Interior leak on 1969 Columbia MK11

Looking for any suggestions on locating leak inside the cabin. I am new to this, so explain slowly. We went out sailing noticed floor filling up with water. I am not sure where to start… It is only inside the cabin under the wood it is not coming from the bolts. However, I do see gurgling from the bathroom direction.

This isn’t something that can necessarily be answered here. Too many variables. I’m more of a small boat one-design sailor. That said, your head probably has a Y valve that can direct waste to either a holding tank or directly out through a through-hull into the open water. This valve should always be switched to directing waste into the holding tank (unless you are offshore) and the through-hull closed. Could that valve be open allowing seawater to back in?

I am sorry for posting this… I need help with information from experienced sails men… I am a newbie, however, I am hooked. Even when I seen the floor fill up with water. I still wanted to sail. I didn’t want to go in. You see I am in San Diego, so once I got out of the harbor into open ocean. I have never had so much fun. Furthermore, sinking could become a big problem. So I came to the experts. I will check this valve because the other compartments were clean and the bubbling seems to be coming from the corner facing the toilet area. I will check into where it is located and how to check… If you have any advise throw it my way.Thank you Michelle

Hi Martin
I am a sailor with 70 years of sailing experience–Started when I was 14 and am currently scheduled to be 84 in Oct. My last boat was a 38 ft Offshore Cheoy Lee. I sailed in Hong Kong waters for a year then shipped it back Seattle.
In a race in Hong Kong I was on a Yamaha 33 and we had water over the floor boards after launching off a wave with a big bang. Bailed like the dickens for 4 hours, Checked the head to see if it was overflowing - and it was OK, and finished the race. (did not win) At the dock pumped the boat dry and took out all the floor boards so I could see the surface of the hull. Checked all sea cocks. None had leaks. But I found a crack in what I thought was the inner liner of the boat and informed the Skipper. The Skipper informed me it had no liner. So we had cracked the hull. Your head may be overflowing on the side of the boat it is mounted on when you are on a Beat. (head on port side on Starboard tack and head on Starboard on a Port tack sometimes will overflow the head.) If it is not any seacocks, not the hole where your speed log is set, not the engine cooling water supply while the motor is running, not the shaft log while sailing-----sometimes the shaft log will leak if your prop is free wheeling while you are sailing, Not the head joint between the hull and the base of the head and not the head overflowing, and if you have a hull liner you may have to haul the boat and after the hull dries put a few buckets of water with bright colored die, into the cavity between the hull and the liner. You may have to make a hole here and there to get the colored water in all the various cavities that may otherwise prevent the water from getting to all the places a leak might exist. After you haul the boat wait until the hull is dry and try to use a die that has contrast to your bottom paint.
By the time you do all this I believe you will find the leak.

One more thing to check. It appears your problem only shows up when you are sailing.
I do not know if the Columbia model you have has a bolt on Keel. If it does you may be getting leaking around the bolts when the keel is getting side pressure on a beat.

i had a 1973 26 mk II and found if the drains from the sinks were not shut off that would cause water ingress when heeled perhaps that or the head backflowing

I have a Columbia 10.7 and have no leaks below the waterline. I doubt the bolt is leaking if it was tightened properly. I usually add a bit of life caulk to it before putting it in each spring. The increase of pressure while sailing or heeling is not sufficient to cause this bolt to create a leak that does not occur when simply sitting in the water. The bolt is at least 3 feet under water. So, the hydraulic pressure on the bolt is pretty significant. It would be leaking all the time.

It is possible if the leak happens while sailing and heeled over one of your through-hulls is allowing water to enter. First step is to check if it happens on one tack or both. If it’s a through-hull it will happen probably when heeled on one side but not both. Check to make sure all the through-hulls are tight. If they wiggle in any way, they could let water in when the boat is rocking and rolling, but it’s more likely that the leak is a factor of the heel and the location of the through-hull and outlet.

Hi Michelle
I also am new .
I would like to know if you found the issue ?Where did you find water coming in? What do you use as bilge pump(s)?
what do you use for batteries ?
thank you