Achilles Sailing Yachts built by Butler Mouldings
Version45 Last updated12/3/19
Achilles 24 Zethar Keel Dropping 2004
The aft keelbolt was replaced and associated repair work done in the winter of 2002/3 (click here). Epoxy filler was used at the keel but when lifted out at the end of 2003 it had not bonded to the cast iron. There was a hairline crack and after a couple of days ashore water was seeping out, so the filler was removed and the gap left to dry under a plastic sheet taped to the hull. Repeated attempts to fill the gap through the following Spring after many weeks of drying always ended in failure with the filler bubbling.
By the time we produced the bubble above, she had been out of the water for over six months. The likeliest explanation was that there was still moisture in the gap. In curing the original keelbolt problem we found that there was expanded foam under the grp cabin moulding between it and the hull at the bilge, and the concern was that the leak had let water between the hull and the liner rather than just up around the keelbolt. There were four filled holes on the moulded step for the cabin sole boards. I dug out a plug of filler and there was foam that was saturated.
With a wire and a length of rod the foam was dug out, adding four more holes to improve access. With a length of small diameter pipe on the end of the vacuum cleaner it was a case of dig a bit, suck a bit, until as much as was possible was removed.
The only area left was under the glassed in limber pipe beneath the cockpit sole which was cut out to find more wet foam.