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Author Topic: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut  (Read 431 times)

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Breakin Away

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Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« on: April 16, 2019, 06:05:11 PM »

Hi all,

My boat needs a new prop, shaft, and strut. I think I have good leads on the first two, but the strut is a concern. The boatyard's supplier is planning to source it from Buck Algonquin. I believe that CatalinaDirect has the exact part, with the perfect (square) hole locations and perfect curve of the mounting plate, making for the best possible fit (and least man-hours of work). I know nothing about Buck Algonquin except some online pictures that show "generic" struts with no holes and a flat mounting plate. However, I realize it's also possible that Buck Algonquin might have an identical one to the Catalina/CatalinaDirect, and might even make it for them.

Do any of you guys know about Buck Algonquin as a replacement strut for our boats?
« Last Edit: April 16, 2019, 07:00:27 PM by Breakin Away »
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2001 MkII Breakin' Away, #1535, TR/WK, M35BC, Mantus 35# (at Rock Hall Landing Marina)

Noah

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2019, 06:38:12 PM »

I bought mine at CD. Worked fine.

See pics of install here:
http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,10060.15.html
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KWKloeber

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2019, 05:42:18 AM »

<<However, I realize it's also possible that Buck Algonquin might have an identical one to the Catalina/CatalinaDirect, and might even make it for them. >>

Why not ask CTY parts, should be the first go-to for parts.

Alternatively ask BA if they supplied the strut to CTY.
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scgunner

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2019, 08:25:01 AM »

     I think you answered your own question" I know nothing about Buck Algonquin". On a major component replacement why even think about rolling the dice, go to Catalina Direct and get the right part, you won't be sorry.
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Stu Jackson

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2019, 11:15:31 AM »

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Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2019, 08:20:37 PM »

I though I'd close the loop on this, since I've learned some interesting things since I last posted that will be of interest to anyone else who needs to source a strut in the future.
<<However, I realize it's also possible that Buck Algonquin might have an identical one to the Catalina/CatalinaDirect, and might even make it for them. >>

Why not ask CTY parts, should be the first go-to for parts.

Alternatively ask BA if they supplied the strut to CTY.
I finally found the phone number for Buck Algonquin and called. The guy said they didn't make a strut for Catalina 34.

Then I called Catalina Yachts, and they told me they no longer carry struts because they had gotten rid of them in all their current boat designs. He told me that Buck Algonquin made them for Catalina, and I should call them. (Go figure!)

So I called the guy back at Buck Algonquin to tell them what Catalina told me. He told me he's only been there a few years, and hadn't heard of any struts for them, but there's another guy who has been there for 20 years who would know. Unfortunately, he's out until Monday or Tuesday. I asked if there's any chance they had them in stock, and he said that if they did he'd probably know about it, so I'm most likely looking at 5 to 7 weeks to have one made.

I wasn't going to wait half a week on such a long-shot chance, so I called CatalinaDirect, who had four in stock, and the part will arrive on Monday. I suspect they get them from Buck Algonquin (which is in Stevensville, MD, only about an hour away from my boat), but it's quicker to get it from California.
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Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #6 on: April 27, 2019, 08:26:59 PM »

Hi all,

The strut arrived from Catalina Direct, and it is a close, but not perfect, fit. The pre-drilled holes on the strut are about 1/4" further apart in all directions than the prior strut. Also, the strut's flange is a little too wide at the aft end, and will not allow enough space for any fairing or gelcoat without some trimming of the bronze flange. It looks like the original strut may have been trimmed in a similar way.

The guy at the yard who is doing the work said it may add a few hours of labor, and we agreed that I would check with you guys for suggestions on the best way to proceed.

First of all, I should mention that the strut that we received from CatalinaDirect does not have the raised "CAT 34/36" letters on the port side of the casting as pictured on their website (Neither does Noah's):



Interestingly, the original (bent) strut that was pulled off my boat does have those raised letters. This suggests that CatalinaDirect might have changed sources for this strut since the time they took their pictures.

Regarding narrowing the aft sides of the flange, I assume that this could be easily done by tracing the shape of the old flange onto the new flange, and grinding the metal off the sides using a rotating bench grinder.

Regarding the misplaced holes, the question is whether to enlarge the holes on the strut, or perhaps enlarge the holes in the boat. The locations are really only about 1/8" or so off for each hole, and the bolts from the original strut did not go straight through the hull. The lock nuts and glassed-in backing washers inside the hull are actually further apart than the holes outside the hull, suggesting that the bolts were angled out somewhat from the strut holes. So with the new strut's holes further apart, it might be possible to leave the backing washers in their current place inside the hull and just "cone out" the holes in the hull a little bit to allow the bolts to penetrate the hull at a different angle from the pre-drilled holes on the strut. Obviously, sealant would be called for in the enlarged holes, and of course, fairing compound and gelcoat would further help to seal the whole thing off. I think that this would be better and quicker than trying to expand the holes in the metal. But it all must be done carefully to preserve the alignment with minimal adjustment of the motor mounts.

How does this suggested procedure compare to others who have done this project? (Noah?)
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KWKloeber

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #7 on: April 27, 2019, 10:41:43 PM »

breakin

Can you C-clamp them together (upside down) and w/an angle grinder bring the new strut down to the face of the original?  To rough it anyway, field fine tune it w/ the angle grinder.

Why do you need a new strut?

I don't feel that strongly about not enlarging the strut holes - kinda a play-action call. 
But from the sideline I think IIWMB I'd plan it the other way:

  • Enlarge the hull holes so that they center where you need them to be. Oversize them (by 1/4? inch diameter.)

  • Rout out polyester/glass just like you are installing a deck thru fastener. (RC's method to install fittings.) LEAVE an inside and outside skin in place.

  • Fill using Mas Epoxy w/microfibers. (so you'll have an epoxy sandwich [stronger] rather than an epoxy plug [weaker.]

    RC's pic inverted.)

  • redrill, countersink, butyl, fair.  Sail.
Epoxy potting and butyl underneath the fairing is belt and suspenders.

-k
« Last Edit: April 27, 2019, 10:43:07 PM by KWKloeber »
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Twenty years from now you'll be more disappointed by the things you didn't do, than by the ones you did.
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Noah

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2019, 08:44:41 AM »

I would trust your yard/insurance company/surveyor. My yard had no trouble using the strut provided. The hole alignment and fairing were not an issue for them and the yard informed me before I ordered the replacement CD strut that “it didn’t make a difference to them if they used a ‘predrilled’ strut or ‘blank’ strut, they do strut replacements regularly and they would adjust what was necessary, if required”. Apparently, it was NOT a big issue.  The work area was tented most of the time to protect surrounding users/environment against toxic micro balloons grinding dust, so I can’t give you anymore info than my close-up step-by-step pics posted previously. On my boat, all worked out well; new strut tight, in alignment and faired smoothly.  Good luck. Any pics of bent/damaged running gear parts before replacement?
« Last Edit: April 28, 2019, 08:57:10 AM by Noah »
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Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2019, 05:38:09 PM »

Thanks for all the advice. It's real helpful. I'm not going to micromanage the yard pro, but he did ask my advice on the hole positioning issue for the strut, so I'm going to advice him pretty much along KWK's line of reasoning. I'm heading out of town on business in a week, and he's not going to have it done before then, so I'm looking at two more weeks before repairs are complete. I'm not going to hassle him over that, because I want it done right and not a rush job. It's clear from the things I see changing every time I go there that he's "getting his ducks in a row" to start work, and he also needs to prepare an updated quote for the insurance company before starting work.

I went down to the boat twice this weekend to check things out and re-measure some stuff. The strut/hull holes are all VERY close to the correct position - like within about 1/8". I think it will be much easier to move the holes in the boat than in the bronze. The new strut's flange is definitely too wide and will need to be tapered a bit. When you look closely at the original strut, it's clear that it was also manually tapered to fit within the little "keel" that's built into the hull there.
Why do you need a new strut?
Severely bent during impact with submerged log. Based on the ~8"x8' cross section I saw churning around behind the boat after the impact, it was a railroad tie.
Any pics of bent/damaged running gear parts before replacement?
See below. Some of these pics are from the original haulout, and some are more recent after the removal of old shaft/strut and receipt of the new parts:

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Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2019, 05:40:07 PM »

More pics from post-damage survey...
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Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2019, 05:41:39 PM »

Pictures taken today, after shaft/strut removal and receipt of some parts:
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KWKloeber

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2019, 05:51:13 PM »

Yowsa.  Submerged is ok.  Semi submerged are the bitch.

 But what’s a little bend here and there.  Easier to make turns or compensate for prop wash. 🙄
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Twenty years from now you'll be more disappointed by the things you didn't do, than by the ones you did.
So throw off the bowlines.  Sail away from the safe harbor.  Catch the tradewinds in your sails.
Explore.  Dream.  Discover.   -Mark Twain

Breakin Away

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Re: Urgent: Sourcing a new strut
« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2019, 06:08:01 PM »

By the way, I applied my insurance company's prop allowance toward a Flexofold prop. Prop was ordered Tuesday, and arrived Friday. So AFAIK, all parts are here (strut, shaft, prop, packing box).

I looked at a few of the flexible coupler options described here, but decided to let them just do a like-for-like replacement on that part (one-piece solid steel coupler). I did't want to complicate things for the yard too much beyond what I've already done with the unfamiliar prop design.
« Last Edit: April 28, 2019, 06:09:56 PM by Breakin Away »
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