Water is coming into the hard top of my 47' Commander (non-flybridge model), and dripping down near the top of my windshield. There are a few spots on the roof where the gelcoat is missing (like quarter size holes), and I can see the fiberglass (I believe this is what I'm seeing). I was thinking I could re-seal the entire hard top, but I am not sure how to go about this (hopefully in not too difficult of a way). 

Any thoughts or suggestions would be great.


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Wiper seals?

No - It's definitely coming from the top somehow. It could be from where the antennas or spotlight are mounted, but those areas don't look bad. 

Mike Watson said:

Wiper seals?

I would re-bed any penetrations first and also look at the drip channel that finishes the roof joint.

Second to Tim’s comment, Jacob. You’d be amazed where water can get in.

Thanks for the help - So you wouldn't be worried that the gelcoat is missing in places and I can see the fiberglass underneath?

Gelcoat would be on my list but with low priority, it shouldn't be allowing the leak.

Missing gelcoat is not the source of the leak. Think of this way...the resin itself is the waterproof material, if you didn’t paint or gel your boat would it sink? Of course not.

On my boat when I had this issue it was from antennas and dinghy tie downs that the previous owner put there with no caulk or other bedding. You can basically check off the stuff the factory mounted up there, like the spotlight, extremely well bedded on its own teak block. It’s the crap people add later (poorly) that becomes the problem. Radar, gps antennas, non-factory lighting, all likely sources.

Not that you shouldn’t fix it, but from 1970+ the hardtop was solid fiberglass with no coring, it won’t hurt anything. If your boat is 1969 or older the hardtop is plywood cored, and you need to fix the leak immediately.

Corrections on the last paragraph on the previous post. The 1970+ should be 1969+.
The 1966 thru 1968 models with the short top was completely solid fiberglass. However, the optional extended top on the 1968 model was wood.
Jim Rivas

I defer to Jim, his knowledge of these boats is far better than mine.

As Chris mentioned before, the leak must be coming from one of the “add-ons” that were performed after the boat left the factory.

Thanks! This is very helpful - I really appreciate it.  I'll look into rebedding the aftermarket accessories as soon as the shrink wrap comes off.  

Thanks again

I like butyl tape for bedding deck hardware. Search for it on the internet. Have to get under the hardware. Could also make cork/rubber gaskets from sheet gasket material.

Can you experiment with a hose to see what fittings leak? Could consider some duct tape to seal off deck penetrations as part of the experiment.

John Brock

71 410 Commander

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