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Post by Graham » Tue Aug 19, 2003 11:01 pm

My decklines are fitted with metal hoops riveted through the deck and I'm worried about the strength of the fitting - she's an old boat. What do people use decklines for and how strong do they need to be?
Any ideas for good fitting methods without having to retro fit recessed deck fittings?

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Post by MikeB » Tue Aug 19, 2003 11:09 pm

Cant comment on replacing fittings but certainly I know folk who suggest that lines should be strong enough to lift a loaded boat by.

Now that strikes me as perhaps a little unrealistic, given that we could be talking about 70 to 100 pounds of load, plus 50 pounds for the boat itself. Transfer that lot thro a deck fitting and its asking a lot of that deck fitting.

But, if I'm having to use the lines to help me rescue a swamped boat in big seas (which is one reason they are there) then the very last thing I want is for them to start pulling out of the deck when I'm pulling on 'em.

They also serve as something to hold onto when you're in the water beside the boat, and are very useful to pull on for heaving yourself onto the deck when being rescued.

Worth maintaining in good order then


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Post by Aled » Wed Aug 20, 2003 12:10 pm

The metal loop type of deckfitting is plenty strong! The only weakness which comes with old age is with the rivets holding them in place. If they are loose, leak or are suspect in any way, drill them out and replace with stainless machine screws, nuts and large washers and a blob of sealant. If the rivets are glassed in from behind, then this could be a major undertaking and possibly best left alone (it's a horrible job to grind away the grp and usually easiest to relocate the fittings and fill in the old holes).

Like Mike said, never let anyone lift your loaded boat by the decklines, or tow you by the decklines, they're only meant as handrails.

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Re: Deckfittings

Post by Jim » Wed Aug 20, 2003 10:48 pm

Aled has hit it right on the head! The eyelets should be stainless steel so not much worry about them. The aluminium rivets on the other hand could be a problem. I don't recommend rivets, if the mandrel falls out when you pop it (about a 50/50 chance) you have a hole through the rivet to let water in.... Suitable nuts and bolts are much better, go for something non-ferrous like good quality stainless (I'm forgetting my grades now) or possibly brass although that will corrode eventually.

If what you have is waterproof but you are concerned about them, you could try using valley topcleats instead. They are round plastic things with 2 grooves for decklines or elastics and come with stainless bolts and nuts - knoydart stock them
I never got round to putting sealant in the holes when I retrofitted them to my boat (in a hurry) in place of the horrible through drilled elastics and can confirm that they do need sealing!


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