'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 05 Nov 2011, 19:18

When you redid your transom, did you have to cut the welds on the corner caps? What did you do to re-secure them? I think my transom is ok, I've done some lifting and pushing on the motor and I don't get any movement, but I have always been curious how to take the transom cap off with those welded corner caps.

RazorBaits
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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 05 Nov 2011, 22:50

Got a little more done today. With two small kids, it's not easy to find chunks of time to get projects done.

I got the carpet off the back section. i had to use a chisel to remove all of the carpet backing. Now the only thing left is some glue residue. Are there any easy ways to get the remainder of the glue off? or do people just leave it and reglue over it?

I was able to remove the forward panel on the rear deck. It required that I remove the side rails that had the navigation light storage and the side controls attached. After that, I ground the rivets that held the forward panel on and it came off fairly easily.
Forward panel on rear deck
Forward panel on rear deck
Now I have access to the foam in the side compartments. I remember from someone else's project that the large batches of foam on the sides are segmented into three compartments. A little digging into the foam shows that most everything about the floor level stayed pretty dry. However, the foam underneath is pretty waterlogged.
Forward panel removed
Forward panel removed
Foam shows evidence of water.
Foam shows evidence of water.
One thing that I am happy about having available is my right angle drill. Without this, I am sure that many of the rivets I am removing would have been an extreme hassle. Right tool for the job....
Ryobi 18V right angle drill
Ryobi 18V right angle drill
Thanks for all the help so far!

Bhockins
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by Bhockins » 05 Nov 2011, 23:10

The corner caps on my 89 Tracker were held on from the sides with SS phillips head screws. No welds. They came off easily.

Yours is coming along. Good tip on the right angle drill.

jigngrub
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by jigngrub » 06 Nov 2011, 06:20

Most people use a wire cup brush (kinked) to remove the glue residue on metal surfaces, some use the ones for a drill and other use an angle grinder. The cup brush leaves a nice uniform roughened surface for the new glue to grab.
Rum, wenches, and song... just another day on my boat.

whistler
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by whistler » 07 Nov 2011, 10:56

jigngrub wrote:....................
The hull rivets aren't as bad as you might think. For as many as you may have to take out you can replace them with the heavy duty closed end blind rivets like in this video:
It's an easy one man installation, and if you're going to put down the Nautolex vinyl you should rivet your decking down anyway and will need the heavy duty rivet setting tool to do that too.
jigngrub, I always feel as if I have to justify myself before asking a "WHY" did you do this type question. I'm not second guessing you only asking. Now If I've got my rivet terminology correct your boat came with a one piece buck style rivet. You replaced it with a two piece style closed end blind pop rivet. My question is why did you select these rivets? I think I know why but maybe there's more to it than I know?

whistler
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by whistler » 07 Nov 2011, 10:59

jigngrub wrote:Most people use a wire cup brush (kinked) to remove the glue residue on metal surfaces, some use the ones for a drill and other use an angle grinder. The cup brush leaves a nice uniform roughened surface for the new glue to grab.

When using these cup brushes do you get pieces of wire flying loose from the cup occasionally hitting you?

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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 07 Nov 2011, 11:07

My Father-in-law told me that he has some solid "buck-style" rivets available that I could use. Having no experience with these, what is the procedure for installing them? I'm guessing it's some kind of hammer/anvil situation. Can they be installed using normal hand tools??

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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by jigngrub » 07 Nov 2011, 14:25

[/quote]jigngrub, I always feel as if I have to justify myself before asking a "WHY" did you do this type question. I'm not second guessing you only asking. Now If I've got my rivet terminology correct your boat came with a one piece buck style rivet. You replaced it with a two piece style closed end blind pop rivet. My question is why did you select these rivets? I think I know why but maybe there's more to it than I know?[/quote]

Actually, only the hull rivets are the solid rivets... and I haven't replaced any of those... yet. All of the interior framing is put together with blind rivets from the factory. If I replace any of the solid rivets whith blind rivets (which I may have to in the future if I get a leak) it will be because the blind rivets are an easy one man job.

The closed end 1/4" aluminum blind rivets with the steel mandrel aren't your wimpy little run of the mill gutter and down spout 1/8" open end aluminum rivets. A child or woman (unless she's a very stout woman) can't set one of these rivets, it takes strength and effort to set one of these rivets. The closed end blind rivets also provide a waterproof and vaporproof seal when set properly, open end rivets do not.
whistler wrote:
jigngrub wrote:Most people use a wire cup brush (kinked) to remove the glue residue on metal surfaces, some use the ones for a drill and other use an angle grinder. The cup brush leaves a nice uniform roughened surface for the new glue to grab.

When using these cup brushes do you get pieces of wire flying loose from the cup occasionally hitting you?
Yes you do!... and it is absolutely necessary to wear eye protection, and better yet a full face shield.
Rum, wenches, and song... just another day on my boat.

jigngrub
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by jigngrub » 07 Nov 2011, 14:41

kofkorn wrote:My Father-in-law told me that he has some solid "buck-style" rivets available that I could use. Having no experience with these, what is the procedure for installing them? I'm guessing it's some kind of hammer/anvil situation. Can they be installed using normal hand tools??
The solid rivets are cheaper than the blind rivets.

Installing the solid rivets requires 2 people, one on the outside of the boat to stick the rivet through the hole and the back it up with a bucking tool or piece of heavy steel like a sledge hammer head... and the second person inside of the boat hits the rivet until it flattens out to a flange. Not only is it a 2 man job, but it's a lot of beating and banging too.

Blind rivets are more expensive, but it's a quiet one man job.
Rum, wenches, and song... just another day on my boat.

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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 07 Nov 2011, 14:46

That makes sense. I suppose that this is the same method used when trying to re-buck any leaking rivets as well. Other than cost, are there any significant benefits to one vs the other??

Thanks for the info!

jigngrub
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by jigngrub » 07 Nov 2011, 19:22

Being able to do the job by myself when I need it done instead of having to wait for someone to find the time to come help me is a huge benefit to me.

... btw, you need to make sure that those rivets you'll be getting for free are the correct length and diameter. Those are the 2 most important things to know when installing rivets... what length and diameter do I need.

This site will help you with that.

https://www.rivetsonline.com/additional- ... grips.html

They're also the place that I order my blind rivets and tools from.

Rebucking rivets is only a temporary fix, the leaking rivet has already been weakened and will eventually leak again... and if you're going to take the time and effort to rebuck a rivet, it only takes a minute longer to go ahead and drill the rivet out and replace it.
Rum, wenches, and song... just another day on my boat.

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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 08 Nov 2011, 00:38

Well, after a day off, I managed to get a little more done today. When I finished up on Saturday, I figured that removing the livewell would be relatively easy. Just remove the rivets from within the bilge area and it should come right out along with the brace for the rear seat. And it would have been just that easy, except for one thing: the livewell drain. I don't know who the turkey was that thought it would be a good idea to encase the livewell drain hose in expanding foam, but it certainly makes removal nearly impossible.
Livewell drain encased in foam
Livewell drain encased in foam
Unfortunately, even after excavating the foam around the hose clamp and loosening it with a bunch of socket extensions, I still couldn't remove the livewell. The way the hose was attached, I needed to pivot the assembly out of the way. With the livewell attached to the front panel of the bilge and the seat support, this wasn't possible. So I needed to remove the plywood from under the seat support so I could drill out the rivets that were clamping the livewell to the bilge panel.
Livewell attached to seat support
Livewell attached to seat support
Once I did this, the livewell came out easily. I also removed the bilge panel and the seat support easily. One more item to the list, the livewell fill hose had a pretty severe kink in it. Not a whole lot of water getting through this:
Kink in Livewell hose
Kink in Livewell hose
Now I was able to see the first pieces of foam under the center of the deck. Tracker used foam panels in the middle to keep the two middle channels clear of the poured foam. These pieces are the ones that retained the most water. I pulled out one 12" x 18" piece of foam from the bottom of the boat under the livewell and weighed it. It came in at 7.4 lbs.
This piece weighed in at 7.4 lbs
This piece weighed in at 7.4 lbs
Now the surprising part: Most of the foam under the two side compartments was relatively clear of water. I found water in about the bottom 3/4" only. The rest of it was pretty dry.
Only water in the very bottom
Only water in the very bottom
Now removing the rest of the bilge floor is pretty easy. This gave me access to the rest of the foam under the center compartment. I estimate that I'll pull out between 80-100 lbs of waterlogged foam by the time I'm done. Not nearly as much as I expected, but now I know.
Bilge floor comes up easy.
Bilge floor comes up easy.
One more critter home, and some damage to the bilge vent hose. One more thing to replace. Not that the mice needed to do much to it anyway, if you looked at the vent hose wrong it fell apart.
Mouse home.
Mouse home.
Ok, so here is where I expect to get a bunch of opinons. With the discovery of how little water is in the foam, I am thinking of not pulling apart the two side compartments. My thought is that I can undercut the foam for each of the compartments and slide a new piece of foam under each.
Undercut the foam of each compartment
Undercut the foam of each compartment
This will retain most of the strength that the pour-in foam provides. I understand the argument about the quality of the older pour in foam, but from what I've been able to see so far, it is in reasonably good condition. I feel comfortable with the foam in these two compartments providing the flotation needed for the amount of time I would need to get help.

This pretty much takes care of the majority of the de-construction. I feel it went pretty well and even without finding 300 lbs of waterlogged foam, I feel that the issues I've uncovered between the water in the VRO oil, and the chewed components, I have saved myself at least as much effort as I put into it, never mind the cost of the motor if that had failed.

I am really interested in hearing any suggestions to keep any additional critters out during the winter months, as this appears to be the biggest issue this boat has seen.

So let me have it... :)

whistler
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by whistler » 09 Nov 2011, 09:39

jigngrub wrote: Actually, only the hull rivets are the solid rivets... and I haven't replaced any of those... yet. All of the interior framing is put together with blind rivets from the factory. If I replace any of the solid rivets whith blind rivets (which I may have to in the future if I get a leak) it will be because the blind rivets are an easy one man job.

Gotcha! I thought that was you in the Video. I think he was using the blind rivets in the Hull on that demo? I may be wrong but I might question whether the closed end blind rivet is up to the same standard as a bucked rivet? Easier and more convenient.....absolutely.

jigngrub
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by jigngrub » 11 Nov 2011, 08:11

whistler wrote:Gotcha! I thought that was you in the Video. I think he was using the blind rivets in the Hull on that demo? I may be wrong but I might question whether the closed end blind rivet is up to the same standard as a bucked rivet? Easier and more convenient.....absolutely.
If you'll read here:

https://www.roymech.co.uk/Useful_Tables/Rivets.html

You'll see that some blind rivets can be as strong or stronger than solid rivets.
Strength of blind rivets (compared to solid rivets )

The strength of blind rivets as given in suppliers tables is generally the ultimate strength at failure. In comparing the strength of blind rivets with conventional solid rivets (same material ) the solid rivets are generally stronger than blind rivets for the blind rivets where the blind rivet mandrel breaks off below the shear line. For the blind rivets where the mandrel breaks off above the shear line the blind rivets are generally stronger.
As I've stated before, the closed end blind rivets aren't your normal run of the mill wimpy pop rivet, and until you've used them you probably won't understand.
Rum, wenches, and song... just another day on my boat.

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kofkorn
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'89 Tracker Pro 17 Investigation (lots of pics to come)

Post by kofkorn » 11 Nov 2011, 17:27

I managed to get a few more hours of work in over the past few days. I got the rest of the water logged foam removed and cleaned up. Under cutting the side compartments wasn't really as difficult as I expected it to be. I used a long sawzall blade with a hand grip and just sliced through it all and removed it in chunks. I cleared out the drain channels, as they had filled with the poured in foam.
Foam Cleared out
Foam Cleared out
Cleans up nicely
Cleans up nicely
I spent some time removing some of the glue from the aluminum decking. I tried several different methods, and I found that the fastest way was using my angle grinder with a 50 grit fiber disc. I used the knotted steel cup as well, but it doesn't remove the glue as quickly. However the 50 grit disc gives a much more aggressive surface finish than the steel cup.
Before clearing the glue off...
Before clearing the glue off...
and after cleaning the glue off.
and after cleaning the glue off.
Here are what I used to get the glue off. When using the knotted wire brushes, be sure to use eye protection and gloves. I can't count the number of pieces that flew off the cup while using it.
Tools to clean the glue
Tools to clean the glue
Safety gear REQUIRED
Safety gear REQUIRED
Finally today, I took it out and floated it to see if there were any leaks in the hull. I was pleasantly surprised to only find two small leaks, one coming from the livewell drain hose, and the other coming from one of the guides on the bottom of the hull. It was leaking right at the point where the weld started. I wouldn't be surprised if it came from the factory that way. You can see them both in the picture here:
Both leaks are near each other.
Both leaks are near each other.
Are there any suggestions to seal the leak in the guide? I'm thinking I could clean it up and then mix up some epoxy and heat it to get it to flow into the hole. It's not really a bad leak, I maybe had about 1/2 oz of water in about 20 min of floating.

I've got a few things on order, next is to finish cleaning the carpet off all of the covers and other accessories. After that I need to make a few measurements to see how much vinyl I'm going to need. Hopefully this weekend I can get the new foam cut and placed. I'm also planning on replacing the main deck plywood. I've had it sitting off to the side for a few days now and it hasn't gotten significantly drier. As a matter of fact, this morning, when I checked, it had a coat of mold over the entire surface. I'm going to get a new piece and properly seal it so I can be sure of good wood. I can always use the other piece somewhere else later.

So any suggestions to help me seal that leak?? I'd prefer to stay away from re-welding if possible.

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