New belly for Perception! 1

New belly for Perception!

So the day came when it was time to start cutting out all the rust and replacing the infected sections and plates. Although removing entire plates seems a bit harsh, I wanted to start with fresh steel sections and plates. Correctly primed and painted that will not give us and problems in the future. All steel boat owners know the their boats will rust from the inside out and prevention is way better than cure.

Two of the ribs on the port side, so far, were also in a very bad state and the badly effected area was cut out and replaced. The previous owners could never have seen what was going on behind all the cabinetry without ripping it to pieces. During the re-build I am planning to install every piece of internal structure at least 100mm off the ribs. All cabinetry will have open back access so every plate, rib and stringer will have access for inspection.

The problem with the original design was that the horizontal stringers had no way of releasing the water caused by condensation or other issues, and it collected in the v-shaped angle between the hull plates and perpendicular stringers. If she had been sailing, even occasionally, the water would have flowed out over the stringer edge and down to the bilge. But she had stood, un-sailed for quite some time before we purchased her and this has led to her issues we are currently fixing.

The repair / rebuild procedure:

  1. Sweep blast
  2. Plate thickness check
  3. Mark all damaged plates, ribs and stringers
  4. Replace stringers and spot-weld into original position
  5. Cut out all and then some damaged plates
  6. Replace and weld in place damaged ribs
  7. Replace and spot-weld into place plates
  8. Mig weld all internal plates, stringers, ribs
  9. Arc weld all outside plates
  10. Grind down all external welds to reveal pits or holes
  11. Re-weld all bad spots
  12. Grind down all external welds to reveal pits or holes
  13. Light test internal welds and external welds
  14. Re-weld all bad spots
  15. Grind down all external welds to reveal pits or holes
  16. Repeat 13-15 until happy!

It’s quite hard to follow the exact procedure as above, as removing all plates etc. at once would be impossible as the whole structure of the boat would probably change without the plates, stringers and ribs in place.

The pictures are slightly disconcerting but take a look anyway, as the after pics will be much more relaxing… After pics coming soon.

Broken RibAnother Broken Rib
New stringer, before removing plateNew stringer, before removing plate
Through hullThrough hull
New stringer, before removing plateRusted Stringers
Rusted StringersRusted Stringers
Some plates removedNew plate spot-welded into place
New plates spot-welded into placeSpot-weldeding new plates into place



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