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Old 04-29-2017, 11:20 AM   #1
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wood repair

While recently on the hard, I needed to run a power cord to the boat's interior. I ran it down the anchor hawse, but stupidly did not put a drip loop in the power cord and it allowed rainwater to dribble down the cord. The dribbles formed a pool on the forward bunk. Now, there is a small dark stain on the wood, where the water has apparently intruded.

Taking this piece of wood out to repair would be almost impossible given location and assembly. Sanding the whole piece would also be difficult because of one corner in which it would be impossible to sand (too tight). My question, is there a way to feather in the sand job and am I risking the wood rotting if I don't sand it out and refinish?

Thanks in advance,
Gordon
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Old 04-29-2017, 11:34 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon J View Post
While recently on the hard, I needed to run a power cord to the boat's interior. I ran it down the anchor hawse, but stupidly did not put a drip loop in the power cord and it allowed rainwater to dribble down the cord. The dribbles formed a pool on the forward bunk. Now, there is a small dark stain on the wood, where the water has apparently intruded.

Taking this piece of wood out to repair would be almost impossible given location and assembly. Sanding the whole piece would also be difficult because of one corner in which it would be impossible to sand (too tight). My question, is there a way to feather in the sand job and am I risking the wood rotting if I don't sand it out and refinish?

Thanks in advance,
Gordon
Hi Gordon - You sound perplexed... are you at all familiar with wood as a boat material... interior or exterior?
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Old 04-29-2017, 11:40 AM   #3
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Greetings,
Mr. GJ. IF you are able to seal the leak AND the stained wood dries out, pretty well the only thing you'll have is the stain. I don't think rot would be a problem unless the wood stays wet and you aren't able to dry it properly. What is the finish surface of the wood now? Paint? Veneer? IF veneer, is the veneer lifted from the substrate at all?
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:13 PM   #4
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Even feather sanding would leave a spot at least slightly different than the surrounding wood. If the wood is now dry and stays dry, it will not rot.
Dry rot comes from wood being exposed to water and drying out many times. Wet rot is wood continually exposed to wetness w/o any rot preventive.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:26 PM   #5
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Be sure that you've left it long enough to dry and to allow the finish to fail (if it's going to) and the material to delaminate (if it's going to).

Then begin to decide how to repair it. Post a pic.

Just a teeny question: why run the cord down the hawse rather than use the boat's 110v wiring system and your shore power cord? All it takes is the 110v 15 amp - 110v 30 amp adapter to plug the boat into an ordinary boatyard receptacle. (Always ready to use 20/20 hindsight!)
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:32 PM   #6
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Try mixing up some oxalic acid, soak the area, maybe cover with some plastic to let it stay wet longer as it only works when wet.

Oxalic acid does brighten wood, depending on what stained it. Most certainly tannins and iron staining, less so for fungus, but worth the effort.
You may have to scrape the finish coating off then use oxalic acid for it to get good exposure to the wood.
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Old 04-29-2017, 03:33 PM   #7
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power cord answer

Quote:
Originally Posted by DHeckrotte View Post
Be sure that you've left it long enough to dry and to allow the finish to fail (if it's going to) and the material to delaminate (if it's going to).

Then begin to decide how to repair it. Post a pic.

Just a teeny question: why run the cord down the hawse rather than use the boat's 110v wiring system and your shore power cord? All it takes is the 110v 15 amp - 110v 30 amp adapter to plug the boat into an ordinary boatyard receptacle. (Always ready to use 20/20 hindsight!)
DHeckrotte,

I ran the cord down the through the anchor locker because I have a 220V, 50 amp system, and the marina does not have 50 amp, or even 30 amp plugs for boats on the hard (perhaps this is one reason I pay only $9 per day.) I run the cord into the engine room, parallel all the batteries and then put a car charger on the system.

The system is dry and got wet only the one time... still, I hate having the discolored wood.

Gordon
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Old 04-29-2017, 03:37 PM   #8
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perplexed by question

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Hi Gordon - You sound perplexed... are you at all familiar with wood as a boat material... interior or exterior?
Art, not quite sure what your question means. The wet wood in question is laminate over plywood (pretty sure). My question had to do with best practices regarding repairing the discoloration. I understand that if I could remove the piece is question, repair would be easier. I may just live with the discoloration, but hate to do so.

Gordon
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Old 04-29-2017, 06:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
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... The wet wood in question is laminate over plywood (pretty sure)...
Were it laminate I doubt you would have a problem, it`s probably veneer on ply.
Fixing a defect like that on a larger area is a problem, on antique furniture it can mean removing and redoing the whole finish. Maybe try the "bleaching" method, and then re-staining the affected area using a very dilute stain so you can slowly add color. Remember that when you re-varnish the treated area the area will darken, so don`t color too much.
If this sounds a bit "hit and miss", it is,especially for this amateur wood finisher.
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Old 04-29-2017, 10:30 PM   #10
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Gordon, my limited experience with oxalic acid as a wood bleach is that it will, indeed, take the color out of the wood. And it will not do so evenly; I ended up doing the whole Spruce mast so as to not have blonder patches where the black water stains were. It also attacks the wood, raising fibers which have to be sanded clean after rinsing and drying. I'd suggest trying to find a way to test the method and the application to your species of wood before making a dark stain worse.

Re power; I've got two separate 110v 30 amp service entries. The AC was added later, and I have no 220v equipment. I run just the one entry feeding the original system while I'm on the hard, using the marina's 20 amp GFI and 20 amp extension cord, and adapter to the 30 amp shore power cord. You could do a similar thing, energizing one leg of your 220v panel, paying strict attention to the 220v items being OFF, and being able to use just those items on the one leg. Using one of the pigtails made for powering a 50 amp 220v boat from two physically adjacent, but opposite phase, 110v dock receptacles would enable that, were it of any use to your work on the hard. With any sort of luck (and care), you'd be able to use the built-in charger and some of the lights and receptacles, maybe even the fridge.
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Old 04-30-2017, 05:37 AM   #11
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You might look up cabinet scrapers and consider practicing on some other scrap trial boards.
Frequently using a scraper you can in areas you can't sand and you can get a very smooth surface w a cabinet scraper and good technique.
It does take some practice using one and sharpening one but you might be amazed by results.
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Old 04-30-2017, 08:10 AM   #12
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Dheckrotte,

Thanks. I thought of your solution two minutes after I answered. I have used my charger solution before arms it works ok...I just need to ensure I have a drip loop in the anchor locker. Your solution is much more elegant and I will probably buy a splitter Ans adaptor.

Gordon
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Old 05-09-2017, 09:29 PM   #13
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You can not scrape away black water tannin iron stains in wood except if you go deep. And it is not a good idea as you wreck the woods surface profile.
I have a lot of 1/8 to 1/16 inch mahogany veneers on plywood and not seen them delaminate from oxalic acid.

All you can do is bleach them chemically. Oxalic acid works very well on mahoganies. Sometimes takes multiple treatments to remove the stain. And if the stain is a fungus, then it won't remove it completely. Heating the oxalic acid makes it work more effectively and quicker.
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Old 05-10-2017, 11:57 AM   #14
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I let it go as i had other things to do. It dried up and returned to its original color. I got lucky. .

Gordon
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