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Aquafibre 33 - 1981


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boats are made differently depending on when (not just where) they were built, normally Aquafibre used an end grain balsa core but may have used foam which is not so good as it does not have the compression of sheer strength, I should suspect that from aquafibre you would have had 1 (but probably 2) layers of gel then a 1oz (300g) matt then 4oz, balsa then 6oz.

the core is only put on the flats (not vertical bits like windows)

the easiest way of finding out would be to unscrew a roof vent and have look!

cheers

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Guest DAYTONA-BILL

Clive, you must be a mind reader, as i was going to reply to Colin suggesting he send you a PM, as you have that type of boat in the fleet. Any i dea what i`m thinking now? :naughty::naughty::lol: . Regards ................... Neil.

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boats are made differently depending on when (not just where) they were built, normally Aquafibre used an end grain balsa core but may have used foam which is not so good as it does not have the compression of sheer strength, I should suspect that from aquafibre you would have had 1 (but probably 2) layers of gel then a 1oz (300g) matt then 4oz, balsa then 6oz.

the core is only put on the flats (not vertical bits like windows)

the easiest way of finding out would be to unscrew a roof vent and have look!

cheers

Unless of course the builders or subsequent owners have adopted good practise and sealed the balsa or foam core with epoxy or similar when they cut out the roof vent, to prevent water getting into the core and turning it into compost (if it's balsa) or slurry (if it's polyurethane foam).

Clive - just out of interest, is the balsa core used only on the decks, or is it also found in the hull (and if so is it below the waterline or not)?

Not an Aquafibre, but earlier this year I saw what looked to be quite a decent motor cruiser (built by a yard on the Broads, though I won't say which one) that had the spongiest decks I've ever come across in my life. On investigation it was found that they'd been cored with lumps of chipboard, which had (unsurprisingly) turned into foul-smelling mush.

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I am not really sure but balsa is not commonly used in hulls apart from where there are large flat unsupported areas, some service runs may use balsa with 6oz on top but more commonly use a strip of plywood to screw to.

All cores have their issues, foam tends to turn to dust with vibration, balsa will rot but slightly slower as it end grain which slows the spread a little as the water cant run along the grain.

Chipboard, even moisture resistant (as found on some Horizons :oops: ) just blows up and rots if it gets wet.

the secret as you said is to try and keep the water out then it wont rot, there are newer plastic honeycomb products out there which we will be using in specific areas but even though balsa is expensive and it rots there is no better alternative for certain applications (IMHO)

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