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andyjen 02-28-2009 02:22 PM

Catalina 22 mast light disconnect question
I need help updating my single steaming light to a steaming and deck light on my Catalina 22. The female end of the disconnect(to take the mast down)seems to be imbedded in the boats fiberglass/poly whatever the core of the deck is made of. I cannot get it out from the top as it has a flange that is under the surface of the deck and I cannot get it out from the bottom as there is no access. The ceiling of the cabin is solid. I can buy a four conductor plug on Catalina direct to replace my existing two conductor but how do I go about it? Looking for help on Seneca Lake NY, Thank You, Andy

ambianceack 03-01-2009 07:14 AM

Can you post a picture? On my 1974 Catalina 22 the female clip was simply held in place with three small screws and the wire came up through a 3/8s dia hole in the center of the clip. A piece of wood (perpendicular to the mast support post) hid the wire in the cabin.

Without seeing your situation, here is a thought, grind out the old fiberglass until the coupler is free. then epoxy the new area, sand and paint, then properly install the new coupler.

andyjen 03-01-2009 07:48 AM

unfortunately your grinding idea is most likely what I have to do, any body else have a suggestion? Thank you everyone from Seneca Lake NY

Capnblu 03-01-2009 01:38 PM

You will need to drill for the new female deck fiting, and bed it in. you will have to run your wiring to this location. the easiest route will be under the settee and come up beside the compression post. If your mas is down, it would be easy to remove your compression post and have a hole bored through the center and hide your wiring that way. Make sure to disconnect and remove as much of the wiring from the old setup. I would remove the old deck fitting and fill and seal off against leaks. Home improvement stores have long drill bits in their electrical departments which you could use to bore the hole through the teak compression post. I would come out on the opposite side of the deck that the original was placed, it is easier drilling a NEW hole than trying to mix match and repair the original location IMHO.

saildork 03-01-2009 01:41 PM


My '83 C22 had a 2-conductor setup forward of the maststep for the steaming light, which I changed to a 3-conductor setup. I could have used a 4-conductor, as you propose, but I chose to use the same ground wire for the two lights.

Because I added the decklight to the steaming light, I had to remove the 2-conductor connector at the deck, drill thru the deck and the headliner inside the cabin and run new wire for the lights back to the panel and battery. I bedded the connectors above and below decks with 3M 5200 and ran the wires behind the teak trim on the port side of the cabin. I did this job in 1998 and haven't had a problem electrically or with leaks ever since.

Does this help?


s/v Stargazer

andyjen 03-01-2009 02:20 PM

Pat(saildork) yes this does help. Tell me exactly how you removed the old connector. Did you drill from inside the cabin till you hit it then pulled it down through (how would you know exactly were it is being inside)or did you hack it out the top somehow? I am thinking I should drill a very small hole down through the top(through the existing connector) in order to get a exact location then drill up through the bottom from the cabin ceiling with the correct size bit.(width of the connector body) Insert the new connector and fill with waterver someone suggests.(3m 5200?) Or should I just abort the existing and move to the other side of the mast with a new hole like Capn blue suggested. I would rather stay on the existing side because that is were the wire exits the mast. I could change that. Thanks Andy

JustineIII 03-01-2009 02:22 PM

Do you need four conductors?
Hold on.

You may not need any additional wire up the mast.

In his book, 100 Fast & Easy Boat Improvements, Don Casey describes a way to set up two differents lights with only two wires, using a couple diodes and a double pole double throw switch. That should save you money, time, and a little weight aloft. Even if you are not a racer, every additional ounce up there only adds unproductive rolling and heeling.

I have not tried it myself yet, but Don Casey is a serious writer, so that might be a much easier way to achieve what you want.


PS: If anyone has tried this trick, please let us know. I'd like to use it to add a windex light to my rig.

saildork 03-01-2009 03:57 PM


As I recall, the existing connector had three small screws that secured it to the deck. I unscrewed it and pulled it up to expose the wires below. I cut the wires, thus removing the connector completely. Then I drilled down thru the deck and the liner. Your suggestion might also work, but you would destroy the insulating rubber and the brass female receptacles inside the connector, so you would have to replace the connector anyway.

Whether you use the existing site or a new site, you will probably want to drill a small hole for the wires, ream out the plywood that is sandwiched between the deck and the liner, fill the hole with epoxy and then after it has cured, drill the hole for the wires again. This will help protect the wood below the deck from moisture.

After all that, and you have run your new wires up from below, connect the wires to the female connector, anchor the connector with the bedding compound (such as 3M 5200 or 4200 for a permanent solution or a different caulk for a mounting that you can more easily remove in the future), and screw it in place with the mounting screws.


andyjen 03-01-2009 05:04 PM

I removed the three screws but it did not pull up. It acted like a flange was under the deck thus having to remove it from the bottom. I will trust your memory and try to look at it more closely and pull up on it with a bit more force. Thank you for the help, Andy

saildork 03-01-2009 07:03 PM


There was no flange below the surface of the deck on my boat. I doubt if there is on yours. You might have to slip a hacksaw blade or coping saw blade under your connector to cut thru the wires. Once that is done, you can drill thru the deck as I described above.

(Justine, Your suggestion is similar to what I did when I initially added the deck light to the steaming light assembly. I later changed it to the way I described above when I found the wires leading from below into the deck connector were corroded.)

Good luck, Andy. Let us know if you have any other problems. Follow-up with a post when you have finished the job. I'll be curious to know how it turns out.:)


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