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WakeWorld Discussion Board » >> Boats, Accessories & Tow Vehicles Archive » Archive through March 18, 2009 » Gel coat cracking?????!!!!! Stress crack??? « Previous Next »
By Kevin Robinson (littletna) on Sunday, February 22, 2009 - 7:19 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Has anyone had any issues with their gelcoat cracking. My boat is an 08 with 70 hrs. Always kept indoors but not in a heated garage. I noticed the crack when I had it at my dealer for some warranty work. It was not a crack from being hit. I think it was from the cold weather. The crack starts from the rub rail and goes down about 6 inches or so. One on the port side and one on the stern. It is still under warranty so I know it will be taken care of but I'm concerned about the future, especially next winter.

I've owned a Sea Ray, Chaparral, and a rinker. All of these boats had no issues with the gelcoat at all. The current boat is a Skiers Choice product and I hoping this is not a problem that will not stay around.

Any info would be great.


By Jay (jay_g) on Sunday, February 22, 2009 - 7:25 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I bought my 07 in 08. Its currently at the dealer getting all the cracks fixed (had about 6)
By scooter (spherren) on Sunday, February 22, 2009 - 7:39 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I have an 06 and it had 12 cracks. It really makes you mad when you pay what you do for these boats and that happens. I had a ten year old bayliner and only had one crack. My dealer is fixing them under warranty and told me that it was from when it was built, that the screw holes were not drilled large enough causing the gell to crack out.
By Kevin Hoye (wakebrdr38) on Sunday, February 22, 2009 - 8:27 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
guess they dont make em like they used to? Ive got an 86 Nautique and its only had one. i have a feeling i dont have a warranty anymore
By pete c (saceone) on Sunday, February 22, 2009 - 10:01 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
It has nothing to do with the cold weather.
my boat (02 210) has been stored outside (shrinkwrapped) in the cold quebec winter and it's as good as new :-)

By Kevin Robinson (littletna) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 5:49 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
So far I guess these cracks are not limited to Moomba? For the price of an XLV I would expect better.
Thanks for the info everyone.

By insuranceman (insuranceman) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 6:09 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
i had a 05 supra ssv 22. had cracks around the front tower feet along with cracks under the seats in the playpen.

dealer had the repairs made under warranty.

By Michael Hunter (mhunter) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 6:42 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
My 89 Supra Sunsport has three stress cracks
since new. Cold weather has nothing to do with it
just gel coat flex cracks very small not even worth fixing. Older Supras are built like a tank.

By Alan Slabaugh (alans) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:02 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I have seen stress cracks on every major brand except for Nautique and MB. 90% of the time it is only cosmetic and really is nothing but and eyesore. Some boats get them, some don't.
By Jon Allen (jon_a) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:10 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Kevin, no big deal. Go have your dealer repair them under warranty if still covered.

For the record, I have seen gel cracks on all brands of boats.

By Brian (noles_fan) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:32 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I had numerous problems with cracks in the gel coat on my Supra. The dealer could not tell me what was causing them and why they kept coming back. To my knowledge, none of them were caused by cold weather. After they are fixed make sure you keep an eye on them. I believe mine were caused by an issue in my hull and since that was not fixed right the first time, I had nothing but problems over the time I owned my boat.
By Craig Cox (wakedoctor) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:36 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
All wakeboats are candidates for getting them. I know we like to think we baby these boats but in reality we don't baby the fiberglass they are made of. The pull of a rider/stress of speakers/boards on the tower over time can cause them. Lets also remember that most the time we operate them we are running close to if not over what is listed on the capacity plate. Fiberglass is strong but were it is weak it will separate.
By Luke the Drifter (tl_hereford) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 9:22 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
^^^ This guy is right on the money IMO.
By corey king (snowboardcorey) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 9:54 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I've seen stress cracks on all boat brands and to be honest the problem will likely get worse before better. The EPA is cracking down on the inputs allowed into gel coat and it seems like modern gel coats are a little more prone to cracking.

Cracks also stem from the fact that quite a few holes drilled through the boats are not properly countersunk, again this is all brands.

By Richard (nauty) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 10:23 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I agree with Craig. My Suspra is rated for somewhere around 1150 lbs of ballast and gear. I typically run twice that just in ballast alone. My boat is 5 years old and has a few spider cracks around the tower legs, but I think that is to be expected. Crossing back over your wake towing a rider with 2500 lbs of ballast can't be good for any boat. It's just one of the things you should expect when running that much ballast. Now if you are running stock ballast and you are getting cracks then you have an arguement.
By scooter (spherren) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 10:34 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
My cracks were around the windshield where each screw hole was drilled wrong. One on the front grab rail and some around the tower which I was not to concerned about. Hopefully after they are fixed they wont crack again.
By Alan Slabaugh (alans) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 11:18 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
Corey and Jon, have you really seen spider cracks in ALL BRANDS? Don't make generalized statements like that unless you can back it up, because I know some manufacturers that try really hard to prevent issues like this and are successful in doing so. I think that spider cracks in these tow boats is totally unacceptable, yes it is mostly cosmetic, but it does not take that much extra work to prevent it. They just know that they can get away with it as long as the boats have plenty of "bling", bells and whistles.

Sorry had to vent. Officially ended my career in the boating industry last Wednesday.

By corey king (snowboardcorey) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 11:54 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I work at one of the larger inboard dealers in MN and we do a lot of gel coat repair. I can honeslty say that we have seen issues with MC, Bu, Gekko, Supra and Moomba. I guess we havent seen them on CC but we don't service many CC boats either.

I agree a lot of companies are trying to minimize the problem but its not always carried out on the production line.

All of the cracks I have seen are cosmetic, I've never seen a structural issue.

By Alan Slabaugh (alans) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 12:18 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
At my old dealership we serviced about 130-150 wakeboats a year, 50% MB's, 10% CC, and 40% (MC, Bu, Gekko, Supra/Moomba, Sanger, Calabria, Tige, and Centurion.) Cracks in everything except CC and MB. I don't know what they do different, but it works.

I know of on MB that a tree fell on and it snapped the tower right off at the bolts and didn't even scratch the gel. I also know of a Nautique that went under a low bridge and it sheared the tower right off, again, no gel cracks.

By C.I.E.....Evan (guido) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 12:22 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I've had gel cracks on every boat that I've had. Multiple manufactures. Nothing structural, purely costmetic.

These boats take a lot of stress and flex. Eventually the gel's got to give.

By Grant Wilson (flordiawakex45) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 1:32 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Alot of the cracks are the Clear coats they use. Not the fiberglass.
By Michael Bouchard (mbouchard) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 1:43 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
no clear coat - it is gel coat (very different). Most major manufacturer's use the 22 mills thick gel coat since that is the optimum thickness for having the least amount of problems.

The cracks come from the fiberglass flexing (or something pushing on the gel-coat directly like a tower bolt). When the fiberglass flexes - the gel-coat is very hard and does not flex nearly as much - thus she can crack.

The stronger the boat fiberglass structure is, the less flex, the less stress cracks.

By Alan Slabaugh (alans) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 2:05 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Yea, no clear coats on gel coat. That does sound like a "good one" that a bad dealer would tell a customer though.
By Ken Land (bulletlines) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:32 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post

I will bet that both stress cracks start at holes for screws under your rub rail. Whenever a hole is drilled through gelcoat it should always be countersunk. I would ask for a picture or be present when the rub rail is removed, and make sure all holes are countersunk: If not, I would request that the warranty also cover countersinking of all screw holes.

Most of the time stress cracks are caused by not countersinking holes during manufacturing process, gelcoat applied to thick, stress at the feet of towers.

When getting stress cracks fixed at feet of towers be sure that the glass is reinforced also, or else stress cracks will more than likely appear again.

If your boat is out of warranty, just do the repair yourself. Non structual repairs are super simple to fix.. Just google gelcoat repair or find a Youtube video on it.

Ken Land
Bullet Lines

By Brent (bfnaci) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:40 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Bummer about the gel coat cracks.
I see a lot of people mentioning cracks in the Skiers Choice hulls.
Call me lucky I guess.
Mine has 500+ hours on it, Mobius LSV without a single crack and I weight the thing down with 2200 lbs and have some serious crashes through my own wake and others around me.

I wonder what the difference is?
I do tighten my tower threw hull bolts often.......hummmm

By Kevin Robinson (littletna) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 7:55 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Thanks for everyone's response.
The crack on the stern in not near the rub rail but the port side crack is. I'll try to pay attention to the screws when being repaired. I know everything will be fine with the warranty repair I just never had this problem before with the other boats I've owned so this issue put up a red flag for me.
So far Skiers Choice have been great with any issues I've had with my XLV. They took pictures throughout the construction process to the final product. They seem to want to stand behind their product. I hope this is the first year bugs getting out of the boat!!!:-)

By Bryan Locke (gwnkids) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 8:02 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
SC stands behind their product my 02 was a mess they fixed everything Props to Rick T. I know they are in the building Biz but they did an excellent job fixing this type of stuff

By Cal (phenom_1819) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 8:18 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I feel the need to say this because nobody else has yet...

I hope all of you that are saying you are having issues are taking it up with your dealer, or if not getting the response from your dealer, taking it to the manufacturer first to give them the opportunity to make your situation right before blasting them...

By Cal (phenom_1819) on Monday, February 23, 2009 - 8:19 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey, the post that was the reason for me posting that disappeared...! Still, needed to be said.

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