Catalina 34

General Activities => Main Message Board => Topic started by: Gary Brockman on April 25, 2009, 11:10:23 PM

Title: New Traveler Installation
Post by: Gary Brockman on April 25, 2009, 11:10:23 PM
I have a question for those of you who have installed the 9" traveler bolts thru the cabin top.  Did you use a 1/4" bit all the way thru and ruin the threads in the metal plate or did use the threads as well as thru-bolting the bolts?

Since my original traveler never had the 9" thru-bolts installed, I wanted to install them when I replaced my original traveler with a new Garhauer traveler. Garhauer make me two 9 1/2" bolts by welding 3" bolts to thread stock so that I could thread the bolts into the metal plate in the traveler bridge as they passed thru the hole I drilled thru the cabin top for added holding power. I used a long 3/16" drill bit to go thru the existing holes into the cabin so as to preserve the threads and then used a long 1/4" bit to enlarge the holes from inside the cabin up to the metal plate.

My problem is that when I screwed the bolts into the metal plate, they did not line up exactly with the 1/4" holes I made from the inside. Am I just wasting my time trying to preserve the threads or should I just drill straight thru with the 1/4" bit?


 - Gary -
Title: Re: New Traveler Installation
Post by: Stu Jackson on April 26, 2009, 08:12:45 AM
Hi, Gary,

You may have yet a third option.

It took me a few readings of your topic to understand that you have an interesting situation that is different than what most of us faced when we added the long through bolts.  When the "bolting" was identified as an issue back in the late 80s (and IIRC Jim Moe noted it on his C30 as well), most of us did not remove our travelers.  Rather, we used one of the next inboard holes in the traveler track that was inboard of the fixed traveler end stops to drill down through the traveler pedestal (bridge) and the cabin top.  'Least that's what I did, and it worked out pretty well because the port bolt came through the inside in the cabin just inboard of the teak head door assembly.  The other, of course, came in over the galley.  I put an acorn nut on the bottom of the galley bolt, but the head door won't swing open with an acorn nut on that bolt, it just barely passes the bottom of the bolt. 

What this means is that on our boat we have two "hold-downs" on each side for the traveler track: the original short bolts through the embedded threaded deck plates in the pedestal PLUS the newer inboard bolts.  This is what I recall the suggestions were from the skippers who identified the issue and recommended it be done.  The 9 inch long bolt that I ordered from Catalina Yachts was not an all thread, just a long bolt with threads up the bottom 1/4 of its length - at least that's what I remember. 

In your case, Garhauer did you a favor by supplying the long bolts all threaded (or the top and bottom ends at least) for you to thread through the embedded threaded deck plates in the pedestal all the way through to inside the cabin.  This is a neat idea, and should provide the necessary holding power by being both through bolted all the way plus being through the threaded plate.

Options 1 & 2:  It appears you have those two choices you mentioned:  1) drill out the threads to let you line up with the holes you already made below; or 2) use the threads and make yet second holes below to line up and secure them.

Since you now will have only one "holding bolt" per side for the new traveler track, I recommend that you invest the "time trying to preserve the threads" in the pedestal, and make the second hole(s) down below if you can find the bottom of the new threaded-through bolts, then fill the holes that didn't work.  The reason I suggest this is that since you'll only have the one bolt on each side, you will obtain the strongest of the two options 'cuz you will have the benefit of the threaded plate plus the through bolt with its support from the washers inside the cabin.  Then fill the "wrong" holes you've made below with appropriately colored epoxy or some material to visually make them disappear, unless bigger fender washers down below can cover them up.  Of course, this is the harder way, but it seems that from your question you have found a way to do so.  I'd be interested in how to can manage to do it.

Option 3: Another third choice you have is to do what I did.  Use the existing short bolts (which I recall were under the end stops) and put them through the existing embedded threaded deck plates in the pedestal (just like it was before you started this project), and then drill new holes further inboard as we did.  It will not employ Garhauer's idea, and simply uses the new all-thread bolts as "regular" long bolts, but this option will give you the double bolts on each side - belts, suspenders and draw strings are never too much when the traveler track support is the issue. 

Regardless of how you do it, please ensure that you caulk the bottom of the traveler track over the pedestal.  I ended up with a leak that manifested itself in the dorade hole that I eventually tracked down to the traveler track, so I had to lift the track to reseal it a few years later.  I hadn't considered that when I drilled the holes and added the bolts earlier.

One of the considerations however you end up doing it is where the hole on the port side ends up being located down below with the teak head door assembly.  As long as you "miss" the teak, it seems that the bolt should be either inside the head or just forward of the bulkhead between the head and the nav station.

Glad to know that you're aware of that "enhancement" and are doing it. :thumb: 

Your topic may encourage folks who have older boats to check to see if their POs have done this, and, if not, do it right away.  As I recall, this was one of the first holes I ever drilled in my then new-to-me boat, and I still have that looooong drill bit I bought from Ace Hardware!  At least the holes were above the waterline!!! :D
Title: Re: New Traveler Installation
Post by: Gary Brockman on April 26, 2009, 10:36:09 PM
Stu -

Thanks for the information.  I am going to continue to try to have the thru-bolts use the threads in the metal plates if at all possible. When I used the long bit to go thru into the cabin on the starboard side, over a pint of water came out of the hole. It seems it had leaked into the traveller pedestal and was trapped there until I drilled my hole. When I drilled out the hole on the port side no water came out. I think this was because my port dorade vent leaked inside the boat after the last rain storm like yours did and the water must have come from the pedestal.

My original traveller had three screws in each side and Garhauer duplicated the hole pattern in the new traveller for me. I have used two short screws in the outboard holes on each side that go into the metal plate as before. It is the inboard hole on each side I am trying to use the threads and thru-bolt.

The thru-bolt on the starboard side over the galley is easy to work with an acorn nut. On the port side, the hole is above the inboard side of the chart table behind the head door when it is opened all the way but the head door does not have very much clearance and I will probably use a flat nut there.

I was not able to drill additional new inboard holes in the pedestal for the thru-bolts as a PO had drilled holes (fore & aft) on the inboard sides of the pedestal and inserted pvc pipe into the holes as a lining to serve as additional line fairleads (Mainsheet and main halyard).

I will take a picture next week of how it comes out.

 - Gary -
Title: Re: New Traveler Installation
Post by: Hawk on April 28, 2009, 12:28:41 PM

I just completed installing my Garhauer traveller upgrade on the weekend. Looks and feels like it will operate superbly. We have a 5 boat sail planned for Thursday (4 days) Vancouver to Tumbo/Saturna Island. Looks like sunny and 10 to 20kn.....traveller should get a good trial run.

Ps. I had one very stubborn top securing screw on the old port sheave. I busted two hardened bits on the impact driver and was considering grinding it off, notwithstanding generous doses of PB Blaster for several days,.......then I thought, hey isn't that why I have those nice skookum vice grips.
Moral: PB Blaster and good vice grips!