How To Repair a Hobie Cat 16 Hull

How To Repair a Hull

A couple of weeks ago we got an email from our friend Matt down in Australia. While out his Hobie 16, he split the seam at the anchor bar and dropped the mast. He also tore away some of the deck.

When we saw the pictures, we saw how serious the damage was. We hadn’t encountered this problem before. When we bought our first ’79 Hobie, its biggest problem were soft spots on the Hull that we had to re-enforce. So we asked Matt if we could share his story on our blog in hopes that we could get some comments from you. If you have any suggestions or tips for Matt please leave a comment below or send us an email at

Matt emailed his plan of action for repairing his Hobie 16.

Matt’s Story and Plan for Fixing a Hobie 16 Split Seam and Deck

As the deck is already damaged, I plan to cut away the deck in an oval shape just large
enough to allow easy access to the inside of the hull/seam (get a grinder and hand/arm

Hobie Tramp Repair

To repair the seam, I was thinking about clamping the split seams together (just enough to
enable epoxy to squeeze out – ensuring that the epoxy is able to set between the deck and
hull). I will drill some holes through the deck and inject epoxy into the holes, allowing it to
run into the seam. (A)

To reinforce the structure I will mix epoxy and microballoons or similar resin thickener to form a paste (peanut butter consistency) and bead a smooth curve on the inside of the hull at the seam, this should give me a good area to work with. (B)

To further reinforce the hull and deck, I will sand (grind) back some of the glass inside the hull (to enable a good bond) and lay up a course of fibreglass mat. To repair the deck, I will cut back the damaged area(s) until good, undamaged fiberglass is exposed.

I’ll make the Backing Laminate. I will cut two pieces of 8 ounce fiberglass cloth, three inches larger than the hole(s). Using Vinylester resin I will pour the resin over the 1st cloth on the wax paper, and then repeat with the second piece. Once cured, I shall peel the laminate off the wax paper, and cut so that it will have 1 inch overlap over the hole(s).

The backing laminate will be inserted into the hull and glued to the foam and inside of the hull using a syringe filled with catalysed resin.

Once cured, I will glass in three sheets of mat as per fiber glassing techniques.

What do you think? Have any comments and/or suggestions for Matt? We love to hear your feedback. Leave us a comment or email us at

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