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Drying soggy hull without inspection ports

Gator

New Member
Last summer after finding and fixing the leaks, I reduced the weight of my ancient sunfish from about 185 pounds to 130 pounds without installing inspection ports. The boat had a small drain hole in the transom as well as the standard small drain hole on the starboard side of the deck. I taped a very small 12 volt fan (designed for a computer) tightly to the deck so it would blow air down the starboard deck drain, and powered the fan with a small solar panel. After 2 weeks under its canvas-like cover and on its trailer in the hot sun (average high temperature here in Texas was about 100 degrees) the boat was reduced from 185 to 152, and after the fourth week it was down to 130 pounds.

During the hottest part of a sunny day, the air exhausting the transom hole was obviously warmer than the ambient temperature and more moist than the average humidity of the summer air. It could fog up a clear glass held near the exhaust hole. But by the end of the 4th week, the outflowing air was merely still warmer, but not more moist than the ambient air. The absense of the excess moisture signaled that the hull had finished drying.

The air movement was gentle, not fast; but it was consistent throughout daylight hours as the sun powered the fan through the solar panel.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
Highly efficient, and not surprised, as the release of moisture from foam is very slow as well. Excepting storage on a steep ramp, I'll not be installing transom drains in future Sunfish purchases.

I'm impatient, so I use a 4-inch muffin fan taped to the longest length of PVC pipe that can fit the existing 6-inch inspection port.
 

walnut

New Member
I just bought a SF and never had anything to do with one. From what I knew about the specs, I thought it seemed heavy. Now I hear water when I turn it over. I'm hoping I don't have to replace a bunch of styrofoam. What happens if it isn't replaced?
 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
I saw you made a post after this. The issue with water in the hull and foam is that it makes the boat weigh a lot more than it should.
 
How do you weigh the boat? Most hanging scales I’ve found don’t go near the weight of a sunfish without getting expensive.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
A bathroom scale sounds like a lot of trouble—especially if you're carrying it with you while you look for a "standard-weight" Sunfish to buy. (Also difficult—if not a hazard—when you're alone). :confused:

Why don't we establish a table of what our boats weigh on a grocers' or "major" fish scale? I have a couple of Chatillon scales. One reads to 50 pounds, the other to 30 pounds (the 30# isn't going to work). :(

Put a board under the transom and use the bow handle to hook the scale on. Once the boat has fully cleared the ground—and only the transom is touching—what number would be reached?
 

Cactus Cowboy

Well-Known Member
Bathroom scales get a bad rap, LOL... and I'm no hand to use one on a regular basis, I couldn't care less about my own weight as long as I'm reasonably fit, but I've been known to weigh hulls with bathroom scales by weighing myself, then weighing myself holding the boat hull. It may not be the most accurate reading you'll ever get, and there's a trick to stepping on the scale while holding a boat hull a certain way, hand in dagger well, but at least you'll get a ballpark figure. Just be sure not to injure yourself while using this method, especially if you're getting older as I am. I've always used the same method to weigh my cats on bathroom scales... ever try to get a cat to stand still on the scale by itself? It's a lost cause, LOL... :confused:
 
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A bathroom scale sounds like a lot of trouble—especially if you're carrying it with you while you look for a "standard-weight" Sunfish to buy. (Also difficult—if not a hazard—when you're alone). :confused:

Why don't we establish a table of what our boats weigh on a grocers' or "major" fish scale? I have a couple of Chatillon scales. One reads to 50 pounds, the other to 30 pounds (the 30# isn't going to work). :(

Put a board under the transom and use the bow handle to hook the scale on. Once the boat has fully cleared the ground—and only the transom is touching—what number would be reached?
Even a light modern boat will weigh over a hundred pounds.
 
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