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Old 07-03-2017, 01:00 PM   #1
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Broken teak rail

So I'm varnishing the bridge, having removed the windscreen andClick image for larger version

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ID:	66403 bimini, as well as undoing the front stays from the mast. A small gust of wind and to my horror, the mast goes over with a thud, broken at the base. A quick look shows why; dry rot halfway through it. Oh well, wanted a shorter mast anyway. However, the top of the mast cleanly decapitated my aft railing gate at the fitting on the latch end. Luckily the latch wound up on my swim platform, so I'm just looking at replacing the rail. Anybody know somewhere to get this done? Click image for larger version

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Old 07-03-2017, 03:12 PM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr. 66. Oh dear. I can only imagine the feeling but I can appreciate the positive slant (new mast). There appears to be quite a gap in the railing. Were stanchions bent, the camera angle or is there a piece missing?

For replacement, IF you're not comfortable making a new section of railing the only think I might suggest is a local woodworker. Needn't be a shipwright. Will you replace the mast with wood or go with aluminum?
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Old 07-03-2017, 03:30 PM   #3
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Looks to be a clean break. Didn't the metal piece just come off? Are you sure the metal piece could not be reattached with some wood epoxy filler in the attachment screw holes?

The small ding on the rail will just agg character.
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Old 07-03-2017, 03:45 PM   #4
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Go to marina office. They will give you names of three carpenters. It's a small non-profitable job in their busy season so expect to either wait or pay.
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Old 07-03-2017, 03:48 PM   #5
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Greetings,
Mr. b. Again, it could be the camera angle but it appears when the metal piece abandoned ship, the wooden stub of the rail remained inside meaning a whole new piece. If it was only a matter of filling stripped holes I would agree with your suggestion but I would not trust epoxy for a butt joint repair of that size and location.
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Old 07-03-2017, 04:02 PM   #6
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RT, I believe he said the end piece was on the swim platform.

It looks to me that the teak is fitted into a shallow cup on the metal piece and held with a screw. Not particularly strong to begin with.
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Old 07-03-2017, 06:29 PM   #7
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If the missing piece of wood is still in the latch, what`s to lose epoxy gluing the ends together, maybe with a plate bridging the repair underneath,using timber or metal. Later in the off season,get it remade properly. It`s a good workshop job for a woodworker on a bad day outside.
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Old 07-03-2017, 06:45 PM   #8
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I would first try and repair the break, using both thickened epoxy and large diameter long dowels. I'd make the dowel holes a bit oversized to aid with alignment of the two pieces. If it doesn't work out then find a carpenter.
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Old 07-03-2017, 06:52 PM   #9
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Greetings,
Mr. I. Now, the dowel idea is much better IMO for a temporary fix. The problem I have with simply butt gluing the end back on is inherent weakness, subsequent breakage and loss of the latch piece if anyone happens to apply excessive force to the railing. From what I've read on TF, replacement latches and hinges can be near impossible to find.
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Old 07-03-2017, 09:44 PM   #10
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Any decent woodworker can duplicate that using a new piece of teak.

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Old 07-04-2017, 06:32 AM   #11
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Any decent carpenter can make a new one . If he doesn't have any teak just have him make it out of a piece of treated wood or oak for a temporary fix . If I had both end caps and the old rail I could make it for you.Just look around your area and find a boat with the most wood on it , the owner will either be a woodworker or he knows one for sure .
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Old 07-04-2017, 07:00 AM   #12
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Thanks all. I'll try to find a woodworker locally that can do this. I was hoping someone like Marty would say they could do it . I may remove the latch from the stub, and run some long screws from the end of the stub through the epoxied joint as a temporary fix. I like the idea of reinforcement along the bottom with a stainless or aluminum strip, but the break at the fitting makes that difficult.
Good discussion as usual.
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Old 07-04-2017, 07:09 AM   #13
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The main thing is to hang on to those end caps.The wood can be replaced easy enough . You were pretty lucky that one landed on the swim step . They can be hard to find .
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Old 07-05-2017, 07:50 AM   #14
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Luckily, the slider knob kept the end from falling through the slats on the swim platform! My lucky unlucky day. Also the anchor light lens landed in the dingy, and the led bulb landed on the deck. So all pieces accounted for.
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Old 07-05-2017, 08:43 AM   #15
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I second Insequent's post. I'd epoxy and dowel the thing back together but, I'd use fiberglass dowels. Drilling the holes oversize is right on; you could never get the holes in the right places given the shattered ends.

You can source the fiberglass dowels from McMaster-Carr, from folks who sell components for making kites(!), or repurpose a 'glass fishing pole or similar 'glass artifact.

Strength will be more than adequate. Fiberglass dowels used in this way is an accepted method for repairing the rotted ends of floor joists in historic, museum houses (the 'historic fabric' is saved, and you don't have to tear a lot of house apart to install new joists).

It would be pretty easy to make a new one, paying attention to the curve in both directions.
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Old 07-05-2017, 02:18 PM   #16
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Thanks, I'll give it a try. With me, +/- an inch is about my level of accuracy. Maybe put the dowels in the long end and mostly thick epoxy in the latch end. The latch mechanism is enclosed, so I won't gum that up.
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Old 07-05-2017, 02:45 PM   #17
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Greetings,
Mr. 66. The dowels go in BOTH ends. Continued past both sides/edges of the break, the dowels will give the repair torsional strength.
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Old 07-05-2017, 02:47 PM   #18
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This could be a good learning project. get piece of teak and using a rasp fit the ends into the metal pieces then rasp and sand down the rest to fit the contour. It will take some time bit really isn't hard to produce a piece you would be proud to show off.
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Old 07-05-2017, 02:53 PM   #19
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I presume you know your West System epoxies and their fillers. Other mfrs would be similar. For years, I've been using West's 105 resin, a hardener suitable for the temperature - 205, 206, or maybe (but rarely) 209, and one of their structural fillers - 403 or 405. 405 Filleting Blend is brown, looks good with wood, flows and spreads more smoothly than the white-ish 403 Microfiber. Their 407 is reddish and dandy for use with Mahogany in low strength applications (I used the 407 for the veneer on the FD and on the Mahogany swim platform).

The dowel holes can be quite sloppy; I used a 5/8" bit for 1/2" fiberglass dowels. I would have been happier to have been able to drill accurately enough using a 9/16" bit.

Drilling, then installing all these dowels at once was a pain! All four edges and all 22 dowels had to be epoxied at the same time.
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Old 07-05-2017, 03:02 PM   #20
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FF is right. But, he only broke one end so two neatly-spaced dowels should be plenty on a piece of wood oval and 1" x 2 1/4" in section. I further think that, perhaps, if the broken end will come out, I'd at least consider getting it out and epoxying the shards onto the main portion of the rail. That way, I could be sure I epoxied all the shattered bits together with no splits ready to accept water. Additionally, if I were to epoxy the end onto the main portion of the rail, I could drill for dowels from the end. It would ensure that the holes lined up perfectly!
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