Rebedding Deck Hardware Part 3: applying 4200 and cleanup

It is always fun to drill holes in you boat … not!

Re-drilling the holes took only a few minutes.  Be sure to drill the hole ‘straight’ in relation to the curve on the desk.  I conducted a ‘dry fit’ of the hardware to confirm the holes are correctly placed.  I did fine and everything fit perfectly!

The next step was to tape the hardware and deck to keep excess bedding compound (I used 3M 4200) from sticking where it is not needed.  It is VERY important to do this taping step as 4200 will stick to EVERYTHING. A good taping job makes for painless cleanup.  I used 3M/Scotch ‘blue tape’ as it has a clean and sharp edge, and can be removed without leaving ‘goo’ behind even after a few days.  ‘Standard’ masking tape will dry and stick to the deck in just a few hours … especially in direct sunlight.

Just before rebedding clean the contact locations on the deck and hardware I cleaned the hardware contact points with acetone.  This was to remove any waxes or films that may have interfered with the creation of a good seal.

I created a work table out of a square of cardboard and set out my working tools before starting: nuts, washers, bolts (for the cleats), 4200, adhesive cleaner, lots of rags, gloves (and extras), socket wrench (for the nuts), screwdriver (for the cleat bolts), and a razor blade.

First I put on gloves … you don’t want this adhesive on your hands!

I set the handrails in place with the bolts holding the assembly about 1/2-inch off the deck.

A 3 oz tube of 4200 was perfect for this project.  I cut the ‘syringe’ for the tube for a large opening.

Starting with the cleats I applied 4200 to the deck, bolts and bolt-heads.  Setting the cleat in-place wiggle and press slightly to set the hardware, then insert the bolts.  In the cabin place the washers and nuts.  I was careful not to turn the bolt.  The screwdriver held the bolt still and turn the nut with the socket wrench.  At this stage I set the nut ‘snug’.  I did not set the nuts tight.  I was making a ‘custom gasket’ of 4200 under the hardware.  By not setting the fittings tight this leaves some 4200 between the deck and hardware.  If I set everything tight ALL the 4200 would have been forced from the joint … and I would not have created a waterproof seal.  A good amount of 4200 will came out at the deck/cleat joint.  The excess 4200 using my finger … yes, i was wearing the gloves!

larger washers cleats
The four bolts and washers for the cleats are in the center of this picture.  I installed larger diameter washers as a stronger ‘backing plate’.  Far right you can see the size of smaller washers as installed by Jerry.

For the handrails I applied the 4200 around the bolts and on the deck in the masked area.  I then gently pushed and wiggled the handrail fully into place.  In the cabin I placed the washers and bolts.  As with the cleats the hardware is set snug, NOT tight.  The bolt is kept from turning by the teak.  I didn’t use so much force as to ‘break loose’ the bolts.  A good amount of 4200 came out at the deck/handrail joints.  I again removed the excess 4200 using my finger … again wearing the gloves!

Now I cleaned up any 4200 that dripped onto the deck, or anyplace else, using the adhesive cleaner.  I was amazed how many spots i found!  I did cleanup prior to the 4200 setting.

Another ‘wait period’ to allow the 4200 to set.  4200 sets depending on the temperature.  Cool spring weather meant waiting till the next morning (about 16 hours after bedding).  I used a razor blade to cut around the base of each piece of hardware.  Being careful to cut around the hardware, NOT under the joint, I then removed the blue tape.

excess removed one
Note the evidence of white 4200 round the heads of the cleat bolts.  Important to prevent water from running down the bolt and leaking into the cabin.

I waited another 30 or so hours to tighten the hardware.  Waiting allows the 4200 ‘custom gasket’ to fully set.  By tightening everything two days I created a tight, waterproof seal.  The deck hardware was now re-bedded!

excess removed three

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