View Full Version : Floor and Stringer Q's
02-04-2004, 10:40 AM
I am in the process of looking for an 86 to 90 Sunsport. I have been doing some research and have found that many people have had problems with the floor systems and stringers in these boats. I understand that there is drainage problems with the floor design. I would like to know the things to look to diagnose stringer rot. Is there any tell-tale signs besides soft flooring spots, and is there a way to inspect the stringers without tearing the floor up or drilling holes through it?
Also, after I buy one of these boats, is there any special care, techniques, products that will help to prevent stinger problems? Thanks for the help.
02-04-2004, 12:45 PM
Best test is to ratchet the engine mount lag bolts. They should not spin. Most sellers should give you permission to do this test.
You'll find soft spots where the fat sac was or under the captains seat. Sometimes the foam in the bilge is so saturated that the boat will list!
There are many prior posts on techniques to protect the wood floor and stringers. I like the use of clear penetrating sealer. You can go to www.rotdoctor.com and get a preview of the process.
02-08-2004, 07:18 AM
About a year ago I had the floor of my boat replaced by Bennett's Boat Repair (highly recommended!) in Maryville, TN. While the floor was rotting in one spot, Donnie said my stringers and foam looked as good as the day it came out of the factory! He took pictures of the whole process with a disposable camera that I provided. He said the problem with the older boats was that the floor panels were not gelcoated. The gelcoat is what prevents the water from getting to the wood. He also said that 90% of the older boats that he sees with floor rot, also have rotted stringers.
I've got an '88 that Donnie replaced the floor and stringers. The amount of rot was unbelievable for a boat that stayed in a garage. Donnie does excellent work.
03-12-2004, 12:54 PM
I replaced the floor, foam and stringers on my '86 saltare. Once water gets below the floor, it has no way to exit, and rots everything away. The foam gets waterlogged and there is no way to dry it out, it must be removed. The stringers were not in bad shape but I replaced them anyway.
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