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Old 05-05-2013, 22:01   #16
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I'd cut away the 'furniture' without mercy. What a dumb design. To do the butyl seal you do not want to turn the screw even a little. That will be hard to achieve with that situation.

I'd probably just tidy up the cuts and leave the nuts exposed. It's a boat not a condo, right?
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Old 06-05-2013, 19:51   #17
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

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Hey Boulter, it's not the headliner but fiberglass roof. It's a kind of lip that comes up to the hull, I suppose the intent was to make it prettier than simply butting up squarely. I was able to do the aft stanchion only because there is a deck drain about four inches from the stanchion mount and there was some cutaway to allow the drain pipe to connect.
Hi:

I saw the photograph. It looks about the same amount of material about in the same place as my headliner. I don't regret cutting all of it away.

Boulter
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Old 08-05-2013, 04:28   #18
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

I once hired a midget,nice guy,i wish he were still around.
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Old 08-05-2013, 10:50   #19
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

You know, it's a real pity that the people who design these things never have to maintain them.

If I ever end up as King of the Universe, I think I'll implement a law that says the designer gets to work on them if the owner can't reach something. Maybe, (pretty small chance) they will learn something
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Old 11-06-2013, 12:45   #20
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

OK, after 6 weeks of weekend trial and error (along with about $200 of error) here's the solution - figured somebody might be facing something similar and may benefit from my solution. Throughout all of this, I had the "solution" of cutting out the headliner which would have been acceptable with a teak blank to cover the hole but I really didn't want to do that if I could avoid it just because that was something I was sure I would not do sufficiently well to make it look like something I could be proud of.

I first discovered the Toggler Snaptoggles. They come in stainless steel and are rated to hold up to 356 pounds in in 5/8" drywall. I was planning on using 4 of them in 1/2" fiberglass which, while I don't know for sure, I figure is stronger than drywall so it should be good.

Since I can't get to the backside of the bolts I've been drilling out the existing stainless steel screws on the stanchion bases - 4 per base. Good times.

I say "was planning" to use the snaptoggles because it turns out the depth of 2 of the 4 holes was not sufficient to allow the snaptoggle to rotate behind the deck and be used - it was only about 1/2" deep and the toggle itself is over a inch long so it would not even go all the way into the 2 most inboard holes (1/2" think fiberglass, 1/2" deep hole). Much swearing occurred and we decided to retreat, reorient and reattack. After a few beers of course.

The next thing we found was the PlusNut blind fasterner. Amazingly, these also come in stainless steel (although they only had 41 in stock but I only needed 34 total). I tried these out last weekend between rain showers and they fit right into the most inboard holes perfectly and allow the 1/4" bolts to fit. Again, I am not sure how strong these are in 1/2" fiberglass but I'm going to bet the lifeline on it that it's strong enough. Especially since about half the bolts I found had no backing nut on them at all any more (if ever) so I'm 100% certain I am better off than I was before I started all this. Looking at the chart for these (in kN so I had to convert) it looks like I could expect at least a couple hundred pounds of force to be supported - and with 2 of them that should do the trick.

So now I am putting the snaptoggles in the outboard most 2 holes as I believe these will actually give me stronger results (and I already have them anyway so I might as well use them) and then I'm using the PlusNuts on the inboard 2 holes.

All together I am pretty sure this solution will provide a much stronger installation than I had, maybe even better than the day the boat rolled off the production line. And they won't leak.
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Old 11-06-2013, 13:23   #21
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

Link should be, Plusnut Blind Fasteners - Find Plusnuts Fasteners at Cardinal Components
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Old 12-06-2013, 09:55   #22
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

Boy... I've got mixed feelings about either of those products for lifeline stancions. Most say you need a backing plate to support them or at least large fender washers... neither of those have much area to spread the load... I hope they dont pull right through at the wrong time!
Arent boat jobs a bitch?
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Old 12-06-2013, 10:12   #23
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

I know what you mean, but I can unequivocally state that the original design on these stanchions did not have backing plates. Not a single lifeline stanchion on the boat has one (and I think it's all original) and only about a third had a washer underneath. I suspect more of them may have had washers at one time but they've since fallen off and disappeared although I have come across a couple that only had a nut and lock washer as the backing as well as more than a few that had nothing at all (I assume any backing had completely vibrated off over time but who knows).

I would have loved to put backing plates on these if I could but this is the best I could make of the situation and I know that I am now better off than I was at least. Given that each of these rates at well over 200 pounds of force to pull out, I'm thinking this is pretty secure with 4 of them spreading the load a bit.

Yeah, boat jobs are a bitch alright.
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Old 12-06-2013, 18:22   #24
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

Check out ' The Toggler" which insert from the top for blind holes. WM and hardware stores sell them.

Toggler Snaptoggle | Anchor Bolts,Toggle Bolt, Toggle Bolts
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Old 13-06-2013, 21:08   #25
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Re: Hard to reach bolts

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Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
Boy... I've got mixed feelings about either of those products for lifeline stancions. Most say you need a backing plate to support them or at least large fender washers... neither of those have much area to spread the load... I hope they dont pull right through at the wrong time!
Arent boat jobs a bitch?
Me too. The vast majority of my fittings which were retained by plain flat washers only, not even fender washers, had dimpled the underside glass (compressed the core?), were lose, leaked, or some combination of all 3. Other than the deck fills, I have taken every piece off.

Boulter
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Old 14-06-2013, 09:52   #26
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Re: Hard to Reach Bolts

How much weight would your average a fender washer support before pulling out? According to Cruising World, ABYC suggests that the entire lifeline installation be capable of withstanding a static force of about 600 lbs. As far as I can tell, the snaptoggles and plus nuts will exceed this suggestion by a pretty fair margin - each snaptoggle will support more than 350 pounds and the plus nuts will support more than 200 pounds each. It's all stainless steel too and is a all thru-bolted installation.

I know this boat has been sailed in blue water quite a few times without a backing plate on the lifeline stanchions and otherwise been perfectly fine for over 25 years without them. I would feel better with a backing plate on there for sure but this seems a pretty reasonable alternative given the past performance without any backing plate and how this is actually a upgrade to the prior installation.

At any rate, it's done now so if this goes sideways at least the forensic investigation will know where to start.
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Old 15-06-2013, 06:52   #27
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Re: Hard to Reach Bolts

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How much weight would your average a fender washer support before pulling out? According to Cruising World, ABYC suggests that the entire lifeline installation be capable of withstanding a static force of about 600 lbs. As far as I can tell, the snaptoggles and plus nuts will exceed this suggestion by a pretty fair margin - each snaptoggle will support more than 350 pounds and the plus nuts will support more than 200 pounds each. It's all stainless steel too and is a all thru-bolted installation.
What does " static force of 600 pounds mean"? I would take it to be a 600 pound force applied horizontally in the abeam direction to the top of the post. Then assuming a 24 inch high stanchion post and the mounting screws have a spacing of 2 inches, the inside screw(s) are in tension to the tune of 7200 pounds, and the outside screws are in compression also at 7200 pounds. The mating surfaces: inside deck is in compression and outside deck in tension, also at 7200 pounds.

Wood has a strength of about 10,000 PSI.

No wonder essentially every fastener had dimpled the underside of my deck, and a fair number of them were loose. With just a plain washer, the area under the washer is something like 1/4 square inch, that is wood to support a load of about 2500 pounds, when the forces can be much greater. As new from the factory, this state of affairs is plainly unsound IMHO.

Now this analysis is just heaving on an isolated post not yet in a lifeline system. However, the lifelines won't add much to the situation as they are almost perpendicular to the direction of our 600 pound force.

If the above does not make any sense to you, you might want to find a "statics" textbook at the local library.

I never actually stopped to do an analysis of this situation, but thanks to you I now have. I sure am glad that I am beefing things up on my boat.

Cheers,

Boulter
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