Would it make sense to get somebody with a high tech imaging device
make the rounds of boats on local yards and we share his/her cost
:: This is a very sobering failure and a reminder to never :: stand under boats that are on the hoist. Tough news for :: Tom & the Witchy gang... :: :: For those who haven't seen it, you'd be proud how well :: the boat held up despite the fall onto pavement. The :: rudder is ruined, the keel needs repair (and presumably :: new keel bolts), but the hull itself suffered only a few :: minor scratches (at least that I could see from the :: outside). :: :: I believe Larry Tuttle at Waterat has the molds and/or :: templates for making new rudders and has done so :: recently. :: :: Making a new keel could be more problematic. I'm not :: sure if the keel mold was with the rest of the E27 :: molds, or if it even exists any more. Dave Wahle in :: Watsonville would know, probably. Hopefully the keel can :: be saved and repaired. :: :: As far as maintenance and prevention: Everyone should be :: aware that keel bolts are not maintenance free. :: Periodically (annually?) the bolts should be carefully :: torqued. To torque the bolts holding the hoisting strap, :: the strap must first be removed. I was unable to find a :: specific torque for these nuts, but the consensus among :: the experts was to torque them tightly with a short :: (approx 24") 'cheater pipe' or breaker bar. Be sensitive :: to galling and don't torque them hard enough to damage :: them. You will need a deep socket (3/4" I think), a long :: (12") extension, and a 1/2" socket wrench with cheater :: pipe. It takes only about 10 minutes. :: :: I recently replaced all the nuts and washers on my keel :: bolts (one at a time--don't pull all the nuts at once). :: If possible, the keel bolts should be completely dried :: and sealed against water intrusion before the new washer :: and nut are installed. :: :: Crevice corrosion in stainless bolts is a nasty :: insidious problem and very hard to predict or inspect :: for. I've seen a lot of stainless fasteners fail with :: very little signs of inspectable corrosion. So even if :: we could see the keel bolts (which we can't without :: removing the keel), it would be hard to know for sure if :: they were compromised without dye testing or some modern :: imaging. There may be some possibility of x-ray or :: imaging technologies that could inspect keel bolts :: without detatching the keel, but I don't know if any is :: available locally (or affordably). :: :: Though eye nuts on neighboring keel bolts sound :: promising (and available--Fastenal sells 3/4" stainless :: eye nuts with 4700lb working strength), care should be :: given to placing loads on the keel bolts not intended by :: the designer. All the keel bolts in our Expresses may :: not be bedded equally in the keel (the hoisting bolts :: may be better supported), and side loads should be :: avoided. That said, Get Happy!! (hull #1) has the :: hoisting strap attached to different keel bolts than all :: the other E27s I've seen and so far no problems... :: :: We are all wishing the best for the fast and effective :: repair of Witchy Woman.