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Old 04-08-2010, 09:14 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
1980 31' Excella II
Madison , Wisconsin
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 19
Leaking Rivets

I knew I had some leaks and thought I had some leaking windows. Yesterday I was able to get into my 1980 31' Excella that I am restoring in the middle of a rain storm. I have most of the interior skins off and was able to see that most of the leaks were coming from rivets. I could actually see the water seeping in around the back of several rivets.

How do you seal up rivets??? What can I do at this point to make sure other rivets don't start leaking once I have everything put back together? I have way to much work in to this project to let rain wreck it.

Thanks for your Help

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Old 04-08-2010, 09:47 PM   #2
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1955 22' Flying Cloud
Boulder Creek , California
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 1,177
I think sikaflex is the stuff, but that's from memory, and after a couple of brews, so maybe not! I have a couple of leakers in my Safari too. I was told not to try to re-buck them, because they may be work-hardened and they may be partially cut through by the shifting panels. Better to drill and replace them, what with having it opened up already on the inside. Mine are around the front vent, and I had interior rivets popping there also. there were about four or five different kinds of rivets in that area, and some empty holes.

Rich the Viking

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Old 04-09-2010, 12:31 AM   #3
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1971 25' Tradewind
Menlo Park , California
Join Date: Jan 2010
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I'd give Loc-tite 290 a try.

This is if the rivets appear tight, but leak slightly. The Alcoa Aluminum Gutter Seal from Vintage Trailer Supply also appears to work quite well, and is easily applied.

The polyurethanes work, but since they are thick, they will leave a visible caulk line.

- Bart
Bart Smaalders
Menlo Park, CA
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:46 AM   #4
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1975 31' Sovereign
1980 31' Excella II
Sprung Leak , North Carolina
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You can use sealants, but they are going to be temporary at best. Replace the rivets if you have the chance, that way you can be sure that they are sealed up.

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Old 04-09-2010, 07:32 AM   #5
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1978 31' Sovereign
Madison , Mississippi
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 120
Blog Entries: 5
For what it's worth, I have the same problem. From what I've gathered on the forum replace with buck rivets if you have the equipment, or Olympics. The factory uses Sikaflex to seal the inside seams.
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:14 AM   #6
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1969 31' Sovereign
St. Louis , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 7
This should help...


Someone on this website mentioned the product "Captain Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure" as a great way to seal up hairline cracks and minute leaks such as rivets and such. Last fall I purchased two bottles to handle my leaking rivet problems and the stuff really lives up to it's name. Here's a link that discusses the product. I ordered a bottle from the internet, but was able to find my first bottle to try it at a marine store. And one bottle goes a long way. It's the color and consistency of watered-down Elmer's glue, but it really wicks into those rivet gaps. Let it dry for a few hours and hit it with another drop or two. After the rivet-head stops accepting more glue then it's sealed. With your interior skins off you should be able to see it penetrating through on the other side, and since it's clear and thin it's not noticeable from the outside. Good luck!

Capt. Tolley's Creeping Crack Cure

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