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Old 08-05-2021, 06:50   #1
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Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

My rigger and boat yard appear to have used silicone when using stainless screws to attach fittings to my aluminum mast. I've always understood something like tef-gel should be used to avoid corrosion. In one instance, for the cage that goes over my steaming light, they used silicone to isolate the cage itself from the mast. This makes sense (other than silicone being such a pain). I think a UV stable plastic washer would have been better in this case. It also appears that they used silicone caulk for the screws on the steaming light, the cage, and the screws holding a whisker pole track to the mast. I can see the advantage of silicone caulk helping to prevent the screws from backing out and also blocking water intrusion that could induce corrosion.

What are your thoughts on the use of silicone, or perhaps another caulking material for stainless screws and aluminum as opposed to tef-gel?

In the case of tef-gel, is a PTFE lubricant like Super Lube a suitable substitute?


Edit: The context of all this is that I need to remove the screws from the whisker pole track to slide it up a bit higher and I am wondering what to use when I re-install, in case that influences your response.


Thanks,
Harry
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Old 08-05-2021, 15:07   #2
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Tef Gel is superior to those others you mentioned. Super lube is great but not for this application. Silicone is useless in this application.
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Old 08-05-2021, 15:24   #3
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Tef-Gel.
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Old 08-05-2021, 15:51   #4
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Silicone.....useless.

Tef-gel... excellent

Lanocoat...good

3m 5200....acceptable
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Old 09-05-2021, 09:23   #5
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Tef Gel
Duralac (extra points if you like yellow)
Teflon tape in a pinch.
Lanacote (OK, not great)

Sillycone is better than nothing but would not be on my list. Superlube is great stuff but not for your application.
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Old 09-05-2021, 11:02   #6
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

I like tef gel on the threads and a plastic spacer between surfaces. (cut from milk jug)
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Old 09-05-2021, 12:06   #7
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Sillycone belongs in boobs not boats!!!! Hope you don't plan on painting the mast as the sillycone has soaked into the aluminum and paint will not adhere to it. I use electrical tape or vinyl window material for an insulator between mast and hardware. Definitely need an insulator for bronze like winch bases and cleats. SS hardware doesn't react all that much but will eventually cause paint to bubble around the hardware. For fittings where the fastener passes through, not threaded into, be sure and coat fastener shaft with some form of antii-seize. Those are the only places where I've been defeated in removing fasteners.
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Old 09-05-2021, 15:56   #8
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hlev00 View Post
My rigger and boat yard appear to have used silicone when using stainless screws to attach fittings to my aluminum mast. I've always understood something like tef-gel should be used to avoid corrosion.

What are your thoughts on the use of silicone, or perhaps another caulking material for stainless screws and aluminum as opposed to tef-gel?

Edit: The context of all this is that I need to remove the screws from the whisker pole track to slide it up a bit higher and I am wondering what to use when I re-install, in case that influences your response.

Thanks,
Harry
It shows that we must specify what we need rather than letting our hired professionals make choices for us.
I specified tef-gel when my spinnaker pole track was installed.
After 9 years there is no sign of galvanic action or galling.

Trust yourself and your research.
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Old 09-05-2021, 18:05   #9
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Re: Silicone for stainless fasteners and aluminum mast?

There are silicons and silicons not all are the same ,maybe pay to ask wot was used in your job , then maybe worry.⚓️⛵️
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