17 April, 2011

TI Bulkhead

Keith (Chekika) asked me how I installed a watertight bulkhead in my TI.

I made it out of 3" foam block available at my local kayak store. It is mini cell foam used to install bulkheads, make thigh pads, seats, etc. in kayaks. The location I picked is just aft of the mast, where the cockpit well starts. The Mirage well acts as a support for the back of the center piece.

The bulkhead is made from three sections. For each section I made a cardboard template. The center piece fits exactly between the keel groves. I had to slightly notch the middle for the Mirage well. First you dry fit the piece. Using a belt sander I shape the foam to a final tight fit.

The glue that I use is GOOP Plumbing Cement available at Home Depot. I used about three tubes. First I mark the dry position of the bulkhead inside the boat. Then I remove the foam and put ample amount of GOOP in the marked area and sides of the foam. This is messy. Don't worry, the Goop  can be pealed off once dry. Insert the foam and let it dry.

After the bulkhead piece is in, go back into the boat and work extra GOOP around the edges filling any gaps. GOOP smells like airplane cement. Use plenty of ventilation. Repeat several times until you get a nice fillet of glue all the way around. Reach behind the bulkhead and fill as much as you can before inserting the next foam piece.

The sides are made the same way. The back of the top needs to be profiled. Glue the three sections together.

Once you have all three parts in and glued from the front, the hard part is to reach through the round hatch and apply glue to the back. Long hands needed. This is a Hudini trick.

After I was satisfied that the bulkhead was watertight, I filled the front with water. Make sure you support the boat. You can spray with a hose also.

1 comment:

  1. Why? what you need a water tight bulk head for? you in tend to leave the water in as ballast or whats the reason for doing this?


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