Iron v. Lead Keel - Page 2 - SailNet Community
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post #11 of 17 Old 08-19-2006
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Watch out for lead shot

One more thing. I have heard of manufacturers pouring lead shot into the fiberglass keel instead of using molded lead. If you hit a rock hard enough to hole the fiberglass, the lead shot spills out and you boat capsizes.
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post #12 of 17 Old 08-19-2006
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The lead shot is fine, provided it is fully encapsulated in resin... if it is just sitting there in the keel, then it is a problem. However, resin-encapsulated lead shot is not as dense as a solid lead block.

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post #13 of 17 Old 08-20-2006
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sailingdog,

You amaze me. You are on the ball on every thread. Encapsulated in resin!!!!!!! I didn't think of that
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post #14 of 17 Old 05-01-2010
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I have a 1968 Haida 26'. It has a cast iron keel with stainless bolts. I am pretty sure they are original, too! As far as I know the bolts pass through a flange on the keel. They are on the list for repair during the next haulout.

I just wanted everyone to know that the keel is rust free, and still hanging on. I am currently deciding between stainless, mild steel, or bronze bolts.
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-01-2010
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I did a lot of work last spring, grinding our iron keel down to shiny metal and applying barrier coat. This year I have to touch-up one spot where there is a small speck of rust coming through, so it worked pretty well. (And since I didn't re-block last year, I need to get the spots where the blocks were.) I did this work with a hand grinder. I would have been much quicker using a sand blaster. (And last spring was one of the wettest on record. This task really needs to be done on dry days.)

Overall, it took some time but will only need to be done every few years. And as you can read from my thread, I was a complete novice at it last year.Fixing Keel Rust is a real GRIND!!! (PIC HEAVY)

Ground out the rust


With barrier coat applied


Then you bottom paint over the barrier coat.

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Brad

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post #16 of 17 Old 05-01-2010
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There is another advantage of lead over iron, mainly in deep fin boats. These kind of keels are the best performing but not the ones that can resist better to grounding or hard impacts. If that occurs, an Iron keel will not bend and will transmit the full blow to its connections to the boat (steel bolts) and the adjacent area and supports. A lead keel will bend a lot and can absorb this way a lot of energy and the impact on the keel support structure will not be as damaging.

Some years ago I saw a modern Wauquiez that had hit a rock. The lead keel was incredibly bent, but there was not the slightest crack on the junction between the keel and the hull. That says a lot about Wauquiez build quality but also about the absorbtion impact of a lead keel.

Regards

Paulo
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post #17 of 17 Old 05-02-2010
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Tager
Stainless or mild steel bolts are ok, but avoid bronze with an iron keel. They are more expensive as well.

Brian
Living aboard in Victoria Harbour

Last edited by mitiempo; 05-02-2010 at 12:33 PM. Reason: add
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