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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Gear & Maintenance
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  #11  
Old 06-17-2007
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The problem with using something like 5200 in there (which is probably the wrong material because it is expensive, it hardens, and it has structural bonding qualities that simply aren't needed) is that if moisture gets under it--you've trapped it very nicely. I think I'd prefer something like an old asphalt/tar based gasket sealer that stays "gooey" pretty much forever, or something like BoatLife polysulfide that stays very flexible, more so than 5200.

Or better yet--since the folks who make the swages generally say that anything in them will interfere with the proper compression--just circling the boat once a month and shooting some BoeShield or similar water-displacing protectant in there.

I wonder if this means a "better" swage would be open at the bottom, so moisture could drain out?
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HS-

If you're really worried, what one of my friends did is poured hot beeswax over/into the swage fitting after heating it with a blow dryer. The wax seals out the moisture, but doesn't interfere with the swaging process, since it is already swaged.
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Or you could parcell it and coat it with white lead. Which is how standing rigging was protected for a few hundred years. And, if you were to do that, you might eliminate the stainless steel at the same time.(vbg)
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Using the 5200, and other means of filling the voids in a swagged fitting hark-ens back to the days when we used poured fittings. Zinc was the media heated to about 700 degrees (F) you would put a pine stir stick in the melted zinc and if it was just slightly tinged the zinc (A light brown) was at the right temperature to pour the fitting. To hot or to cold and the fitting would not pass the stress test. Now days they use a Resin instead of zinc.

But what those riggers are doing is filling the voids with a tough medium to stafe off corrosion caused by moisture infiltrating the fitting. So a swagged fitting will last longer. Still you should do your weekly inspection of your rigging to be safe. Or eyeball it each time you have to go by it.
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Old 06-18-2007
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There would also be the issue of air getting to the stainless which is what you want. I suspect that my problem simply comes from poor quality swaging. We shall see.
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TD, yes, I meant 3M's 5200.

I'm always amused at how often people insist that 5200 is not the right product. Seems to me thaat the adhesive qualities are beside point in this application, whether I want them or not, so why bother to point that out? The bit about hardening vs. non hardening is moot in this case I believe, since we're talking about such a thin coating. I agree that you want oxygen to get to the SS, and that a sealant (any sealant) will prevent that, but in this case, SOMETHING is going to be blocking oxgen access to the steel, whether it be water in the swage that can never be completly eliminated, some kind of sealant, or the swage collar itself.
I also don't believe that having a sealant in the swage interferes with compression - if you want, I'll take pictures of my fully compressed from end to end swages, and you can be the judge. They're tight on there, believe me. Already had her out in 15-20g25, and everything is solid.
Of course, none of that relieves me of the burden to perform regular rigging checks.
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Old 06-18-2007
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I only just acquired some 5200, not so common this side of the pond. What is its shrink-with-age characteristic? (Most elastomers, polymers, etc., suffer).That is what would make it dangerous to use inside a swage. Molten zinc sounds rather a neat idea (if a very old one). Drop the swaged end in a hot galvanic bath for a while.
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Old 06-18-2007
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Mike, when I say 5200 is the wrong product, that doesn't mean there's anything "wrong" with 5200. Using gold instead of zinc would also be wrong. The product (gold) is simply overkill for the application. I also use Krytox as a lubricant--but wouldn't waste it on squeaky hinges, 3-in-1 oil or WD40 will do them better. And cheaper.

Beeswax indeed sounds perfectly good, perhaps especially since it could melt & reflow in really hot weather, resealing itself. I'm sure many things would work.

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Bear in mind that oxygen and stainless don't matter--if you keep the stainless dry. Anoxic corrosion is only a problem when there is water present. (Or perhaps other materials, none that we'd have a boat wrapped in.)
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