LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200 - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 17 Old 05-28-2013 Thread Starter
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LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

I'm re-caulking where my chainplates pass through the deck. Sabre's original user's manual (circa 1984) shows LifeCaulk but I'm wondering if 4200 is a better sealant. Should I stay with Life Caulk?


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post #2 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

4200 is a mild adhesive as well as a claimed sealant.

Life caulk is a sealant.

Butyl tape is better than both.

Butyl tape sold by Maine Sail is a superior butyl tape.

C34 mark 2 chain plates leaking - Chainplates flix

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post #3 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

This Sabre suffered from chronic chain plate leaks. The PO of the boat got so frustrated after re-sealing them almost yearly, with everything from 5200 to 3M 101, that he tried SILICONE..... This only made things worse, MUCH WORSE...



This is how bad SILICONE contamination can be...

This is 4200 is and it stuck to NOTHING due to the silicone contamination. The current owner THOUGHT he removed the silicone but had not..


I spent an entire hour, on just one chain plate, removing the silicone contamination via grinding wheels Dremel tools and lots of nasty chemicals. I then re-bedded it with my butyl tape and it has been 100% bone dry since...

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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

Maine, do you allow the butyl to be exposed on the deck? I'm rebedding my chain plates which also go through the deck in a similar fashion. I'm concerned about the portion of the butyl that will be exposed to UV and dirt/grime.
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

I too have tried everything, except silicone. I'm pretty sensitive to my chainplates due to the neglect the PO allowed. I have a new leak at the stbd aft lower shroud that needs tending.

I use butyl tape for all my other deck hardware, but am curious about sealing the chainplates this way. Do I wrap the tape around the plate and push it firmly into the deck recess, covering with the SS plate?

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post #6 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

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Originally Posted by Sabreman View Post
I'm re-caulking where my chainplates pass through the deck. Sabre's original user's manual (circa 1984) shows LifeCaulk but I'm wondering if 4200 is a better sealant. Should I stay with Life Caulk?

Whatever the outcome of this discussion will be, THANKS A LOT for posting this image! I have a persistent leak at two lower shroud chainplates but I never thought of adding a sealant groove (I hope the engineer that drew the plan was better with engineering than with spelling; I am pretty confident that he or she meant 'groove' when writing 'grove'

I have rebedded them thrice, first with RV-style butyl tape, then with the one-and-only Mainsail tape, then (in desperation) with Lifecaulk. Each time somewhat chamfered at the top but still leaking. I will make a fourth effort after cutting the whole thing open again and this time leave a 3/8" groove around the chainplate.

Will wait for the outcome of this discussion to see what to actually put in the groove.
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post #7 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

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Maine, do you allow the butyl to be exposed on the deck? I'm rebedding my chain plates which also go through the deck in a similar fashion. I'm concerned about the portion of the butyl that will be exposed to UV and dirt/grime.
Would also like to know this answer, thanks!!

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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

By the way, that diagram is GOLD!

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post #9 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

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Originally Posted by asdf38 View Post
Maine, do you allow the butyl to be exposed on the deck? I'm rebedding my chain plates which also go through the deck in a similar fashion. I'm concerned about the portion of the butyl that will be exposed to UV and dirt/grime.
It won't hurt it at all... It might collect some grime over the years but you can wipe it with a rag slightly dampened with mineral spirits and clean it up...

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post #10 of 17 Old 05-28-2013
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Re: LifeCaulk vs. 3M 4200

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Originally Posted by MastUndSchotbruch View Post

I have rebedded them thrice, first with RV-style butyl tape, then with the one-and-only Mainsail tape, then (in desperation) with Lifecaulk. Each time somewhat chamfered at the top but still leaking. I will make a fourth effort after cutting the whole thing open again and this time leave a 3/8" groove around the chainplate.

Will wait for the outcome of this discussion to see what to actually put in the groove.

I would be checking for "tracking leaks". These are leaks that track through the deck or between the deck and liner and come out at an area that is not at all where the water went in.

I had a boat seven weeks ago that had a leak over the nav station. Owner re-bedded everything within a 5' radius of the nav desk. Still had a leak. I happened to notice a slight dampness behind a hanging locker around a screw and the leak was traced to the forward port light. Rebedded that port and the problem went away... Water was tracking all the way from the forward port light to the nav desk before it found a means of egress into the boat. Chainplates are a great area where tracking leaks occur if the deck has not been potted.

If the deck has been potted care must be taken to make sure there is minimal to no movement in the chain plate and that the butyl is in compression, (really packed in) if using butyl....

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