Keel Bolts - Inspecting Tightening
By Bob Kuba, Quiet Island #1291 (1994)
Link to tool source (Stu 2/20/13): http://c34.org/bbs/index.php/topic,7356.0.html
Keel Bolts, Out of sight and out of mind.
This is a project that should be on your commissioning list, before your boat goes in the water. Ensure that your keel bolts have the proper amount of torque on them.
Wing and Fin Keels
Same value, torque to 107 ft. lbs.
- Torque wrench (You can rent for a day from many auto-parts supply stores)
- 9" extension bar
- 1 1/8" 6 point deep socket - 1/2" drive.
Not all keel studs are created equal. Before purchasing a socket measure your longest keel bolt assembly from the bottom of the nut to the top of the stud. Some boats have short studs and others have much longer studs.
- The "standard" deep socket from Sears is 3 1/4" tall. ($10.69)
- Measuring from the bottom of the nut to the top of the stud It will accomodate a height of approximately 2 1/2 inches.
- Snap-on Tools ($60.75)
- Their deep specialty socket is 5" tall
- Measuring from the bottom of the nut to the top of the stud It will accomodate a height of approximately 4 1/4 inches.
- Custom Socket ($25 - $35)
- If your longest stud is taller than 4 1/4" there is an easy solution. Purchase the Sears deep socket and take it to a local welding shop and have them cut it in half and extend it to 5 1/2", or more using a piece of steel pipe. It works, and for about a third the price of a specialty socket.