Keel Bolts

We just saw this article from Waterline systems that may hold your attention. Something to talk about over the weekend. I’ve cut and pasted the text, but the actual article is here
Maintenance Bulletin
Keel Bolts
Keel Bolt Maintenance Bulletin
There aren’t many maintenance areas that are more important, or more often overlooked than keel bolts. This is true for every
boat, but particularly so for J/22s, J/24s and J/80s, all of which routinely hoist the boats in and out of the water using the bolts.
Failure of any keel bolt is bad, but most bolts are part of a massively redundant system, where the failure of any one bolt is rarely
immediately catastrophic. For boats that are hoisted, the failure of a bolt holding the lifting gear can be catastrophic and has the
potential to lead to the loss of the boat, or much, much worse.
While this article is being distributed to USWatercraft and J/Boats customers, it applies to virtually all production boats, regardless
of builder or brand. If they use Stainless Steel keelboats and most of them do, it applies. Feel free to pass it along to your
friends and fellow boat owners. It’s pretty important.
Since they live in the bilge, keel bolts can fall into the category of “out of sight, out of mind”. It is because they live in the bilge that
they need routine care and attention.
J/22 keels are made using 316 Stainless Steel threaded rod, which is cast into the lead. The nuts, washers and lifting bar are made
using 304 Stainless and are then electro polished. This has been the industry standard for many years, and has provided many
years of service life.

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