Catalina 34

General Activities => Main Message Board => Topic started by: kh3412 on November 07, 2016, 03:16:48 AM

Title: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 07, 2016, 03:16:48 AM
OK pulled the keel stepped mast off the boat for the winter and was going to dry the bilge for the winter to repair the tabbing on the mast step/stringer. Found the PO had done some repairs to the stringer and the wood was sooked / rotted. Searched the site and found mention of the problem but found no info on the repair. Wondering has anyone else done this repair and how did you go about it?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 08, 2016, 01:48:14 PM
Talked to Catalina today they sent this pdf as a guide for repair.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 08, 2016, 02:04:46 PM
The crack where water was getting in. This picture was from when we were looking at the boat to buy. Had been sitting for three years. removed a section of fiberglass to find soaked and rotted wood :cry4`. Will take more pictures as I progress. First thought is how to remove all the glass covering the wood, Thinking a Multi tool may work here. Has anyone used a multi tool for fiberglass and how did it fair?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 08, 2016, 02:15:04 PM
picture
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Stu Jackson on November 08, 2016, 10:29:45 PM
From my vague memory and a search:

http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,6752.msg44723.html#msg44723

Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 09, 2016, 10:18:12 AM
   Will take on this problem in the spring, it's getting too cold now. May try a air driven mini saw to open up the mast step. A multi tool makes a lot of fine dust and the blades aren't made for glass but will work. Shop vac is a must.
   While grinding gelcoat I hit a very thin spot in the back of the mast step and water ran out. Opened up the area and
let it dry out from fall to spring. Patched the step and added a vent to allow more drying if needed. I could not find any way for water to get in except to get past the screws holding the mast base.  Sealed the screws and think the water stopped but I want to open this up to be sure.
   Talked to Gerry Douglas at the Annapolis Boat Show and he said take it apart and remove the wood because it would be rotten. I may look at
replacing the wood with SS or alu. box of some design to support the mast.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 09, 2016, 03:53:25 PM
Phil I'm down the road at Sandusky Harbor. Where do you store for winter?
Perhaps we can mass produce a repair.  Not sure what direction to take with the repair,
was thinking the same as you, metal, but not sure you could get it in without cutting the floor.
When I talked to Gerry he mentioned laminating it in place with smaller pieces that may be doable.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 09, 2016, 04:42:25 PM
   I'm at Deep Water Marina for the winter. Would like to get 2 or 3 warm days to try to start this project.
Thought about making a support with 2 parts, lower and upper because the keel bolts may be in the way of a single part. My bolts are only 2" or 3" from the back of the mast step.
   May get warm enough to go up early next week and get started. 
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 13, 2016, 03:16:57 PM
Ever wonder what is in the mast step? Well wonder no more. Started cutting the waterlogged mast step out and was surprised with a stainless "t" beam running across. Used a mutitool and was very impressed with the ease of cutting the fiberglass. Should be in every tool box. Not sure what my plan to rebuild will be,but getting it open gives me something to think about.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 13, 2016, 05:20:06 PM
   Nice work. Now I know what I am getting into. How long did it take to cut everything out? Was it a lot of mess? What kind of blade did you use? l
Let us know how you move ahead.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 14, 2016, 07:42:48 AM
  KH: Looking at your pictures has me rethinking my approach to cutting into the mast step. Just picked up
some new multi tool blades this morning. Will take advantage of this weather window & get things opened up
this week.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 14, 2016, 09:08:53 AM
Phil let me know when you have it apart. Took about 4 hrs of digging wood out so plan some time. Dust was not an issue, get the carbide tip blade. Bring sharp wood chisel and hammer. Will try to get up there this weekend so would be great to get together and plan a repair.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Ron Hill on November 14, 2016, 02:59:47 PM
Phil : I queried Gerry Douglas when the "wood" in mast step problem came up in the early 1990s. 
He said that Catalina change from the "wood" in the early production of 1988 C34s.  Don't recall the exact hull # he gave me now (I may have published it in the Mainsheet tech notes?), but it was about # 720.

It'll be interesting if Catalina really changed or he told me that hull # just to please me!?!

A thought
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 14, 2016, 05:31:26 PM
   Ron, My boat followed yours down the production line, #788 & #789. Tomorrow we will know if the wood was removed or not. Will let you
 know how it goes after I open things up tomorrow.
   KH, I will let you know if I can be in Sandusky this Saturday. Call and we can get a plan. 419-355-6135
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on November 15, 2016, 06:01:58 PM
   Bad day at the boat today. Didn't get to far but I did hit wood. Hope to get done Thursday.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Gregory M on November 16, 2016, 11:44:46 AM
Hi guys! Looks like not only you, dealing with the same problem! Started about three weeks ago, cutting along crack edges with Dremel pointed cone bit mounted on flex shaft (works well to open up cracks), to find out what's in there? Rotten wood, saturated with oil, diesel and god knows what else!? Looks to me, like wood was added as filler piece to fill big void, between "I" beam and keel-son. Questions: 
1)   Are you sure that is stainless steel? (haven't open up yet), but, upon drilling to clean hole, aluminum shavings where discovered.
2)  What's your plan to fill the gap with?
     (mine is to use):
                                 1) 3/4 "maranti" plywood in layers, sealed with S-1 sealer and bonded to each other with epoxy East System (not West).
                                     But this sound like lot of time and expense.
                                  2) Block bow and aft sides of keel step with let's say 1/4" plywood and fill "box" with epoxy mixed with cotton fiber (heard that is structural filler) or                                                                         
                                       short stranded or chopped glass.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 16, 2016, 04:36:21 PM
Greg
Hi sorry to hear about your step. You know i assume it was stainless but to be honest I did not check. Where I was chiseling the glass off the top did not groove the metal and would have thought aluminum would have. Have not come up with a plan yet was waiting to meet with Phill and see what ideas we could come up with. your second idea would be a lot of epoxy and produce a lot of heat. Under my wood in the bottom of the bilge they had globs of resin with fiber to bed the wood to the bilge. Not sure how well it worked from what is left. Thinking I have two ways to go.
1 Fill in the area using the raised glassed area I have not removed with resin/filler to have a flat surface to build up from.
2 Remove the rest of the glass and resin down to the hull and build up from there.
If you choose your second way what will the bolts holding the mast step screw into. On mine the bolts are outside the metal beam?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 16, 2016, 04:48:29 PM
Open this for all to weigh in, just throwing ideas out there. Build a form bow and stern of post area fill with concrete and have studs for the step in the concrete, fiberglass over the whole thing. Concrete is great for compression, water won't hurt it, fills voids if you use a vibrator when pouring, and it won't rot.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Gregory M on November 16, 2016, 08:16:06 PM
Concrete is great for compression, absolutely,  not so much for possible twisting (not to much thou), and what about when is wet and freezes, boom, we have cracks in fiberglass again.... I agree that is lots of epoxy, would estimate 2 gallons or so. East system is almost half price from West system, same 5:1 ratio, same pumps, only 5% less strength though, very insignificant and what is important, dose not blush! Also, it is laminating epoxy. Just   nice stuff to work with! :clap. As for heat, yes it will build up, that is  why has to be done in layers. An inch at the time, pretty much a sizable batch.
 Not sure what route to take for bolts holding base of mast: 1) drill and tap in to fiberglass  (machine bolts), possibly insert layer of 3/8 thick aluminum in last layer of bedding of "glassed" post. 2) use lag bolts (as they where), there is way to drill and "tap" lag bolts in to fiberglass. On the other hand, is ts a bit (huuuuge bit) over kill to to do it that way! Filing with epoxy, that is.. More ideas ? I do not want to look, like I'm stuck in Epoxy!
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 17, 2016, 11:30:08 AM
Concrete is great for compression, absolutely,  not so much for possible twisting (not to much thou), and what about when is wet and freezes, boom, we have cracks in fiberglass again.... I agree that is lots of epoxy, would estimate 2 gallons or so. East system is almost half price from West system, same 5:1 ratio, same pumps, only 5% less strength though, very insignificant and what is important, dose not blush! Also, it is laminating epoxy. Just   nice stuff to work with! :clap. As for heat, yes it will build up, that is  why has to be done in layers. An inch at the time, pretty much a sizable batch.
 Not sure what route to take for bolts holding base of mast: 1) drill and tap in to fiberglass  (machine bolts), possibly insert layer of 3/8 thick aluminum in last layer of bedding of "glassed" post. 2) use lag bolts (as they where), there is way to drill and "tap" lag bolts in to fiberglass. On the other hand, is ts a bit (huuuuge bit) over kill to to do it that way! Filing with epoxy, that is.. More ideas ? I do not want to look, like I'm stuck in Epoxy!

Just thibking.....

why the  need to cover the concrete w/ glass or epoxy?

conc would be very easy to set bolts or studs.  Using high strength conc should do fine (shear value will increase with compression value.) 

In college in the whacky 70s, I wanted weights for traction (yes, a converted camper van) for the winter that lasted from May 1 to April 30.  I got heavyweight, super strong (which was also SUPER dense) aggregate from a power plant construction job and cast up some 18" cubes to fit next to the wheel wells (yes, down inside the seats that made the bed bunks.)  They were monster heavy and monster strong.  At graduation party we had a contest trying to bust them up w/ sledge hammers (beer was involved.)  No way.  I slept better afterward knowing the concrete that went into that nuke plant.  I don't see a problem if the block has a high enough shear value (more cement, less water, in the mix.)

If using epoxy, cast in or drill and sink in roughened-up stainless coupling nuts held into place w/ waxed up bolts -- soon after the epoxy kicks, back the bolts out, leaving a threaded receiver in the epoxy.  I have no idea the depth you have there -- could use add'l coupling nuts to make the treads as longs as needed.  Also a good way to set studs or threaded receivers for engine mounts (over lag bolts -- which are difficult to use in hard epoxy (no wood fibers to break and lock into the lag threads.))

Depending on volume, could you use a G-10 block ($$$$) and build up from there?

On the 34, is the stainless holding the mast -- or what? 
ie, do you NEED compressive strength around or under the stainless, or is it window dressing? (I am deck stepped.)

kk

Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Gregory M on November 17, 2016, 06:17:25 PM
Ken, look at pictures in reply #9, this is the cavity we trying to fill, with "something", to make support for T-bar (stainless..not confirmed thou). Notice, that left and right side, under flat part of T-bar, rotten wood is not removed yet. Not sure how far it goes estimating around 5~8 inches on each side. My guess is that Catalina, made "design" of wood, to support and prevent T-bar, from rocking/stabilizing, for and aft of T-bar. [doc09714920161107160426-1.pdf]  :cry4`don't know how to add link.. it's in reply #2
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 17, 2016, 08:12:37 PM
Greg

Yep i see it and understand better now that I saved them and zoom in. 

First things -- easy to post a link.

click on the subject line of the post that you want to link to (the subject line is a hyperlink.)
just go to to your browser address bar -- highlight and right-click > "copy" the address (or ctrl + C is the same as copy)
past into your new message  (right click > paste -- or ctrl + P)

alternately -- hover over the subject line
right click > "copy link address" (or something similar if not using Chrome browser)
paste into your new message

Ahhhh I see why now. 

Is that wood or mung turds I'm seeing in the bottom?

Do you think the T is fiberglassed in?  Or was just embedded into the lumber?

The lumber under the T is what's supporting it -- nothing on the ends?

My bilge is narrow - maybe an inch wider each side than the cover board so I can't relate exactly to what the C34 has.

Everything's "easy" when you're not there looking at the situation, but....  I'd probably consider having my buddy (a stainless fabricator -- everyone needs a buddy (or son/in law) like that) make me a "box" to epoxy into the bilge.  If I went that route, I'd make a "close" tolerance, exact not necessary, mock up for him using heavy corrugated cardboard or foam-core poster board and duct tape.  Or (built-up) styrofoam insulation sheets as a template.  The "box" could be an open frame -- say like a 4- sided A frame (trapezoid) with an open base and from angle or T-bar for the "legs".  The legs could be angled as much or as little as you need to make the base as large as necessary to give "overturning" support.   The top could be drilled and the step thru-bolted, or weld nuts underneath for the step bolts.

Hell, I see an Erector Set mock up!!  Wouldn't THAT be cool!

-kk


Ken, look at pictures in reply #9, this is the cavity we trying to fill, with "something", to make support for T-bar (stainless..not confirmed thou). Notice, that left and right side, under flat part of T-bar, rotten wood is not removed yet. Not sure how far it goes estimating around 5~8 inches on each side. My guess is that Catalina, made "design" of wood, to support and prevent T-bar, from rocking/stabilizing, for and aft of T-bar. [doc09714920161107160426-1.pdf]  :cry4`don't know how to add link.. it's in reply #2
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Noah on November 17, 2016, 08:42:14 PM
I believe if you back to the beginning of page one of this thread you will see the link to the Catalina fix for this problem and it shows the metal T-Bar. Why not just go with their block (or laminated sandwich) of hardwood suggested repair? Seal it up properly, glass it in, and even gelcoat over and should last another 20-30 years.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 17, 2016, 09:57:49 PM
I believe if you back to the beginning of page one of this thread you will see the link to the Catalina fix for this problem and it shows the metal T-Bar. Why not just go with their block (or laminated sandwich) of hardwood suggested repair? Seal it up properly, glass it in, and even gelcoat over and should last another 20-30 years.

noah do you know...
I wonder if that's what CTY did in the first place? ie. seal it?  If not, why??? not.

I don't see the point of painting gelcoat on.  If you seal the entire thing in epoxy resin, what does gelcoat do? Make it pretty?
Polyester resin onto epoxy would be used only if subject to UV deterioration -- not an issue here.  Anything polyester instead of epoxy resin is subject to eventual hydrophilic action (what causes hull blisters.) 
If "pretty" is the reason, I'd mix some white or other color pigment into the final coating/tabbing of the block.

Another way would be to fab the block out of open cell foam and saturate it with unthickened epoxy resin.

Many ways to skin a feline!

ken
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Gregory M on November 17, 2016, 10:26:15 PM
Thanks Ken! Excellent suggestion! BTW. Those pics are not from my boat. I'm just following on subject, cause I started same project and I'm assuming (hate that word) having same problem. Already, having pieces of rotten wood in my possession! and oil, and diesel...stinky mess! Going to boat Tomorrow, will see if I can open up the "thing". Getting chilly here, so not sure if can be done before winter. My goal for now is to open up and see what I'm up against. Let you know how it goes. Thank's for info about links! :thumb:

Noah! I'm type of guy who want's to improve things of not necessary "good design". Saying so, I'm not fan of having wood in bilge. :shock:, but thank you, for your input!  :thumb: 
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Noah on November 18, 2016, 01:18:32 PM
Having owned four wood boats in my lifetime, wood in the bilge doesn't worry me--if handled appropriately. Ken, Yes I believe the gelcoat was as you say just to make it "appear finished". CTY did that in the rest of the bilge and lockers instead of paint.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 18, 2016, 06:12:27 PM
Ok, met with Phil today and we confirmed both our boat follow the same construction. Two blocks of wood with a "t" piece of stainless in the center. We concur filling the lower part of the bilge with an epoxy mix to provide a flat surface to build up from. The use of a solid block will not work as the keel bolts and the leg of the "T" prevent you from sliding it in. The port and starboard pieces of wood will be left to dry for the winter. Unable to get a measurement but seems more than a few inches from our cuts. So we are looking into ideas on how to fill the void between the new base and the "T" to take the compression of the mast.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 18, 2016, 10:56:21 PM
So, you're saying you can't get the T out?  How far to either side does it look like it extends?

ken
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 20, 2016, 04:09:15 PM
Ken the "t" will not come out with the cuts I have made. Unsure how far the "t" goes back at each side but the fiberglass covering goes back about two feet on each side. You would have to cut the floor pan out to open up the glass to see how far it goes.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Breakin Away on November 22, 2016, 09:37:46 AM
I just read this thread. Sorry, I need the remedial version.  :D Could you please specify what you mean by "muiti tool"? Google search brings up a nice selection of Swiss Army Knives, Leatherman, etc. I suspect you mean some sort of power tool. (Dremel?)

And a comment. I used to use West System for epoxy, but never liked the severe amine blush. It creates adhesion problems when trying to build up a block from multiple layers. I'm not familiar with "East System," but a quick Google search showed some comments about blushing problems.

FWIW, here is what I used for a minor core repair on my prior boat:

http://www.epoxyusa.com/Basic_No_Blush_Marine_epoxy_p/me03.htm

You'll have to research compressive and shear strength of this brand on your own.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Noah on November 22, 2016, 10:04:41 AM
I would suggest building your block sandwich while the epoxy is still wet or at least not cured. Then you should not have problems with blushing. If you decide to build it with coated pieces that are already cured, any waxy blush can be easily cleaned off or sanded off.  Also, using the right hardener makes a difference too.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on November 22, 2016, 10:38:47 AM
Breaking away: muti-tool
https://feintools-online.com/specials-new-products/free-blades-rebate.html?gclid=CjwKEAiA9s_BBRCL3ZKWsfblgS8SJACbST7DbNoDX8Q_aGwScIQt4wzr6a6AfoCZ6_REisgbw9XvxxoCQkvw_wcB
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 22, 2016, 10:39:07 AM
an oscillating multi tool
http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result/index/?limit=60&q=multi+tool
(http://www.harborfreight.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/6/2/62867.jpg)

I picked up the HF variable speed one for a REALLY good price on a super sale, and FWIW recommend a multispeed one -- it's much more versatile for odd jobs than a single speed and worth the price difference.

-kk
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 22, 2016, 10:13:32 PM
HF variable speed multi tool -- 15 bucks, tomorrow only for iTC members!!

coupon att'd
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Breakin Away on November 23, 2016, 06:43:59 AM
Thanks! I'll head there soon. I'm not an ITC member, so maybe I'll wait until Friday to see if there's a BF deal open to everyone.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Breakin Away on November 23, 2016, 02:47:55 PM
HF variable speed multi tool -- 15 bucks, tomorrow only for iTC members!!

coupon att'd
Actually, the coupon you linked is only for single speed version. Seen any special deals on the variable speed one?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on November 24, 2016, 09:56:39 PM
breakin


Yep. I grabbed the wrong one.  The variable was 25 boat bucks. 
The better HF variable speed model that I have is now on 3 day BF sale for $25, no coupon/not ITC
http://www.harborfreight.com/variable-speed-oscillating-multi-tool-62867.html

and here's 20% on that, so 20 boat bucks.
http://www.harborfreight.com/digitalsavings.html

That's crazy cheap for a great tool, $5 better than I paid.

ken
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Breakin Away on November 24, 2016, 10:01:12 PM
Thanks, Ken! I was planning to head over there this weekend, and now I'll make sure to!
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: DaveBMusik on February 26, 2017, 08:05:32 PM
Just wondering if you came to any decision about what to use for the compression block?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Gregory M on March 02, 2017, 03:07:53 PM
Just wondering if you came to any decision about what to use for the compression block?
Dave
It is still quite unfavorable to work/check on things, but wood inside is not that soft as I originally thought (surface rot). When I dig deeper it's getting hard. So, I'm going to open as much and as deep as I can, fill void  with epoxy (thickened with glass strands/powder), and glass over with several layers. Spring will tell more...
My thoughts for now. :wait
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: DaveBMusik on March 02, 2017, 05:13:43 PM
Please keep us updated! I may pull out the wood below the bilge in the fall and if I'm going that far....
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on March 07, 2017, 06:32:49 AM
Had a break in the weather and removed the "mung" that Catalina had used to bed the wood to the bilge.
Still not sure what to fill space with and as the weather has turned cold again will be keeping all options open.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: DaveBMusik on March 07, 2017, 07:33:27 AM
Had a break in the weather and removed the "mung" that Catalina had used to bed the wood to the bilge.
Still not sure what to fill space with and as the weather has turned cold again will be keeping all options open.

Nice job!
The early  boats had a piece of wood between the bilge floor and the outside hull. I'm curious if yours does and if you can see it where you cleaned out down to the hull? I'm trying figure out if the board ran all the way from the aft keel bolt to the forward one

I was giving some thought to this in case I do it and was thinking about cutting some pieces of 3/4 or 1" hardwood to slide in and stack. Epoxy them before placing them and then build temporary walls fore and aft and fill with epoxy.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on March 07, 2017, 07:49:12 AM
kh,

What size block (very approximately) do you need?

ken
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: patrice on March 08, 2017, 08:57:39 AM
Hi,

Just a suggestion, why not take some carboard and make a stencil for a piece in front and one in back of the top support that we see on the picture.
Bring to a local sheet metal shop and ask them if they could make you the 2 parts in aluminum plate.

Bring back to boat and dry fit.  You will be able to fit with a simple grinder.

Once happy with the parts, could epoxy in place.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 11:31:31 AM
   This is what I had after cutting out the center of the wet wooden beams. Had some warm weather so I started the fix. Cleaned and ground the
lumpy putty. Filled low spots with glass and resin to work toward making a level base.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 11:34:41 AM
   Hope this is a better (bigger) picture.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on March 08, 2017, 11:45:24 AM
Phil

When you say "resin" you're talking epoxy, correct, not polyester resin ( fiberglass).
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 11:47:49 AM
   This is where things are now. Did a pour of thickened resin and added some 1/2" thick glass cut outs, saved from old boat projects. Turned cold so everything is on hold again. Took a hot glue gun and cardboard to make a prototype of ss beams to go under the wood and ss supports under the factory "t" section.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 11:49:53 AM
  Yes, Epoxy...West...polyester is only for no iron shirts !
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 11:56:02 AM
   After checking a lot of epoxy brands, I was at the boat and ready to pour so I just went up the street to WM and got some West System. Had planned to try some other brand like MAS but that didn't happen. Didn't want to wait for UPS.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on March 08, 2017, 12:04:12 PM
LOL

FYI   If you use the west systems "special Hardner" you don't need to worry about removing the blush. All their other hardeners leave the blush. Mas hardeners are also blush free.
One reason I like and strongly have recommended on here to use Mas, is the mix ratio is more forgiving.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 12:27:39 PM
   Thanks Ken. Will try MAS after this gal. is gone.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: KWKloeber on March 08, 2017, 01:43:40 PM
 Phil,
Just more FYI. The way it works is that the Mas hardeners can also be used with the West resin.
You use the mix ratio of the Hardner you're using regardless which resin it's going into.
 So you could use a Mas non-blush hardener with whatever West resin you have left over.

 The difference in the resins is that Mas has a little more body to it but has surfactants so that it does flow (or supposed to) as well as the less bodied west. Mas also makes a penetrating  resin which I have used which is a little bit less body then the west.

 Of course, the west thickeners and adhesives are compatible with either brand.

kk
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Phil Spicer on March 08, 2017, 02:38:13 PM
   Once again, thank you Ken. This board is a fantastic wealth of knowledge. We never stop learning.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 02, 2017, 04:27:29 PM
Ok time for an update. Got the area cleaned out last winter on some of the warmer days. Decided to build up a platform using aluminium, put a length of pipe for the drain between bilges and pieces of 7/8" plate stock.   
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 02, 2017, 04:31:53 PM
Put a layer of fiberglass between each level to tie each level to the bilge sides.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 02, 2017, 04:33:41 PM
The hope is to slide the last level under the wood still left in the stringers.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 02, 2017, 04:37:37 PM
The last level in place. :clap Now just have to clean up the area some more and fit the hardwood in.
Hoping that should water get in the bottom there is nothing but aluminum.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 27, 2017, 06:44:05 PM
Just to close out this topic. Got the wood fit in (took some pounding)
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 27, 2017, 06:45:39 PM
Installed a plate on top.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on May 27, 2017, 06:47:08 PM
And glassed in to surrounding area.
just need paint and done.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Jon W on May 27, 2017, 09:17:51 PM
You made it look easy. Really nice work.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Bill Shreeves on December 08, 2019, 08:40:32 AM
Sorry for the lengthy post but, this may be useful to someone else.

I too "had" a mast step stringer that was very wet.  This winter's project was to expose / remove the wet wood in the bilge on my ’87 C34 after seeing wetness in the wood small gaps around the keel bolts when I replaced the keel bolt nuts and washers last Spring.  From what I’ve read, the wood could be plywood or a hardwood and understanding that if wet, it needs to go.  As many who’ve researched this, they’ve found the drawing / directions from Catalina on replacing this wood in the bilge with fiberglass as well as drawings / instructions for replacing a wood mast step / stringer
With the mast step / stringer on top of the bilge, I figured that too could be wet and that I’ll probably need it out of the way to replace the wet wood in the bilge.

So, I had the mast pulled and removed the fiberglass cover of the mast step / stringer.  Sure enough, it was very wet wood.  Not soft but very wet and I figured, glad I opened it up and got to it before it rotted.  I carefully cut and chisel out the stringer aft of the exposed stainless-steel “T” flange.  I wasn’t sure how it was constructed so, I was careful.  All of the aft stringer was very saturated with water.  After getting that out I worked on the forward stringer.  It had far less moisture but was still wet.  Making plunge cuts with the multi-master was much easier than the aft stringer and after having removed a few pieces of the dryer wood I FINALLY realized that the wood was probably solid mahogany or teak.  If so, rot is not a concern.  At that point I let out a long fuuuuuuudge but, with a different ending.   I’m very disappointed that I didn’t sooner think about what kind of wood it was!  Unfortunately, I was committed and removed the remainder of the fwd stringer.  I'll doing a little research to try and identify what kind of wood it is.   I'll try a call to Catalina but, don't expect much from that.  A carpenter I know is much more familiar with different types of hardwoods so, I'll see if he can identify it.  I sure wish it was mentioned somewhere that the hardwood could be solid wood that doesn't rot.  When hardwood was mentioned and knowing plywood is something they have used, I was thinking oak or something like that.  It never occurred to me that it might be teak.  Oh well, lessons learned and now shared with embarrassment.

Both stringers did not go all the way down to the bilge but did extend down toward the bilge (see photo looking fwd with aft stringer removed) and I think, if I put my brain in gear instead of focused on extricating the “wet wood”, I could probably have trimmed out the bottom of the stingers to remove the bilge fiberglass cover and remove the bilge wood.   The rough dimensions of the stringers that spanned the bilge, not including what protruded down toward the bilge, are about 5-1/2” T x 4-1/2” W.  So, they’re pretty darn beefy along with a stainless-steel “T” flange.  I haven’t exposed the bilge wood yet and I will only remove an easily accessible section to see if that too might be teak.   If so, I may leave it.  Not sure yet.
So, the reason for this post is.  If your mast step / stringer is solid teak like mine, you might want to think twice before removing.  I also want to include that the fwd side of the fwd stringer as well as the aft side of the aft stringer were capped with a 3/4" piece of wood nailed on, likely teak too, over the stringers.

In advance of my stringer surgery, I wouldn’t have known it was solid wood or that it could be solid teak so, I’m sharing for others.   
I took a bunch of photos during this removal and could share if interested.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on January 09, 2020, 04:19:21 PM
The front looks in much better shape than mine was, you should be ok drying out and replacing the aft piece.
I worked to remove all the wood in the sump of the bilge replacing it with aluminium or fiberglass.
You may want to check the other strings as I found them to be wet also.

Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Bill Shreeves on January 10, 2020, 02:30:24 PM
The front looks in much better shape than mine was, you should be ok drying out and replacing the aft piece.
I worked to remove all the wood in the sump of the bilge replacing it with aluminium or fiberglass.
You may want to check the other strings as I found them to be wet also.

I removed the stringer in front of the mast just after having taken that picture.  I've since verified the stringers under the mast are solid teak.

I removed most of fiberglass veneer from the bilge bottom to expose the wood.  (See attached pic. Note: This is a single piece of wood.  The line across is from shallow cuts made to help remove the fiberglass veneer).  The wood in the bilge also appears to be solid teak.  It's wet but, its not structurally compromised.  I'm seriously considering leaving it in place knowing its 32 years old and still structurally sound (read "not broken" ).   I haven't exposed the, two stringers aft of the mast so I don't know what they're constructed of.

So, I have a few questions to pose to the forum and I'd appreciate feedback / opinions etc.

*   Was the wet wood others have removed from bilge / stringers teak and structurally compromised or a different material?

*   Does anyone know of what and how the two stringers behind the mast are constructed?  This could save me from having to expose more.

*   Any thoughts on leaving the teak wood in the bilge and glassing over or just leave exposed as is or rip it out and glass

Regardless of what I decide with the wood bilge, I'm thinking of fabricating either large SS plates for each keel bolt as large washers and/or fab plates to span two bolts at a time.

-Thanks
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on January 18, 2020, 05:35:30 PM
Bill not sure what the stringers are made of. I have one picture of one.
I made a form in the shape of a 2x6 and laid-up fiberglass in it, then vacuum bagged it with
West System. The finished fiberglass 2x6's were then cut to replace only the lower part of the stringer.
These were fit inplace and the whole thing was covered with roving and mat.
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on January 18, 2020, 05:48:47 PM
Never did post a finished picture.
Epoxied stud/screws in the base to hold the mast base.
Hopefully this will keep the water from finding its way into it
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: Bill Shreeves on January 19, 2020, 10:59:02 AM
Bill not sure what the stringers are made of. I have one picture of one.
I made a form in the shape of a 2x6 and laid-up fiberglass in it, then vacuum bagged it with
West System. The finished fiberglass 2x6's were then cut to replace only the lower part of the stringer.
These were fit inplace and the whole thing was covered with roving and mat.

Thanks!  your pic is very helpful.  I now have a better idea what I'll encounter if I dig deeper. on the other stringers  The pic of your completion looks great!  The height of the exposed keel bolts looks looks like you retained and glassed over the wood in the bilge, yes?
Title: Re: Mast step / stringer
Post by: kh3412 on January 19, 2020, 01:13:57 PM
Yes Bill did not pull the wood out. Did not k ow it went under the step or I might have.