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2183[bolger] Re: glass boards in wooden boats

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  • djost
    Feb 1, 2000
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      My 1969 Enterprise racing dinghy, a Jack Holt design, has a wooden
      centerboard. It is made out of marine ply and definitely has positive
      buoyancy. This is offset by a grip that consists of what looks like a pair
      of rubber hoses (perhaps old bicycle tires) screwed down so that they grip
      the board just enough so that it does not pop back up. Upwind, the
      combination of leeway and the rubber grips holds the board down.
      Downwind, when the boat starts to come up on plane the board will lift
      about half way up due to the lack of leeward pressure and the speed of the
      boat. That is ok as the boat is much faster with the board raised anyway.

      The biggest problem is that the board is susceptible to breakage. I think
      that it is just strong enough to stand on to right a capsized craft. I had
      occasion to do this last August in Wychmere Harbor on Cape Cod. The mast
      was stuck in the mud and the board held me ok. I have broken two boards
      since 1969, but I think that would be expected on a craft this old.

      Peter Vanderwaart wrote:

      > My Stuart-built Mariner had a FG centerboard. No problems.
      >
      > Given a satisfactory way to build one, an FG board should work well. It
      > would be heavy enought to do without lead inserts - a great convenience
      > in the building. If you don't have a wooden core, I see no reason to
      > use epoxy instead of polyester.
      >
      > The problem with using wood or, more especially, foam as a core is that
      > the board may turn out to have positive buoyancy.
      >
      > There was an article in the Catboat Bulletin some years ago by a man
      > who made a new centerboard for his Marshall catboat using an aluminum
      > core (which was quite flexible), covered by FG. I wonder if there is
      > some other possibility in the stacks at Home Depot. Perhaps some sort
      > waterproof panel material used behind tile walls in bathrooms or under
      > showers could be used as a core material.
      >
      > Peter
      >
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