Leaky Sail Track Saga

The headaches of boat ownership… Wade was on Take It Easy for a week. With James our shipwright in charge, they went about attending to the destruction and reconstruction of the cabin roof ceiling. Brace yourselves, it looks bad!


Sail track off and holes temporarily covered.

Let’s take a step back: remember we told you about drips coming through one of the sail track bolts into the cabin in a previous post?  Well once the sail track was removed, it became obvious that several of the bolts had been leaking and moisture had accumulated between the external cabin top and the internal ceiling. Because the roof is sloped, the water trickled down towards the window end of the sail track.

The guys drilled holes in the ceiling to trace where the wet wood was. Basically, you keep drilling till the saw dust that comes out is dry! Once done, the scary part started: taking to the roof with a circular saw is never a good sign!  By the time James finished with his chainsaw massacre, we had a rather large hole in the ceiling!



The wet laminated timber between the beams was cut away. Fortunately it was just that: wet wood, not rotten wood. It was then a process of replacing the soggy stuff with new laminated timber, gluing that in place and letting it dry. And finally a new piece of marine ply for the ceiling was cut to size and glued into place, before being undercoated. We will stick the roof lining (carpet like cloth) back on when I am next on board, since that is my job!

Once the roof was dealt with, Wade, a glutton for punishment, decided to attack the sanding of the cabin top, deck, cockpit and sugar scoop steps. The existing paint was flaking and also leaving grey dribbles along our blue hulls as it oxidized with the weather. The deck of a catamaran is BIG.  So it meant sanding for three days on hands and knees! Wade felt like he might never stand up again. But at least we can now look forward to redoing the lot with proper weather-fast, slip resistant deck paint  – a job we can tackle together when it stops raining; that and getting rid of all the dust inside from the sanding! Stay tuned for the next installment of our spring maintenance!




18 thoughts on “Leaky Sail Track Saga

  1. Ah the joys of wooden boats! Good to get that sorted though. My freshly painted – well about 1 year old cockpit paint job has been ruined by bird poo! When I water blasted it it still wouldnt come off. Ahh the joys of boat ownership! 😉

    • Hi Viki, yes the birds can be pests – we get coots on the sugar scoops and welcome swallows along the life lines! A towel soaked in water and left on for a while seems to soften the muck and get rid of the worst but eventually a repair t is needed.

  2. over the course of this winter we have relocated 8 seagull nests and 24 eggs and yes they make a hell of a mess. we will have to rethink next winters mooring.

  3. Wow, that really was leaky! Made some great damp patterns 😉 A lot of work and you must be really happy to get it all done 🙂 Our good friends will be making a start on the winter work on their boat soon. We think there should still be a couple of decent weekends so hopefully Simon and I can join them for a day 🙂

  4. Pingback: Sand-Tape-Paint | sv-takeiteasy

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