Railing stanchions

Discussion in 'Materials' started by fallguy, Feb 2, 2020.

  1. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Easy and quick question.

    The terminating or beginning ends of a railing system. Are they supposed to be anchored more than just the stanchion? I can see that end really getting a lot of force and no help from anything near it.

    If more than just a 1" stanchion is needed, then what? The idea being a force applied to the stanchion would be inboard and so thus any anchoring would also be inboard, but is it done much, or is it better to just run two stanchions and a short railing if you want more strength?

    Also, is they any way to do an economy pulpit? Like how do you terminate the two rails coming into each other on the cheap?

  2. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    If you are installing a boarding access (perhaps amidships each side?) the stanchion on each side of the gate is usually supported by a brace, such as in this link -
    SCHAEFER Stanchions | West Marine https://www.westmarine.com/schaefer--stanchions--P002_065_003_502

    Alternatively, something like this would probably be a bit stronger, and look nicer -
    Gate Stanchions / V4A buy now | SVB https://www.svb24.com/en/gate-stanchions-v4a.html

    Will you be fitting a toerail along the gunwhales of your cat?
    If yes, then rather than just a small rail (such as a standard aluminium extrusion, or a 2" x 1" timber) you could perhaps build a small bulwark a bit higher, and have the stanchions welded to plates which then bolt on to the bulwark. This should be much stronger than bolting baseplates into the deck - stanchions like this are subjected to huge leverage, especially if people grab them to haul themselves on board.

    Re pulpits, are you planning on fitting one on each bow?
    The Skoota in these photos just has side stanchions (no pulpits) and a mesh net between the bows.
    Sailing Catamarans - Skoota 32 live aboard cruiser http://sailingcatamarans.com/index.php/designs-2/6-powercats/469-skoota-32
  3. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member


    The Skoota pictured is not the demountable version. So, people will never be standing so close to the edge; generally. I don't have a good pic for reference.

    No toerail. This is a powercat.

    The bow is what I am trying to plan for and the terminations....
  4. philSweet
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    philSweet Senior Member


    If possible on a light boat, try to use a three point tripod at each end. This image from a J99 is typical and the bow pulpit shows how little of a triangle you really need. Three inches out of line is plenty to stiffen the mount. I usually put a patch of 1708 biax under each base as a boss to prevent any water pockets should the deck end up compressing a bit.


    Image source - J/99 https://portsanilacmarina.com/product/j-99/
    bajansailor and fallguy like this.

  5. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member


    that I can do and I only need one side

    mine is clear, though, nothing like a line through, so I could try to finish to a point, but no fitting looks right.

    I could do my offset on the bow and that would keep people from daring out too far... I just didn't want the rail to steal from the aesthetics, if, for example, I ended 3 feet short; it would look odd

    here is a production photo of the deck top; your offset idea might be fine because I want people to move toward the trampoline and stay off the narrow tip for safety reasons and the offset would be just ahead of the cleat which would make it impossible for plankwalking

    bajansailor likes this.
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