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Author Topic:   220 DAUNTLESS: Damage to Transom
Steve M posted 04-03-2005 11:24 AM ET (US)   Profile for Steve M   Send Email to Steve M  
This is my first time starting a thread, so bear with me. This one probably needs some background. I have a 2003 220 Dauntless with a 2003 225 Mercury Four-Stroke, sometimes referred to as a Yamamerc, due to it's origins. Between December 1st and the end of January I received two recall notices from Mercury. One was related to the throttle mechanism and one was related to the cowling. On top of that I was in need of 100hr type service, so I arranged with the local Mercury dealer to drop the boat off. Note that this particular location is not a Boston Whaler dealer (but it was at one point), and they are pretty big outfit, and some of their locations are Boston Whaler Dealers. The nearest BW dealer is over 3 hours away from me. So here is where it gets interesting....
After dropping off on a Sunday, it takes about a week to get the cowling, so on Friday I am told my boat will be ready that afternoon. When I arrive the service manager tells me that my boat has been in an accident. My hands now briefly cover my face while he continues. While it was being backed into the test tank the part of the fork lift which attaches to the trailer became unattached, and my boat (trailer attached) rolled back into the test tank. We go back into the shop area and take a look. The outboard, which was tilted up at the time has sustained some fair amount of damage: parts of the lower unit are broken off, the SS propeller is bent up, the hydraulic trim system has burst. But as far as I can tell, the boat looks unharmed. Having seen that the boat itself is unharmed, I am almost giddy, knowing that this is a "Premier" Mercury dealer and they will fix the motor right. Well they accomplish some amazing work in a short timeframe, and a week later my boat is ready to be picked up with many new parts on the motor. No charge for anything, including the 100 hr service work. I take it for a test run, and the motor is for the most part is perfect. The anal side of me winds up touching up the paint on the some of the exterior bolts that were removed to replace the trim system, lower unit, etc. The tilt lock bar doesn’t pivot quite right, and I determine that it is missing a bushing. But all and all the motor is fine. So here is where I get to the point of this thread and where I can use some help/advice from the forum.

On the top of the transom, where the motor is mounted, there is a black vinyl / plastic cover that is screwed into the transom, and serves as a kind of cap covering the joint where the various pieces come together. I noticed on mine that it is notched on either side of where the motor comes in contact with the hull. So when you crouch outside the boat with the motor tilted up, and look up towards where the top of the transom is you see these two cut outs in the vinyl/plastic piece. What concerns me is that one can see an exposed fiberglass joint where it looks like two pieces of the transom come together. After something like this happens you become very detail oriented when your looking it over, so it probably was always like this but I never noticed it. I am trying to determine if all of the boats (i.e. 220 dauntless with the 225 Merc EFI fourstroke) are like this, or is there something different about mine. Also, I think at the very least that I should seal this with silicon to prevent water intrusion into the Transom. What does the forum think? I will try and post a picture to the web this morning.

Thanks in advance for your help. Steve

Steve M posted 04-03-2005 02:25 PM ET (US)     Profile for Steve M  Send Email to Steve M     
Here are some pictures. Note when you click on a thumbnail the detail pictures are huge (i.e. ~900K) so do so with care if you don't have broadband.

merc125 posted 04-03-2005 02:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for merc125  Send Email to merc125     
That doesn't look good, there shouldn't be any splintered edges on a whaler transom.
I'd have it surveyed ,if only for peace of mind. MartyD
jimh posted 04-03-2005 03:43 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Sorry, but I don't see any pictures on the linked page.
kglinz posted 04-03-2005 04:50 PM ET (US)     Profile for kglinz  Send Email to kglinz     
I've got the same strip on my boat. When the dealer installed the engines he removed the strip and notched it to allow the motors to seat flush against the transom. It's not sealed to the transom and is just trim strip. Unless they notched it, without removing it, and damaged the transom fibreglass it's OK.
kglinz posted 04-03-2005 05:00 PM ET (US)     Profile for kglinz  Send Email to kglinz     
I finally got the pictures to load. It's kind of chewed up. If you can get to it, you should seal it. I would think epoxy would be the way to go. If you can't get to it, I would have the dealer pull the motor and remove the strip for inspection and sealing.
Steve M posted 04-04-2005 08:05 AM ET (US)     Profile for Steve M  Send Email to Steve M     
For those who are having trouble with the webpage, my apologies. Here's my attempt at a single picture. This is the view when you stand behind the boat, crouch down behind/underneath the motor while it is tilted, and look to up and to the port (i.e. the left). The starboard side is similar. If this works I can post more picture links.

Thanks, for the feedback so far.

jimh posted 04-04-2005 08:52 AM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
In the image linked above, what is seen under the black molded strip on the transom does not look like the original finish. From my understanding of Boston Whaler hull construction, that area should either have been laminated together or sealed with a strong adhesive. (I believe the adhesive is black in color.)

It looks to me like it needs to be sealed.

prj posted 04-04-2005 11:23 AM ET (US)     Profile for prj  Send Email to prj     
Consider the impact load on the transom
when the outboard connected with the tank.

That sudden impact load would have been radically different
than even the quickest hole shot you're capable of.

You might consider removing the vinyl trim
and surveying the entire transom lip for damage
that may have occurred.

Perhaps have a heavyweight stand and bounce
on the lower unit while you closely eye that transom detail
for movement.
This may clarify if that potential damage is recent or longstanding.

lloyd13 posted 04-04-2005 12:11 PM ET (US)     Profile for lloyd13  Send Email to lloyd13     
There is something amiss there. I would be speachless if I bought a Boston Whaler that had glass fibers emanating from any orifice. Something is wrong. Everything should come off and a good inspection and correction made.
kglinz posted 04-04-2005 01:44 PM ET (US)     Profile for kglinz  Send Email to kglinz     
The area in question is not a well finshed area. Thats the reason the cap is installed. It looks like the notch was cut in the cap strip without removing the cap and they got into the transom. See if you can remove one side of the cap without removing the engine to look at the transom and see how the rest of the joint looks. See if the dealer that damaged the motor will help you check it out.
Lars Simonsen posted 04-04-2005 09:03 PM ET (US)     Profile for Lars Simonsen  Send Email to Lars Simonsen     
I have a 1998 Dauntless 18 and the transom has a similar "unfinished" edge under the trim piece. However, it is sealed with some sort of sealant. I don't see any "frayed" fiberglass there (on my boat). I would remove the black trim and inspect the top edge of the transom; if there is separation of the fiberglass from the transom, it would seem to be a problem. I can't tell from your photos whether this unfinished edge on your boat is damaged or undamaged. Take the trim off and post some more photos.
TRAFFICLAWYER posted 04-05-2005 05:07 PM ET (US)     Profile for TRAFFICLAWYER    
My motors are mounted on the plastic strip without being notched, this caused the motors to be not exactly flush with the transom by about 1/4". This has no effect, although I can tell you that trying to screw into the end of the transom will require a drill hole first as the material is extremely dense, must be whalerboard or something other than plywod. Given the denisity and the fact that the trim is only cosmetic, shouldn't effect anything. Like Kglinz said.
jimh posted 04-06-2005 10:48 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Many Boston Whaler boats are build with a Unibond hull AND a third molded cap. The hull and liner are molded together and any seam between them should be completely sealed and consist of cured resin. The joint between the Unibond hull and a deck cap is made with adhesives. Usually the adhesives are black. This is what I would expect to be under the plastic trim piece on the transom if there was a joint there. If the ragged edge being seen is part of damage to the Unibond hull, it should be repaired with resin or other appropriate material (possibly epoxy).

I am not familiar with the 220 DAUNTLESS hull structure to say for sure what this seam is, either Unibond or adhesive.

AllanR posted 04-07-2005 12:57 PM ET (US)     Profile for AllanR  Send Email to AllanR     
You might want to contact Boston Whaler send them the photos and ask for their opinion. If this hit was as strong as it sounds with the serious damage to the motor, all of that force was transferred to the transom.

You definitely should get a survey of the boat as well.

They may have to remove the engine to get a good view of everything. For a dealer who is equipped, that should not be a major problem. If they are willing to accept responsibility, then they should do it anyway.

In a year or two, when you might develop cracks in the transom, the dealer may say, too bad, that was something else and not us.

It may be just cosmetic, but if I were you, I would want to be sure.

jerseyboy posted 04-07-2005 05:30 PM ET (US)     Profile for jerseyboy  Send Email to jerseyboy     
Have the dealer, that potentially damaged your boat, remove the engine.

Contact Boston Whaler for advice, then begin your investigation.

Now is your chance to hold the dealer accountable if any damage occured.

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