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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2015 10:52 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 04, 2006 12:03 pm
Posts: 56
Location: Tucson, Arizona
I need to replace the front cross bar but I can’t get it off the boat. Last weekend the port shroud broke under single trap conditions and I think the weight of the mast on the front cross bar caused the sleeve that supports the mast ball to tear through the top of the cross bar.

It looks like the port bow tang was bent too. I’m not sure what to do about that either.

Unfortunately, the front cross bar bolts are frozen. The boat was bought in ’03. An effort was made to remove all the cross bar bolts for inspection back then but the front bolts wouldn’t budge. If memory serves, liquid wrench was tried among other things with no luck. The rear bolts came out fine.

This has me worried that the boat is finished. Any suggestions or recommendations welcome. Thanks,


Here's a picture of the damage to the front cross bar
Image

Here's a picture of the port bow tang. Note how it has pulled away from the silicone sealant
Image


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2015 9:01 am 
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Joined: Tue May 27, 2003 12:44 pm
Posts: 12532
Location: Oceanside, California
The bow tang is not likely an issue. There is a long stainless part bolted to a fiberglass bulkhead. The span from the bulkhead to the exit point can flex quite a lot and broke the sealant I'd guess. Clean the old sealant out and you may be able to see inside. Just in case it has become miss-aligned... I would rig the boat and then reseal in the correct position (after fixing the beam issue).

The rear beam bolts had stainless nuts inside the hull. The forward bolts seat in chunks of aluminum (snickers bars) Glassed into the hull. Likely the oil could not get past the compression sleeves into the threaded blocks. They may be seized to the bolts as well.

I think since this is all seized up and you HAVE to replace the beam...I would just go for it on the beam bolts. Either they will release or break them (cut them) off and then deal with the consequences.

You can install inspection ports in the deck just behind the beam. Maybe will help to get the bolts loose by direct application of break free or penetrating oil. Then if you have to, you will have access for glass work and backing nuts for new bolts.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:25 pm 
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Joined: Mon May 09, 2005 10:25 am
Posts: 3559
Location: Jersey Shore
Gotta love galvanic corrosion....

A couple thoughts -

First, do as mmiller suggests and try to get the bolts free. I guess you could throw an 18" breaker bar on them and see if you can get them to move. But you might be better off cutting in the inspection ports first so you have access inside the hull. This would allow you to 1) see what you're dealing with before you start breaking stuff. And 2) apply penetrating oil directly into the threads. More than likely though, the threads are caked full of corrosion and no amount of oil is going to make a difference.

If you do break off the bolt heads, I think it's not the end of the world. Basically, you would need to take an angle grinder and cut the bolt off flush with the deck and then drill it out. If you end up destroying the threads during the bolt removal, you would just need to drill and tap the aluminum bar in the hull for a helicoil or thru-bolt (which would be no problem since you have access ports).

If things really go south, I imagine you could cut the aluminum bar out of the hull and glass in a new bar. Again, this is why you probably want to cut the access ports first, so you can formulate a game plan.


Another thought would be to repair the crossbar in place. From the picture, this looks like a fairly clean break and I'm thinking you could unscrew the mast step ball and remove the nut and washer. Then repair the crossbar using a plate of ~.100" thick aluminum alloy 6061-T6. The plate would be approximately 5" long x whatever the width of the top of the crossbar is (4" or so?). The plate would need to be bent to conform to the curve on the front of the crossbar. Then drill a 3/4" (?) diameter hole for the dolphin striker post to pass through. Re-install the washer and nut on the striker post and then match drill 3/16" holes through the plate & crossbar and secure the plate in place using SS rivets.

Whatever you do, if you end up removing and replacing the bolts, be sure to put some antiseize on them this time.

sm


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 23, 2015 8:54 am 
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Joined: Fri May 01, 2015 9:49 am
Posts: 236
Location: Eastern PA
Haven't worked on boats, but on cars, an impact wrench can sometimes break things loose with less destructive consequences than a big breaker bar.


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