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Old 11-08-2018, 05:02 PM   #1
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Mainship Stringers

A surveyor told me that in later years, MS hull stringers were 'built up' from several thin balsa core layers. He said that it was the reason that MS stringers always tested positive for moisture. I'd rather not drill one to verify. Can anybody verify that?

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Old 11-08-2018, 06:26 PM   #2
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Properly sealed, they should stay dry. If they're epoxy bonded into a single piece, they, like a glulam, should be as strong as steel and stronger than solid wood beams. I've bonded many keels, ribs, bulkheads, etc., with epoxy and never had a moisture issue. In theory there is a micro porosity in resin, but items I've cut open, laminated wood, even plywood, bonded and sealed in epoxy, never have shown any sign of moisture or recorded a higher moisture content that kiln dried wood.
Although in some fiberglass boats, Bayliner especially, I have found shoddy workmanship in interior fiberglass work even though the hull was well done. It looked like 2 different crews worked on different aspects of the boats. One professional and one amateurish.

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Old 11-08-2018, 08:17 PM   #3
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Some boat builders use rigid closed cell foam as interior mold for building very thick fiberglass overlay into the thick hull itself. Never need worry about moisture touching the inside of stringer; nothing to rot.
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:37 PM   #4
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About two years ago on my '05 400 there were some discolored stains on the stb side center line stringer running down from the through bolts for the motor mounts. It scared the heck out of me, so I carefully pulled each bolt. The inside of the bolt hole felt dry and no liquid or anything ran out for 24 hours with the bolt out.

I was still nervous though, so a surveyor buddy of mine came over with his moisture meter and tested the stringer, it tested dry. I put it back together and moved on. The stains have never shown back up, but I still worry sometimes.

Sorry for the thread creep. Periphery info at best, I guess.
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