Pearson 28-2 chain plate and cabin ceiling crack
I have a really nice condition 28-2 that I purchased in May, sailed from the Chesapeake (Irvington) down to the Neuse River where it now resides, and found little wrong with it aside from some minor cosmetic age. It is admittedly a very clean and pretty dry boat. It does have its share of light stress lines and cracks here and there in the places you’d expect, but nothing that would imply abuse. When I bought it I did not the particular interior cracks around the chain plate. What has me posting is I noted the other week a small drop of water on one of the interior bolts. Ok, chain plates are a usual suspect for leaks. I then noticed the offending bolt was slightly loose. It took a buddy on deck with a screw driver to hold the bolt as I tightened the bolt from the cabin. I then tightened all of them on both chain plates given they all needed to be snugged up. In doing so I noted the interior fractures in the ceiling around the chain plate got a bit more pronounced. Before, they were just evident lines in the gel coat. Now I have induced a slight ridge along some the the cracks.
If I were to want to rebed the plates at the deck, I’d need to find some alternative mast support since to do so would require my removing both stays. While this design seems to be intended to minimize water dripping down the stays and through the deck, it comes at the cost of having to completely release the stays to inspect the through-deck of the chain plate. This all seems quite evident just looking at it, but am I missing anything?
Are these 4 bolts merely retaining the interior plate, and the chain plate it otherwise cast into the piece above deck that the stays attach to? I’d like to think this is the case and that those 4 bolts are not the only things connecting the above and below deck portions of the chain plate.
As far as the interior fractures, while unsightly, is this cause for alarm? I wonder if some water intrusion caused the core to degrade and has allowed the fiberglass to now compress when I tightened the bolts.
Also, right on fractures, it feels tacky. You can see some appearance of a darker color at the cracks, and I wonder if what I’m feeling is from precious resealing with something that remains slightly tacky that has migrated out.
Anyway, any info on this style of chain plate and thoughts on the fractures is appreciated.