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Old 06-28-2013
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Re: Cost to Replace Chainplates? Should I Walk Away?

Originally Posted by CheckedOutRob View Post
Well, my intent is serious voyaging so unfortunately I cannot trust any chainplates original to the boat. I'd be tickled pink to hear they had been replaced but it probably isn't so. Stainless is one metal that has a cumulative fatigue lifespan. Stainless work hardens. Work hardening means "brittle". A chainplate cycle loads and work hardens. I've heard of people removing their 'plates and breaking them in half with their hands. Easily.
I did exactly that with my headstay fitting. It looked O/K but had some brown staining so I buffed it up with my buffing wheels. It came up like chrome but there was a faint hairline scratch remaining - I buffed some more but it was still there. I took the whole fitting in my hands and tried to bend it whereupon it twisted like taffy and snapped through the hairline mark. I doubt it took 20 lbs of force to tear it in two and it had looked perfect - the hairline was nearly invisible.

At that point I pulled them all and made up new ones.

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