Soft spot a concern?

Thread starter #1
I picked up a 1960 sunfish in very good condition for its age. I already own an older Sunfish that I was considering painting. I decided to experiment with the 1960 version, which I am very thankful. I learned a few things that will help when I paint my other boat. Back to my newly aquired 1960. She has no inspection ports, but weighing in at 130, I felt there is no need. Being 50 yrs old, I'm sure she could use some drying out, but I wanted to save the money and time. However, when putting the splashgard back on after the paint job, I noticed some definite softness to the top both on the bow and aft sides of the splashgard, mostly noticed on the bow side. I can press the fiberglass down at least 1/4 inch. Do I have loose foam? I actually didn't think there was foam attached to the top at that location. How would I fix if I do address it? Or, can I sail as is? With the time and expense in painting, I'd like to be done with it. Actually plan to sell, but don't want to pass along a major issue. Advice?
 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
#2
Sail it as is. You can push down that far on some new Sunfish. That boat is 52 years old and in my opinion should be expected to show some signs of age. BB
 
#3
Here's a question: Since people often install an inspection port behind the splash guard, would that be ill-advised with a soft spot? Or should you install the port and then reinforce the spot? What's the best way to reinforce that spot?
 
#4
Here's a question: Since people often install an inspection port behind the splash guard, would that be ill-advised with a soft spot? Or should you install the port and then reinforce the spot? What's the best way to reinforce that spot?
That area has no foam backing, so it naturally flexes more than most other parts of the deck. That is especially true of boats of that era, which generally seem to have thinner fiberglass. It's not easy to envision reinforcing the spot where you are putting in a port. If anything, the port acts as a reinforcement of sorts - fasten the port bolts with nuts and seat it in with 3m marine adhesive.

Those Sunfish from that timeframe can be pretty nice. Any idea of hull weight?
 
#6
Boats of that era weighed about 130-140 pounds off the factory floor. If you've got a boat of that vintage that weighs 130, thank your lucky stars.
 
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