A decision has been made and acted upon regarding the rotten transom. The top fibreglass lip was barbarically hacked off using a thin disc in a 4 inch grinder. What remained of the old plywood core was dug out very easily using a length of steel bar, and a piece of fresh plywood (exterior grade) was cut and shaped to slot in.


Crappy rotten old ply?


Then dig it out with a long (metal) stick.

It seemed like the original ply was merely held in place with optimism and the foam that provided the dinghys side compartment buoyancy.  As I couldn’t think of a cheaper way of gluing the thing in place, I did the same. Bought some budget expanding foam from screwfix for £7 and blasted it liberally into the bottom of the hollow transom. Then squished the new ply section down into it and G clamped the whole thing up to avoid it blowing up like a big green balloon under the pressure of expanding gunge.


Roughly shaped up using a jigsaw and flap disc.


Clamped in a sandwich of expanding sticky gunge.

This did look a right old mess at this stage as it squirted out everywhere and is incredibly filthy, sticky stuff. I tarped it over to allow it to cure for a couple of days then trimmed off the excess with a bread knife. Much tidier now.


New ply piece glued, trimmed and tidy.

The ply was still exposed along the top edge though which would allow water ingress again. I’m looking for a repair that’ll last a few years here so I’m going to have to bite the bullet and glass over the top before painting it. A bit of a pain as it’s costing more money to do this and the whole point was for it to be a budget build. I do however have some polyester resin and matting left in the shed so I’m going to use it up. Call that cheating if you like.


Fibreglass capping finished.

After 48 hours of curing time, the primer went on during a dry morning.


Ta da! Strong, solid transom for mounting my mirror dinghy rudder etc. Result.

Not bad cosmetically and it’s now solid as a rock. Rudder and mainsheet traveller next. Then screw on the rubbing strakes and launch. Simple  really, should easily be done in time for a bit of new years day pottering.