Quick-connect links

Anchors should be attached to rodes using a proper anchor shackle.  Anchor shackles are “C” shaped to provide greater freedom of movement, as opposed to chain shackles (which are more U shaped) or quick-connect chain links, such as the one shown.  Quick-connect links are used to join chain only, and should be considered a temporary … Read More

Mysterious Leaks

Cabin leaks are never a good thing, and this one is no exception.  The owner stated brown fluid oozed out of the cabin roof at infrequent intervals – sometimes after a good rain, other times after the boat was healed while sailing.  Investigation revealed the coach roof and cabin side coring showed high moisture readings.  … Read More

Deck-Stepped Mast Failure

The cored deck beneath this stepped mast is failing, a problem typically associated with deteriorated coring caused by water intrusion.  Note the deck depression and cracks in the fiberglass around the base of the mast.

Rotten to the core

“Mounting hardware directly through cored decking without taking the proper precautions is just asking for trouble. Here a leaky lifeline stanchion has caused the coring beneath its base to rot. The mounting nuts are drawn up so tight they’re crushing the panel, no doubt an attempt by the owner to not only keep the stanchion … Read More

We Don’t Need No Stinking Backing Plates!

Underside view of an anchor cleat for a mid-sized power boat. The mounting hardware washers are woefully inadequate, verging on ridiculous for a cleat expected to support the strain associated with anchoring. Larger washers, or better yet a backing plate, is called for here.

Improper Shackle Mousing

Mousing shackle pins with stainless steel wire to keep them from unscrewing is always a good idea, however it needs to be done correctly. Contrary to the photo below, the mousing wire should pass through the pin and around the shackle itself, not through the chain (which will work and eventually break the wire).

Incorrect Swivel Installation

Swivels are installed between anchor and rode to prevent twisting (particularly when chain is used), however many boaters are unaware they can be installed incorrectly, as in the photo below. Ensure the jaw fitting of the swivel is attached to the chain, not the anchor shank – the swivel eye will be attached to the … Read More