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granche1 01-17-2013 06:54 PM

Chainplate fabrication
Hi everyone.

I have my 1986 psc 37 in Bahia del Sol, El Salvador at the moment. Ive decided that my chainplates are getting sketchy and am wanting to replace them. Who has done this and how do you get the teak out of the way of the chainplate bolts? Where did you get the chainplates fabricated, from what material and how much should that cost? What should one look out for when taking on this project? Im considering having them fabricated locally in Central America since the importation of event the simplest item is a bureaucratic pain in the butt.

Thanks for any experience that you can throw my way.


s/v Viandante

niftynickers 01-20-2013 12:22 AM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
I wouldnt mess around with metal of uncertain origin (third world) for my chainplates,they are just TOO important.For NiftyNickers I obtained the forestay and the backstay chainplates from the Pacific Seacraft and I fabricated the six side stays from 316 s/s from McMaster-Carr.I also replaced all bolts with 316 bolts.In order to access the nuts in the interior you must do some damage to the teak slats or battens,just grit your teeth and go for it.Some can be accessed thru the slider in the head and thru the hanging locker. The side plates can be loosened and slid out from the rubrail-I used a strong steel flat blade (putty knife) to break the sealant free.

Good luck,
Dianne and ChuckBurke S/VNiftyNickers C37 #139

jnewcomer 01-20-2013 11:56 AM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
We took our shroud chainplates out one at a time so the machine shop could match the hole placements and the angles of the bends. In Mazatlan there is a shop with a water jet cutter that did a great job of cutting and bending for about $100 each. Someone else will need to advise you on what services are available where you are. After you get the bolts out you can just pull on the shoud and it will extract the chainplate from the teak rubbing strake.

We used a Fein tool to clean out the old sealant on the rubbing strake and to cut the teak slats on the interior for removal. If you cut right on the screw holes you can reinstall the slats without too much noticablle damage. The overhead panels need to come off so you can reach the nuts on the bolts. A big pry bar is needed to push the bolts out from the inside. You'll need several tubes of caulking. We used Life-Caulk by Boatlife. When re-installing turn the nuts rather than the bolts so the caulk in the holes stays put.

The old chainplates are 1/4" stainless but 5/16" will fit in the slots in the teak rubbing strake which gives you a stronger replacement than the original. You need to decide what bolts to use before having the holes put in the new plates. The originals had the square base of a carriage bolt in the round hole of a chainplate so the hole is oversize for a 1/2" bolt. We opted for 1/2" holes and 1/2" bolts so there is a good bearing surface. I agree with Niftynickers that 316 is the preferred material for the plates and bolts.

We had rust streaks after after a while because the top holes were not polished. Make sure the shop polishes all edges and the outside faces of the plates and the insides of at least the top holes.

Good luck.

s/v Pelagic
lying Lake Union
Seattle, WA

L124C 01-22-2013 02:32 PM

Re: Chain plate fabrication

Originally Posted by granche1 (Post 977320)
Hi everyone.

I have my 1986 psc 37 in Bahia del Sol, El Salvador at the moment. Ive decided that my chain plates are getting sketchy and am wanting to replace them. Who has done this and how do you get the teak out of the way of the chain plate bolts?

What teak? No teak in the way on my boat! A picture is worth a thousand words.
Are you sure they are shot ? Not that they couldn't be, but 1986 isn't very old, and as I recall, PSC are quality boats. I have a 1970 Yankee and the chain plates are still sound. I did replace my fore stay chain plate, and had a major boat yard make it. Took them two tries! I think any metal fabrication place would have been as good or probably better, as long as they use the correct SS.

Stumble 01-22-2013 08:00 PM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
We do a lot of replacement chainplates in titanium, and frankly I am with Nifty, I wouldn't replace them in a third world shop unless I knew for sure the quality of the material, and the workers. If someone accidentally swaps in 300 for 316, which is almost impossible to test for unless you have a moly test kit, you could be screwed.

The way we work is to have customers send us a tracing of their chainplates with dimensions marked, then we digitize that into a CAD program. From there it's off to the water jet cutters.

wsmurdoch 01-22-2013 09:36 PM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
For someting as simple as the chainplates you should be able to judge the shop and the workers for yourself. If you are worried about the steel, you might want to see the plate before the steel is cut and polished. The plate that the chainplates are fabricated from should be marked with the alloy, the manufacturer, and the heat number. The shop should have a "mill sheet" (analysis) for the heat (batch of metal). If the shop does not have it, the manufacturer should be able to fax it to you. The mill itself should be ISO 9000 certified which means that a competent third party (usually British Standards Institute) has examined their quality control systems and they can be trusted.

Bill Murdoch

L124C 01-23-2013 02:14 AM

Re: Chainplate fabrication

Originally Posted by wsmurdoch (Post 979727)
For so meting as simple as the chainplates you should be able to judge the shop and the workers for yourself.

Yeah....thats what I thought when I took my forestay chain plate to Svendson's. A major boat yard in the SF Bay Area (not the Third world!) with a big machine shop. They couldn't even get the holes in the right place or re-assemble everything correctly. God knows if they used the right steel!

Stumble 01-23-2013 03:32 AM

Re: Chainplate fabrication

After stainless chainplates are fabricated they really need to be electropolished to maximize corrosion resistance. You could certainly skip it, but then you start trading corrosion resistance for price pretty quickly.

PCSSailor 04-10-2013 06:42 PM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
Original stainless manufacturer in CA did mine while PC was "insolvent". He was great. Charged about $800 bucks for the whole lot. An Annapolis crew wanted $3,000. Unsure if he'd work with you directly but perhaps an email to Thumper at the factory would help. I may be able to dig up his name...its been a few years. Let me know.

wsmurdoch 07-09-2013 05:18 PM

Re: Chainplate fabrication
Here is a story of a titanium chainplate failure.

A bit about the dismasting... - Odda Sea - Life Aboard An Allied Princess Sailing Yacht

Bill Murdoch
1988 PSC 34
Irish Eyes

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