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  #21  
Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

A correction: It was not THC but THE.
The bolts were in two sizes, the 5/8" ones were from McMAster Carr and had poorly formed threads with lots of pitting not only on the top of the threads but down inside the threads. The other bolts labelled THE were 1/2" and were in bags labelled "Brikksen" and had pitting only on top of the threads.
Now, I thought bolts like this were cut with an automatic threading machine so how do they get pitted unless the cutting tool is very poor?
All the stainless bolts I see in the shop have pitting on the top of the thread (the outermost part) but no pitting deep in the thread. The bad bolts have extreme pitting on "top" and some pitting deep inside. Non-stainless bolts around here seem to look a lot better.
Looking at these bad bolts, I now think they were made from stock that had deep pitting whereas the good ones were made from stock with lighter pitting. In other words, the better bolts originated from smoother stock. I'll admit, I am used to seeing bolts used on high vacuum equipment where such pitting would cause problems so you buy very high quality. Maybe I am simply not used to seeing such large bolts for non-vacuum stuff.
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frogwatch View Post
A correction: It was not THC but THE.
The bolts were in two sizes, the 5/8" ones were from McMAster Carr and had poorly formed threads with lots of pitting not only on the top of the threads but down inside the threads. The other bolts labelled THE were 1/2" and were in bags labelled "Brikksen" and had pitting only on top of the threads.
Now, I thought bolts like this were cut with an automatic threading machine so how do they get pitted unless the cutting tool is very poor?
All the stainless bolts I see in the shop have pitting on the top of the thread (the outermost part) but no pitting deep in the thread. The bad bolts have extreme pitting on "top" and some pitting deep inside. Non-stainless bolts around here seem to look a lot better.
Looking at these bad bolts, I now think they were made from stock that had deep pitting whereas the good ones were made from stock with lighter pitting. In other words, the better bolts originated from smoother stock. I'll admit, I am used to seeing bolts used on high vacuum equipment where such pitting would cause problems so you buy very high quality. Maybe I am simply not used to seeing such large bolts for non-vacuum stuff.
Could you post a pick? When you say pitting, does it look rusty or just a rough surface?

Many threads are "rolled" which is stronger than "cutting".

Brisken is a distributor for THE.

http://www.brikksen.com/index.aspx

A lot of companies take a THE product and package it for sale.

Last edited by casey1999; 12-02-2013 at 07:15 PM.
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  #23  
Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

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Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
Maybe the answer is to buy US MIL grade bolts.
I couldn't find them in the right sizes that I needed for a 27ft boat, I searched around for a while with no luck. I eventually concluded that it made little difference because we will be replacing them over a short period of time anyway (<=10 yrs), the job took less than 4 hours total and wasn't that intense, so we just ordered from Mcmaster Carr and didn't worry about the mil spec part. There really is no reason not to do it every few years, especially considering that we don't have the typical chainplate design, ours bolt onto the deck directly and run through to a backing plate on the other side, so it's not a hard task.

I was glad we did it, 3 of the nuts I removed fell apart when I put a wrench on them. One broke when my hand hit it.
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

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I was glad we did it, 3 of the nuts I removed fell apart when I put a wrench on them. One broke when my hand hit it.
Sounds like you need to replace on a 3 year interval...
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

At first I thought you guys were talking about counterfeit parts from China… West Marine pretty clearly identifies their bulk fasteners as 18-8 stainless which does cover much of the 300 series stainless steel (316 SS does have less chromium content, making it less prone to corrosion, but sacrificing strength). For most applications the 18-8 ones should work fine. Where on your standing rigging are you putting bolts and nuts? My production boat’s rigging is all clevis and cotter/ring pins where it counts. I had a nyloc nut on an anchor roller bolt that got pretty rusted so I replaced it with 316 stainless. I have rebedded my stem/stern fittings as well as the chain plates and have seen no evidence of any of the corrosion you guys are talking about.
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

18-8 is another term for type 304 stainless. It is not 316.
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

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Originally Posted by Frogwatch View Post
I walked into my shop today and there was a guy waiting for some parts to be modified. I asked what he was having done and he handed me what looked like a 1/2" stainless bolt that was being modified to have a round rather than hex head. It looked just like a threaded terminal for heavy boat rigging and he confirmed that it was. He named two big well known quality boat manufacturers he was doing the work for.
I looked at the bolt threads and although it had been polished, they were seriously pitted. After he left, I looked in thebox he left for more to be done and noticed 6 of them in a bag from McMaster Carr and they were all equally bad. They almost look as if they were cast in a poor quality mold rather than turned on a screw machine.
When the parts get sent out I intend to suggest they find a supplier of better quality stainless. This looks like cheap chinese stuff that I would not allow on my boat. I may even call the boat company and suggest they inspect the parts.
Any ideas on what I should do?
Frankly, if I were in your shoes, or acting as your legal adviser (which I am most assuredly not) and I had any suspicion that the parts you describe might be defective, or of poor quality, such that they might represent an unusual hazard to someone relying upon them for their rig, or elsewhere, before doing anything on/with them in any manner, I would advise the prospective client of my misgivings both verbally and in writing (so that they have affirmative notice) and request that they sign an acknowledgement of such notice which, ex post facto, will indemnify you for liability in the event a 3rd party suffers a loss or injury by their use (in which case the vendor and everyone that's had any connection to the defective parts is likely to be, if not certain to be, sued for negligence, at the least).

Your prospective liability can be inferred/arise from the legal theory/principal Qui tacet consentiret: the maxim of the law that "Silence gives consent" or "agreement". If you knew, or by virtue of your profession, skills and experience, reasonably should have/could have known of the hazard/danger to an unsuspecting user and yet did nothing to alert/warn the vendor and by extension the user, you are/were, ipso facto, "negligent". The foregoing may sound a little radical or excessive, and I agree that to some extent may be, but in the hands of a plaintiff's trial attorney, could easily be used to make toast of your business and/or bank account. ("If you knew, why the hell didn't you say something/warn anyone..."?)

As for this silly debate about West Marine verses McMaster/Carr, a vendor may stipulate certain specifications/standards for the products it intends to offer to the public but, unless it has a knowledgeable Quality Control officer/agent that can test and assure that the stock they acquire for resale meets the stipulated specifications, the vendor has no way of ensuring/knowing, unequivocally, that it does. Jeeze, even McDonald/Douglass and Boeing have been known to unknowingly buy and install counterfeit parts in the military and commercial aircraft they build. It is a little much to expect vendors like WM and M/C to do much better, no? One of my professors in graduate school once observed that "if something doesn't look/feel right, it probably isn't". Frogwatch has observed that "something doesn't look right". Given that, it might be wise for him/her to act accordingly for his/her own protection, No?
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

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Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post

To quote Steve D'Antonio in the latest issue of Professional Boatbuilder " Most stainless steel available to the marine industry and retail purchasers is 304. Stronger than 316, it is the least corrosion-resistant commonly available grade of marine approved stainless steel. While its corrosion resistance is considerably higher than that of ordinary steel, it is far from corrosion proof. The popularity of 304 in the marine trades is a function of cost and availability. It's less expensive than 316 and does a reasonably good job when not called upon to do something it was not designed for. As for availability, a 316 hex-head cap screw, say, is rarely stocked by common chandleries and must be special ordered from hardware suppliers. Most builders just go with the 304 cap screw on the shelf."
Casey

The above quote is not a recommendation of 304 in any way. It is a statement of what is commonly used in the marine industry with a full explanation of the corrosion properties of each type included in the rest of the article. As it states "...when not called upon to do something it was not designed for."

As far as bronze bolts - or titanium for that matter - I would think there are US made ones available. But wherever they are made there are good and not so good of any type.

Interesting point - the best 1x19 type 316 stainless rigging wire is Korean made. The stainless made in the US is not as good. This comes from a good local rigger and has been echoed by others.

Groco bronze seacocks and ball valves are considered very good - they are not all US made.
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

Quote:
Originally Posted by mitiempo View Post
Casey

The above quote is not a recommendation of 304 in any way. It is a statement of what is commonly used in the marine industry with a full explanation of the corrosion properties of each type included in the rest of the article. As it states "...when not called upon to do something it was not designed for."

As far as bronze bolts - or titanium for that matter - I would think there are US made ones available. But wherever they are made there are good and not so good of any type.

Interesting point - the best 1x19 type 316 stainless rigging wire is Korean made. The stainless made in the US is not as good. This comes from a good local rigger and has been echoed by others.

Groco bronze seacocks and ball valves are considered very good - they are not all US made.
There are very few (maybe one or two) makers of bronze bolts in the US. I have spoken with Jamestown Dist and they even have problems getting US made bronze fasteners. Most bronze fasteners are made in china and all are junk.

Agree, the Korean (not china) wire is the best. There is no wire made in the US- Loos does not make wire now.

304 maybe ok for temperate climates, but if you plan to head to the tropics, forget it.
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Old 12-02-2013
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Re: Poor quality stainless rigging

hmmm I have some 304 stainless parts that I made for my motorcycle(that I rode on the beach at high speed in salty air) and for my boat too...

im in el salvador...TROPICS

no issues

most issues of severe rust and corrosion are from bad cleanup in the final production stages...in other words foreign material contaminates the porous nature of stainless and when not polished and or cleaned up imediately will rust badly(surface)

some wax and or kitchen stainless polish does wonders to keep surface rust at bay, if you polish to a mirror finish that helps even more...

But maybe Im just talkin crap, well see what my 304 polished chainplates looks like in a year or 2 or 3 or 10...who knows...

maybe we got some new fandangled 304 down here but I doubt it...its probably taiwanese or chinese but I stress it mostly has to do with how its finished(production wise)

304 is indeed stronger than same size 316...its for what uses that makes one better than the other...316 is brittle and I have seen many a davit, tower, lever, kickstand, mount, etc...break and or stress fracture in 316...a lot of it is caused by bad welds, that weaken the already brittle 316, or any stainless for that matter...

anywhoo

I would simply not buy again from that same lot of rigging stuff and look at it... well before buying if possible...if it doesnt look good, somewhere else will have ones that do...

peace
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