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Stainless Steel Yacht plugs are rusting


Dear Sir,

I hope you can help me. I have a base plate for a land-line plug on a fiberglass yacht. It is constantly exposed to seawater It is Stainless Steel and appears to have pitted around the edges, causing rust colored staining on the surrounding fiberglass. Is there anything I can do?

Many Thanks,

Colin Villiers
- London, England

You can lacquer (clear coat) it, but that's about it. The stainless is probably not of a grade fully resistant to salt water.The plate should probably be made of a different grade of stainless steel, or of nickel-chrome plated brass.

Ted Mooney,
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha - Pine Beach, New Jersey


Hi Colin,

Why don't you consider PAINTING them s.s. plate? Use a clear fibreglass resin ... but resin by itself will/can easily crack ... so I suggest that you get a layer of matt or, as the frp mfgs call it, a couple of layers of veil which is gossamer thin. When the yacht is out of water, clean the s.s., abrade it slightly (to enhance the bond) before coating. Ensure, too, that the veil or matt extends past the s.s. and inches onto the hull.

There are different types of stainless, all masquerading under that common name. If your plate is a 400 or a 300 series, you sure can expect rust ... less with 3l6 s.s.

If you can't take your yacht out of the water, consider using epoxy ... Epoxies have been used UNDER WATER, ie. curing under water ... but whether they were special ones or any type, I just dinna ken. Check with your local supplier of thermosets ... OK? Epoxies are more difficult to handle than polyesters, get some advice.

freeman newton portrait
Freeman Newton [deceased]
(It is our sad duty to advise that Freeman passed away
April 21, 2012. R.I.P. old friend).

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