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Old 10-23-2019, 11:24 PM   #21
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Our American made Tolly has virtually no wood outside [couple of thin horizontal teak spacers at bridge sides next to top and vertical trim pieces alongside both sliders' sides. No soft decks. No rot at all except one tiny soft spot [1" x 2"] over the porthole in port side forward head. That rot is on inside wall due to previously bad calking outside on top of porthole frame. I've left it alone and dry for over a decade. Unless you know it's there... you'd never know it's there.

We keep her in covered berth! IMO, for the long run... that overall boat protection is really worth the cost.
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Old 10-23-2019, 11:31 PM   #22
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City: La Conner, WA
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When we started looking for NWD, we quickly determined that finding a boat that either 1) had factory fiberglass-only decks or 2) had professionally (or competently) fiberglass decks (IE no teak decks with holes drilled into the deck structure) was a high priority or would be a large cost adjustment if we were to consider one. As it turned out we found NWD which I believe has a combination of our two requirements.

Our boat was made in Taiwan, but without teak main decks. I <think> the aft cabin and flybridge deck were teak, as both show sides of a non-factory appearing finish (gelcoat with crushed walnut shells type grit for non-skid) making me think someone repaired them in the past. The aft cabin is soft but seems to not be getting wet, so I think the repair was half what it should have been. Fortunately the flybridge seems strong. The aft cabin top needs the core replaced and the surface is showing signs of cracking, so it will need to be done this coming spring / early summer.

The main decks all have a non-skid diamond pattern, and are about 1/4 glass, 3/4 plywood, then 3/16 or so glass on the underside. The fuel fills and water fill had raised mounts molded into the deck. The two soft spots I've found were around a (likely) owner-added deck-port for a pump out that was not properly sealed, exposing the plywood core to water as well as an area near the water fill which I am still trouble shooting. I don't think the moisture came in from the top; it was either from an ill-fitting fill hose 2" hose squeezed down to a 1 3/4" fill spout or it was from an issue with the hull/house joint leaking. I've mitigated both and am watching it this fall. If I've eliminated the moisture source then I will need to replace about 6-8 square feet of deck core that is accessible in my lazarrette.

Here's a photo of when I went to move the deck port for the pump out...the non-skid and gelcoat ground down so I could add a 3/8" raised "bump" for the deck fitting to set above deck level to lessen the chance of water ever draining past even when the sealant gives up (matching the others on the boat.) You can see here I've almost finished getting the plywood core removed about 1/2" back so I could seal it with thickened vinylester resin.

The overall state of the decks and my knowledge of how they go together made me comfortable with them, and more willing than not to gamble on what might be hidden under them. In the end we came out ok - they hadn't leaked on the tanks and rotten them from the top, and aside from the trouble spots noted are in good shape physically. What I haven't already fixed or mitigated I have the plans, means, and ability to do during the upcoming spring season (at least I hope I can fit it all in!)

The core I removed for the below photo was clean, dry, hard, new looking plywood - not even some of the fractional pieces of hardwood some have found. I'm lucky I think though.

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Old 10-28-2019, 06:37 PM   #23
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Old 10-28-2019, 06:37 PM   #24
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Old 10-28-2019, 06:48 PM   #25
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Heck, even my American-made motoryacht from 2000 has balsa-cored decks. And yes, the core got wet in spots from the factory shortcutting the building process. The difference from an asian make is that the top layer of glass is thick enough that the deck never got spongey. Just something to deal with... it isnít the end of the world.
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Old 10-28-2019, 07:59 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Tom.B View Post
Heck, even my American-made motoryacht from 2000 has balsa-cored decks. And yes, the core got wet in spots from the factory shortcutting the building process. The difference from an asian make is that the top layer of glass is thick enough that the deck never got spongey. Just something to deal with... it isnít the end of the world.

Same story here. I've been finding some areas of my decks with coring issues (all balsa core as far as I know). Haven't yet figured out what's wet vs rotted vs delaminated, but I do have a couple of areas that make a little noise if you step on them just right (no perceptible flex, however). So those areas definitely have issues. After some investigation, it turns out that not a single deck penetration had the core sealed in any way from the factory. They just drilled through the deck and called it good. Fortunately, with the decks not being spongy, I can figure out a good time and method to fix it on my terms instead of it being a "fix it now" thing.
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