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Sunfish drying the insides

Rusty2010

New Member
I bought my first sunfish ( 82' )a couple of weeks ago and I know I need to dry out the inside foam. I don't have a garage so I have to do this outside. I have done a boat load ( pun intended ) of research on this and I know that I first have to decide if I do this with the hull up or hull down. It doesn't have any inspection ports yet but I expect I will need one in the deck at the stern and either/and a inspection port in the bow and one ahead of the dagger board well. I thought I would get one of those small muffin fans to push air in the stern inspection port.

If I do it with the hull facing up I was thinking of propping the bow up on a saw horse and the stern on a board on the ground to give it an up angle to help with air flow. I figure if I do this I might put a black plastic trash bag taped to the hull to warm up the hull and air inside to aid in the drying. Upside down I can leave the ports open rain or shine for several weeks. I know I need to put a screen on the inspection ports while they are open so that insects and critters can't find a fall home inside the boat.

If I do it with the deck facing up I was not sure if I should do it with the boat level or propped up on a saw horse under the bow. Muffin fan above the stern inspection port pushing air into the hull and possibly out the mid boat port or the bow port. I would also use a black plastic bag taped down to the deck to warm the boat and thus the inside air. The issue with this is I have to be careful if it rains that water doesn't collect in the cockpit and I remember to put the inspection port covers back on. The boat won't be in my yard but will be at a friends yard and she has agreed to put the inspection port covers on if I call and remind her.

Adding an inspection port in the stern seems a given. I don't know if I need both a mid boat inspection port and a bow inspection port or just one in mid boat for keeping an eye on the mast well and dagger board well. Will the mid boat port still draw air from around the bow to dry the foam in the front of the boat if there isn't a bow port? I don't mind 3 inspection ports if that is best but if I can get by with 2 that seems better. From what I read the stern and mid port should be 6" and the bow port 4". Right?

What say ye?


I anxiously await hearing what anyone has to suggest.

Thanks in advance
 

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Weston

Active Member
Most folks on this forum suggest limiting the number of wholes you cut in the hull to a minimum. I think you’ll need two for circulation: a 4” on the deck near the rudder and another 5” port midship or forward, depending on if you also need access to the inside of the boat for other repairs.

Since the boat will not be at your home, I recommend putting it on blocks or saw horses upside down to avoid rain getting into the hull.
 

Breeze Bender

Breeze Bender
If I were you I’d add only one 5” fan centered behind the splashguard. Your boat has a drain in the stern. Open that, as well as the drain on the starboard side of the deck. Unless your boat is completely waterlogged you should get enough air flow without cutting three big holes in your deck. You’ve already got the new style rudder so I wouldn’t put one in the stern. Others will disagree. Deck down if left outside is probably best. You can tape the fan over the port hole. Black plastic will definitely warm things up. Are you sure your friend can’t house it for you during the winter months? A dry garage would have you dried out a lot faster!
 

Rusty2010

New Member
If I were you I’d add only one 5” fan centered behind the splashguard. Your boat has a drain in the stern. Open that, as well as the drain on the starboard side of the deck. Unless your boat is completely waterlogged you should get enough air flow without cutting three big holes in your deck. You’ve already got the new style rudder so I wouldn’t put one in the stern. Others will disagree. Deck down if left outside is probably best. You can tape the fan over the port hole. Black plastic will definitely warm things up. Are you sure your friend can’t house it for you during the winter months? A dry garage would have you dried out a lot faster!
Unfortunately I can't find a garage for a few weeks or month to dry it out. Has to be outside.
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
You've got all (of a dry) winter to dry it out: one port, one fan--inverted.

Don't use black plastic on painted surfaces--it'll cause paint to blister on the first hot day.
 

danpal

Active Member
I'd add an inspection port in the front wall of the cockpit which serves two purposes. You can both dry your hull and easily add hiking strap. The inspection port can also be used to hold a dry bag to store your keys, phone and a water bottle.
 

Sailflow

Active Member
Any boat with a back drain leaks a lot. I would do a leak test before putting in a port. The leak test would confirm the best place for a port.
 

LAWilliams

New Member
I agree with these guys. Run a leak test and let that decide the best location for the port. We were sure where our leak was until we ran the test and found four areas leaking. I think this would avoid extra ports and work. Good luck
 

Rusty2010

New Member
How much does your boat weigh?
I am not sure. I tried using a bathroom scales but I was getting a number so high I knew it was an error. It is so heavy that two adults have a very hard time lifting and moving it in the yard..
 
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