Deck problem from leaking chain plate

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Southpaws2's picture
Southpaws2
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Deck problem from leaking chain plate

I finally decided to do something definitive about chain plate leaks that I had been chasing after for the last 4 years. After a bit of effort I removed all the chain plates. To my surprise the deck core in the area of the chain plates that had previously leaked seemed to have "disappeared" (first Image) whereas as it seemed quite intact where no leaking had occured (second image). It doesn't look to me like the "disappeared" core is balsa but rather some sort of foam. Believe it or not all three of retangular chain plate holes on the starboard side are now "connected" by the core having "diappeared" between them. Any ideas what this foam material is? I presume this is bad. I think I have a job on my hands. Any advice totally welcome.

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Toronto, Ontario

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto

gmackey
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Rick,

The C36 laminate schedule from Catalina specifies "11/32 ply w/hi-fibe mix" (sic) for the side deck core.

I'm on the iPad right now so I can't attach the document now but I'll find it later.

Cheers,
Graham

Graham Mackey
SV Nostromo
1989 C36 908
Tall Rig/Wing Keel
Toronto, Canada

BudStreet
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That is a fairly big problem. You will want to try to find out how far the core is gone, probing with a stiff wire will give you an idea how far out it has rotted away and you can mark it on the top of the deck with a non-permanent marker. If it is all gone between the chainplate holes that is pretty serious. You're going to want to know how far out on the side deck it has rotted away. It is plywood in that area.

You might be able to fix it by filling the cavity with thickened epoxy. You will have to seal up all the chainplate holes from the bottom and pour the mixture in from the top until the whole area is solid. I did this on our 28 but in a much smaller area. There was a spot where two pieces of core seemed to meet near a chainplate hole and the factory had left a bit of a gap there. Filling it with epoxy solidified it and it's fairly easy to do. I found out the hard way that sealing the holes from the bottom is difficult and critical. I ended up using sheet metal and cut rods to wedge in there to hold it in place. No bonding agent I tried could stand up to the epoxy, it made them all release so a mechanical means of holding the sealing plates in place was needed.

But if it's a really big area, and it seems it might be, that may not be a good solution. You might want to get an expert involved here. Wiggers Yachts at Bowmanville has done a lot of this type of repair on C&C's, CS's and Hunters. They do very good work from what I've seen. They cut the top skin off, replace the core then bond down the top skin again and blend in the glass on the deck. Saw a Hunter Legend they did and it was impossible to pick out the repair. Costly work though.

It is really important to take any deck leak very seriously. I make a practice of pulling the hardware, grinding the core out away from the holes and filling the cavity with epoxy to ensure no water can penetrate the core. I have two more stanchions left to do on our boat. Same with hatches or just about anything that penetrates the deck, the very least you should do is paint epoxy on any exposed core at any hole in the deck, but better to grind it away and fill with epoxy.

Other thing with the chainplates is get the new style covers from Catalina with the raised lip on them, I just got them and they are very slick and for $9 each it's a no brainer to use them.

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bakerha
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bstreet - would you post a link to the chainplate covers you refer to?

_____________
Harold Baker
S/V Lucky Duck
Duncan Bay Boat Club
Cheboygan Michigan - Lake Huron
1989 C-36 mkI TR/WK M25XP

BudStreet
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Posts: 1127

These covers were mentioned in a thread on this forum a few weeks back. I ordered six of them. The part number is 24263, I called Dani at Catalina and she shipped them out, $63 shipping to Canada included and new screws as well. A great deal. Who other than Catalina would bring out new parts for old boats? Gotta like that.

I've attached several pictures of some of them, I think they will be a huge upgrade from the stock ones.

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manonash
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I got the upgraded plates Bud mentions/shows as well. I'd *highly* recommend them to every C36 owner, as it's obviously a better design. The port side took me about 3 hours (mostly scraping out the old 4200), whereas the starboard side only took about an hour... Good stuff...

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Steve Ramsey - Puget Sound
S/V Manonash - '96 C36 mkII (#1586) - M35B

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Wavelength
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So what is the advantage? Does the added box go down into the deck or does it go up?

Ross & Joanne
Wavelength
Saint John NB
RKYC
C36 #658 TR 1987

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Southpaws2
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Thanks Bud for some very wise advice. I will keep the forum updated on how I finally deal with this. Of course, this has all to do with the defective chain plate design that has been the subject of lots of forum space over the years. The same issue exists with the C34. My sailing buddy, Tony Germin and I debated the problem with the design for months last year and came up with several solutions for a better chain plate. We recently wrote an article on this and hope to have it published in Jibsheet. If you search under our names in the C34 and C36 owners' forum you will find what we have posted on this to date.
As for the "box" that Ross asked about, it goes up. These are mainly marketed as for use over the center chain plate. I recently ordered 6 myself and found that some of them did not fit over the forward and aft chain plates since these are a slightly larger size than the center one. I am not convinced they are a permanent solution but they are definitely better than what most C36s and C34s have now.
Regards,
Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Toronto, Ontario

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto

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LCBrandt
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Rick, it won't make it in the soon-to-be-published JibSheet issue (due to my family commitments...sorry). But it'll be in the issue after that. Sorry.

Larry Brandt
S/V High Flight #2109
Pacific Northwest, PDX-based
2002 C-36 mkII SR/FK M35B
 

BudStreet
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[quote=Wavelength;11279]So what is the advantage? Does the added box go down into the deck or does it go up?[/quote]

It goes up. There are several advantages.

First it keeps water from ponding around the chainplate, that is a big problem with the original design. The raised part creates a dam there.

Second it has far greater area to hold sealant vs the current one that only has a tiny edge joint where it meets the chainplate.

Third, it is far stronger than a flat plate and can resist any forces that try to twist it and break the seal.

BudStreet
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[quote=Southpaws2;11280]Thanks Bud for some very wise advice. I will keep the forum updated on how I finally deal with this. Of course, this has all to do with the defective chain plate design that has been the subject of lots of forum space over the years. The same issue exists with the C34. My sailing buddy, Tony Germin and I debated the problem with the design for months last year and came up with several solutions for a better chain plate. We recently wrote an article on this and hope to have it published in Jibsheet. If you search under our names in the C34 and C36 owners' forum you will find what we have posted on this to date.
As for the "box" that Ross asked about, it goes up. These are mainly marketed as for use over the center chain plate. I recently ordered 6 myself and found that some of them did not fit over the forward and aft chain plates since these are a slightly larger size than the center one. I am not convinced they are a permanent solution but they are definitely better than what most C36s and C34s have now.
Regards,
Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Toronto, Ontario[/quote]

Rick, how are the bulkheads? I would expect you would have water damage to them as well. Fortunately they can be changed though it is a significant job. It is well documented on this site.

I followed your thread on the chainplate design, I think it is superior to the stock C36 ones. It is similar to what they used on the C28 and that was a lot more reliable than the C36 ones though they were not perfect. Our 1990 28 was leaking at 2 of them when we bought it but they had never been rebedded in 16 years so that's an improvement. If you move forward on that keep us posted on how it works out, I think that is closer to a permanent solution.

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Wavelength
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That is what I thought. Looks like another project to add to this winter's list. I wil need to buy a roll of Stainless wire for the MIG welder first.
On my C30 I used butyl tape for all new bedding and sealing and it worked great, no leaks. Is this what C36 owners have found as well?

Ross & Joanne
Wavelength
Saint John NB
RKYC
C36 #658 TR 1987

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StephenK
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[QUOTE=Southpaws2;11280].....As for the "box" that Ross asked about, it goes up. These are mainly marketed as for use over the center chain plate. I recently ordered 6 myself and found that some of them did not fit over the forward and aft chain plates since these are a slightly larger size than the center one.
[/QUOTE]

I can tell you that these "new" chainplates did not fit over my forward and aft lowers as mentioned above. I ordered 6 new plates and could only use 2 on the center stays. Catalina accepted the return of the unused 4 plates.

I like the new improved design and its a shame that they did not fit all chainplates.

Stephen Kruse
Kruse Control #1428
1995 C-36 MKII SR/WK
Lake Lanier, Ga.

BudStreet
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Aw crap. I hate when something like that happens. Here I am gushing about what a great job Catalina does and then we find this out. You'd think they'd know about that wee problem and tell a person when they order 6. I will check mine next visit to the boat and see if that is the case on our boat as well, it probably will be given how close in vintage our boat is to Stephen's. Then I guess I'll go to the local welder I use and get him to modify our 4 flat plates to look like these, which will cost significantly more than $9 each but is probably still worth it. Merry Xmas Mr. Welder!

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Southpaws2
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Bud, of the 6 flanged chain plate covers I got from Catalina, four of them did fit over the fore and aft chainplate so all is not lost. Turns out I am not going to use them because I plan to to a more robust revision. Therefore, if the ones you have don't fit, let me know and I can send you the ones I have. I also did a visual and moisture meter check of the bulkheads today and all looks fine although as you pointed out, center chain plate leaks can damage the bulkhead as well as the core of the deck. Ditto for Steve K.

Larry, great to hear you will be able to find space in Jibsheet for our article on dealing with the chain plate issue. In it we propose three solutions for redesigning the chain plates. I mentioned the redesign that Tony successfully implemented last year. This year I am going to try something a little different which is essentially to make a large flanged deck cover plate that will incorporate the deck bolts since these are often a source of leaks as well. Tony and I are currently working on a Youtube slide show and video of last year's project. I will post the link when we finish it.

I fully agree with Ross that butyl tape is the way to go and will be using it to bed the chain plate when they are reinstalled. It stays flexible forever and acts as a sealant rather than an adhesive. When I removed my chain plates this fall, the 5200 took some gel coat with it. This would never happen with butyl tape. As well, even 15 years later butyl tape can be cleaned up with a bit of acetone.

Best of the season to all.

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Toronto, Ontario

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto

sceptre1
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Posts: 77

I also ordered six of the replacement chainplate fittings; two were able to be fitted on the uppers, the four lowers would not fit. I thought about filing down the inside surface of the fittings but there is not sufficient material in the fitting to maintain strength after any loss of steel in the weld. I guess Catalina used different chainplates on their 1995's.

Tony Cullen
s/v Sceptre
1995 C-36 MkII 1449 TR/FK
San Diego, CA. (Chula Vista Marina)

Bruce Poorman
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We store our 1989 hull number 954 with mast up and rebedding chain plates was on the survey. With mast in place, do you release and rebed each one at a time, and if so, can you give me any tips on doing that ? We really do not want to take the rig down.

Thank you!
Bruce Poorman
Bobcat 954

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Channel Islander
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Bruce, this topic is discussed a lot on this forum (in this thread!) and there's a pictorial guide in the technical section that will show you exactly how to do it. Good luck!

Nick Tonkin
*Former* Website Administrator, C36/375IA
*Former* owner, C36 tr/fk #255, Santa Barbara, CA

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Southpaws2
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Bruce, the article in the technical section provides good information on how to reseal the chain plates but only as far as removing the old sealant and replacing it with new. This should only be considered a minimum or temporary "fix" for reasons discussed in this and other threads regarding chain plate leaks. If you are going to follow this approach I would suggest you at least take an additional step to create a generous chamfer around the slot shaped hole that the chain plate projects through. This will provide a much better opportunity for the sealant to actually create a seal. Don't forget that the deck bolts can also leak so simply resealing the actual chain plate may not be sufficient. This is not discussed in the technical section article.
As for actually doing the job, because the mast is keel stepped you can safely remove all shrouds at the same time. Probably best only do one side at a time though since it isn't a great deal of fun and you will want a cold beverage or two by the time you complete one side.

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Toronto, Ontario

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto

Talisman
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Could you tell me who in Catalina would know about these new plates. The parts dept in FL don't seem to know about them

Enrique
Talisman
1998 36 MK2 Hull #1673
Tall Rig Wing Keel
M35BC engine
Old Saybrook, CT Summer
South Glastonbury, CT Winter
 

BudStreet
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Call Dani Monterroso[FONT=Arial][SIZE=2][COLOR=navy][COLOR=navy][FONT=Arial]

818 884 7700

email [/FONT][/COLOR][/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]
[FONT=Arial][SIZE=2][COLOR=navy][COLOR=navy][FONT=Arial][EMAIL="dani@catalinayachts.com"]dani@catalinayachts.com[/EMAIL][/FONT][/COLOR][/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT]

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BudStreet
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We got down to the boat today, what a spring we are having. In double digit temperatures now for almost two weeks, snow is all gone. Hoping this spring weather lasts but one never knows. But I digress..

The new chainplate covers did not fit the fore and aft lower chainplates and only 2 of the 4 would even fit the uppers. The problem is the vertical pieces have been bent slightly too short by about 1/16". When they were welded on they are inside the opening on the base plate by enough that they won't go down on the lowers. Someone screwed up on that when building them.

I tried grinding them out on the ends with a dremel grinder but after an hour of wearing out numerous grind stones and still no joy I gave it up. That wouldn't have worked anyway because these things need to be ground back right into the corners and a round bit can't do that.

Tomorrow I am taking them to the aforementioned machine shop to see if they have some magic tool that can cut the ends of the vertical pieces back. So close but not quite there.

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Southpaws2
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Bud: I had a similar problem when I bought the upgraded chain plate covers with the flange from Catalina. They only fit over the center chain plate. I think Catalina made them only as a solution for leaking around the center plates. If you take a close look at your chain plates, you will see that the thickness of the fore and aft chain plates is greater than that of the center one so the problem may not be just with the verticle flange part of the cover. It could be that the hole itself is not big enough. If that is the case, your machine shop guy won't be able to make them fit. Let us know what happens. I am currently working with my buddy Tony to make a completely new chain plate cover that is quite a bit different from what we described doing for his Catalina 34 in this forum. Will post something about it when we are done-hopefully in 2-3 weeks.

Rick Verbeek
Southpaws
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto

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richie30
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I ordered six of these new chain plate top side covers from Catalina direct. Just wondering if I should use 4200 or 5200 from 3 AM to seal them? Thanks, Rich

Rich

Richard & Joan Bain
PAZZO Hull#1670
1997 Catalina 36 MK11
Bayfield, Ontario

My Day Job Below
www.richardbain.com
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