Installing interior to exterior teak handrails - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 11-02-2011
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Installing interior to exterior teak handrails

I have a Pearson 36 that has a set of handrails where the interior and exterior handrails are mounted back to back using long screws. The original screws went from the handrail in the cabin through the deck and into the deck handrail, which was fastened by a nut. Both sides were then plugged with teak plugs. All the original screws broke as they were rusted through. I'm trying to find small diameter, 4" long screws minimum. The best I've found are 12-24 x 4", which is still too big of a diameter. The heads and nut won't fit the handrail mounting holes. I.m considering making the handrail holes bigger and using bigger plugs, but being that the holes are already close to the side f the handrail, it may not work out. Does anyone know of any LNG small diameter SS screws? Any other ideas on mounting back to back handrails?
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Old 11-02-2011
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Try McMaster Carr.

I did a quick search, and found these :

http://www.mcmaster.com/#socket-head-cap-screws/=er4ztl

Look under stainless steel, 18-8, they have 8-32 in 4" length.

They also do threaded rod which might work.
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Old 11-02-2011
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MY oday 30 has the same type of rails. a real PITA! Most of the old ones were still good but I did find a few at the local WM. I think they are/were #10 x 18
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Interior and Exterior handrails bolted together

I have the same arrangement on my Luders 33 and it was leaking badly. I removed all handrails and will not replace the ones inside – when healing, I find it easier to hold on to the sides than the ceiling. If you do that, you’ll need shorter bolts. But if you prefer to reinstall the inside ones, the threaded rod is the way to go.
Anyway, since you are at it, I would to do what I did: drill the holes with a bit the same diameter or slightly bigger; countersink the deck side of the deck hole; clean the inside with acetone then stick a piece of duct tape on the ceiling inside the cabin making sure it is well stuck. Mix epoxy without any filling and pour on the hole. Put a cup or a plate under the tape inside and remove the tape draining the epoxy which can be re-used. This will ensure you are protecting your deck from future moisture problems. Then when the epoxy is cured make sure you re-bed the outside rails with butyl tape from Maine Sail.
Good luck on your project.
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Old 11-03-2011
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So happens I am replacing my cabin top rails on my 303...After breaking one...

They were leaking ( a nearby yard charged the PO a pretty penny to "fix" them several years ago. They lied to him) quite badly.

As per some other threads on here, I found that the "late model" -circa 80's- Pearsons have thru bolted handrails in the cabin top. After removing the bungs on the exterior ones, I found that the bolt head had been expoxied. And in trying to remove one, I split the stbd handrail along a wood seam ;(...

Well, thank god for D&R Marine!. They sell lots of Pearson OEM products, including the right sized handrails:

DR Marine Product List

Just got two new ones from the yesterday, and they are exact matches.

Sooo...Now the mission is to NOT break one of these!

Last edited by sidmon; 11-03-2011 at 10:31 AM.
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Old 11-03-2011
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I've done that job on my Pearson 28-2. My original bolts were in good shape so I have nothing for you there, but it sounds like others have given you sources or possibilities for long, thin bolts.

I drilled out and potted the deck holes with thickened epoxy, then redrilled to isolate the core. I put that job off for months because I was worried about realigning the holes top to bottom--the angle has to be right to get the bolt through the handrail on both sides. Finally just did it, with a jig on the hand drill to assist in making the holes perpendicular to the deck. Had to widen some of my holes a bit but got it back together, and swore I'd never take the handrails off again.
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Also, here is some useful info from someone who has been down this road:

Hand Rails

Last edited by sidmon; 11-03-2011 at 09:36 AM.
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Old 11-03-2011
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Find an Industrial fastener supplier in your area - forget "marine" sources. A good industrial supplier will have or can get the most mind boggling array of fasteners in any material.

I was in my local one - Pacific fasteners and they had an absolutely HUGE nail on a display board. This thing must have been three feet long and an inch & a half in diameter. It made a railroad spike look like a brad nail. Turned out it was used as a tent peg for circus sized tents.

Does Worst Marine have that sort of selection?
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If you have to replace the teak hand rails, it might be worth investigating plasteak and Stainless Steel as alternative materials.
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Old 11-04-2011
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Wow, thanks for all the great responses and thoughts. My email notifications must have been off. I didn't realize so many of you had replied. I look forward to looking further into your ideas and reporting back. Thanks!
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