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Old 26 February 2014, 17:24   #1
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Proper way to address transom repair

Hello,

I recently purchased a 2005 Zodiac Mark II which a 40hp Mercury 4 stroke. The boat is overall in excellent condition but I found one area on the left hand side rear where the transom connects to the tubes. It obviously needs to be re-glued but I'm not sure to what extent. One inflatable repair shop I spoke to said to do it right you'd have to take the whole thing apart, including the motor, take the whole transom off, and completely rebuild/re-glue both sides. About a $750 job. Another inflatable repair shop person I spoke to said to just get some 2 part glue and re glue it, or bring it to them and they would do it. The second shop said that because the other side is fine I don't have to be overly concerned with it until I see it further coming apart. I'm kind of lost but want to make sure I do what is necessary.

Here are a few photos of what I'm dealing with. The guy I bought it from attempted to re-glue it but didn't too a very good job.

I'm dying to get in the water with this boat but want to get this fixed, properly, first.

Thanks for any help!!
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Old 26 February 2014, 17:55   #2
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I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but this appears to be the beginning of the end for the glued parts of your boat.

Zodiac glue seems to only last about 10 years, once one bit lets go, the rest will follow pretty quickly. Thats the bad news.

The good news is that repairing it is straightforward if time consuming. From personal experience you need to fully remove the transom, clean it up and re glue with 2 part adhesive.
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Old 26 February 2014, 18:20   #3
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Thanks. That is consistent with one the one repair shop told me. On that note, here are a couple more questions:

1) Am I risking making anything worse using it lightly before I get it fixed? The other side seems pretty good.

2) Are there other areas of the boat that are glued which I should pay close attention to?
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Old 26 February 2014, 23:36   #4
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As said above ALL the glue is failing, just from age. Fortunately the tubes themselves are thermo-bonded, and won't fail, but the glue needs to be replaced. The boat appears in great condition and is worth fixing. If it were me, I would take the entire floor and transom off the boat and reglue them which takes care of the critical parts. To do the job right takes a lot of time cleaning and prepping. I can't imagine paying someone though as it would take a looong time.
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Old 27 February 2014, 03:57   #5
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It may be the timber in there that's the problem
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Old 27 February 2014, 15:17   #6
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It is a time consuming job but worth it to do the job properly. If a transom is not fully beyond repair you can drive wedges down between the laminates and dry it out, then pour epoxy resin (west system) down the ply and clamp together. It's a case of gluing the tubes down afterwards. A bit of a pig, but worth it.
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Old 27 February 2014, 16:15   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ninjah View Post
Thanks. That is consistent with one the one repair shop told me. On that note, here are a couple more questions:

1) Am I risking making anything worse using it lightly before I get it fixed? The other side seems pretty good.

2) Are there other areas of the boat that are glued which I should pay close attention to?

1) I had the virtually identical problem with a Zodiac futura FR Mk2C, the problem appeared on Saturday morning, I continued to use the boat and by the end of the weekend the transom virtually fell off. You wont make it any 'worse' by using it because the whole transon needs to come off to be fixed properly anyway. My concern would be if the transom lets go suddenly your engine is going swimming. I was using mine with a 25hp and towing a few toys as well, if you are only doing 2kts with 2hp on the transom it could last for a few more months, but it will still fail eventually because the glue is basically not sticky any more.

2) All of the glued areas of the boat will fail, the main ones as Peter C mentioned are he floor and the transom. All the other places (grab handles, D rings etc) will go as well but wont stop you using the boat so can be tackled as and when needed.

I honestly don't think its the transom, they are well made and even if abused rarely fail.
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Old 28 February 2014, 20:02   #8
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Thanks everyone for your comments and advice. I think I'm going to be smart and get it fixed properly. Especially with the 40HP mercury, don't want that sinking anytime soon. The boat is in great shape so hopefully I can do the transom glue now and come back and do the bottom later. I checked out the bottom last night and it looks fine. Cheers.
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Old 04 March 2014, 14:38   #9
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Ok, following up.

I went through the entire bottom and the other side of the transom and all the glue looks fine, perfect actually. I also checked again the failing side and it looks like the glue on the parts that connect to the tube is also in fine (perfect) shape.

The problem is only the areas on this one side that the transom trim connector piece is glued to the transom. Given all other glue areas on the boat look perfect, I'd hate to rip them apart only because they "should" fail in the next couple of years. I may be able to get another couple years out of everything and I'm dying to get this baby in the water!

I'd like to try and repair just the one side, and again its only on the part that connects to the transom, not the part that glues to the tubes (which is fine).

I'd like to get some feedback on what the best way would be to complete this one section. Ideally, I'd like to fully disconnect where the connector piece glues onto the transom, sand it, clean both it and the actual transom up, and glue it back together. Is this a reasonable approach? Can I do it without taking the motor off and removing both sides of the transom?

Some photos are attached of what I'm talking about. Forgive me for not knowing what to call the "connector piece" that glues onto the transom and then the tubes. That is what I need to glue back on the transom. As you can see in the photos, the part glued to the tubes is fine

Thanks everyone for any help. I'm hoping to get at this soon!
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Old 07 March 2014, 10:04   #10
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Following up, never mind, I'm just going to get it done right now and do all of it. Cheers.
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Old 12 May 2014, 16:58   #11
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Hey all. I figured I'd close this post out now that I got the transom issue resolved. I ended up getting both sides professionally re-glued. Attached are some photos of my newly restored transom.
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Old 12 May 2014, 17:03   #12
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Wow, what an incredible job!
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Old 12 May 2014, 17:35   #13
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Very tidy repair. It's as good as new.
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Old 12 May 2014, 21:51   #14
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I have a 1996 zodiac 115 HP RIB 427 inboard (see pics) parts hard to come by. I have been encouraged to convert it to outboard. Are transoms a universal size?Does a transom with four metal arms work?
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Old 13 May 2014, 01:09   #15
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Hi Eddie,

I definitely don't know the answer to that but I'm sure someone can shed some light.
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Old 23 May 2014, 11:23   #16
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I should have checked the boat before asking questions. In the meantime I found out that with all the arcing that happened in the motor it cannot be repaired so I have to put in a new engine. Since the zodiac is solid fiberglass from front to rear with only a square foot hole in rear where the engine fits it's impossible to put outboard on boat. Anyone got a cheap replacement engine for my 115 hp inboard Projet 427 Maxie? Boat is in good condition so I am willing to find an engine.
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Old 23 May 2014, 12:32   #17
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I doubt you'll find a cheap engine, but inboard jets are still made and available. Whether you can find one that fits your (French?) motor mounts is another story. Mercury makes an inboard jet right now but its only available as a 200hp. Its possible that you could keep the existing jet and just put in a new block. Adapting your jet to a new block and getting the motor mounts all lined up is probably going to take some work. Try some of your local riverboat dealers, they are pretty jet savy and might be able to suggest some alternative blocks for your jet.
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Old 23 May 2014, 12:35   #18
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Hey all. I figured I'd close this post out now that I got the transom issue resolved. I ended up getting both sides professionally re-glued.
Ninjah; Which shop did you take the boat to for repairs? Sal's in Alameda?


jky
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Old 25 May 2014, 15:53   #19
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Thanks Capnjack
The zodiac was built in British Columbia Canada and I live near Toronto. Hopefully the marine mechanic can come up with a solution for me to get boat on the water
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