Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Anodes update

Just a quick update on the anodes situation (this post turned out a bit long in the end).

Anodes updateAfter spending some time looking about, I opted to buy the anodes I needed from a shop close by in Fareham - Vitesse Marine. Probably more expensive than I could get elsewhere, but I was worrying that the longer I left it the more unnecessary corrosion problems I would be facing later.

I could always research a cheaper supply when I was less pressed, and maybe carry a few spares if I ever got that rich.

After a long chat with the guy behind the counter, I bought a set of four zinc anodes which were the same size as those I had on board.

I need at least six, but can't afford them all at the same time. I still need to buy more paint and loads of wood this month.

When the guy wheeled the anodes I'd just bought out to the truck, they were huge. Much bigger than the ones I had on Lady Jane.

He said "I'd be surprised if you had anything smaller fitted, though we do have smaller anodes which would fit the studs on the hull".

What I thought was that the previous owners must have fitted smaller anodes, to save on costs.

After thinking about it for a while, I opted to buy two big ones (12kg (26.5lbs)) and two of the ones the same size I already had (4kg (8.8lbs)). My reasoning being, the two smaller ones could go back on the rudder, while I would have two big fat ones on the hull, giving Lady Jane even more protection.

The shop guy was very patient, considering.

When it came to actually fit the things, I realised that in comparison to the good anodes still on the hull, the really big ones were in fact the right size, and that like so many things on Lady Jane, I had simply underestimated the scale of the things.

I was pleasantly surprised at how easily the old nuts came off, after just a quick phssst of WD40 and a brief wait, they came right off with no hassle.

I was disappointed to find that the nuts and studs were a range of different sizes, but the real problem was that the two big anodes would not fit. I was sure I had measured the distance between the centre of the studs correctly (I had measured a couple of the old ones), and that I had bought the right ones.

In retrospect, what must have happened was that although the right size was on the invoice, I was simply given the wrong ones. (220cm between centres, rather than 225cm between centres).

After much deliberating, I chose to go ahead and secure the big anodes on with just the one nut, and see about changing the two smaller ones for the larger versions, with the right distance between the centres during this week.

At least this way, the protection starts immediately. Also Lady Jane is not going anywhere soon, so they should be just fine as they are, held on with only one nut.

When I replace them, I'll replace them with the right size and, who knows, maybe even get uniform sized studs and nuts at the same time.

I would have taken a picture of the shiny new anode(s) in place, but I was quite muddy and my knuckles were dripping blood, from the barnacles encrusted on the hull near where I was working, (another lesson learned) all of which put me off going down and back up that ladder again.


  1. Hi Tim! It really isnt a problem (as Im sure you know!) to move the studs it takes about two minutes to weld new ones on. The most important thing is that they protect only the items that are at "Line of Sight" so the prop and rudder have to be in sight of the anodes protectiong them. All this I guess you already know, so forgive me if I am again teaching you to suck eggs. Re the anodes being in the water at all times as with a plating process where metal is transfered from the cathode to the anode a medium (acidic)(or similar) in the case of copper plating, copper sulphate (I believe) and what we suffer from, salt water so no salt water no reaction? The guy next to me who had a steel boat used to save up all his old anodes and bunch them togeather and connect them on to a steel cable and dangle it in the water from an earth point on his boat. He use to do this as there was steel sheet piling close to his hull which used to cause him problems.

  2. http://www.zincsmart.com/
    Might be worth a look in the future? maybe!

  3. Hi Rob

    Thanks for all that.

    I'm still learning about all this stuff, so any advice is gratefully received.