Making the Most of a Minimal Budget. Contact me at: or on Twitter: @skintsailor

Sunday, 11 September 2016

A Cleaty Day

Cleaty, I just made that word up. My definition is: a day or portion thereof with regard to the business of cleats.

As per my last post, I've stripped the jib sheet cam cleats from the deck and brought them home in preparation for swapping them over to something newer and more importantly, better working.

Way back when, I got a couple of  Barton cam cleats which I dug out of the junk box. It just happens that the fixing centres are 40mm. Bingo! I used one to repair the main sheet jammer.

Old and busted versus new hotness.

The new one fitted a treat

Looks the part too.
I decided to use the same cleats on the jib sheets despite the difference in fitting centres. I'll sort something out about the difference. With my mind made up I wasn't going to pay stupid money for some huge cam cleat off a tug boat with the correct 60mm spacing, I nipped to Marine Superstore and bought just the one cleat to make the set of three. Less than 20 quid is better than 50-60 for a pair of monster cleats.

Where the jib cleats were are strips of duct tape covering the fixing holes. The old cleats are raised up on strips of Paxolin.. The Paxolin is soaking in the kitchen sink to strip the old sealant and brown paint off it.

Ahh, the smell of Paxolin.... it takes me back to the late Seventies and my first ever job. I worked in electronics test and development (at 16!) for a company making emergency power supplies. The smell of Paxolin always reminds me of soldering electronic prototypes on tag boards and the connections on the transformers I used to design and wind up myself.

Once the strips are clean I'll paint them with something maybe a bit brighter than brown. Maybe dove grey to match the hull and tie into the grey on the cleats. I still have the grey paint from the locker tops.

Which reminds me, I really need to fit the starboard locker top to match up with the port one I fitted months ago.


  1. It's a good idea to fix these cam cleats if you can, they are pretty expensive to buy new, as I have found out.

  2. Alden, I know what you're saying, but yesterday I was pleasantly surprised by our local chandler. Marine Superstore here in Portsmouth had one in for £17.75 so I snaffled the extra one. Had I reused the original fixing holes I would be paying a lot more. I've decided to have all 3 cleats identical, which makes things easier. I just need to keep one spare on the boat and it will fit in either position.