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BuffaloBill

Nice pair of cleats...

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Ok. Got your attention did'nt it ;)

I would like to fit a pair of cleats to the centre of the boat but I'm unsure

as to whether I need to fit something to the underside of the decking

to make them more secure.

We feel it would make it easier for Jenny to take control of the craft

quicker by securing the ropes by the centre cleat thereby giving me more

time to get from the helm, out the rear door and around the side deck

to the forward rope, then get ashore and make it secure there.

And before anyone comments as to Jenny doing the forward ropes.... She

can't get off the bow as it's too high 95% of the time! And, I don't want

to be cruising along with the ropes stretched from bow to stern every

time. Untidy :norty:

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a plate on the underside is always a good idea.

If your fitting a cleat in the middle to you meen centre line? if so you will want fair leads, we dont like rope chaffing on the GRP

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Don,t know how your boats laid out but a nice thick piece of marine ply glued to the underside of the deck underneath the cleat should spread the the load,the cleat being bolted though this,better still glass the board all over ,and make the board at least 3 times longer than the cleat and twice as wide :wave

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Just an idea Bill and you may have already tried it........

When coming into moor, Jenny goes to the bow, picks up the line and brings it back with her to the aft well. Then when coming alongside, she gets off and takes both the bow and stern lines with her. Depending on how quick you can then get off yourself depends on how long Jenny is left on the mooring. Once you're off, quickly secure the stern line so at least the boat ain't going to drift away. You've then got a bit more time to select a point where you can get the bow line secured.

Alternatively, still with two lines in the aft well, Jenny gets off with stern line only and makes a temporary hitch to the nearest mooring point on the bank, pontoon or whatever. Then, if within reach on the boat, retrieves the bow line from the aft well deck and takes it along the mooring to the bow where she can either hold it til you get off or tie it off herself.

I've tried both the above methods on centre and aft steer boats and they worked for me, even when single handed.

However, if the wind's blowing off the mooring, then I doubt Jenny would be able to hold onto two lines.

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a plate on the underside is always a good idea.

If your fitting a cleat in the middle to you meen centre line? if so you will want fair leads, we dont like rope chaffing on the GRP

I think Bill means a midships cleat either side of the boat just by the centre cockpit?

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As has been said, a backing plate is essential to spread the load and prevent stress cracks (or worse) even in light usage, it is also a good idea to sandwich some P40 bridging filler between the plate and the underside of the deck to make sure you have full contact to spread the load, tighten the through bolts (using "penny" washers on the underside) until it squeezes out and then finally nip them up when it has cured. Marine ply is good for the purpose but I have been using HDPE sheet for quite some time and will nver go back to wood, it will never rot and is easy to work with ordinary woodworking tools.

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I think Bill means a midships cleat either side of the boat just

by the centre cockpit?

Yup, thats what I meant to say but forgot to add :(

Jenny is neither nimble enough nor strong enough to take both ropes

onto the quay and be able to hold Sapphire until I get there when the

wind is blowing off the mooring. It was her idea for the centre cleat.

The only problem with reinforcing the underside of the deck is the

amount of work to get at it! On both sides!! Hence the question.

I do understand the need to sandwich P40 between the reinforcing and

the underside but wondered if I could get away without it. We are

down tomorrow so will investigate further.

Thanks for the replies.

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Just an idea Bill and you may have already tried it........

When coming into moor, Jenny goes to the bow, picks up the line and brings it back with her to the aft well. Then when coming alongside, she gets off and takes both the bow and stern lines with her. Depending on how quick you can then get off yourself depends on how long Jenny is left on the mooring. Once you're off, quickly secure the stern line so at least the boat ain't going to drift away. You've then got a bit more time to select a point where you can get the bow line secured.

Alternatively, still with two lines in the aft well, Jenny gets off with stern line only and makes a temporary hitch to the nearest mooring point on the bank, pontoon or whatever. Then, if within reach on the boat, retrieves the bow line from the aft well deck and takes it along the mooring to the bow where she can either hold it til you get off or tie it off herself.

I've tried both the above methods on centre and aft steer boats and they worked for me, even when single handed.

However, if the wind's blowing off the mooring, then I doubt Jenny would be able to hold onto two lines.

Word of warning if adopting this method on the Broads,

The correct way to approach a mooring would be with the current on the bow.

Where ever the current is running putting a stern line on first exposes the boat to the risk of what happened the other week on the Thames resulting in a sunken boat.

If the flow is on the nose then the first line on should be the bow. You can get away with a centre line as the boat can't pivot on it but if you put on the stern rope then the bow can be washed round by the current giving loads of leverage to rip off the cleat or potentially rip a big chunk of boat out.

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Word of warning if adopting this method on the Broads,

The correct way to approach a mooring would be with the current on the bow.

Where ever the current is running putting a stern line on first exposes the boat to the risk of what happened the other week on the Thames resulting in a sunken boat.

If the flow is on the nose then the first line on should be the bow. You can get away with a centre line as the boat can't pivot on it but if you put on the stern rope then the bow can be washed round by the current giving loads of leverage to rip off the cleat or potentially rip a big chunk of boat out.

And if the wind is stronger than the current?

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1) You will need to access the underside of the deck anyway in order to bolt the cleats on (screwing them is definitely not an option).

2) I've never heard of using HDPE sheet rather than marine ply for a backing plate, but if it's strong enough to take the load and whatever you use to stick it in place (probably epoxy) holds then I see no reason why it couldn't be used.

3) Bevel the edges of your backing plate to ease the transition between deck and plate, and glass them in place with epoxy (not easy working upside down as I know from experience, you need to put the epoxy on then wait 'till it starts to cure and goes sticky before trying to get the glass cloth stuck down, which then needs to be done in a bit of a hurry).

4) Use penny washers or a stainless steel plate washer (better, but possibly overkill) to spread the load from the bolts.

5) When you do get to bolting the cleat down, cleats that use four bolts are obviously better than those that rely on two. Use plenty of goop (Sikaflex or similar), as you don't want water leaking into or through the bolt holes.

6) Fit fairleads to prevent rope chafing on the GRP, preferably ones that allow a fair lead for ropes going forward and aft, giving you maximum flexibility when mooring up.

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