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Old 21-01-2020, 19:38   #1
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Install: Gangways & Passerelles

I recently acquired a composite Gangway (aka; Passerel) made by calibramarine. On one end it has wheels to move around the dock and the other end has a 1 pin that attaches to a female fitting on the boat. I need some advice on installing that female fitting on my transom step.

My sailboat is a 2007 Beneteau 46 with teak floors. I will need to drill a 1 hole for the female fitting to slip inside. Should the fitting sit on top of the teak deck or do I need to remove a larger diameter of the teak so that the flange of the female fitting sits on fiberglass deck underneath the teak. I was also thinking of using 3M 5200 to seal around the fitting. Never installed a fitting like this before. Thanks.
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Old 21-01-2020, 20:13   #2
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

1 1/8 inch hole = 28mm
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Old 22-01-2020, 00:18   #3
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Personally I would go the smaller hole and mount the fitting to the teak, it is a nice low profile that shouldn't interfere with foot traffic when the passerelle is not installed and sealed with a semi flexible sealant will not allow water to penetrate through to the glass under the teak.
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Old 22-01-2020, 01:45   #4
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Have a look how it is done on boats that come standard with a passarelle, hmm likely larger boats, like Amel Super Marumu.
If you prefer not to drill large holes, mount the pin away from the hull, something like in the photo (borrowed from the net).
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Old 22-01-2020, 03:09   #5
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Bob View Post
Personally I would go the smaller hole and mount the fitting to the teak, it is a nice low profile that shouldn't interfere with foot traffic when the passerelle is not installed and sealed with a semi flexible sealant will not allow water to penetrate through to the glass under the teak.
You certainly don't want the passerelle to rub on nearby teak as the yacht bounces around so having the stainless steel deck fitting above the teak may help. Of course it may not be enough, you might need a bit more clearance.

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Old 22-01-2020, 09:17   #6
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Certainly small hole and flange laying on the teak.
Much easier to ensure good water seal. Good seal is very important!
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Old 22-01-2020, 09:25   #7
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

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Personally I would go the smaller hole and mount the fitting to the teak, it is a nice low profile that shouldn't interfere with foot traffic when the passerelle is not installed and sealed with a semi flexible sealant will not allow water to penetrate through to the glass under the teak.
Thanks uncle. When you say semi flexible sealant are you referring to 3M 5200?
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Old 22-01-2020, 09:29   #8
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Thanks for all the comments and the confidence to drill a hole in my boat.

The male pin also has a flange so when connected the gangway sits a few inches off the teak deck.
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Old 22-01-2020, 09:56   #9
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

I would not drill out the teak to accommodate the flange as this would leave a deep hole for water to stand in which could eventually penetrate your deck. From the picture it looks like you need to mount this devil relatively high up on the aft to account for tide shifts - mount it too low and a low tide could present problems - I assume that the male pin has some sort of swivel. It appears that the screws are the only thing actually holding the flange down so yes, 5200 would be my go to.
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Old 22-01-2020, 10:23   #10
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

You may find issues with a small width of your wheels because their slenderness results in a tendency of sliding into the gaps between the planks of the pier and then become trapped as a leverpoint when the boat shifts. Obviously something will bend or break, the wheel(s) bracket, the composite structure, the male pin or the female pin holding or your boats deck.

Think like walking a pier wearing high heel stiletto shoes. If the gaps on the pier are small then there is much less likelihood of the wheels becoming entrained.

I would strongly recommend utilizing wide wheels, MUCH wider than any gap on the surface that they will come into contact with.

Also recommend that you spring bias your gangway / passerelle such that it only comes into contact with the pier when it is loaded by the weight of a person trying to bridge the gap between the boat and the pier. Either a bungee or a spring lift is common. Much quieter and less wear and tear.
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Old 22-01-2020, 11:18   #11
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

We have a similar gangway and use a plastic doormat under the wheels when using it on a planked dock. Before you drill the hole for the socket check that it is not tapered, the bottom of mine was 1 1/8”, but it was larger at the top. I see you have a drawing, but it never hurts to measure the actual part: in the photo it looks tapered. Don’t forget to mixup some epoxy to coat the hole if there is any core exposed when you drill. Also be sure to use a Forstner bit instead of a spade or hole saw for a cleaner cut.

We got ours on Amazon it’s made by Osculati out of aluminum. They also have white plastic sockets that I used on the swim step with the chrome ones on the cockpit rails. I put one socket on each rail, one on each corner of the swim step and one in the center. This way it can be used on floating docks from the swim step and fixed from the cockpit rail. The next mod is to make it possible to use only 1/2 of the gangway for times when 1m is long enough and 2m is too much.
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Old 22-01-2020, 11:39   #12
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

Blackacre, i did exactly this on my Jeanneau 43ds last year. The female pin that came with my passarelle required me to drill all the way through the teak on the bathing platform and through the fibreglass. It is all quite thick and extremely strong. It would have been better with some bolts but on my boat the access underneath is virtually impossible so i simply used some very stout screws. This is a good solution but a word of warning since yr very attracttive (!) female fitting would let water into the space underneath in rain or big following seas. Mine has a cap on it which is secured to the female fitting on a short tether. The way around this problem of water getting in would surely be to use a fitment similar to the pic shown by HankonTheWater. I might in fact add a fitting like this to my setup since the bathing platform is a bit low for some pontoons and sometimes i need a point a little higher.

The matter of the wheels getting jammed in the slots between the boarding on the pontoon is a very valid point but has a simple solution. Simply set the level with yr uphaul arrangement such that the wheels are about 6" (10cm) above the level of the pontoon. Once it has the weight of a person on the passarelle the wheels will them firmly rest on the pontoon for the few seconds that your weight is holding it down.

You do need some sort of uphaul arrangement, many people use the topping lift with a spreader gadget that looks a bit like a coat-hanger. I use a pulley arrangement from my stern arch (which doubles up in taking the tender when i am out at sea). In addition to this you need an adjustable line from each aft corner of your boat across to the passarelle bec otherwise it will swing uncontrollably and dunk yr crew/wife/partner (?) in the water. I found that instead of tieing this line to each corner of the boat (unsightly?) i have one of those quick release dinghy spinlocks at each corner. Helps to make the fine adjustment in a flash.

You then need to figure out where to store yr passarelle when not in use. There is one model which folds up v compactly thanks to 3 hinges. I chose one with no hinges at all so i then sling it under the top rails of my transom arch underneath the solar panels. If you have one hinge the other way of doing it is to fold it over the lifelines/stanchions and then secure it.

Best of luck
Andrew
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Old 22-01-2020, 12:04   #13
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Re: Install: Gangways & Passerelles

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Also recommend that you spring bias your gangway / passerelle such that it only comes into contact with the pier when it is loaded by the weight of a person trying to bridge the gap between the boat and the pier. Either a bungee or a spring lift is common. Much quieter and less wear and tear.
Thanks for the advice. The OEM sells a trapeze which would allow hanging the dock side to the topping lift. Pretty cool way to keep it off the dock when not in use. But I was planning on rigging shock cords From near the wheels to my Bimini top. In this way I think it will hover off the dock until a person steps on it then the weight will transfer to the dock. Ill post some pictures when the project is complete.

Youre also right about the wheel getting stuck on a wood dock but Im currently on a concrete dock. If I find Myself at a wood dock Ill lay down a thick floor rug/mat underneath the wheels.
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