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Inspection port advice

Weston

Well-Known Member
I always use at least some SS bolts but on my ‘71, when installing a port near the daggerboard there were so many layers of extra fiberglass folded onto itself where I cut the hole that I used SS screws in some spots, as there was certainly enough material to bite into.
 
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mixmkr

Well-Known Member
If you ever feel like you'd ever reach in there, you might consider an appropriate length bolt or put a dab of caulk over the nut or screw end. Might save you from grabbing something to wipe the blood off the back of your hand!
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
+1 on what mixmkr said, no one needs 6 pointy rusty metal spikes hidden in that area. We use marine stainless machine screw, #8-32 size with a washer and nylock nut. There is a Goldilocks length, too short and there are not enough threads, too long and a regular size socket won't stay on the nut long enough to get the screw snug.

Take your deck plate with you to the hardware store some ports have countersunk holes and some have squared bottoms. I think the length we like was around 1 1/2 inches, we eventually bought a deep well socket to use specifically on plate installations. And buy 1-2 extra nylocks and washers, because most likely one may disappear into the bilge.

Check out our video series for some tips:


You can also put blue tape on the jigsaw foot plate vs on the deck to prevent scratches to the gelcoat.

Wear long sleeve shirt if you plan to reach inside the port to work with the raw fiberglass edge.

Alex and Cort.jpg
 

signal charlie

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Another tip is to not tighten the outer screws (L-R) all the way, they may pull the ring of the port out of plane and the cap is harder to install. Fill any resulting tiny gaps with sealant.



 

Alan S. Glos

Well-Known Member
I use aluminum pop rivets, 1/8"dia. and long enough to allow using a matching aluminum washer under hew deck to increase holding power. Finish with a dab of silicon goop on the rivet hole to prevent leaking. Fast, cheap and effective.

Alan Glos
Cazenovia, NY
 

L&VW

Well-Known Member
If you ever feel like you'd ever reach in there, you might consider an appropriate length bolt or put a dab of caulk over the nut or screw end. Might save you from grabbing something to wipe the blood off the back of your hand!
How are blood stains removed from gelcoat? :confused:
 
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