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Old 10-14-2009
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cghubbell cghubbell is offline
1977 CS27 ~ Ravat
 
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Rebedding aluminum toe rails

This is "yet another which goop do I use" posting. I did scour the archives, but I'm still not 100% certain of my decision...

I have removed the beastly 27' long aluminum toe rails from my boat to allow me to perform a deck repair. Just as well, on a 30 year old boat it was time to put a nice new seal in place. It appears that they were originally bedded in some form of a butyl rubber. It was grey and sticky like thick mozzarella cheese in most places, but a few spots had dried more. I removed all the thick chunks, leaving only what's pressed into the hull to deck joint.

It seems from my reading that butyl is a great choice for deck hardware in general. Except for one thing... I'm trying to imagine spreading a nice even thin layer of this stuff over the length of the rails, and then having it squeeze out evenly... This stuff seems pretty thick compared to a thinner caulk-like product. Especially in cooler fall/early spring temps.

Also of note is that I do not plan to clear the old hull-deck joint which is sealed with this stuff. So, whatever I bed the rails in will be up against some butyl in the joint, albeit a thin layer.

Would I be better off using 3M 4200 or 101, or something else? I'm not a big fan of 5200 since someone else may need to re-bed it down the road. Should I stick with butyl? Is it practical for this application? I haven't used new butyl before (nor have I rebedded toe-rails!) so my concern is based on observing what's on there now.

Thanks in advance,
Chris
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CS27 #1254 ~ Ravat
PYC, Lake Ontario

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