AMF Windflite leaking

Discussion in 'Sunfish Talk' started by wardie, Aug 28, 2016.

  1. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    I am getting a lot of water inside the hull every time I sail. It has a Depiersa (spelling?) push/pull bailer. The metal housing attached to the hull isn't pointing straight back I'm thinking someone messed with it or it hit something? Anyways the hull is full of a lot of water. I turn the boat on it's starboard side and open the drain and lots of water comes out. My friend thinks it's the bailer. I can see the ball inside the bailer opening ? I don't have much experience could a bailer leak water into the hull??
     
  2. Rudder

    Rudder New Member

    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Leak test
     
  3. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    this is the question, "I don't have much experience could a bailer leak water into the hull??"
     
  4. sailcraftri

    sailcraftri Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    47
    Trophy Points:
    48
    It may be the bailer but most likely the water is coming in somewhere else. Remove the bailer and make sure the hull to cockpit is bonded and no gaps. Then fill the mast step with water and if the water level stays then the mast step is okay. Then I would go around the boat and re silicone all hardware. Then the next thing to do as suggested earlier is the leak test.
     
  5. fhhuber

    fhhuber Member

    Likes Received:
    24
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Bailers don't really exclude water from back-flowing, they just slow it down a lot. Just a little dirt on the seating surface (whichever type valve.. flapper or ball) and it leaks back into the boat. They mainly keep you from constantly being ankle deep in the cockpit.
     
  6. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    111
    Trophy Points:
    63
    fh, he is referring to water in the hull, not the cockpit.

    Wardie, I think you have a leak. Sailcraft could be right, but Windflights have few pieces of hardware, so it would have to be an incredible gap to allow much water in. I'm afraid it's time for a pressure test.
     
  7. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    133
    Trophy Points:
    63
    If or when you remove the bailer (DePersia), you'll see that the cockpit and hull are tightly merged together—call it bonded—at that junction. Leaks shouldn't be possible at that site. If you are uncertain as to the seal around the bailer, remove it, and install an 1¼" expandable freeze plug at an auto parts store. (~$5) Otherwise, you should be able to see water leaking into the cockpit through a defective or loose bailer. If your cockpit floor is significantly damaged, water entering the cockpit from the bailer could be re-entering the hull there.

    A second test (to positively eliminate the bailer as the leak-source) is to caulk the outside hull around the bailer and seal the bailer's opening. Silicone caulk is easily removed, but push some bread or toilet paper into the bailer first to reduce the amount of caulk needed.

    You might be able to gently rotate the bailer to its correct orientation when caulking. Try a wood dowel to assist in turning it.
     
  8. fhhuber

    fhhuber Member

    Likes Received:
    24
    Trophy Points:
    18
    If you suspect water getting between deck and hull via the cockpit drain... you need to remove the drain, clean up the fiberglass and do a leak test. SLIGHTLY pressurize the hull via the hull drain and apply soapy water to the suspect area.

    Lots of threads about leak testing.
     
  9. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    133
    Trophy Points:
    63
    What are you doing, writing at this early hour? ;)

    I've had no occasion to do a pressure test. Did I read (here) that one's lungs are a sufficient pressurization source? :eek:
     
  10. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    I don't have any water in the cockpit that I haven't dragged in there when getting into boat. When I take the boat out of the water there definitely is water in the hull and it takes a while to drain it. Maybe there's a half gallon maybe more. Hull has a couple very small spots with hairline cracks but nothing I could detect that would allow this much water in. I have a friend who IS a sailor (not like me I'm just playing at it) and he said that much water in the boat must be coming from a bigger opening somewhere. He noticed the bailer housing is at an angle not straight back which gave rise to maybe it's leaking?? I noticed the ball just laying inside housing. I don't know but there's a ton of water in the hull that I have to drain each time. When I drain the boat it's up on it's starboard side and when the water looks like its stopped draining I grab the bow and lift up and down in a rocking motion then more comes out. I do seem to get most of the water out. Yes maybe the leak test is in order. I am bummed it seemed so light when I bought it? I also think the PO wasn't honest when he sold it to me. This much water had to of been noticed before and the hull was very light when I lifted it before buying and I asked if their was leaks. Caveat Emptor huh?
    Thanks for all the help.
     
  11. Rudder

    Rudder New Member

    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    3
    "you'll see that the cockpit and hull are tightly merged together—call it bonded—at that junction. Leaks shouldn't be possible at that site"

    2004 Sunfish Worlds, the boats were leaking at this connection so bad, they had staff from Rhode Island factory there after the complaints. The boats were leak tested by staff, bailers removed because of the bubbles, the joint between the cockpit and hull caulked and bailers reinstalled.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  12. fhhuber

    fhhuber Member

    Likes Received:
    24
    Trophy Points:
    18
    You'd be surprised how much a hairline crack opens up once you apply the water pressures involved in sailing.

    Known cracks = fix it.
     
  13. signal charlie

    signal charlie Active Member Staff Member

    Likes Received:
    139
    Trophy Points:
    43
    The bailer only fits in that hole, and yes you could have a gap where the cockpit bottom and hull seam SHOULD be bonded. We have repaired a boat where water leaked in through that seam, it was probably damaged by someone hammering an old metal bailer off, maybe that was me.....

    Other common leak areas are the daggerboard trunk, rudder fitting, mast step, splashguard trim holes and anywhere on the hull deck seam.

    There are over 30 designed holes in a Sunfish, a few less on a Windflite, so to ask someone if an old 1970s boat leaks is really not a fair question. We know they do. What we should ask is how much and where, so we know what we have to deal with. If the boat is "dry" and lightweight when we bought it then we should be able to maintain it that way, even if it means draining some water after sailing. We find the leak and fix it when the opportunity presents itself.

    I'll guess you have a hairline crack in the daggerboard trunk and/or a gap in the bailer seam, both easy repairs.
     
  14. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    thanks guys I'll start with the leak test and see what happens and report back.
     
  15. signal charlie

    signal charlie Active Member Staff Member

    Likes Received:
    139
    Trophy Points:
    43
    When you pull the bailer out you may be able to see a visible gap in that cockpit/hull seam. If there is a leak there then inject some epoxy or polyester resin/hardener, then clamp lightly if needed to close the gap.

    The leak test is fun, and you get a clean boat out of the deal!
     
  16. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Well guys half a days worth of squirting (a little at a time) on the bailer nut and I unscrewed the bailer and removed it intact from the hull. There is no separation at all in the hull so I'm going to have to look at the repairs that have cracks in them along the bottom of the hull. Another single hander said its usually the dagger board trunk?? I have no idea if the leak test will work there ?? anyone care to share how they went about checking dagger board trunk?
     
  17. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

    Likes Received:
    133
    Trophy Points:
    63
    1.Tape the vent hole
    2.Tape the bottom of the daggerboard slot (duct tape)
    3. Draw a bubble over the top of the slot/trunk with your soap solution (dishwasher detergent diluted with water about 1:1).
    4. Apply light pressure into the hull and watch.

    You might as well put soap on all areas that could leak.
    Did you test the mast tube? Just fill it up and see if the level drops over several hours
     
  18. wardie

    wardie Member

    Likes Received:
    4
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Ok I'll do this but I've never tipped the boat over or had any chance for water to get into the mast hole. I think maybe those repairs in hull or the trunk is at issue. I will follow your instructions and report back.
     
  19. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    133
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Does your hull have a owner-installed drain through the transom? If so, check that area for leakage. Actually, that can be checked after a sail by raising the bow on land. Water shouldn't be exiting that point.

    The worst "leak" scenario would be that there's a crack in the daggerboard trunk. Go here to check on the "shotgun-approach" to sealing that point. Starting at the BEGINNING | Page 7 | SailingForums.com

    It's the part of the boat that is always deepest in the water. The hull bottom flexes a lot against the trunk.

    Here's a view of the trunk interior from the top. What appear to be cracks to the left is a delamination of glue that the previous owner had used to narrow the trunk for easier adjustment of the daggerboard. (I think). :oops:

    [​IMG]

    'Course, they've designed the Sunfish to take some whacks, but they couldn't prepare for every boating situation! :eek:

    GEDC0039-001.JPG
     
  20. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

    Likes Received:
    111
    Trophy Points:
    63
    So water does not come over the deck when you are sailing?

    But in any event you need to do the pressure test with soapy water.
     

Share This Page