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Re: Birdwatcher II, others being built? Foam details...

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  • Peter Lenihan
    I ve not the plans for BWII but Bolger does call for insulation to be used throughout Windermere in an attempt to make her a full four season
    Message 1 of 7 , Jan 2, 2005
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      I've not the plans for BWII but Bolger does call for insulation to
      be used throughout Windermere in an attempt to make her a full four
      season live-a-board.PCB&Fs call specifically for the use of the 2"
      blue Styrofoam board to be used both in the hull sides and the cabin
      roof.
      Both in conversation with "him" and several letters addressing the
      foaming stages from "them",this is what I now think I know :-)

      1)The foam MUST be thoroughly glued to the plywood panels
      2)All remaining voids found along the perimeter of a glued foam
      panel must be filled with expanding foam.
      3)Sandwich construction is very strong for its weight.

      As great luck would have it, a wonderful little sedan cruiser is
      wintering besides Windermere and is scheduled to have both her coach
      and pilot house roofs replaced due to rot. The preliminary
      inspection has revealed that the Styrofoam was originally installed
      with only globs and big lazy "S" applications of glue.This left lots
      of un-glued and un-seen gaps between the plywood shell and foam.
      Over a relatively short period of time,condensation has done its'
      evil work of rotting out several deck(roof) beams and given rise to
      soft wood along the corner posts of the coach sides.

      I was,at first, simply go to "tack" my Styrofoam in place on
      Windermere while trusting the outside shell to keep the water
      away.Thankfully,this in-the-flesh example of the effects of
      condensation appears to have been sent to me by the God of Silly
      People just in the nick of time :-) It'll be mighty tough skimping
      on the glue this Spring while from my near neighbors shelter will be
      heard the racket of gutting and repair......

      As to the question of strength with sandwich construction, Phil
      Bolger related a story to me of his own gradual conversion to this
      method of construction.A method which he confesses to having been
      leary of for years.Today,he looks back at those years with with
      amused dismay. In essence;Brad Story built a ply/foam/ply sandwich
      with door skins,suspended the finished product between two saw-
      horses and invited Phil to stand up on it to see if it would break
      or deflect much. Well....Phil did,the panel didn't and the rest is
      history. Thus we see more of this construction technique being
      applied to recent PCB design work.
      The ultimate success of this technique however,depends on being very
      thorough with all your gluing and sealing stages.Leave no "holidays"
      nor voids for moisture to come a roostin' in. It is a marvel for
      strength and light weight which hopefully will see further
      applications expressed in new designs to come.

      So...that's all I know or can contribute to this subject. I can't
      wait to hear from a few of our engineers to enlighten us with some
      raw figures or examples.


      Sincerely,

      Peter Lenihan,blissfully un-engineered and close to becoming un-
      hinged,if the New Year festivities don't stop soon, from along the
      frozen shores of the St.Lawrence...........
    • Bruce Hallman
      ... What glue did you use?
      Message 2 of 7 , Jan 2, 2005
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        > 1)The foam MUST be thoroughly glued to the plywood panels
        > Peter Lenihan

        What glue did you use?
      • Peter Lenihan
        ... Hi Bruce, Haven t begun the insulation just yet but Bolger does specify setting the Styrofoam onto a well thickened,evenly spread,layer of epoxy. A couple
        Message 3 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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          --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, Bruce Hallman <bruce@h...> wrote:
          > > 1)The foam MUST be thoroughly glued to the plywood panels
          > > Peter Lenihan
          >
          > What glue did you use?

          Hi Bruce,

          Haven't begun the insulation just yet but Bolger does specify
          setting the Styrofoam onto a well thickened,evenly spread,layer of
          epoxy.
          A couple of folks around these parts,think this route too
          expensive and are suggesting I go with a proven construction grade
          adhessive specically designed for attaching foam to
          wood,steel,concrete etc...
          I'll be writing Bolger before the month is out and will seek
          clarification/opinion on the justification for epoxy along with
          viable,less costly alternative.Stay tuned... :-)

          Sincerely,

          Peter Lenihan
        • Nels
          ... Here is a link to two types of one brand of 1 rigid foam. One is hydrophobic (like me:-) and the second waterproof. They also have a sealing tape
          Message 4 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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            --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, "Peter Lenihan" <peterlenihan@h...>
            wrote:
            > I'll be writing Bolger before the month is out and will seek
            > clarification/opinion on the justification for epoxy along with
            > viable,less costly alternative.Stay tuned... :-)
            >
            > Sincerely,
            >
            > Peter Lenihan

            Here is a link to two types of one brand of 1" rigid foam. One
            is "hydrophobic" (like me:-) and the second waterproof. They also
            have a sealing tape available to seal joints, but don't mention an
            adhesive.

            http://tinyurl.com/yvb7r

            There are also many sources for fire-proof paints and coatings as
            well as waterproof coatings. One example.

            http://www.hytechsales.com/fire_proofing.html

            From what I understand, in building BWII, the rigid foam is glued
            down between 1x1 longitudinals before the topsides and bottom are
            installed around the bulkheads and the outside finished off with
            exterior chines, shear strakes, taped seams and painted. (All
            exterior surfaces are epoxy coated and glassed flat on the floor,
            prior to assembly.) Then the boat is turned upright and the interior
            plywood panels are installed.

            I would expect that there has to be vertical wood supports on the
            topsides and transverse frame supports on the bottom, for the
            attachement of the bulkheads right? Because you can't attach the
            bulkheads directly to the foam. So in essence the sides and bottom
            are web frames and very rigid by themselves especially once the foam
            is cemented in.

            Therefor the interior panels could simply be installed as removable
            panels and could in fact have air circulation vents installed that
            would allow any moisture to evaporate. One could also install
            horizontal natural wood strips, as in Lestat, allowing air to
            cirulate freely behind. Any actual water would run down into the
            bilge troughs that are a part of the design and could be wiped up
            with a rag.

            This is the route that I might choose as this hull would be much
            stronger than the instant line of boats, even without the interior
            layer of plywood. After all, BW is simply a variation of the Scooner
            and HH Schooner hulls which only have one layer of 1/4" plywood!

            Cheers, Nels
          • Rick Bedard
            Yep, been my experience that no air voids can be allowed between ply and foam, or rot will find it s way. That is, unless you intentionally keep them separate
            Message 5 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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              Yep, been my experience that no air voids can be allowed between ply and foam, or rot will find it's way. That is, unless you intentionally keep them separate and allow for air circulation and drainage between the foam and ply. Either way, epoxy coat the ply first! I've seen white foam that tends to get pulled apart if bonded on both sides and the panel stressed. I've been told, but haven't seen it proven that the pink or blue is much better at staying intact... I'll be using pink foam held away from the plywood hull sides by fiberglass vertical spacer battens. I'll get zero added structural strength, however I'm only looking for insulation and floatation.

              Rick

              Peter Lenihan <peterlenihan@...> wrote:

              --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, Bruce Hallman <bruce@h...> wrote:
              > > 1)The foam MUST be thoroughly glued to the plywood panels
              > > Peter Lenihan
              >
              > What glue did you use?

              Hi Bruce,

              Haven't begun the insulation just yet but Bolger does specify
              setting the Styrofoam onto a well thickened,evenly spread,layer of
              epoxy.
              A couple of folks around these parts,think this route too
              expensive and are suggesting I go with a proven construction grade
              adhessive specically designed for attaching foam to
              wood,steel,concrete etc...
              I'll be writing Bolger before the month is out and will seek
              clarification/opinion on the justification for epoxy along with
              viable,less costly alternative.Stay tuned... :-)

              Sincerely,

              Peter Lenihan





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            • oarmandt
              ... ply and foam, or rot will find it s way. That is, unless you intentionally keep them separate and allow for air circulation and drainage between the foam
              Message 6 of 7 , Jan 6, 2005
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                --- In bolger@yahoogroups.com, Rick Bedard <sctree@y...> wrote:
                > Yep, been my experience that no air voids can be allowed between
                ply and foam, or rot will find it's way. That is, unless you
                intentionally keep them separate and allow for air circulation and
                drainage between the foam and ply. Either way, epoxy coat the ply
                first!


                I wonder if Dave Carnell's preservative technique (borax and boric
                acid in ethylene glycol - see MAIB 8/15/2004 p26) wouldn't work well
                in the foam/ply sandwich construction. I am thinking of treating
                the interior surfaces of all the wood, letting the treatment dry,
                then gluing all together. Epoxy seal the outside. It seems that
                there is little chance of the treatment being washed away if the
                outside surfaces are reasonably sealed. Any water drawn in as vapor
                is likely to leave the same way, leaving the glycol and/or borates
                behind.

                I have a Birdwatcher under construction. Mine will be mostly BW 1,
                with a few details borrowed from BW 2 where they suit me. I was
                planning on the foam sandwich hull side panels until I saw the
                reports of rot here. With the preservative treatment, I think it
                stands a good chance.

                Doug
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