From engines to cleats the problems that create the most headaches for owners are those associated with backing up hardware. There’s no reason to buy a new boat using plywood in the stringers or floor, as backups for cleats, in handrails, around hatches and, most of all, in the transom. In my many years of marine experience, I’ve learned that doing so will have you removing what little hair you may have left.
Plywood will get wet and rot. You will never be able to sink another new screw into it. Your transom will need to be replaced eventually and so will your stringers, toe rails, etc., etc. Don’t buy into it. Today, there are numerous alternative materials referred to as “boards” that are designed, engineered and produced for this purpose. If they get wet, they will not rot or lose properties. They will last longer and make your life easier as an owner. Many quality boats used plywood for many years because it was cheap, available and easy to cut and fit. Today, there is no excuse for it. Make sure a polymer backer board is used in your vessel. You will enjoy boating all the more for it. The risk of increased costs and lost time on the water associated with using plywood in a new fiberglass boat are far too high to buy one using them.