Originally Posted by Ladd
OK Captden you have had your boat for a while, what can you tell me about chain plates? Who is the best way to inspect them?
When I first started looking at these boats I did a lot of research
on what to look for as potential problems and chainplate issues were pretty much on the top of the list. The quality of the stainless steel
used on these boats was not the best. I did pull and inspected the chainplates and found that the chainplate it self was fine but the bolts that go through the hull
were in very tough shape. You could see that water
did get in between the plate and the hull
and just where the bolts came through were rusted so bad that most of the bolts just snapped off when I went to remove them. Depending on what year the boat was built these chainplates can be very difficult to get at. On my boat, most of the plates were accessable from the inside as they are located inside of lockers, the only ones that required any real effort to get to were in the main cabin
, and of course these were for the main mast
. For these what I did was locate them by measure and drill a 1 7/8" hole through the wood batten and then you can get a socket on the bolt and remove (snap) the nuts. After replacing the bolts I just made a wooden plug
to cover the hole. After getting all the bolts out I was able to just clean out all the caulking where the plate comes through the toe rail and then pull the plate straight up and out. After getting the plate out you can see that the water
was getting in through the toe rail and caused the problem, so resealing at this point is the key to prevent this from happening again. Also make sure you seal where the bolts go through the hull as this can be a area where water can in and also cause problems. Been over five years since I did this work and so far all is dry and looking good but I do reseal the area where the plate comes through the toe rail every season.
Hope this helps, not a real difficult job to do but it is very time consuming.