Lightning Grounding an Iron Keel? - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > Electrical Systems
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  #1  
Old 09-03-2009
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Lightning Grounding an Iron Keel?

What's anyone done with lightning grounding to a conventional (NOT ENCAPSULATED) iron keel? There's fairing and barier coat and bottom paint over the bare cast iron, so we were thinking that a conventional ground from the mast base to the keel bolts might be great--except for blowing all that expensive coating off the keel and letting it start rusting again. There's no way that will take a strike without the need for a haul & strip & recoat at "UGH" dollars per gallon.

Would you try to strip some of the keel, and recoat it with something conductive, like just zinc galvanizing paint? Or install real bronze ground plates,not Dynaplates, but solid grounding plates?

Has anyone taken a strike with any of these setups, and have any comments on how well it did or didn't work?
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Old 09-03-2009
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Grounding

My neighbors 50'Benny got hit a few days ago. He is a NASA engineer, and has every grounding thing you can get. This is the second time for him in five years to get hit. Don't know how much damage was done this time, but the last time it took almost a year to get everything fixed, which included pulling the keel. I don't think any of the grounding stuff helps much. I have seen studies that read both ways. It is more like when it's your turn, it's your turn.
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Old 09-03-2009
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I'm not questioning turns, damage, or effectiveness.

I'm just asking what's more suitable for an iron keel, and less likely to blow all the keel coatings off of it, than conventional keel grounding.

The alternative would be to get a real body shop man, the kind that worked with hot solder before "plastic" was used for sheet metal repairs, and then fair a nice zinc coat over the keel and smooth that down, I supposed. But that would be a non-trivial project, and the body men who know how to do that work usually are found under a Rolls or other top brand name, only.
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