What's new

Something unexpected

Jduri

New Member
Picked up a project... '68 sunfish. Solid hull/deck and all parts (already stripped off of it). Inspection port had been cut, revealing it was full of expanding foam.
I've cut a few more strategic ports and gotten most of the foam out (thing weighed 300#!).
My issue is...
in all the info read/video's watched, the decking rolls back fairly easily. On this boat, there are 2 ribs glassed in under the deck to provide rigidity! (about where foam blocks should be)
is this a factory item for this year?... or something someone added?
inside underdeck.sunfish (2).jpg
View from inspection port forward. Almost uncovered the mast boot.

Once I remove the expansion foam, I need to install new foam blocks. Ribs prevent bow deck from rolling back far enough.
Stern compartment shows no evidence of ever having foam...but no deck ribbing either.
Any suggestions welcome.

ALSO... has anyone put together a cutting list for new foam blocks? It;'s fairly easy to measure/figure...but if it's already been done...
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
Mast boot=Mast step?

New to me, so defering to member Signal Charlie.

Keep in mind the Styrofoam is structural in Sunfish--less-so to the later-mandated floatation.

Actually, nicely done structure. For sure, this is branded "Sunfish"? :oops:
 

Jduri

New Member
Can find no branding. Assuming I'll unearth the serial, after I remove layers of gelcoat. Registered: xxxxxx98M68A
Possible transom was replaced, as no evidence of old style rudder set-up
Has some sort of fabricated atrocity for a rudder now. Looks similar to my '68 Lonestar-13 rudder (boat below)
Looks like a Sunfish, feels like a sunfish...might be a sunfish?
Had only one access port. I added the rest, to assess, and get out the expanding foam.
Edge seems a little thick for OEM aluminum trim. It just had angle aluminum fitted.
OAL 13ft 8.5in
Beam 47"
7" Freeboard amidships
 

Attachments

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
Well, I may have to retract my “not a Sunfish” comment. Any chance it could have come from Canada? A company up there called Grew was licensed to build Sunfish in the 60s. In the Will White Sunfish book he mentioned the sails were similar to US ones but had leather corner patches. Makes me wonder if this could be a Canadian built boat with slightly different construction.
 

Jduri

New Member
sails is a faded/torn Coral (mai-tai)
1617686451657.png
No leather. Inclined to believe it's just a 50+ boat, that's seen modifications. IA prior registration #'s (Iowa?)
She's a California girl now. Guy that had her, bought boat + Trailer. He only wanted the trailer. I offered to haul off the boat. (with title)
That's all the 'history' that I know.

Regarding ribs under the deck...I'm inclined to cut them off (at least to the mast step/no separation zone)
I'll be installing new foam blocks. I need the additional clearance of a more flexible separated deck.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
That registration number can't be an official HIN, as HINs weren't put on hulls until late 1971. :confused: I suppose you could engrave it into the transom to make subsequent ownerships easier in some states.

As I recall, the aluminum edge-trim width (inside-measure) is 1/4" (6.35mm). From the pix, your edge appears somewhat wider.

While the Sunfish factory aluminum trim adds a lot of strength, automotive resources carry "toothed" (hammer-on) vinyl trim, which is easier to install, has more colors, and is a whole-lot cheaper! :cool:

I'd be tempted to save the added wood structure. Right now, it's protected from rot.

Inexpensive "craft" Styrofoam is available--precut--in various lengths, widths and thicknesses. (JOANN'S, Amazon). Smaller pieces can be "fed" through the present wide openings, glued together (to make big blocks) and glued in place.

Flotation is secondary: deck and hull were designed to share structural duties.

Two-part foam water-resistant "glue" has been recommended here. Read up on it, as it can get out of control! :eek:
 

sailcraftri

Well-Known Member
Looking at the transom photos would indicate that this is not a Sunfish. A 1968 Sunfish would have the indent in the transom for the carriage bolt. Canadian version, maybe. Not very familiar with those. There was another knockoff Sunfish built in MA around that time period. I’ve owned one of those. Looked every bit like a Sunfish as if they popped molds off a Sunfish. Cannot remember what the rudder looked like but will try to dog out old photos to find out.
 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
sails is a faded/torn Coral (mai-tai)
View attachment 44899
No leather. Inclined to believe it's just a 50+ boat, that's seen modifications.
That sail is much newer than the boat. That color scheme arose in the 80s as the Sunrise and has had a few iterations since. Back in the 60s the colors were simpler - just blue and white, or red and white, etc.

As you and Sailcraft RI note that the stern is not a Sunfish. You mention that the transom may have been replaced. Is there evidence of that type of major work - or just the noted “non-Sunfish” stern?

If it turns out not to be a Sunfish, there doesn’t seem like a lot of reason to remove the deck stiffeners. The Sunfish deck frequently flexes there even with the foam blocks in place.
 

Jduri

New Member
Two-part foam water-resistant "glue" has been recommended here. Read up on it, as it can get out of control! :eek:
[/QUOTE]


So...what is the reason for NOT using Great Stuff (very sparingly) To affix blocks to Hull/deck?
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
So...what is the reason for NOT using Great Stuff (very sparingly) To affix blocks to Hull/deck?
Great Stuff has a yet-unproven reputation to absorb water. (unproven--to me). ;)

I tried Great Stuff's "Pond and Stone" variant. While thick enough, I found it had more flex than I'd like. (Flex like a dry sponge). It's black, while regular Great Stuff is ivory in color.

If your Styrofoam blocks are where you'd like them, how about drilling a series of 3/16" (5mm) holes along each block, and inserting two-second bursts of the Great Stuff--of your choice--using the provided snorkel?

The holes can be readily closed using Thixo and pieces of old credit cards.

Do not fail to wear gloves! :confused:
 

Woodwind

Active Member
Great Stuff also has applications to automotive fixes:

View attachment 45314
L&VW
Yep! I saw this just the other day I had to stop and take a picture.
It’s the Great Stuff test vehicle...:eek:

May be a little bit more hostile environment than the interior of Sunfish hull???
from the look of the streaks it looks like maybe they applied it while they were still underway.

and an alternative advert. to the fried egg “This is your brain on drugs” line of thinking...
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Jduri

New Member
Update…for less,than I was going to spend on glass, thixo, epoxy, primer & paint…Imwas able,to pick up a ‘68 Alcort, in great shape.
Fully stripped, and emptied of foam, this one still weighed ~300lb. I cut it up and took it to the dump.

I already had the supplies, so upgraded the ‘68. I’m on the water!
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
So the first boat sleeps with the other fishes...RIP. It was certainly different enough to wonder where it was made. Through the years Alcort experimented with some different design ideas, maybe they were thinking about copying Boston Whaler design by adding those unexplained stiffeners and filling the hull with expanding flotation foam? NOT a good idea unless water intrusion can be prevented.

Trivia Time: The Boston Whaler developers listed the the Alcort Sailfish as one of their inspirations, and when Matt Plunkett put together his 2017 book Unsinkable: The History of Boston Whaler he contacted us to provide a picture of the Standard Sailfish for the book.

Audrey Winnie 23 May.jpg

Back to the Great Stuff question, we have used it sparingly to adhere sections of the white structural XPS (Extruded Polystyrene) blocks, with the idea that any water that found its way inside a hull would be removed immediately after a mess about. The Great Stuff foam is not "marine grade" and does not have the same desirable closed cell qualities as quality marine grade flotation foam. It is indeed a tenacious adhesive though, and great care should be taken to not get any of these foam on skin.

Marine grade flotation foam can be bought from Fiberglast or TotalBoat, we purchase the 4 lb version (4 pounds of flotation per cubic foot).

As for replacement XPS blocks, we believe that pink Owens Corning foam board, sold in 4x8 sheets of different thickness at home improvement and building supply stores, could be layered into acceptable substitutes.

Thanks for sharing the photos and we'd love to see photos of you new ride.
 

beldar boathead

Well-Known Member
This one sold on eBay for a lot of money! Alan Glos has one for sale for $165 - I have seen that price more frequently than $325, but suffice it to say that old rudder has some value!!

1633144165004.png
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
She looks great! Nice stripes.

There is value to the old style rudder assembly, depending on whether it is crusty or shiny, $165 and up. Most of the value is in the pin, those alone sell for $40 and up.

They also make nice wall decor.

Thanks for posting the photo,
 
Top