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Projects/Modifications

Solid Rail over Lifeline and Binnacle Grab Bars with Winch Pockets

Pictures provided by Gary Nelson, Reve, Catalina 400 #207

When I came in from the fore deck, I was always reaching for the wheel for a hand hold. I looked at the 470s at the boat show with the bars in the middle. They were too far to reach for me and they distorted the cockpit cushion. I made these up out of one inch tubing and where they bolt into the side of the binnacle, I made winch handle covers out of PVC to hide the bolts. I blocked them under the deck with starboard. They really are stout and when at the wheel, you can lean on them with one arm. I didn't count on that.

I made spools out of 1 inch starboard with a hole saw with a 1/4 inch hole in the center. I mounted a 1/4 inch X 2 inch long bolt with a nut tightened down, chucked it with a drill and sanded it down so it will fit inside the tube. It should be 7/8 inch using 1 inch tubing. I undid the life line by removing the pin, removed the shackle and slid the spools over the life line holding them in place using electoral tape. A few in the center and on the ends. I put it back to together using a rope to pull the sanction tight so I could get the pin in. They spun on me so I drilled a 1/4 hole through the life line shackle and mounted the eye bolt.
I'm getting rid of the hose clamp and going to try a ubolt.