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Thread: Chain plates are out, now what? Reply to Thread
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  Topic Review (Newest First)
12-30-2007 11:06 AM
jrd22 Hoffa- I emailed Brion Toss (rigger, Pt. Townsend) about my chainplates and he definitely recommended removing and inspecting(mine are 20 yrs old). He said people are understandably hesitant to pull them because it can be a big job, but he also said that 1/3 of dismastings are caused by chainplate failure. Makes me feel better about doing it. Resealing doesn't look to be a big job if you have the same type of sealing plates that I do, screwed down rectangular plates? I'm sure someone here has done it and can give you specific instructions. Looks like tomorrow is going to be a nice day for sailing around here, wish the boat was in the water.

12-30-2007 01:43 AM
HoffaLives since jrd22 has had his question answered, i'll pipe in with a related one of my own; when i bought fainleog, the surveyor recommended i pull the chainplates and reseal them at the deck. they've never been pulled and the visible caulk looks very weathered. the deck around large fittings like this on the cs is solid fiberglass - no core, so water intrusion doesn't lead to rot. so far we have had no leaks into the boat, and so i'm wary of ripping these out as i'm not ready to replace them. i know keeping on top of through deck fittings is an important part of regular maintenance, and lord knows these are overdue, but i'm reluctant to disturb these. opinions?
12-29-2007 09:52 PM
camaraderie Hey Pigs! Good ta see ya!! Happy New Year!
12-29-2007 09:36 PM
pigslo I would replace them while they are out as you have already done the hard part!
12-29-2007 09:30 PM
jrd22 The only reason I can think of for the surveyor to require the chainplates to be removed is that I mentioned that the only other boat like this that I have seen advertised has had the chainplates replaced? I know that a lot of well know riggers recommend replacing chainplates every 10-12 years if you are cruising full time offshore in tropical climates, I don't know if that is overkill or not. It was not as big a job as I feared, boat was well made with good access to all under deck hardware(backing plates on everything. I only had to cut out one piece of plywood behind the stove that is hidden by a piece of stainless to access genoa track nuts and stanchion bolts(I'm taking the teak decks off also). I guess I'll plan on having new ones made, might run it by a local rigger. We are doing a fairly major refit; bottom paint strip and re-paint, hull painting(Awlcraft), remove teak decks, re-glas the decks and non-skid, replace head, some electronic upgrades, furling on headstay and inner forestay with sails for both, new batteries, new canvas all around, new upholstery, diesel forced air heat system, new liferaft. I'm not doing all of it myself, my job get's in the way of a lot of important stuff!

Charlie-you gotta know the right people! I'm hauled out in Anacortes at a guys place that has done a lot of work for me before.

12-29-2007 02:09 PM
FrankLanger Wait a sec, folks. While I don't really disagree with your posts above, and would also wonder why the surveyor suggested pulling the chainplates, there are lots of cases (and frightening pictures) of chainplates that looked fine above deck, but had corroded significantly at the part that is "inside" the deck, where moisture can get trapped and gradually corrode the chainplate. It could be that the surveyor had seen one like this recently, and was being a bit cautious, suggesting that pulling them is the only way to know if that section of the chainplate is deteriorating.
I agree with the above posts that now that you have pulled them, it is probably best to replace them with new ones, as then you won't have to worry about them for a very long time.
But I wouldn't want you thinking that the surveyor was necessarily wrong in his suggestion, or that you were wasting your time in taking them out--better safe than sorry, as losing one of these may cause the mast to fall at an inopportune time.
12-29-2007 12:26 PM
sailboy21 Does seem odd to pull chain plats for a survey. They are through deck type right? You can use a dye penetrate test, but as said before results are anything from conclusive. Any other testing is expensive. All commercial rigging is tested to a point above its rated working load, and retested at an interval. Never heard of this done on sailboat parts, could be interesting. Unless there is obviously something wrong, chain plates seem like they would be the last item of concern on the rig. The safety margin built into them is larger than any other rigging component.
My boat had a crack in the stainless cranze iron, surveyor just pulled me aside and told me to make sure the owner replaces that before I paid for the boat.
12-29-2007 12:24 PM
camaraderie I've NEVER had a surveyor tell me to remove my chain plates. WHY did he suggest this? Were the pin holes elongated? Was there evidence of leakage around them? Were there rust cracks? There must be an underlying reason for that recommendation.
12-29-2007 12:05 PM
CharlieCobra Where did ya find yard space for this? I've been waiting for space to open up for two months now.
12-29-2007 09:44 AM
sailingdog If you've already got the chain plates out... it would make sense to replace them, given that the current ones are 20 years old.

I'd have to agree with Sasha as to question why your surveyor told you to do this—unless there was some serious indications of problems with the chainplates or a known history of problems with them on this specific make of boat, 20 year old chain plates are probably still quite serviceable.

It would also be good to make sure that all the fastener holes for the chainplates, if they go through plywood or cored deck material, are properly potted and sealed against water intrusion.
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