Holes and Punctures
Impact damage often results in holed decks, hulls, bulkheads or cabin tops' requiring structural and cosmetic repair.
Solution 4 - Repairing holes & punctures
1. Cut away all loose or damaged material. Try to maintain a circular or oval shape, exposing solid laminate. Inspect internal structural members for damage, also. Dry the area thoroughly. Sand or grind to a 12-to-1 bevel from the edge of the repair area.
2. If necessary, provide backing for the repair by bracing plastic covered plywood over the inside of the hole.
3. Coat the exposed repair surfaces with unthickened epoxy. If the through-panel damage doesn't exceed 25mm in diameter, prepare a mixture of epoxy and 413 Microfibre Blend to a non-sagging "peanut-butter" consistency and trowel into the void. Several applications may be necessary to fill the hole. Allow each layer to set-up slightly before applying the next.
4. If the repair area is larger than 25mm in diameter, laminate a plug the same thickness of the laminate from pieces of 400gm/m2 fibreglass cloth. Cut the first piece slightly smaller than the outer edge of the bevel; and then each piece progressively smaller. The final piece should be slightly larger than the inner edge of the bevel. Wet-out all pieces at once and bond the wet plug in place with epoxy thickened with 403 Microfibre Blend. Cover the plug with Peel Ply and plastic. Squeeze off excess epoxy and allow to cure. Remove Peel Ply and plastic when cured.
5. Sand high areas flush. Fill remaining imperfections with epoxy and 411 Microsphere Blend for final fairing; sand with 80-grit sandpaper when cured.
6. Coat the repair area with several coats of epoxy, allowing the epoxy to set-up slightly before applying the next coat. Allow to cure 24 hours before final wet sanding with 220-grit sandpaper and painting.