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post #2 of Old 07-05-2009
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Soft seating of fittings and an alternative

Not sure about your toe rail but I have a suggestion wrt fixing hardware to decks and this applies to stanchions as well. When I fitted my hardware I did not want the hassle of water seeping under fitting after a year so I looked into alternatives. Since my boat is ply and epoxy I purchased the Gougeon Brothers on boat construction and in there read the epoxy fixing method which I used throughout my boat and to date some 8 years on I do not have a single instance of water seeping under a stanchion or deck fitting.

In principle the system uses a different approach to fixing fittings. All the stress on a winch which is fixed to a deck with 4 bolts and bedded down on flexible sealant travels through those 4 bolts with some stress on the sealnt which flexes. In time the sealant will break it's seal....when it does water seeps in and the weakening will stress the bolts and utimately the deck in that area will become damaged.

On the other hand, using the Gougeon method of hard fixing all the stress is taken by the entire base of the winch because it is effectively hard boned to the deck. The stresses are now spread over a wider surface and therefore dissipated and not localized.

I highly recommend you look into this method more thoroughly as I simply cannot explain the method adequately here. All I can say is that it works! It takes longer to do and one has to be thorough and do the job properly but the result is that you will in all likelihood not have to concern yourself with leaking deck fitting for a long time to come.

Happy sailing

s/v Cielo
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