Stress cracks at window fames

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catalacmarc
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Joined: Tue Aug 16, 2016 12:58 am

Stress cracks at window fames

Post by catalacmarc »

Just replaced the cabin windows on my 1991 36. Looking at the frames I suspect it was the third or fourth set of windows, at least one if not two previous were screwed into the frame. The set I removed was held on by silicone but were almost the exact size of the opening. There are numerous gel coat stress cracks radiating out from the windows and on each side there was a major crack through the fiberglass from a bottom corner between the two upper windows radiating four inches or more from the edge of the frame. In one case it lined up exactly with a joint in the interior teak trim. Two of the windows were popping out of the frame. And the silicone had been run in the frame and on over the teak trim, gluing the teak trim to the window? I suspect that the windows were either too large or the screwed windows stressed the fiberglass prior to the installation of the siliconed windows. It is also possible that the teak glued to the windows exerted force against the window frame when the weather was too hot. Anyone ever see anything like this on their boats?
I replaced the windows with smaller acrylic ones held in by GE SCS2000 silicone to give room for expansion. I used foam rubber window seal to keep the silicone off the teak trim.

A related question, anyone ever take down the interior liner on the cabin sides, it would make sense to inspect the interior liner on the inside of cabin side is it glued on? Likely should inspect the chain plates as well.
Thanks, Marc

James Power
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Re: Stress cracks at window fames

Post by James Power »

Marc,
Can you post some pictures of the window frame stress cracks.
The interior cabin sides were covered with melded fabric or foam backed vinyl, both glued in place with contact spray adhesive. The fabric can be peeled back and reglued with care. The vinyl is not so easy as some of the foam will tear away from the layer of vinyl when removed, creating lumps and an uneven surface when reglued.

Hope this helps
James

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