With decades of experience in glassing hundreds of surfboards, windsurfers and ʻnon-marineʻ projects, the staff at FIB is up to date with all materials and techniques for maintenance and repairs to vessels of all ages and designs. Topsides, hulls, deck house structures, through-hulls, windows and hatches…from minor damage and leak repairs to full collision and customization projects…FIB is the source for dependable Glass work!
Different boat construction methods require appropriate maintenance and repair techniques.
A. Solid Fiberglass
Solid Fiberglass has few problems with water intrusion on decks. Below the waterline, and up to 6” above waterline, the hull must be checked regularly due to ‘water flow’. Water Flow, (hydraulic pressure) has the potential to rip apart even a small gouge.
Fiberglass, on either side of a substrate (wood/plywood, PVC Foam, Polyurethane Foam, balsa core, etc.), is the easiest to repair. The substrates usually take a long time to rot, and are effectively capable of being ‘cut out’ and replaced.
Foam substrates are not as quickly affected by water. However, the lightweight and more fragile nature of foams, tend to iallow more significant damage from any impact. Polyurethane foam cores absorb water and can make the hull much heavier if not repaired soon after damage. PVC Foam is comparably stronger and does not soak up water. Balsa Core provides excellent strength and is lightweight, however will absorb water, become ‘mushy’ and deteriorate quickly with cracks or damage to the protective fiberglass surface.