Hull construction

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Hull construction

Postby Jaxsoday » Sat Sep 01, 2018 12:13 pm

The floor of the cockpit has two inspection ports.
How far forward and aft does that void extend?
What if anything is in the void?
I raised my jack stand so that the boat was tilted going aft. I opened the inspection ports. There was significant water below. I opened the transom petcock but no water flowed out.
How come?
Please fill me in on this design feature.
Thanks...Jack
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Re: Hull construction

Postby Alan » Sat Sep 01, 2018 2:02 pm

The void extends all the way aft, beneath the cockpit floor, and all the way forward to the bow flotation tank. The bow flotation tank is open to the bilge.

The only things in there, as the boat came from the factory, are the compression post for the mast and probably some pieces of styrofoam, intended as flotation material. The bow tank may be stuffed with styrofoam pieces.

The transom drain plug (on the outside of the boat toward the starboard side, not the self-bailer just inside the transom) should drain water from the bilge if you raise the front end high enough. One of the bits of styrofoam may have shifted and be blocking the opening.
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Re: Hull construction

Postby Jaxsoday » Fri Sep 07, 2018 11:16 am

Alan...thanks very much for getting back to me...its really appreciated...

I don't know what you mean by, "The bow flotation tank is open to the bilge."

Generally, I don't understand how water would get into the void in the first place...through the centerboard trunk? Jack
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Re: Hull construction

Postby Skippa » Fri Sep 07, 2018 10:07 pm

Water enters the inner hull by way of the centerboard trunk openings for the up haul and down haul lines for the board. There is lots of information in the archives for ways to minimize the water entry.
There is a bulkhead separating the forward bow tank in the very front of the boat, maybe about two feet from the very front.
On my 1980 DS II, I removed 4 large garbage bags of styrofoam, much of it was saturated. I replaced it with about 125 sealed 2-liter soda bottles.
Search the archives, the information is there.
You have a great boat, this is just one of minor issues that you need to work around and this is the site that will guide you through the fixes.
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Re: Hull construction

Postby Alan » Sat Sep 08, 2018 12:13 pm

For years I assumed that the bow flotation tank had some sort of wall that separated it from the bilge. Turns out that isn't the case. The flotation tank space forward of the forward bulkhead (inside the cuddy) is not separated from the bilge--the tank and the bilge are one continuous open space.

The biggest source of water in the bilge I know of is the centerboard trunk. In maybe two hours' sailing in choppy water, I've gone from a dry bilge to having several inches of water below the inspection ports in the cockpit, which means it was even deeper in the deepest part, around the mast. I left the boat overnight in a slip in that condition, and the water level hadn't changed at all in the morning. That tells me that the water in the bilge wasn't coming from some other source underwater, like a leak in the hull or from a drain plug.

Another source of water in the bilge is water in the cockpit (from rain, or maybe from water coming over the coaming during an interesting sailing experience), which seeps down through the inspection port threads.

I forgot something important in my previous post--there's a flotation tank in the bilge, sort of a fiberglass storage container, with styrofoam in it. It's installed forward of the mast and it runs crosswise for the full length of the bilge. It would block the fore-to-aft flow of water in the bilge, except that it has two narrow gaps on the underside, one port and one starboard, that allow the water to flow through, albeit slowly. I've posted photos of it elsewhere on the forum.

And finally, one more thing I forgot: Where's your transom drain plug (the bilge drain, not the cockpit drain)? I assumed it was offset to starboard, but someone has posted photos of a 1977 DSII where the transom drain plug is in the center. The hull molding and cockpit molding are very close together at that point and the self-bailer passes through both moldings in that area, so if your drain plug is in the center, that may account for the slow drainage.

Later DSIIs, including my 1980, had the drain plug moved to starboard so it opens into the space under the starboard seat. I assume that slow drainage from the center drain hole is the reason why.
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Re: Hull construction

Postby Jaxsoday » Sun Sep 09, 2018 8:32 am

Alan and Skippa...

thanks so much for the info...very very interesting...you've given me plenty to think about...i still have the issue of the void not draining...my petcock is starboard lower...thinking now the obstruction might be just aft of the inspection ports...I've checked the transom through the drain about a foot and don't feel anything...
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