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Filling screw holes in aluminum extrusion

aluminum extrusion hardware

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#1 Ajax

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 01:07 PM

On old boats that have seen years of hardware modifications, what are the best methods to fill in old screw and rivet holes to maintain the structural integrity of the spar?

 

So far, all I've seen is screwing in allen-head plugs coated with Lanacote. Are there any other methods that I should be aware of that might be better?



#2 Trendsetter

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 01:53 PM

I have had welders come in and spot weld all the spots to fill in the holes and make it whole again.  short of that I think you are more or less playing tear along the dotted line even if you fill it with screws



#3 Wet Spreaders

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 02:14 PM

The PO had screwed a cam cleat to the mast - I think that it was for the kite halyard, although using it seems like a really crappy idea to me, so I removed it. I filled the holes with Marine Tex (white) and put a plastic bag over it while it set to make it smooth. I'm sure that I could find them if I look, but you can't see them from the dock, so cosmetically that's a decent, low cost, choice. Not helpful structurally, obviously.

#4 SloopJonB

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 05:57 PM

Welding should be minimized on spars - it screws up the heat treating.



#5 Mr. Fixit's brother,, Mr. Fixit

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 06:07 PM

http://www.alibaba.c..._aluminium.html



#6 dreaded

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 07:14 PM

On old boats that have seen years of hardware modifications, what are the best methods to fill in old screw and rivet holes to maintain the structural integrity of the spar?

 

So far, all I've seen is screwing in allen-head plugs coated with Lanacote. Are there any other methods that I should be aware of that might be better?

 

just pop a rivet in and forget about it...  



#7 One eye Jack

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 08:15 PM

Monel pop rivets or screws.. Stainless reacts with the aluminum.. Welding not a good idea as another said, it can screw up the mast with the heat. But he holes need to be filled as an empty hole can cause problems with flexing etc.

#8 Ajax

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Posted 08 July 2013 - 01:55 AM

Ok, thanks for all the good info, gents.



#9 pauloman

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Posted 10 July 2013 - 01:31 AM

I've heard of success filling holes old screw holes in aluminum by adding standard epoxy thickeners to an aluminum filled mcu paint - a google search for MCU aluminum should maybe turn up something



#10 Jim Conlin

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Posted 13 July 2013 - 11:34 PM

Paul, by chance, do you sell this miracle stuff?



#11 CaptKen

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Posted 15 July 2013 - 12:19 PM

JB Weld might work.  It is similiar to Pauloman's idea but off the shelf.  I've had good luck repairing small bits in car and lawn mower engines with it.



#12 sailorbob

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 03:43 PM

JB Weld makes a bunch of different fillers.  Make sure you get the one for ALUMINUM otherwise you will have a dissimilar metal issue!



#13 SloopJonB

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 11:25 PM

I've heard of success filling holes old screw holes in aluminum by adding standard epoxy thickeners to an aluminum filled mcu paint - a google search for MCU aluminum should maybe turn up something

 

You can buy powdered metals to use as thickeners - presumably aluminium is one of them.







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