps it from betting on people."

     W. C. Fields
Mike
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Marine canvas & upholstery SWFL


« #2 : May 01, 2013, 09:52:37 PM »

like june I like screws, and bevel the gelcoat after drilling I remember one boat a new vip probably 97  it had oddly thick gelcoat and I didn't bevel enough. I had it chip as big as my thumb

timtheboatguy
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« #3 : May 01, 2013, 10:25:50 PM »

Sounds like bad fiberglass, perhaps there was an air pocket between the substrate and gel coat when the boat was built or a bad mixture of resin. Anyway, it wasn't your fault, the guy has a lemon!

http://www.timtheboatguy.com

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regalman190
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Custom Marine Canvas Rochester, NY


« #4 : May 02, 2013, 07:16:29 AM »

Thanks all for talking this on through with me. Makes me feel better.

Definitely bad fiberglass or gel coat. Or both. I do understand that these types of boats take more of a beating on the water than most boats.  I guess the object when owning one of these is how fast can you go and how high can you go when you hit a wave. Can't be good for the hull.


Regal Canvas
Mojo
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I'm Always In Trouble


« #5 : May 03, 2013, 06:57:57 AM »

It is very reminiscent of when I would install solar screens on coaches. There is nothing like drilling holes in the side of a 1/2 million dollar bus to install snap studs. I pre-drilled every hole and prayed to God I didn't hit a wire inside the wall cavity.

You get used to knowing where the manufacturers run their wire looms but it was always nerve racking. I have cracked a couple finishes but thankfully they were so small that the snap covered them. Like Mike I always used screw studs.

I have found that while cussing wont make things better it sure makes me feel good during those Opp's moments. Being a Marine I learned to cuss with the best of them. Thankfully my local priest was never on the job with me. :)

I quit doing solar screens for two reasons. 1.) Liability 2.) Margins. I make twice the money with my canvas products. I sure do NOT miss the days of drilling into fiberglass ( or working off ladders ).

Chris
Mike
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« #6 : May 05, 2013, 05:45:01 AM »

chris didn't you have a way to attach the screens without snas using some sort of clips?
I was trying to think of it when I did a set in this guys coach in  april, perhaps the guy who called you  from pc

Darren Henry
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« #7 : May 05, 2013, 10:17:29 AM »

Quote
I have found that while cussing wont make things better it sure makes me feel good during those Opp's moments. Being a Marine I learned to cuss with the best of them.

I was a Sargeant Major in the Canadian artillery and fluent in Newfand-eze when I shattered the windshield on a 38' cabin cruiser on Friday afternoon as the owner was on route to live aboard his boat. I'd have given you a run.

The glaziers had run the glass all the way to the bottom of the channel of the window frame. The nanosecond that the drill bit entered the 1/4" air space (what wasn't blessed 'der ;the mongrel,scurry........ the windshield and I both snapped.

Life is a short one way trip, don't blow it!Live hard,die young and leave no ill regrets!
Mojo
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I'm Always In Trouble


« #8 : May 05, 2013, 09:38:51 PM »

chris didn't you have a way to attach the screens without snas using some sort of clips?
I was trying to think of it when I did a set in this guys coach in  april, perhaps the guy who called you  from pc

Mike I never used clips. There are a few makers out there that do though.

Chris
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