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Old 13-04-2015, 14:56   #31
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Re: How to check keel bolts

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Originally Posted by muddyWater View Post
What do you do if you have studs embedded in a cast iron keel and they look to be in need of replacement? Are they replaceable?


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yes but if I remember correctly the keel has to be dropped and the lead heated up to remove the bolts and then new bolts installed. Very expensive and time consuming.
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Old 13-04-2015, 15:07   #32
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Re: How to check keel bolts

Originally Posted by muddyWater View Post
What do you do if you have studs embedded in a cast iron keel and they look to be in need of replacement? Are they replaceable?

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Originally Posted by ontherocks83 View Post
yes but if I remember correctly the keel has to be dropped and the lead heated up to remove the bolts and then new bolts installed. Very expensive and time consuming.
There is no lead in a cast iron keel.
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Old 13-04-2015, 15:46   #33
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Re: How to check keel bolts

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Originally Posted by Terra Nova View Post
Originally Posted by muddyWater View Post
What do you do if you have studs embedded in a cast iron keel and they look to be in need of replacement? Are they replaceable?



There is no lead in a cast iron keel.
Ha that is funny. I totally read that as lead and not cast iron. My bad. Diregard my last.
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Old 03-05-2015, 09:43   #34
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Re: How to check keel bolts

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Originally Posted by George DuBose View Post
This is about a 1973 Pearson 36-1 with a deep bilge sump and 12 bronze 5/8" J-bolts.

I hope this is the correct thread, but I need to drop my keel due to slight separation between the lead and the fiberglass keel stub. The silicone around the keel bolts has failed due to age and there is a 1mm separation in the front of the lead/keel stub joint. The keel bolts haven't been retorqued in 42 years and she has bumped a couple of rocks lately. No wonder she is smiling.

My first problem is somebody, probably Pearson poured resin into the bilge and all over the keel bolt holes in the bilge. I have to clean all the threads of the bronze "J" bolts before I can remove the 15/16" nuts from the 5/8" studs. In some places, I can barely reach the keel bolt nut and can't get a Dremel with a small wire brush all around the stud. Needless to say there isn't room for a die to clean the threads.

Some of the bolts are so close to the bilge wall, or in such a tight spot that I can't get even a deep socket over the 3" of extended bronze bolt without removing a 1/4" of bilge wall.

I have been able to remove 9 of the 12 nuts from their 5/8" bolts, but I may have to resort to splitting the last 3 bronze nuts.

I am having really deep (150mm and 225mm long) hole saws made by cutting bi-metal hole saws in half that have the ID of my keel bolt's OD and welding in lengths of tubing.

I need to be able to put the hole saw over the 3" long bolt that's protuding up into the bilge and then still cut through 3" of bilge floor down to the lead. I already made test holes with a 1/4 drill bit.

I will have the boat lifted off the travel lift and block the keel somehow. Suggestions?

I may not be able to use the die to clean all the 5/8" threads until the keel is separated from the hull. I just can't risk having the keel bolts hanging up when the boat is lifted.

Couple of more questions.

Drilling test holes to find the lead under the bilge floor brought up shavings of what looks like MarineTex. White chalky plastic with no signs of any glass fibers.

Second question: Can I carefully use a pencil torch to burn off the MarineTex/resin/frozen snot whatever-it-is from the bronze keel studs? Does bronze lose temper or anything when heated. I am not talking about red hot, only just to burn of that crap that's all over the keel studs.
I did the extended hole saw thing on a homebuilt cold molded boat that had "bonded bolt" keel bolts. The bolts were 1/2" stainless threaded rod set in 6" high oak floor timbers in oversized holes filled with epoxy. There were no nuts on the bolts, just the epoxy. IIRC I used 3/4" hole saws welded onto a piece of pipe with a 1/2" stud on the other end for the drill motor. Went through about 5 saw blades cutting out 8 bolts. Worked real well. After that i drove wedges between the lead and wood until the keel fell off. Not too bad a job.
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Old 03-05-2015, 09:45   #35
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Re: How to check keel bolts

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Originally Posted by ontherocks83 View Post
Ha that is funny. I totally read that as lead and not cast iron. My bad. Diregard my last.
On an iron keel they are usually regular bolts tapped into the iron. Just unscrew them.
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