The Rot Doctor


Subject: 34' ex fishing trawler
Date: Fri, 23 Mar 2001

Dear Doctor Rot
Soon I will be taking possession of above mentioned vessel, I got it for the proverbial song so I will restore it . I might add that I have looked at a lot of fish boats for sale over the past 18 months and this one is in fine shape. More to the point Dr., I would like some recommendations as to how one goes about restoring it with your products. I read the article about the sport fisherman from Calif. The photo of the finished hull looks more like a glass boat than one of wood. First question: Why is it necessary to recaulk using cotton and then a compound, cannot one omit the cotton and just use a flexible caulking compound?

The cotton serves as an interior "buffer" for the planks to swell against, and it serves as a backer for the flexible caulking, such as 3M™ 4200 Polyurethane. We strongly suggest that you do not omit the cotton. It's a tricky process to caulk with cotton, and you should get a book that gives you all the details or hire a professional to do that part of the job for you.

Question 2: after it is faired smooth and finish coated, will the lines of her planking not show up eventually and break the paint coating?

Eventually that may well happen, depending on the wood, the environmental extremes, the type of filler, the type of paint, the color of the paint, etc. Keeping it bright and pretty is a touch-up process one usually has to go through every several years. Not a bad job if you keep after it and don't let it get too bad.

Question 3: Should one haul the boat and let it dry out prior to using your products.

It all depends on what you are going to do. Normally, for surface treatment just hauling and starting work is sufficient. The wood will dry sufficiently on the surface to allow the application of our products, and the finish coatings. The only time a complete dry-out is required is when there is deteriorated wood to be treated, or when you are doing something such as splining seams, repairing interior frames, and the like.

Question 4: Should you then do the interior side of the planking as well?

Entirely optional. CPES will help protect wood from deterioration, but if the wood looks sound and good then the CPES may not be necessary.

That's it for a start, can you estimate the cost of the above vessel. She is a small 34 foot double ender with a beam of just 9' 6".

To coat the entire exterior of the hull would require about one 2-gallon unit of the CPES, which would be $149.45 USD. Other items, such as the 3M™ 4200 or the Epoxy Filler are volume-dependent, and you will have to inspect and estimate how much of that you will require.

Thanks in advance for any information.
Best regards
Robert H.


Good luck with the boat, and please come back if you have additional questions or if we can be of further help.


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