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Old 08-06-2013, 11:34 PM   #1
HanfordReachie
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Default Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions? Foam Out or leave?

I'm redoing the floors in a LUND Pro-V 1890 open sled. I'm considering doing it myself to save some $, and I think I'm going to use thermo-lite boards. Has anyone done this themselves? I've searched and found a few threads but wanted to lay out what i'm going to do and see if anyone has any tips, especially with the thermo-lite boards. I'm also going to take off the carpet from the aluminum doors and from side walls.

Here are some pics..




The plywood on the floor and bow/deck should be 1/2" so i was going to use the same thickness. The main floor is 5'x8' give or take. the bow is roughly 5.5' by 6', tapering to the bow. There is also a small section of plywood (2' wide) on top of the storage area at the stern.

From what i can see, these are the steps..
1) Pulling the boards. I was going to try to get some large card board sheets and make a template of where the screw holes are so i don't have redrill into the supports when i re-lay the floor. There are 3 sections on the main floor and 2 or three sections on the deck. The deck has 4 aluminum storage doors. So I plan on make the same template for the deck area for the door cut-outs and screw holes.
2) Foam : Take it out. I'd like to add a door in the floor for more storage. Any suggestions on how to do this? I take it i'll need to have someone make an aluminum door and frame similar to the other storage doors.
3) Cut the boards to the template and reattach using the same stainless steel screws. Do i need to put anything between the TL boards and the support stringers? like a thin strip of padded backing or something? Do stainless steel screws work to attach it? or do people use something else?
4) paint the TL boards. Should i paint them before attaching them? And what type of paint/grip paint have people used? I've seen some texture paint that are used on home decks. Can I use that? or is there something better?
5) Anchor nest at bow. Should i use thermo-lite for this part? I plan on putting on an anchor nest. Will the TL boards support the anchor nest or should i not worry about it? Maybe put diamond plate up there? That might look odd since that is the only place that has diamond plate. The bow section has a little compartment for plano lure boxes and a few electrical dials to check the juice in the batteries.
6)Should i worry about anything regarding the seat bases on the floor? In other threads, people mentioned that screws seem to work themselves out of the TL boards. Do you put a little dab of glue on the screws before attaching?


Another question... I'm going to remove some carpet that is glued to some sections of aluminum side walls. The carpet is pretty tattered and some look like it's still attached well. Any suggestions on how to take this off? Use a blow dryer to heat it up and then pull it off? And if there is still glue stuck to the aluminum, is there a good cleaner that can get it off? I've heard of goo-off. just want to make sure the chemicals don't do something to the aluminum.

Another question. Since i'm ripping everything out should i look to replace other things.? I though i'd replace the fuel hoses since i'll have access to them. Anything else?

Thanks for reading this long winded thread and any suggestions you and think of. And if anyone has any unused thermo-lite sections of board i'd be interested in buying them.


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Old 08-06-2013, 11:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

Where did you find the thermo-lite? I was thinking of taking my boat to Down River but I know it's going to be spendy.

I wish I had some answers to your questions.

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Old 08-06-2013, 11:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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Where did you find the thermo-lite? I was thinking of taking my boat to Down River but I know it's going to be spendy.

I wish I had some answers to your questions.

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There is a place on the east side. near McLoughlin and Holgate. applied plastics. I think it's around $180ish for 4X8 sheet. I think they have larger sheets that you can order.

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Old 08-07-2013, 12:19 AM   #4
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

Thank you.

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Old 08-07-2013, 01:44 AM   #5
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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Originally Posted by HanfordReachie View Post
There is a place on the east side. near McLoughlin and Holgate. applied plastics. I think it's around $180ish for 4X8 sheet. I think they have larger sheets that you can order.
Please explain:

What is Thermolite?

As far as removing the old carpet glue--try using a heat method--BE CAREFUL! Remember, aluminum has a low melting point!
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:24 AM   #6
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Truck bed liner and ceramic coated self tapping screws is what I used on my drift boat floor. Cool project, nice boat.


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Old 08-07-2013, 05:44 AM   #7
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

$180 for a 4x8 sheet? Measure twice, no thrice and cut once.
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:48 AM   #8
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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Please explain:

What is Thermolite?

As far as removing the old carpet glue--try using a heat method--BE CAREFUL! Remember, aluminum has a low melting point!
From the little that I know and heard... it comes in sheets like plywood and is light weight, water resistant, and supposedly never rots. I believe the board has some sort of foam that is coated with a reinforced fiberglass covering/shell.
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Old 08-07-2013, 09:13 AM   #9
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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Truck bed liner and ceramic coated self tapping screws is what I used on my drift boat floor. Cool project, nice boat.


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Thanks. I'll look into the bed liner material and screws. The screws that are in the boards still look good. If they look okay when i take them out i may reuse them.

Anyone else have other covering material suggestions?


Quote:
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$180 for a 4x8 sheet? Measure twice, no thrice and cut once.
Spendy, yes. hopefully the card board template will help me avoid cutting mistakes.
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:40 AM   #10
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

A suggestion - MDO - plywood, comes in marine grade or standard, coated one or two sides with phenolic impregnated paper. It is structurally very strong, wears like iron and is very weather resistant, also takes paint beautifully. It is the material they use for road signs that are not metal. If you seal the edges and keep it well painted it will be many years before you have to replace it, costs about half the price you mentioned for the other material. You will have to shop around a little to find it but most lumberyards can order it.
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:54 AM   #11
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A suggestion - MDF plywood, comes in marine grade or standard, coated one or two sides with phenolic impregnated paper. It is structurally very strong, wears like iron and is very weather resistant, also takes paint beautifully. It is the material they use for road signs that are not metal. If you seal the edges and keep it well painted it will be many years before you have to replace it, costs about half the price you mentioned for the other material. You will have to shop around a little to find it but most lumberyards can order it.
Thanks for the suggestion. TL board is pretty spendy. I like the idea of it being 1/2 the price. I'll look into the MDF impregnated boards.

Anyone else use this MDF and do you like it? Any other board material i should consider?
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:00 PM   #12
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

Search for MDO, not MDF. O is outdoor grade (resin impreg.) and will weather much better. Most outdoor signs are made of MDO.
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:30 PM   #13
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I used 3/4 x 4x 8 sheets from Applied Plastics $230 a sheet. but I will never have to do it again and half the weight of plywood. I cut and fit the panels then removed and had rhino lined. super light super tuff looks awesome. be sure to where a respirator and safety glasses long sleeved shirt and no shorts ( Don't ask)
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Old 08-07-2013, 03:00 PM   #14
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I'm getting ready to do my floors too.

What does MDO or MDF stand for?

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Old 08-07-2013, 03:05 PM   #15
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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I'm getting ready to do my floors too.

What does MDO or MDF stand for?

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Not sure exactly sure what they stand for. But I think the "O" stands for outdoor. I've called a few lumber places and MDO is what you want. The places that i called didn't have marine grade MDO nor had they heard of it. Does anyone have a place to get marine grade MDO?

The more and more i look at the price tag. I think i'm moving away from Thermo-lite. I'm sure it works great... but dang! it's expensive. The price increased recently and now it's around $215 a sheet

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Old 08-07-2013, 03:11 PM   #16
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IF I ever have to replace the floor in my Columbia it will be powder coated (match the paint scheme) diamond plate 1/4" aluminum with the diamonds lightly sanded to remove the coating would be my first choice, cost be damned once and done for as long as I'll be around.
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Old 08-07-2013, 03:23 PM   #17
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

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I'm getting ready to do my floors too.

What does MDO or MDF stand for?

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Wikipedia is your friend..................


MDO -
Medium density overlay panel, or MDO panel, is a paintable surface made of plywood with a weather-resistant resin overlay bonded to the wood by heat and pressure. The overlay, which has at least 27% resin content,resists water, weather, wear and degradation. A similar product with a more rugged, smoother surface is called high density overlay (HDO) plywood.

MDF -
Medium-density fibreboard (MDF) is an engineered wood product formed by breaking down hardwood or softwood residuals into wood fibres, often in a defibrator, combining it with wax and a resin binder, and forming panels by applying high temperature and pressure.[1] MDF is generally denser than plywood. It is made up of separated fibres, but can be used as a building material similar in application to plywood. It is stronger and much denser than particle board.
The name derives from the distinction in densities of fibreboard. Large-scale production of MDF began in the 1980s, in both North America and Europe.
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:24 PM   #18
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Wow - Sorry - hit the wrong key - it is MDO not MDF which is short for crap-olla board made from sawdust which should not be anywhere on a boat.
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Old 08-07-2013, 04:36 PM   #19
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I have been replacing the carpet on my Tracker piece by piece the last 2 years. I have previously redone the interior on other boats over the years since I was a kid. Whoever thought carpet in a boat was a good idea needs to be eaten by seals.

1. Bad news is there is no easy way to get carpet fuzz and glue off of the aluminum. Solvent will work and so will a bit of heat from a heat gun-just don't mix the two and still expect to have eyebrows. Let it soak and then take putty knife and scrape. Any way you slice it-it's a mess. Expect to have to re-cover as the labor to get to a paint grade finish will be insane -you would be better off making new piece from scratch. Not to mention that the aluminum doors/pieces are made with the carpet wrap in mind so the piece w/o carpet will be too small.

2. Plywood or the MDO will work just fine. MDO is not inexpensive, if you are going to coat or paint, the finish will be nice. However, if you are going to cover the wood with carpet again (NO!), vinyl or bed liner go with plywood. Modern glue in plywood is much better than it used to be. Marine grade plywood used to mean something and is supposed to have better wood, maximum gaps between layers etc. Today, for your application an 1/8" gap in interior layers won't matter and there is little difference in the actual glue between marine and exterior grade ply. For something like a floor application the difference between $$ would not be worth it-go with a good faced ply. I have played with some of the marine "plastics" and they tend to flex. You may have to install more supports for the floor, also they are massive bucks.

3. I used the copper treatment to preserve my replacement wood pieces. If you wanted to go all out put a layer or three of spar/marine varnish on all sides.

4. I used the Dorset marine vinyl to replace my carpet, it provides good footing on slimy/bloody floors and scrubs/hoses nicely. It was ~$25 a yard for a 6' wide piece and can be obtained from those big mail order outfitters. 4 yards should do your boat. I used good old contact cement to put it in place. The advantage is that you only have to remove fuzz and clean the parts enough to get good purchase with the glue.

5. Spray on bedliner is a good product but again-not inexpensive to have applied, the stuff in a can while worthless on a truck bed may be OK in this application. However, I would not want a black floor in the summer.

6. To reset your doors/hatches you can pop rivet the door hinges to a piece of aluminum angle iron and screw that to the wood.

7. Don't skimp on the new screws-the new hardware will look better and won't be buggered up.
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Old 08-07-2013, 08:19 PM   #20
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

Beaver SR and Irie1 thanks for the tips and info.

BSR. I noticed that the storage doors are built to account for the "fuzziness" of the carpet. Good call. I'll just have to deal with the seams.
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Old 08-07-2013, 10:10 PM   #21
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I used outdoor carpet from home Depot 6' is 2.40 linear foot i believe. I used this on the vertical surfaces. To remove glue get stripping paste from Lowes. Its for stripping the glue from linoleum. But wear gloves then finish with a wire wheel.

Spar varnish oil based deck paint and softsand :-) my deck has held nicely thus season so far

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Old 08-07-2013, 10:12 PM   #22
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Oh and new hardware stainless steel hardware is much better priced at places like fastners or fastenal. Check them out or something similar in ur town. Sure Tri cities has something like that.

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Old 08-07-2013, 10:38 PM   #23
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Thermolite wears very well and you'll never have to replace it once installed. I would never use any wood product as the floor in a boat. Copper coating anything near aluminum is asking for trouble.
I did my 20 foot Willie predator several years ago ( I think one of the Thermolite threads was started by me years ago) and it looks just like it did when i went in except for a bit of color fading, especially along the seams. The only thing I would do differently is have a few cross members welded in to help support the flooring. The material holds up just fine and doesn't sag at all but it will flex a bit when walking at the middle of an unsupported lenght. I used the 1/2 inch and never did any coating. Looks and has worn just fine. I used regular stainless self tapping screws just like original. Like someone else said measure three times cut once. The material cuts easily with a circular or jig saw. Make sure to leave drain space along the sides/back it that's how your boat is designed to drain to the bilge. After 4 plus years with the boat store outside and uncovered I'm a big fan.
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Old 08-07-2013, 10:51 PM   #24
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions

A heavy wire cup brush on an angle grinder will absolutely get rid of any carpet and glue bonded to aluminum. It will make a big mess and take some effort, but it will all go away. It will also give the aluminum a little tooth for what ever you put back over top of it (if anything).
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Old 08-08-2013, 09:04 AM   #25
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A heavy wire cup brush on an angle grinder will absolutely get rid of any carpet and glue bonded to aluminum. It will make a big mess and take some effort, but it will all go away. It will also give the aluminum a little tooth for what ever you put back over top of it (if anything).
Thanks for wire brush idea. A great opportunity to buy more tools

BSC- Thanks for your ideas. especially the soft sand mix in the paint. I'm in portland so i'll try to see if there is a fasteners store around here. does anyone know of a place in portland? Someone earlier mentioned ceramic screws... is this common off the shelf item? If not, anyone know where to get them?

Right now, the plan is MDO with deck paint with added soft sand to the paint. Anyone else use soft sand beside BSC? Pros, cons?

THANKS for EVERYONE"S input on this!
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Old 08-08-2013, 11:51 AM   #26
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here is what my floor looked like. down and dirty quick and let it dry in the sun. it worked and spent less than $50 on paint and soft sand. had plenty of extra of both in case i need to touch up or have other things to paint
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Old 08-08-2013, 11:56 AM   #27
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions? Foam Out or leave?

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Originally Posted by fishchaser View Post
I'm getting ready to do my floors too.

What does MDO or MDF stand for?

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MDO= medium density overlay (mdf laminated to plywood on both sides)
MDF= medium density fiberboard

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Old 08-08-2013, 12:03 PM   #28
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions? Foam Out or leave?

Foam under floor.... Leave it or trash it?

I called a LUND rep and he said that the foam should be a closed cell foam (pore in kind) and I shouldn't have any issues with it soaking up water. Anyone out there have closed cell foam under their floors where it performed as it should after 20'ish years? I'm inclined to think even though it's closed cell, the stuff has got to break down eventually and take on water. Or am I wrong with that assumption? Any thoughts?

I know the foam is there for floatation but if it's water logged and added 100's of lbs to the boat, I'd rather take it out. Dwnrvr told me they took out foam from a raptor and it weight +600lbs!

I'm also playing around w/ the idea of adding a washdown system. Since it doesn't have one now, i'm not sure if the foam will trap the run-off from the floors. I guess i'll be able to determine that once i open it up.

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Old 08-08-2013, 12:05 PM   #29
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BSC... very nice. I think a matching blue would look great in mine. Or maybe gray.

Or blue soft sand in light tan paint. and have the sand show through the paint.

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Old 08-08-2013, 06:54 PM   #30
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Foam under floor.... Leave it or trash it?

I called a LUND rep and he said that the foam should be a closed cell foam (pore in kind) and I shouldn't have any issues with it soaking up water. Anyone out there have closed cell foam under their floors where it performed as it should after 20'ish years? I'm inclined to think even though it's closed cell, the stuff has got to break down eventually and take on water. Or am I wrong with that assumption? Any thoughts?

I know the foam is there for floatation but if it's water logged and added 100's of lbs to the boat, I'd rather take it out. Dwnrvr told me they took out foam from a raptor and it weight +600lbs!

I'm also playing around w/ the idea of adding a washdown system. Since it doesn't have one now, i'm not sure if the foam will trap the run-off from the floors. I guess i'll be able to determine that once i open it up.
I pulled 2 garbage cans of totally water soaked foam out of the bottom of my 2001 alumaweld stryker. along with the water soaked plywood I guess I weigh about 400 lbs less now that I have diamond plate floors. I did not replace the foam, that stuff just does not stay waterproof, period.
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Old 08-08-2013, 10:05 PM   #31
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i used about 40 pool noodles :O
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Old 08-08-2013, 10:08 PM   #32
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I pulled 2 garbage cans of totally water soaked foam out of the bottom of my 2001 alumaweld stryker. along with the water soaked plywood I guess I weigh about 400 lbs less now that I have diamond plate floors. I did not replace the foam, that stuff just does not stay waterproof, period.
do all boat manufacturers claim that they are installing closed cell foam and most of them don't perform as they should? Seems like a lot of people have had this issue. Am i wrong? Is it a select few? I think it's odd that the coast guard would think this is okay (certifying a boat's capicity) if foam is failing on a lot of boats. If i understand it correctly, boat manufacturers have to install floatation on boats that are under 20 to 18 feet long for coast guard certification/regs. Do I have that right?

My comment isn't a "stab" at the coast guard... it's just seems like if it's such a problem and undermines people's safety, maybe we should find a better solution. (Like pool noodles!)

Last edited by HanfordReachie; 08-09-2013 at 09:51 AM.
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Old 08-20-2013, 02:41 PM   #33
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Started on the project. I have tons of ziplock bags labeling the hardware. I hope i will remember how it all goes back together!


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Old 08-21-2013, 09:13 AM   #34
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more pics from this morning. The foam indeed has some water in it. The tops of the foam were sawed off for the floor boards to lay flat on the stringers, and i assume that would be a main entry point for the water



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Old 08-22-2013, 08:20 PM   #35
bscappell
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Nice pic's keep em coming

set from my S3 using fish power
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Old 09-14-2013, 12:59 AM   #36
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So it's been a while .... Here are some updated pics.

I took the side lockers /side walls out, as well as the the live well at the transom. I took the gas tank out at drained the bad gas. It was pretty dark. Then i added a gal or 2 and swished it around for a few mins. I'm replacing the fuel lines tomorrow to test the motors.

I kept the carpet inside the rod lockers and took out the carpet near the bow. The glue residue is next. Acetone or paint thinner will hopefully get it off.

And.... i finally cut all the floor boards, side wall boards and stern area boards. I pretreated the boards with CPES epoxy rot treatment from rotdoctor (I did this yesterday). I just finished painted the back sides of all the boards with some interlux paint. (man! that stuff is expensive!) I added a little bit of paint thinner and is seemed to help make is last a bit longer. I probably won't add thinner to the top sides. I almost used ElastaTuff 6000 from the rot doctor. But i couldn't stomach the cost. It is 130$ a gal, whcih only covers 100 sqft! Interlux is 40ish$ a quart but it will cover the same sq footage.

Foam is out... I'm replacing it will some heavy plastic bags that are sealed with good ol' air. That should be light enough, right?

i'm busting my but to try to get this finish so i can at least get out once on this record fall run!








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Old 09-14-2013, 02:25 PM   #37
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Looking good so far. While you have it apart, look over the stringers closely. Quite a few open sleds end up with cracks at the floor welds. I'd also consider making drain holes big enough for water to easily drain to the center bilge area from above the stringers. Including when leaves, dog hair, fish scales, etc get in there.

Keep the pictures coming, I like seeing rebuilds!
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Old 09-14-2013, 03:33 PM   #38
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Looks good!! Did you change your mind and use ply instead of thermo-lite??
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Old 09-14-2013, 09:00 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jvino View Post
Looks good!! Did you change your mind and use ply instead of thermo-lite??
I chose MDO plywood (the stuff that road signs are made out of). it is plywood with a paper laminate that you can get on one or two sides. It's pretty dense plywood too. I just couldn't stomach the cost of thermolite. I got the MDO at Mr Plywood on the east side. 64$ish for a sheet. i'm using 3/4" for the main floor and 5/8" for the deck and side lockers.

Thanks QR. I'll look at the stringers as well. It's a revited boat. There are a few rusty spots but i think that was from the water in the foam.


I just painted the top sides and applied some softsand to it. Final coat tonight and tomorrow and then I'm putting it back together!!! i'm leaving the crappiest job for last.... The carpet glue. It's still on there. I tried some paint thinner and it's starting to come off. It's taking a while though. I think i might pull out the wire brush/grinder in a bit.

Today i found a leak in one of the live-well hoses. So i replaced that. It should be ready for next weekend!!

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Old 09-15-2013, 10:32 AM   #40
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For the glue removal you might try a can of orange based brake cleaner. I have used it on decal glue that you couldn't hardly buff off with a wire wheel on truck cabs. Bowman makes a product called citri- solve that worked great. I'm sure other companies make a similiar product with the same ingredients. We sprayed it on and then waited a little while then scrape it off with a plastic scraper. Didn't hurt the paint, smelled nice and worked good. As with anything read the directions, heed the warnings and try in a small conspicuous area.
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Old 09-15-2013, 10:52 AM   #41
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For the adhesive, try "RemovAll 700 Floor Adhesive Remover-Foam Off".

Send me a PM and I can hook you up.
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Old 09-20-2013, 11:38 PM   #42
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Default Re: Redoing floors with Thermo-lite (DIY). Any Suggestions? Updated pics

I just could wait for tomorrow to put the boat together so I laid out all the boards i could. I need to add 3 or 4 stringers for the access hatches and them i'm ready to attach everything. Crossing my figures that i'll be able to test it out tomorrow afternoon. Yeah Right!! This will probably take a few days to put back together.

I used a wire brush on the carpet glue. I'll either bugg it out or leave it. The scuffs look decent actually. I also added two seat places to the deck. might be a bit crowded for 5 or 6 people for an 18'er but more poles the better chances of hooking up. right? Oh.. and... i got a Q100 Weber bqq to add somewhere. The side railing is quickly being taken up by rod holders and other stuff. Where have you mounted bbqs? and suggestions on where?

The blue turned out a little lighter and brighter than i wanted but it still looks sweet. I think i might add a "NO Skid" coat to teh floor. I used Interlux Interdeck paint and the rubber pebbles are flaking off. Maybe the no Skid will be a bit thicker and the Interdeck. Anyone use NO Skid before. Like it? dislike it?

Thanks for everyone's help and suggestion on this. I have a a few wiring/electrical questions that i posted in the boat/motors forum. Like adding a aux car charger and some gauge wiring issues.







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Old 09-21-2013, 08:52 PM   #43
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Good progress. Mine is still a work in progress. Keep at it

set from my S3 using fish power
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