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Garn
06-26-2009, 11:48 AM
So what is the proper way to drill into gel coat. I would like to have a snap on cover made to cover my open bow. There is an uphosterly place where I live who custom makes them. But i want to be sure he knows what he is doing when it comes to drilling into the gel coat.

Thanks,

Garn

Razzman
06-26-2009, 12:21 PM
The proper way is to run the drill bit backwards until it bores through the gelcoat then switch to forward. I always prefer to tape any area i'm drilling as well to help prevent skating.

maxpower220
06-26-2009, 01:43 PM
Once you have the hole, sand the edges so the it is smooth, this will reduce the chance of "stress" cracks forming.

flex
06-26-2009, 02:59 PM
i installed a monster tower on my last boat and there instruction manuel has a step by step illustration of how to drill trough the fiberglass. here is a link, if the link doesn't work you can download at there site on the installation help page.

http://www.monstertower.com/Portals/27/MT1InstallationandOwnersManual.pdf

mmandley
06-26-2009, 04:44 PM
Props to any of you guys who install there own towers, or drill any holes threw the Gel coat on your boats.

I was about sick to my stomach with stress when i drilled the hole for my tower speakers from the cubby to the tower foot. I just dont know if i could do it in the Gel coat

kaneboats
06-27-2009, 09:08 AM
I remember the first time I drilled one. I had a runabout that was real cute but really basic. It had no speedo or tach. I drilled 3 1/2" holes on either side of the steering wheel to add in the gauges. I was scared to death. After that I was never worried again. Cutting the little holes for the tower install was no big deal even though it was a much more expensive boat.

Razzman
06-27-2009, 11:11 AM
I got you guys all beat, do this one! :p

brownski
06-27-2009, 11:50 AM
You trying to mount a spotlight on the bow?

Razzman
06-27-2009, 12:12 PM
Uh no. Flip up bow nav light.

brownski
06-27-2009, 12:16 PM
That is nice, looks bigger in the first pic, maybe the camera adds 5lbs.

mmandley
06-28-2009, 12:50 PM
Uh no. Flip up bow nav light.

SWEET Raz thats one of my winter add on i want to get. Overton has them for a bill. Did you have to make the hole bigger? I was hopping i wouldn't have to drill it would be a direct replacement.

Razzman
06-28-2009, 01:39 PM
Oh you have to CUT, not just drill. You enlarge the stock hole five times over. But believe me when i say it is easy to do but that first cut is brutal. After that it's all good! If anyone decides to do this let me know and i'll give 'em procedures. We should have a section just for procedures.

zabooda
06-28-2009, 11:57 PM
Nice mod Razz. I've always wanted to add the hide-away bow light since I got the message from my family jewels once while getting out of the boat. Clean look on your boat too.

Sled491
06-29-2009, 11:07 AM
Yeah, that was a good one, I'll have to try to remember to put it back on the list this winter.

mmandley
06-29-2009, 11:53 AM
Oh you have to CUT, not just drill. You enlarge the stock hole five times over. But believe me when i say it is easy to do but that first cut is brutal. After that it's all good! If anyone decides to do this let me know and i'll give 'em procedures. We should have a section just for procedures.

Yea ill be getting with you this winter on it Razz thats sweeter looking then i expected. I have drilled my first hole in the Gell coat but i would like plenty of pointers before i saw an opening in it LOL.

Zabooda i feel your pain man, i slipped getting out of the nose and was doing one of those gymnast impressions on the balance beam.

kaneboats
07-01-2009, 11:54 AM
There's a reason men don't compete in balance beam (maybe 2 of them).

mcdye
07-01-2009, 03:08 PM
and i'll give 'em procedures. We should have a section just for procedures.

I second that........oh Ed.

Sled491
07-05-2009, 08:32 PM
My quess is that this kind of thing should make its way to Moomba modifications

cab13367
10-19-2009, 02:03 AM
The proper way is to run the drill bit backwards until it bores through the gelcoat then switch to forward. I always prefer to tape any area i'm drilling as well to help prevent skating.

I drill the hole in reverse all the way through. Doesn't take long anyway. And be sure to use sharp (new) bit.

Razzman
10-19-2009, 11:13 AM
I use a Forstner bit when drilling into the hull. It will make the cleanest hole you'll ever see without risk of damage as for one it can't skip. Run backwards until through the gel then forwards so it can cut correctly.

Sled491
10-19-2009, 12:55 PM
I use a Forstner bit when drilling into the hull. It will make the cleanest hole you'll ever see without risk of damage as for one it can't skip. Run backwards until through the gel then forwards so it can cut correctly.

Very familiar with this type of bit, but what did you install that you needed that big of a hole?

Razzman
10-19-2009, 01:04 PM
You can get them in any size, but the last jobs i used them on were the transom remote install and the flip-up bow light. I used the biggest i had to drill multiple holes in the cutout area to allow the jigsaw to move freely at the corners for the flip-up. For the Pioneer transom remote i used a 2" forstner as the remote has a 1 7/8 diameter rear protrusion that sets into the hole then sealed it all around, no leaks and took no time at all.

Sled491
10-19-2009, 01:06 PM
Got it, still considering the flip up bow light myself. Just need time :(

Razzman
10-19-2009, 01:15 PM
I've also used them to drill top decks for waterproof strain relief fittings to allow speaker and power wires to enter he hull from a tower on boats were you can't pass through the tower legs into the deck.

Razzman
10-19-2009, 01:20 PM
Hey Sled i just found a killer deal on Aqua Signal Stainless Hideaway (the same as mine) for $84! That's real good as i paid around $120 when i did it!

http://store.mysticmarinediscounts.com/asl-246007.html

sandm
10-19-2009, 01:56 PM
good price. hope it lasts the winter.
that will be on the agenda for spring....

Sled491
10-19-2009, 02:37 PM
I'm gonna order one up this week. Even if I don't get to it till later, at least it will be there when I'm ready. thanks Razz.

cab13367
10-19-2009, 03:33 PM
I may install a heater this winter which would entail drilling 2-1/2" or 3" diameter holes for the heater outlets. What type drill bit do you recommend for this job?

Sled491
10-19-2009, 03:50 PM
Cab, you sure about those hole sizes? I have heaters and they look a lot bigger than 2 1/2 - 3 inch. I would think closer to 4". You would probably need a hole type saw . or a pattern and a dremel tool with cutting tip.

cab13367
10-19-2009, 04:04 PM
No, I'm not sure of the size. That was just a guess. I was thinking hole saw but want to solicit opinions for alternatives. Thanks.

sandm
10-19-2009, 04:20 PM
hate spending the cash for a hole saw that big that you may only use once, but that is the route I'd go. dremel works good, but cuts will be more precise with a holesaw.

I used to be thankful that harbor freight came to town for those odd tools you only use once, but for cutting or working around the boat, I think I'd spend the extra scratch for a good quality bit..

Sled491
10-19-2009, 04:24 PM
Well the nice thing about the heater tubes is that they have a nice big flang so when installed they will cover any cutting blemishes.

Razzman
10-19-2009, 04:30 PM
In your case Al i'd agree on holesaw. I know they are made in specific single sizes which you may have to do due to size of the hole. I'd also chamfer all edges to prevent spider cracks after. I would suggest a Rotozip or similar but in thick glass those things get red hot!