A previous owner of Dawn Treader had converted its tiller to rack and pinion wheel steering (bronze components and housing made this a heavy option). Simplicity, performance with wind vane, and weight reduction led us to change back to tiller. During the conversion, rotten deck core was replaced, vent cowls were sealed, a laminated tiller and new hardware (stainless steel cleats, main sheet wench, and main sheet blocks) were added.
The previous chainplates were unserviceable as they were fiberglassed into their knees. The structure was compromised when inspected (and cut into), and they were also affected by crevice corrosion. Larger stock 316 stainless steel (1/4 in x 2 in) was used to fabricate new chainplates. These were mounted outboard on the hull (reinforced with 4 layers of 1708 biaxial fiberglass) after the old knees were cutout, increasing clearance for walking forward on deck, and decreasing loads on the mast.
Our deck joint leaked in multiple areas because of bond failure and separation. We fiberglassed the entire joint with 3 layers of 10oz FG tape, and increased thru bolt centers to a minimum of 6 in centers with 1/4 x 20 screws.
These images were taken sailing around the Atlantic. From Georgia, USA, to Bermuda, Azores, Canaries, Cape Verde, Caribbean, and back to the states. We’ll share more information about the locations we visited and some of our favorite anchorages in following posts.