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Milbs Mobile Projects

Stay current on all Milbs Mobile Marine field work.

Project Detail: A Field Blog



Project Scope: This blog will cover the latest work being performed offsite.

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5) CD 27 - Removal of the Port Side Mild Steel Backing Plate

January 13, 2024

Days earlier, I took a test run on removing the port side pad-eye through-bolts, which secure the backing plate (to the deck) and webbing (to the hull to help distribute the rigging load). My test run included a soaking of PB Blaster, and the use of a large flathead screwdriver with the occasional persuasive tap of a hammer. Parts did not want to separate during that test run. I knew the impact driver would in persuading the bolts to release their grip...or was it the grip of the dissimilar metals of the mild steel backing plate and stainless through-bolts?
During the days away from Doryen, I ordered and received a high-strength flathead driver bit. It was a wide bit for the oversized through-bolts, spanning nearly the entire diameter. With a few taps on the bolts from below, I returned to the deck and used the impact driver by alternating forward and reverse until the bolts broke free from their rust seized condition. I backed all bolts out, labeled them along with their respective pad-eye, and set them aside. I finished by securely taping the deck penetrations to prevent water ingress while the work continued.
With the through-bolts and pad-eyes removed, I went back into the salon to remove the mild steel backing plate. After a significant amount of trimming, prying, and boat yoga, I was finally able to remove the 1/2" plate. It came out, for the most part, in one piece - the aft section was very badly corroded and crumbled away as I slide it out of its ~50-year home. The backing plates measured 1/2" thick by 3.5" wide, and some ~32" in length. The new backing plates will be made of G-10 (high-strength composite), and glassed to the hull with a laminate schedule of 1708 biaxial fiberglass cloth, replicating the load transfer from rig to hull.

Total Hrs: 4.25

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