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HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Old 07-20-2004, 08:46 PM
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Default HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

A few of you may remember several weeks back.. I posted about water dripping out of several holes on the transom of my 1983 Mckee Waypoint. For those not familiar,this boat is a 16 ft 2 in. "Whaler style" center console with foam core.. no bilge.. I spoke with a few nice folks at Mckee [incuding Key Mckee]that were helpful and gave reassurance. anyway,I was only a few days from filling the holes and calling it good,but instead decided to take the boat and have a used 70 HP OMC installed and fill the holes when I got it back. The "marina" had the boat out in the open for three weeks and it endured several heavy thunderstorms. When I got the rig home the water was AGAIN coming out of the holes in the transom. I looked deeper. As I kept taking screws out of hatches,bilge pump,deck,WHEREVER, I kept having water run out of ALL these holes mostly centerline and on the starboard side of the boat everywhere from bow to stern. A few large holes were cut and filled sometime in the seemingly hard life of this unfortunate boat. I wonder if this has been an ongoing problem.. The guys at Mckee told me this foam would NOT absorb much water,but I am concerned. I am NOT getting gallons of water anywhere,it won't even dampen the shop vac after long "suck out" sessions,but there is persistant water coming from all the small screw size holes an ounce here and there,and the 4 in. hole that was drilled and filled in the center of the floor[I opened it back up to check the foam for saturation]r, always fills up with about 3-4 ounces in a day... The boat has been covered for days and even in the hot weather and plenty of room for evaporation,all these holes are sweating water out.What constitues waterlogged.??? . The boat does not seem overly heavy to me. I may get it weighed,but with gas on board and a trailer with unknown weight, it would be a rough estimate. any help from those with experience would be appreciated.... bob
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Old 07-20-2004, 09:19 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

You have now found out one of the real reasons fully foamed boats are not all they're cracked up to be. Boat manufacutures who fully foam their boats tell you they use "closed cell foam", which by definition is true. But the fact of the matter is that closed cell foam will absorb water over time. For all practical purposes, when there is water intrution it is impossible to get the water out. I would not expect Mckee (or any other manufacturer of fully foamed boats) to tell you anything else but everything is fine. It would ruin their marketing if people started talking about the problems that could be encountered.

Now you have a dilema. Do you continue to look for more areas that have water intrution or do you simply reinstall everything you have taken off and continue to use the boat. Considering its age and the fact that the boat does not seem to be too heavy, I would reinstall everything, making sure to seal each fastener with marine silicone and go on down the road and enjoy your boat. But consider this. You may have learned a valuable lesson. Fully foamed boats may not be all they're cracked up to be.
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Old 07-20-2004, 09:24 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Bob-
Sorry to hear about your boat. Unfortunately this a heavily discussed subject on the Continous Wave Whaler site. I would recommend going there and using the search engine on there. I believe many, if not ALL your questions will be answered. Good luck.
Peter

http://continuouswave.com/cgi-bin/fo...ne=&LastLogin=
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Old 07-20-2004, 09:28 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Lemme try again

http://continuouswave.com/cgi-bin/Ul...i?action=intro
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Old 07-20-2004, 10:23 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Monstawhala is right. The Continuouswave.com web page has discussed this in very, very great detail. McKees were designed by the same guy who developed Boston Whalers and probably as the same benefits (i.e., flotation) and drawbacks (water absorption). As an owner of three Boston Whaler classics, two of which are older than yours, here is what I have learned:

1. Almost all Boston Whalers 21 years old have some water intrustion.

2. A little water intrusion is small stuff

3. Don't sweat the small stuff.

Richard
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Old 07-20-2004, 10:50 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

greyg8r - 7/20/2004 11:23 PM

Monstawhala is right. The Continuouswave.com web page has discussed this in very, very great detail. McKees were designed by the same guy who developed Boston Whalers and probably as the same benefits (i.e., flotation) and drawbacks (water absorption). As an owner of three Boston Whaler classics, two of which are older than yours, here is what I have learned:

1. Almost all Boston Whalers 21 years old have some water intrustion.

2. A little water intrusion is small stuff

3. Don't sweat the small stuff.

Richard
I agree with the above. To be brief, so what? Much is made of the fact that water intrusion may occur. I cannot give you emirical information, but I can say for certaiin that my 67 whaler has been "intruded". It rides the same, is as buoyant and does not feel heavier, or less responsive. If you are looking for piece of mind, weigh it, the trailer and calculate your fuel mass, but either way, time has shown that this is not the apocolypse some have suggested it to be. As much as McKee/Whaler/etc/. may downplay it for marketing, others will hype it for the same end.


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Old 07-20-2004, 10:59 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

What happens sometimes with these boats (many with closed-cell foam as fill -or- just flotation) is that water gets *between* the foam and the fiberglass shell (in little pockets). The foam generally won't absorb water (most won't/can't absorb more than 2%, esp. with newer boats with better closed-cell foam), so that's not a real big concern. The concern is that with too much water, it can break-down the bond between the foam filling and the inner surface of the fiberglass shell. But this takes years, and even then, usually only when a crack or hole is left unattended.

Thing is, with McKees and Whalers, this can affect the structural integrity of the boat (though again, this would be an EXTREME case). On those boats, the foam IS the "stringers", etc, while on other boats that use closed-cell foam just for flotation, the structure remains relatively intact even if there's some water trapped in there (providing the structural members are glass, and not wood). Think of Whalers and McKees as hard-boiled eggs. They're very tough where solid, but not as tough if the backing to the shell is water, rather than hard foam. That's why they're tough to repair/rebuild (great boats though).
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Old 07-20-2004, 11:15 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

"What happens sometimes with these boats ... is that water gets *between* the foam and the fiberglass shell .... The foam generally won't absorb water ... so that's not a real big concern."


-- Until it freezes -- then all bets are off.
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Old 07-20-2004, 11:28 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Savage... ya know, that never even occured to me... since I live in SW Florida... ... but I guess that might be a problem for some, depending on whether or not the water had space to expand when frozen, I guess.
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Old 07-20-2004, 11:40 PM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Bob's in New York... That's not good.

A store clerk once told me the tale of taking a rogue wave into an open hatch on his older Robalo. His boat gained something like 6000 pounds of water weight. They took it to a repair place that sprayed in a special chemical to disolve the foam, then added new 2-part poly foam to make it right again. Big mess to clean up as the solvent and foam chemicals ran out.

As for Bobs' wet McKee, I'm thinking that several weeks in a dry shed with all of the hatches and holds open with fans running might help to dry it out. Maybe use of as moisture meter (from the boat surveyor) to make sure that it's ready for winter.
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Old 07-21-2004, 04:52 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

There is no solvent known to man that will dissolve polyurethane foam once it is cured.
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Old 07-21-2004, 07:45 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Why not dry the boat like a wood core boat with halogen lamps?(15.00 at most auto parts stores). Put the boat in your garage, put the tongue of the trailer as high as humanly possible, and put 2 halogen lamps on the transom(not too close) for as long as it takes for the water to stop flowing. Then go 360 around the boat with the lamps until your comfortable that the boat is dry. Then reseal the holes. I don't agree with the "Don't worry about it" philosophy.
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Old 07-21-2004, 07:46 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Oh yeah, find out how the water is getting in and stop that.
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:28 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Hello Bob

I am curious to your situation because I own a waypoint. You said you have water coming out of the holes in the transom.
What holes do you mean, mine has drain plug,lifting eyes,and transducer that is it. When I put the ducer on a year ago the old holes were dry. When I changed the bilge the old screw holes had about a drop or two of h20 in them which I thought was condensation.
My bimini attachment along the gunnel seems like a likely entry point for water.
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Old 07-21-2004, 08:49 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

lemme just weigh in on the foam issue based on first hand experience...

to float our duck camp, we built "pontoons" out of plywood (most are 6x3x4, others are varying sizes) that we tacked together, temporarily sealed with caulk, filled with water, put in place under the sills, and then pumped out the water.

once the pontoons were pumped out, we filled them with poured poly foam.
this was in 1993...eleven years later, some of the plywood has rotted off (the pontoons are all at least halfway submerged). periodically one of the floats will come loose (logs, current, etc) and we'll pull it and inspect them. just for grins we sawed in half a badly damaged pontoon last year...

eleven years in the water and the foam in the float was dry as a bone...not even any water in the foam in the outer skin

unless we are talking about a different kind of poly foam here, i am convinced that it does not absorb water
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Old 07-21-2004, 09:26 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Foam is closed cell to approximately 94% - 96% The remaining foam is open celled and will allow water migration. If there is no where for it to eventually exit the foam at the lowest point, it will begin to saturate upto 4% by volume with water.

Add an exit hole in the compartment for the water to exit thru and it will never saturate.
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Old 07-21-2004, 09:38 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Weigh the boat, subtract all accessories and gear. Then you will have a better Idea of how much water is in the hull. Even water logged it will not sink....always a plus!
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Old 07-21-2004, 10:40 AM
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Default RE: HELP...is my Mckee waterlogged???

Here are some pictures of a 14' McKee we literally dug out of a yard. The big round spots were where the foam was poured in and covered by a thin layer of glass. They developed cracks over the years and had to be sealed. Problem areas on this hull include bow eyes, hatch hinges, hardware attachments, seat mounts, bilge cover and drain holes. Pretty much anywhere a screw or bolt attached to the hull. They were all dug out and filled with epoxy.

Where most of the water seemed to come in was the rear foam access hole. I dug the foam out to the keel at the hole to get some of the water out. The rear drains also seemed likely suspects. I ended up drilling some drain holes on either side of the keel to get most of the water out. The keel has a 2x2 glassed in place. I put the maual jackplate on because I filled the original motor mounts.

Hopefully yours is in a lot better shape than this one was. This one was subjected to years of abuse and neglect. From what I could tell, other than standing water, the foam seemed pretty dry. No major cracks in the glass. Really thick glass. Built like a tank.









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Old 07-21-2004, 10:53 AM
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Hey, she shined up real nice Tin Man. nice job.
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