Tape to cover hardware that may chafe - SailNet Community

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Old 05-13-2008
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Tape to cover hardware that may chafe

I'd like to get some tape to cover certain harware on deck that may chafe my sails and was wondering what you guys use that holds up in a salt water environment.
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I'd like to get some tape to cover certain harware on deck that may chafe my sails and was wondering what you guys use that holds up in a salt water environment.
Tape may not be the best solution for preventing chafe. If you must use it, use it sparingly.
Yesterday I removed the tape from the spreader ends of a Beneteau and most of the spreader tip fell off in my hand.
The owner is now forced to either replace the spreaders or have a machine shop rebuild them.
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Is there a better solution? I have spreader boots that I'll be installing, but what about everything else? A new spreader is cheaper than a $2500 racing sail, but obviously I don't want to replace either. I remember reading about tape trapping the salt on hardware and greatly increasing the oxidation, I just don't know what other options I have.
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Originally Posted by zz4gta View Post
Is there a better solution? I have spreader boots that I'll be installing, but what about everything else? A new spreader is cheaper than a $2500 racing sail, but obviously I don't want to replace either. I remember reading about tape trapping the salt on hardware and greatly increasing the oxidation, I just don't know what other options I have.
It really depend on what you are trying to cover. What "certain hardware on deck" are you referring to?
There are turnbuckle boots available. Some are made from PVC. Some are made from wet suit material with a zipper.
There are the slit PVC shroud covers. And wooden shroud covers.
Leather is often sewn on things to provide chafe protection.

The problems arise when something is covered up and then left alone for extended periods of time.
Walk down the dock sometime and check out what the wire looks like under one of those tight fitting PVC shroud covers that hasn't moved in a few months.
That's why I don't like to see people wrap things up with tape. They usually don't want to remove it.
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Turnbuckles mainly. Also some stantions. I've seen stantion caps but they look a little rediculous.
Maybe some fabric with velcrow attachment? Like a koozie (drink holder). I'm looking for something that breaths right? somewhat loose fitting.
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Turnbuckles mainly. Also some stantions. I've seen stantion caps but they look a little rediculous.
Maybe some fabric with velcrow attachment? Like a koozie (drink holder). I'm looking for something that breaths right? somewhat loose fitting.

For turnbuckles I would use one of the aforementioned boots made for the job.
For stanchions, the smallest of spreader boots work well and don't look bad. I've seen them on racing boats.

Please understand, I am not suggesting that tape doesn't have it's place on a boat. It's just that it should be used properly and removed fairly often so that one can inspect, clean and perhaps lube whatever is being covered.







Here is the spreader job that I mentioned earlier. This illustrates why I don't like to see people go crazy with tape.

Last edited by knothead; 10-29-2008 at 11:56 AM.
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Unfortunately, a lot of people tape turnbuckles and such, but forget that the tape deprives the stainless steel of the oxygen it needs to protect itself and also traps water against the steel, leading to severe crevice corrosion problems. I am really against taping hardware. If the problem is the cotter pin ends... cover them with a dab of sealant instead, after trimming them to the proper length.
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If the problem is the cotter pin ends... cover them with a dab of sealant instead, after trimming them to the proper length.
Excellent suggestion.
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Knothead;
Thanks for posting thoes...you made a believer out of me...The tape isn't even discolored leading one to even suspect it...truly amazing..

Thanks again.
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I changed out all my cotter pins with split rings (little key rings) b/c I was afraid of something snagging. Where are the places that usually cause chafing?
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