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Topics - togve

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Main Message Board / new chain plate design is now on youtube
« on: January 11, 2012, 04:32:50 PM »
Since last season the good old 34 has been covered up waiting for spring. In the meantime I have put the New chain plate design on youtube. The new design worked as I expected and we had some fun sailing in _ 35 not winds this past season. Next spring I will install centre Cleats in the tow rails. and I'll post the process.

Here is the link for the New chain Plate design:

Main Message Board / 34 verses 355
« on: May 25, 2011, 07:40:06 AM »
Just had a ride on the new 355. Very impressive standing rigging, very solid and stiff. More robust than the 34 and 36.Topside mounting chain plates won't leak. I was not in favor of in mast furling but this one works well and it has quite a large main sail. Sails like a Catalina very familiar to the 36 and 34.Points well in 18 Knot winds. Upscale interior looks very classy. The new toe rail is a nice feature and finally Catalina put in centre cleats , Yee-a. That's my impression of this new model. If your not going to build any more 36s and 34s then I think this is a good replacement.

Hi all

I thought I would share some news on the new chain plate install. They were all installed and rigged to the shrouds on May 6/11.

  Every thing went smoothly until a few days ago. Since they were installed on May6 it has none stop rained in the lake Ontario region. As I was checking for leaks ,,, well the last chain plate I installed was leaking like a tap. I scratched my head a few time and then decided to remove the problem child from the deck . To my surprise I forgot to butyl the shroud bar. The bolts were butyled but not the bar. After a bit of ribbing by my fellow sailors I reinstalled the chain plate again this time with butyl around the shroud bar and it is still raining here and I'm happy to report that it too is now NOT leaking. Because of all the rain I have not been able to sail test the boat , but I'm hoping to, this Saturday.

I'll keep you posted after the first sail with the new plates.


Main Message Board / New Chain Plate design – Installation and setup
« on: April 25, 2011, 07:15:37 PM »
New Chain Plate design – Installation and setup

We have previously posted our new chain design (Apr 8 and 12, 2011), how to remove the original chain plates and prepare the deck for installation of the new ones (Apr 17, 2011). We now describe the installation.,6288.0.html,6266.0.html

[added links, Stu  1/10/2013]

Step 1 – Sealing the New Chain Plate to the Deck

This may very well be the most controversial step.  We made a 1/8” thick gasket out of “fast cure” 3M 5200 by applying a layer to the underside of the deck plate then compressing it against the deck through the deck slot hole.  We used plastic food wrap on the deck to keep the 5200 from sticking.  The food wrap was easily removed once the 5200 cured. Then we applied butyl tape under the washer of the through-bolt, and the under side of the deck plate at the through bolt and the shroud bar. (Image 1 and 2))

Step 2 – Installing the New Chain plate

We used 3/8 x 2 ½ ” through-bolts (probably 2 ¼” would suffice) to compress the deck between the deck plate and the backing plate.  Do not apply any sealant to the backing plate. Next we attached the toggles to the shroud bar.

Step 3 – Re-installing tie rods

We had to shorten the tie rods and rethread them by 3 inches due to the extra length gained by the toggles. We reinstalled the tie rods into their original position using the original nut with a lock washer followed by a ny-lock nut.  Don’t forget to first put on the angled washer that was originally there.  (Image 3) The torque adjustment on the tie rods  was 150 inch-lbs (12.5 foot-lbs) which translated to 1090 lbs of force on the deck. This led to the deck depressing by 0.090 inches.  This was accomplished by approximately two complete turns of the tie rod nut which approximates what is done on the new C355 according to advice we received from Catalina.  (Catalina was not able to provide us with similar information regarding the C34.)

This completes the installation.  (Image 4 and 5) Our next report will be on the sea trials we carry out over the next couple of months.  Tony being the main instigator of all this would be happy to discuss this project offline with anyone who is looking for more in-depth information.
Tony Germin
1997 C34 #1331

Rick Verbeek
1999 C36 #1763

Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto, Ontario

We recently posted our ideas for redesigning the leaky chain plates on the C34 and C36 (1990-2003) models on this main message board on Apr 8 and the final design on Apr 12.  In speaking to some fellow sailors it appears as if the problematic chain plate design goes back even further.  They are currently being installed on Tony’s C34.  Here we describe removing the old chain plates and readying the deck for the new ones.

Removing the old chain plates

Our experience is with the C34 however the C36 is the same in this regard except for the center chain plate on the C36 which is a long bar with several bolts through the bulkhead (rather than the tie rods connecting the other chain plates to the hull).  Access to and removing the tie rods is straight forward.  Remove the nut from the "L" beam attachment end of the tie rod and then unscrew it from the chain plate itself.  

To remove the actual chain plate: 1) Remove the small cover plate on the deck.  Get under it with a putty knife to break the seal or else you risk lifting away some of the gel coat (esp if they have been rebedded with 3M 5200 in the past as was found with one of them.) 2) Remove the nuts and the through bolts holding the chain plate to the deck. 3) Break the seal between the bottom plate of the chain plate and the underside of the deck (putty knife again).  (Note that the bottom plate should never have been sealed but it was in this case by the previous owner). 4) Work the chain plate loose from inside the cabin.  

You will be left with a rectangular hole (“slot”) which requires cleaning.   Note the black (i.e. mildew) staining we found on the removed chain plate (Image 1) and on the underside of the deck (i.e ceiling of the salon) (Image 2).  Mildew = leaking.
Readying the deck
Next steps are:
1)   Remove old sealant
The slot was cleaned using a rotary tool with a cleaning bit. (Image 3)  Luckily we didn’t notice any rot in the wood core but look for this and remove what you can.  If it turns out there is rot beyond reach, then you have a bigger job to do than just worrying about the chain plate.
2)   Mask slot hole from inside the cabin then coat the inner core with thickened epoxy.  (This is the part that should have been done in the Catalina factory during production).   When it is cured, remove the masking tape and use a rotary tool to remove the epoxy that pooled and cured around masking tape.

3)   Next use a rotary tool to create a chamfer around the slot hole on the topside of deck. (Image 4)
4)   Since the deck through bolts often also leak, drill out these bolt holes using a 5/8” bit, use a 1” counter sink to create a chamfer (Image 5) then fill the hole with epoxy, allow it to and redrill with a 3/8” bit to fit the through bolts.   
Clean with acetone. This will result in the deck being ready to receive the new chain plates.  Note this process can be followed even if you are simply going to re-install your original chain plates.

Our next posting will discuss the chain plate re-installation process we followed.

Tony Germin          
1997 C34 #1331      

Rick Verbeek
1999 C36 #1763

Lakeshore Yacht Club
Toronto, Ontario

Main Message Board / New chain plate design V2.1
« on: April 12, 2011, 07:27:27 PM »

New chain plate design Version 2.1

We recently posted our initial ideas for a new chain plate design on the C34 and C36 websites. As expected we got great feedback. We have progressed to producing the chain plates which we will be installing next weekend.  (See image).  The main features of the updated chain plate design are:  1) A deck plate portion that is welded to the vertical shroud bar part of the chain plate and will not allow any water seepage.  The deck plate also accommodates the deck bolts which increase the surface area for sealant and allows compression of the deck plate against the deck.  2) A similar sized backing plate to sandwich the deck between the deck and back plate.  3)  A full sized toggle to connect the shroud bar to the tie rod.

When installed, the new chain plate design will accomplish two essential goals: 1)  A seal to eliminate water ingress into the slot hole in the deck which could ultimately compromise the deck core. (This is what we are all trying to avoid. 2) The ability to tension the tie rods beyond what is currently done out of the factory which just beyond hand tight.  This will tension the triangle formed by the tie rod, outer hull, and deck and result in a stiffer hull.  Under sailing conditions this will decrease the relative movement between the chain plate and the hull which will further preserve the integrity of the seal between the deck plate and the deck itself.

All else aside we think the new design will look great and will be a real conversation piece with other C34 and C36 owners.

Tony Germin
1997 C34 #1331
Rick Verbeek
1999 C36 #1763
Lakeshore Yacht Club

Main Message Board / new chain plate design to stop leaks
« on: April 08, 2011, 02:46:13 PM »
Chain plates on Catalina 34 and 36 from 1990 to 2003

Ah, the age old problem of leaky deck stuff.  Particularly the chain plate design of the Catalina 34 and 36 from 1990 to 2003.  (Discussions with our Catalina sailor friends suggest the problem may precede 1990.)

The problem:

The design of the chain plates which are mounted from the interior of the boat on both the Catalina 34 and the 36 are, in my opinion, problematic in their ability to hold back the water which accumulates on the deck.  The centre chain plate on the C36 is actually a long bar bolted to the bulkhead but the general design problem is the same. (See Image 1 - Original Chain Plate Design)[attach=#]

Three design flaws come to mind.

Firstly, the current design of chain plate attempts to seal the bottom plate from underside of the deck (i.e. the inside the boat).  Eventually the sealant fails allowing water to make its way down the shroud bar to sit on the bottom plate where it can penetrate into to wood core of the deck or leak directly into the cabin.  Penetration into the wood core occurs because the core was never sealed with epoxy after the slot was cut through the deck during installation.
 Secondly, the holes for the two 3/8” bolts are only protected by 3/8” washers, resulting in a small foot print with which to attempt a proper seal from the deck side.  The deck core of the bolt holes was likewise never sealed which can lead to further water penetration into the core of the deck.

Thirdly, the tension on the threaded rod (not seen in the photo) is pulling the current bottom plate away from the underside of the deck. When sail pressure is removed or the shrouds are removed for storage, this   tension tends to pull the bottom plate away from the underside of the deck and depresses the 3/8 washers into the deck, due to their small area.  This will ruin the seals meant to prevent leaks.

Similarly, when there is counter tension from the shrouds as the mast is up, the nuts at the bottom end of the rod are tight and the deck is at a neutral position. When you remove the counter tension from the chain plate by taking off the shrouds, or sailing in strong winds, the leeward shroud will lose tension and the rod tension is pulling on the two bolts and the washers on the top deck . Therefore it is critical to have the correct tension, and more importantly spread this load over a wider area so as to not have vertical movement of the screws or plate.

The solution: The first step to widen the slot in the deck, bevel the slot at the top side and seal the wood core with a coating of epoxy. This needs to be done in order to protect the plywood core from getting wet and eventually rotting. This is not a function of a new design but rather the right thing to do to protect the plywood.

The same needs to be done with the 3/8” bolt holes. Drill two 5/8” holes, bevel the top side of the hole, and fill with a liquid epoxy. Allow this to set, and drill new 3/8” holes.

A redesigned chain plate would have the bottom plate become a deck plate welded to the vertical bar (Image 2 - Deck Plate).  This chain plate will be inserted from the top of the deck and can now be sealed over a larger area rather than the small 3/8” bolt washers  that contact the deck in the current design. [attach=#]

Attaching the threaded rod to the vertical bar of the redesigned chain plate, and tensioning it, will pull the deck plate to the deck and the sealant will be trapped under the deck plate. The pressure on the deck will be widely distributed therefore improving the seal. Proper tension must be applied to this plate, as the counter tension of the shroud will affect this setting. Water now has a longer path to penetrate through the underside of the plate to reach the slot and bolt holes. Using a butyl tape or butyl putty will help to keep this seal flexible.

Remember the area under the deck plate is under pressure from the tightening of the nut at the end of the threaded rod. This pressure will also help to keep the seal under this plate. Because there is constant pressure on this plate, I feel that a glue type sealant is not necessary. Butyl putty will stay flexible and sticky for a long time and it will allow easy removal if necessary.

The last trick is now to attach the threaded rod in a manner that will self align the rod to the chain plate.

I propose an articulating joint using a toggle (Image 3 - Toggle). This joint connects to the bottom of the new chain plate. [attach=#]

Presently I’m working on this design. The goal is to have these new chain plates installed on our 1997 Catalina 34 for 2011 season. I will report any failures or successes so stay tuned.

Tony Germin /  Rick Verbeek
1997 C34 #G697
Lakeshore Yacht Club

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