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Old 05-08-2016, 06:15 PM   #1
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Chasing Teak Deck Leaks

Ok...

Let's chase teak deck leaks...

The playing field... a well kept and clean 1985 Fu Hwa "Golden Star" sedan trawler - with the oversize flybridge.

Having only had the vessel for a few months I am still learning about the boat. In general terms - it is in very good condition... but it does have a "soft spot" in at least one spot on the flybridge (near the ladder).

Recent observations in the lazarette imply that water is getting into the cockpit deck.

So this exercise will be to stop as many of these obvious leaks until a longer term solution (and core repairs) can be implemented - and that could be forever - a non-leaking teak deck is good enough for me.

To start - lets look to the obvious... pretty big gaps in the calk between the boards up on the foredeck...

Thankfully the previous owner provided quality tools to use in clearing out the old failed caulk - that will be a big help.

More to follow on the repairs...
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:30 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarlinLA View Post
Ok...

Let's chase teak deck leaks...

Thankfully the previous owner provided quality tools to use in clearing out the old failed caulk - that will be a big help.
My preferred tool for teak.

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Ted
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:31 PM   #3
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I'll be following along as I have the same thing going on. lol.

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Old 05-08-2016, 06:39 PM   #4
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The eagle's decks where in the same shape. So the out teak was re fastened and seal and a tarp to covered the deck. Took 2+ years to re fasten and seal. The tools I used was a carpet knife, narrow sharpen square head screw driver to ream out the old calk. A electrician screw driver to grip and pull out the stripped screws.

Every September, I chase down loose fasteners and calking. In the summer the deck dry out and shrinks causing fasteners and calk to fail. Each winter I tarp over the deck.
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:39 PM   #5
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Seriously using an electric planer to remove teak?? Why not cut them into little chunks and pull them up? Set the depth on a circular saw, have at it for a while then pull up the chunks, repeat.
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:56 PM   #6
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Greetings,
Mr. CLA. Somehow, just by the tone of your question, I suspect you do NOT want to address your deck leaks like Mr. OCD.

Having had 2 vessels thus far, one with the original teak, leaks and all and the current which has had the teak decking removed with no leaks at all, I would still prefer the former. Teak, in good condition, is the ultimate deck material IMO. Keep the ones you have as long as possible. They actually don't look too bad at all.
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Old 05-08-2016, 07:24 PM   #7
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Seriously using an electric planer to remove teak?? Why not cut them into little chunks and pull them up? Set the depth on a circular saw, have at it for a while then pull up the chunks, repeat.
The adhesive was tenacious. The planner was faster and easier with less effort.

Ted
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Old 05-08-2016, 08:46 PM   #8
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I dho-know Ted... You were onto something but not sure if that little machine is where the vision goes... perhaps something that would look at home in a Terminator movie... something that gets under the wood layer and chomps its way across - ?

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My preferred tool for teak.

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Old 05-08-2016, 08:54 PM   #9
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Phil...

Triage repairs must happen right away... i'm not even comfortable washing the boat till the water ingress can be halted.

Your approach seems reasonable... stabilize and maintain.


Quote:
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The eagle's decks where in the same shape. So the out teak was re fastened and seal and a tarp to covered the deck. Took 2+ years to re fasten and seal. The tools I used was a carpet knife, narrow sharpen square head screw driver to ream out the old calk. A electrician screw driver to grip and pull out the stripped screws.

Every September, I chase down loose fasteners and calking. In the summer the deck dry out and shrinks causing fasteners and calk to fail. Each winter I tarp over the deck.
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:00 PM   #10
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I dho-know Ted... You were onto something but not sure if that little machine is where the vision goes... perhaps something that would look at home in a Terminator movie... something that gets under the wood layer and chomps its way across - ?
You may not have seen my Refit thread. This is how I took care of my teak deck.

Teak Deck

Ted
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:08 PM   #11
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Failed caulking is allowing water under the teak and it is then going down screw hols into the core. A modern teak-to-deck bedding (adhesive sealant) will be sufficient for many years IF not too much water has already got into the core.

I would do some tests. Firstly, see how easy or hard it is to remove the screws and lift off the teak. If it comes off easily, then use a 5/16th drill to map out areas of core that are wet or rotten. Once you are there you can decide on whether or not you need to replace the core. The drill holes you make are easily filled in with thickened epoxy.

On my foredeck it was difficult as the deck had been removed and refastened by the PO with a non-setting bedding, which was very sticky and messy to deal with, but not overly adhesive. Only about 80% of the teak would have been re-useable. Many screws were not holding either. Over 75% of the core was wet or rotten so I replaced the core on the whole area, new FRP on top with non-slip to finish. Something like 95 sq ft area, cost $17,000 in a yard with good labor rates and me doing some of the work.

On my Portuguese Bridge decking the original bedding was still there. Dried and not adhering. All of the teak was removed and able to be re-used. It was easy to clean the old bedding off both the deck and the underside of the teak. We limited our attention to those areas where caulking had failed and screws weren't holding. Luckily most of the core was in good shape. I made a call that there was not enough compromised core area to worry about. Stopping water getting in will greatly reduce core degradation rate and it might not need replacing for a very long time. So we drilled out screw holes to be much oversize, injected thickened epoxy into them then re-laid the teak using sikaflex. After putting all the screws back we loaded up the deck area with lots of weight for a few days to effectively 'clamp' the teak to the deck while the sika cured. Then it was recaulking and light sanding to finish.
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:18 PM   #12
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Yup... stopping water ingress will buy time to assess.

The clue as to how much water is moving through the decks is the tea-colored stain... tea colored stains are numerous.

So stopping ingress is a must. Then decide if the only long term solution is to go nuclear with full remove and cap.

Not lost in this process is that there is already water in there... and a soft spot.

If you successfully stop new water from geting in - do you just shrug about the water that is already in there - melting the wood into mush?

How about this as a solution for the soft spot without removal of the teak...drill in 3/8 diameter holes every few inches in the damaged area and pump in something like urethane caulk that has some structural capacity - then plug the holes??? It seems that if you have to get to the core for the repair your decision is made - you are removing the teak decking to get to the core and not likely replacing with teak.

Anyway - step one seems obvious... cut out and re-caulk where obviously seperated... and go after the other ingress points such as the deck drain, tank fills, ladder mounts...

Must stabilize to the point of not cringing as the forecast calls for rain.

Carl



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Greetings,
Mr. CLA. Somehow, just by the tone of your question, I suspect you do NOT want to address your deck leaks like Mr. OCD.

Having had 2 vessels thus far, one with the original teak, leaks and all and the current which has had the teak decking removed with no leaks at all, I would still prefer the former. Teak, in good condition, is the ultimate deck material IMO. Keep the ones you have as long as possible. They actually don't look too bad at all.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:25 AM   #13
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These are all I used when I re-caulked the fly bridge deck and part of the walk around deck.
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Old 05-09-2016, 06:42 AM   #14
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Replacing the goop between teak pieces will usually not stop a leak.

The deck fastenings of the teak overlay to the boat and the many items like deck boxes , ladders and cleats are frequently the source.
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Old 05-09-2016, 07:08 AM   #15
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Greetings,
Mr. CLA. There are at least two schools of thought on this situation. One, rip all the teak off and rebuild. Another is address the caulk and leaks (As Mr. FF points out you will NOT be able to find them all) as best you can and live with what you've got.
Yes, the water that's already in there is not going to go away and will probably continue to eat away at the subdeck BUT if you can live with the sponginess best to leave it until such time you're prepared to do it "right".
I really don't think injecting any caulk through 3/8" holes is going to do very much and may cause problems down the road when re-build is undertaken. Extra pointless work IMO.
Tough call in any case...
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Old 05-09-2016, 08:20 AM   #16
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I second FF comments:
Quote:
Originally Posted by FF View Post
Replacing the goop between teak pieces will usually not stop a leak.

The deck fastenings of the teak overlay to the boat and the many items like deck boxes , ladders and cleats are frequently the source.
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Old 05-09-2016, 09:10 AM   #17
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I just finished re-caulking the raised forward deck. The base seemed ok & solid. The forward deck & side decks are going to receive a painting of deck paint from HD. Not the ideal solution. It's what I'm going to do. Later, the teak is coming off. It is thin after, what I guess is many sandings from PO's.

As for tools for the re-caulking, I used a Fein, grout diamond tipped cutters (a hand held tool) and best of all, a small counter edging router. The router with the right bit, makes fast straight grout lines.
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Old 05-09-2016, 02:43 PM   #18
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There were some soft void spots. I vacuum dried the area and then injected west system epoxy to fill the void. Soft wood absorbs epoxy. Two holes are required on to inject and one for the air epoxy to come out of. Also I inject epoxy first before the calking, the calking is mostly for show. If screw holes are stripped fill them with epoxy. However its still a yearly project.

In the winter the front desk is covered with a 20 x 24 heavy white tarp. The support is 1 inch pbc plastic pipe, held down by bungee cords. Keeps rain and snow of the deck and boat, plus a dry storage area and project area during the winter. You can find and fix all leaks if you look and know the signs.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:09 PM   #19
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On it... went after the water tank deck fills, deck drain, and the base of the ladder this weekend...

The ply core around the water tank deck fill was fully rotted - went back in with a bit of JB Waterweld putty around the hole just to close the gap. Not pretty in there.

Still, on the road to recovery.





Quote:
Originally Posted by FF View Post
Replacing the goop between teak pieces will usually not stop a leak.

The deck fastenings of the teak overlay to the boat and the many items like deck boxes , ladders and cleats are frequently the source.
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Old 05-29-2016, 06:50 PM   #20
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And went up front to start on deck-triage...

Decided to sand ahead of removing obviously bad caulking... There were two types of caulk in the seems leading me to believe the deck had been serviced in the past - plus - when I pulled the "silicone" product that had failed - there was the little bond-breaker strip of paper in the bottom.

It took a lot of sanding with an orbital Skil sander to make the surface flat... Used 60-grit for the first go-round... sadly - some of the worn areas were so deep it made no sense to chase it all the way to the bottom for perfectly flat re-sand.

I purchased a case of Teak Decking System 440 caulk in black and a half case in white. Considering the caulking alternatives - that were half the price - it "seemed" there was no better alternative.

Upon very close inspection - most of the seams appear to be in good shape. Happy about that.

The idea is that mass sanding with the 40-60 grit to knock down the wood back to truly flat then caulk without taping the edges, then go back across with a 120-grit to provide the smooth finish and clean off the excess caulking. We shall see if that plan will hold.

At the rate of productivity experienced - just the foredeck sanding only - four hours... redoing the 34-foot boat would take six full working days... that would be equivalent of a month of Sundays at my availability...

Hope it doesn't rain in LA for couple of months.

And... for a few hours - the scent of teak made me have visions of being in a wooden ship boat yard... that was a real plus.
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