I'm just a couple of months away from setting off and have pretty much gone over the entire boat fixing/replacing most items.
The one thing I haven't touched yet is the keel
and keelbolts, apart from making new backing plates
for the nuts.
It has been recommended to me by a friend that I should drop the keel
and have the keelbolts inspected.
However, I have several limitations - one is that I can only go to one shipyard (no choice here, take this as a given) who I don't really trust.
The other issues are that the keel is lead with stainless bolts. Builder
is long gone so we can't ask any questions - but most likely they are cast in with a "J".
Boat was launched circa 1985 and was a racing
boat. Keel is quite deep. Boat is 40ft LOA
and 8 ft draft
oh ...and the keel is bolted on with 13 (!)
x 3/4" stainless keelbolts. So doing the sums on cross section - (pi x 0.375^2 x 80,000psi x 13) - the bolts should take ~460,000 lbs in tension, but even factoring in dynamic loads etc - there's still a tonne of safety
Regardless, assuming that we drop the keel - we can't extract the J-bolts to check anyway and will only be able to see the bolt up to the point it enters the keel.
Is it worth doing?
If so, then what should I be looking for - and if there is an issue - is there a remedy apart from replacing the keel? (sistering additional bolts won't work on my boat due to space/geometry reasons)
Thank you muchly in advance!