CB Bolt Water Intrusion

While sailing Shackleton, I’ve had quite a bit of water coming through the CB bolt into the BH 4-5 area.  I attempted to silicon the bolt head, but to no avail.  Then while talking with John Welsford at the Skills Camp, he said all such problems can be easily fixed by using an O-ring.

DSC00416This is the first version.  Clunky, a bit ugly, no O-ring and leaked like a sieve, but it did keep the bolt in place.

DSC00416Parts of the new system.

DSC00419I will epoxy these two pieces together.  The bolt head fits into the circular hole and the lower piece prevents the bolt from working it’s way outward.

DSC00418The O-ring fits between the cap and the CB case.

DSC00416Like this…

DSC00417Genuine bicycle grease can’t hurt anything, and I figured it would keep the O-ring in place while I screwed on the cap.


This is much nicer looking than the first cap, is secured with three screws and hopefully will solve the water intrusion problem.  I had to temporarily remove the vault lid (containing the fixed ballast) to get straight access to the cap.


 Thanks to John Welsford for suggesting this easy fix.  Doesn’t it just look much nicer?  Can’t wait to see if it works.


One thought on “CB Bolt Water Intrusion

  1. Interestingly, it’s almost the exact thing I just did last week. I install my centerboard pin from the underseat storage area per the plans (http://woodnmetalguy.blogspot.com/2014/03/centerboard-pin-completed.html), and I was getting some water in there.

    I took out the pin and found that the head of the bolt had broken free of the epoxy holding it, and water was leaking in, probably around the bolt shaft. So I built a cover very much like yours. My o-ring fits right around the shaft vs. your larger one. Was out for a couple hours last night and there’s still a bit of water getting past the o-ring, but it’s much less than it was.

    In retrospect, I wish I would have mounted the pin from inside the ballast tank vs. inside the storage compartment. A slow leak of water out of the ballast tank would be less bothersome than the slow leak into the storage compartment. I’ll probably rework this next winter either to reverse the access or cap the pin differently, like with a watertight plumbing fixture as I’ve seen elsewhere.

    — Dave

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