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P18 Damage - hit by jet ski  Bottom

  • Last week, while sailing my P18 on a lake outside of Orlando, I was hit broadside by a jet ski going at least 30 kn. The impact was along the seam where top and sides meet, about a foot from the front of the starboard bow. The guy who hit me was hurt but still got back on the jet ski minutes later and fled the scene. Craziest thing.


    The top of the hull has a 30" crack and the seam where the top and the side connect is separated cleanly.


    That separation is about 40" and is extends further aft from where the crack is. I just cut out the damaged area on the top to assess interior damage and begin the repair process.


    The inside revealed delamination damaged (caused by the impact) that extends laterally from the crack - the widest are being about 5". Here are some pictures of the delaminated material that's been cut.



    I successfully repaired (fiberglass and gelcoat) side hull damage (major holes) a few years ago and feel confident about repairing the hole i've cut out but I am not sure about how to ensure a good repair on the separation between the side and top of hull. I assume use a lot of resin and inject from inside and outside then clamp and strap down. Will that work?

    Also - how can i achieve the grid texture on the top of the hull?

    Thanks in advance for advice. Will document process and share.

  • Sheesh. Glad to hear you didn’t sustain any injuries. Hopefully you managed to get the registration numbers. The consolation prize is knowing that the numbskull that hit a big 18' long, 30' tall sailboat was, at a minimum, sore the next few days.

    Edited by badfish on Mar 27, 2019 - 05:05 PM.


    Texas Gulf Coast
    '82 Prindle 16 (Badfish)
    '02 Hobie Wave (Unnamed Project)
    ‘87 Hobie 18 (Sold)
    ‘89 Hobie 17 (ill-advised project boat, Sold)
  • This is why I hate Jet Skis. I see mostly kids riding flat out on these things, going like a bat out of hell because, yeah, it's fun to go fast. What scares me is that people just don't seem to pay attention to where they are going and it amazes me that someone riding one of those blasted water hazards would not pay attention, so much so, that they would hit a sail boat that has a big sail like a big flag waving in the wind, I mean really, how do you not see a sail out on the open water with nothing there to block your view???? Glad that you were not injured and I hope that you at least got a chance to shout a few expletives at the idiot.

    1984 Hobie 16 Redline Yellow Nationals, "Yellow Fever"
    Opelika, Al / Lake Martin
  • I know that i should not joke about this after the damage is done but there is a preventative measure that could have been taken https://www.thebeachcats.…ltimatePWCRepellent.html

    Edited by flyhull on Mar 28, 2019 - 12:03 AM.
  • Quote how to ensure a good repair on the separation between the side and top of hull. I assume use a lot of resin and inject from inside and outside then clamp and strap down. Will that work?

    Also - how can i achieve the grid texture on the top of the hull?

    I would definitely load it up with a thickened resin and then press together and clamp.
    The grid texture is a hard one. You can use an additive to lay down a textured surface, but it won’t be in a pattern. I would use hydroturf, cut to size and glued over the area. Aside from that, I would think you would need to create a pattern of the grid and lay it on a wet resin surface, allow to harden and insure it could release. Sounds very difficult to me.

    Supercat 15
    Windrider 17
    Several Sunfish and Sunfish clones
    Ratboat built from Zuma and Sunfish parts
    Shallow water sailor in the Delaware Bay
  • glad you are ok

    sounds like a very poor mariner on the pwc - many are

    Often It's like giving a novice the keys to a Kawasaki ninja with zero training -

    We have loads of poor mariners on pwc around here as well - even with guides they are in the motor exclusion zones or riding up on fishermen in the flats

    that being said "don't hate them all"
    I know a few that are sailors, mariners and responsible (a few)

    I have been towed in after demasting and had pwc get off their pwc to get in the water with me and help me right my boat - so there are some good ones too.

    don't go shooting your ground to pwc missiles until you are sure they deserve it
  • For some reason, I can’t view the pictures, so can’t really comment on the structural repair other then if the seam has separated then using thickened epoxy and clamps is generally the way to put it back together. Try to scuff and clean the mating surfaces as much as possible to get a good bond.

    For non-skid repair, check out Flexmold by MAS Epoxies. They have a large selection of popular non-skid patterns and will send you a small sample to check against the pattern on your boat (I know they have the Hobie pattern, not sure about Prindle). The product is fairly easy to use and gives reasonable results (I’m sure you could get near perfect results if you used the stuff every day). It is a but pricey though.

  • Thanks for those suggestions. The Flexmold looks like it should work. i found this which has some application videos at the bottom: https://gibcoflexmold.com/help/ like that there isn't any gelcoat sanding or polishing required.

    Lake Conway

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