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The pre-survey went well yesterday and Rebecca and I learned quite a few things. One of which is that the keels of certain Leopard 4600s bolt on and thus can be removed. This is a good thing, the surveyor says, as it allows damage like this to be repaired. He said not to worry, that it can all be made good as new.

The base which the keel bolts on to.

The recess which the keels fits up in to.

One keel removed to repair damage done by grounding.

Part of the hull cut away to repair damage.

A recently repaired keel reinstalled on the other hull.


  1. It looks like this could be a standard in the industry. Being a wood boat guy, very new to me too.

  2. What would be the timetable to get the hull back in shape?

  3. That almost new 4600 has that much damage? Yikes!

  4. I worked at several marinas over the years and saw several boats whose keel bolts were either not installed properly, or which rusted / corroded off causing the keel to come loose or in a couple of cases, fall off in a storm or when running aground.

    Because of this, I would prefer to see a keel completely glassed in. I would assume though, if it were bolted in properly to begin with, that it wouldn’t be a problem, and that there are many, many boats with bolted on keels that DIDN’T fall off. All we ever saw were the mistakes, so my preference could be a moot point.

    There is at least one drawback to a completely glassed in keel and that is if the boat takes a direct lightning strike, it can blow a hole in the side of the keel. I’ve heard of that, but never seen it. Probably rare. But which is worse or a more likely failure? I don’t know. I wish insurance companies kept statistics such as these so builders could make more informed decisions.

  5. Sacrificial keels on multihulls make a lot of sense.

    Chris White designed the Atlantic series of catamarans with them, specifically so that they can protect the hulls, prop and rudder in the case of an impact with a submerged object or a hard grounding.

  6. Mike:
    That’s not the one at Nanny Cay that had the bottom of both pontoons ripped off at the reef at Sandy Spit, is it? We saw that one and the damage looked extensive!

  7. Did you find out what a ‘Pre-survey Inspection’ actually is and what it is for? I have never heard of this before.

    Did he do moisture meter tests, rigging tests, electrics tests, deck and through hull fittings tests, etc?

    Or what? 🙂


    • The pre-survey inspection is typically performed to prevent buyers from wasting money on plane tickets or haul outs for boats which are obviously not suitable.

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