Meridian Yachts Swim Platform Job With Non-Skid Pattern

He couldn't see any physical damage to the swim platform. But he felt the problem when he stepped on it. The port side of the swim platform with the non-skid surface felt like an oil can, and when he stepped on it, the platform descended about a half-inch. When he stepped off, it popped back up. Being on a boat can be dangerous. One misstep and you can lose your footing and wind up in the water, or worse, banging your head on the boat.

So the owner got in touch with me to fix this problem. And I had to figure out what was happening, what went wrong, and how the non-skid surface would look after all of the work was done.

When I started to inspect the swim platform, I noticed that it looked like someone else tried to fix it, without success. So I took on the job and will now show you the step-by-step repair process of this swim platform.

Step by Step Swim Platform Repair Procedure

This is the area where the fiberglass was flexing. Here, I outlined the area where the non-skid pattern is located. I did this to make sure I got it into the right spot, after the repair.

Here, I made a test hole to see extactly what was happening. You can see that the fiberglass wasn't even attached to the plywood, and the foam had separated from the fiberglass.

Next, I cut the whole section open, and you can see that a small section of the fiberglass was stuck to the plywood, while the rest of it wasn't. The foam just gave way from the flexing of the fiberglass.

You can see the space under the foam, and how the foam separated from the fiberglass base, and was stuck to the upper fiberglass non-skid surface.

Even the plywood split. About a quarter-inch of plywood was stuck to the fiberglass base.

Here, I'm grinding away the wood. I didn't want to hammer and chisel it out of fear of worsening the problem.

Slowly grinding the wood away, as you can see in this photo -- working out really well and not spreading the damage.

All cleaned up and prepping for fiberglass.

Surrounding surface area protected from resin.

Two layers of fiberglass applied to stiffen the fiberglass base.

Fiberglass is saturated with resin.

Close up of fiberglass.

Surface area is prepped, and outer edge filled with a fiberglass paste compound.

Plywood cut, shaped, fitted, and glued in place.

Surface prepped for fiberglass.

Three layers of high-strength fiberglass are applied to the surface.

The area is ground down and leveled, getting it ready for gel-coat. This is the best time to test before the non-skid goes on. At this point, I stood on the section and it did not move -- I even jumped on it, and it was solid.

Gel-Coat is sprayed onto the surface.

The repair area is outlined with tape, to lay down the non-skid surface.

Non-skid surface done.

Area cleaned up.

Close up of non-skid.

Pattern came out great. The color match is so good, it looks like a factory finish, and matches the rest of the boat.