Load Rite and Electrolysis

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Relackson
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26M
Location: Bass Coast, Victoria, Australia

Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by Relackson » Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:58 am

I have been able to acquire a new Load Rite trailer in Australia. Chance acquisition - and am quite confident about it after all the positive comments stated on this forum. (Huge thanks)

But one thing does concern me: electrolysis. During my research, I've noted that all the local manufacturers of aluminium trailers use plastic washers or product like Duralac to help prevent non-similar metals touching. From what I can see there has been no attempt to do this on the Load Rite.

How have the longer-term Load Rite owners found the trailers in respect to electrolysis - or any other issues?

Do I need to worry about this?

If so, what steps might I take to help alleviate electrolysis?

Any comments on these trailers (e.g. performance, modifications, repairs, etc.) would be appreciated.

Many thanks

Stan

raycarlson
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by raycarlson » Tue Mar 12, 2013 7:17 am

i beleive its called galvanic corrosion due to dissimular metals. the further apart two metals are on the periodic table of elements the higher the rate of corrosion due to the exchange of electrons or something close to that,it's been a long time since chemistry class.The easiest solution ive used and is also used by the majority of aircraft manufacturers is the paint your holes and washers with a primer.I just paint my washers with Krylon rusty metal primer and that seems to be sufficent for a boat trailer.

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Ormonddude
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by Ormonddude » Tue Mar 12, 2013 11:48 am

Sure paint or a little squirt of 3M 5200 just like mounting a engine on a aluminum boat.

Hardcrab
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by Hardcrab » Tue Mar 12, 2013 8:38 pm

It's not really a question of if, just when.
Anything you do to reduce/eliminate the electrical path between the two metals will go along way to break the chemical triangle at the source.
To check the effectiveness your preferred method of electrical isolation after you attempt it, just use a standard ohm meter to read the resistance across the two metals in question.
An infinite resistance, (no electrical connection at all) is the best you can do.
Opposite of that would be zero ohms, or a very good electrical connection.
That's what you are attempting to avoid.
Plastic/nylon washers are good under bolt heads and washer and nuts but don't forget the bolt shaft as it goes through the hole itself.
I have pretty good luck with Kapton tape around the bolt shafts because it's pretty tough stuff, but it's not infallable. ( It helps to tighten the nut only and be sure not to turn the bolt risking the Kapton tape with hole burrs ,etc.).

And/or, the other way to break the "triangle" is to keep the electrolyte (salt water in this case) completely out of the junction of the two metals.
Completely is the trick.
Even miniscule amounts of electrolyte are all thats needed to generate the small voltages that are the root cause of the damage.

All in all, it's a crap shoot, but the more effective of both approaches you do, the better your chances.
Good Luck

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seahouse
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by seahouse » Tue Mar 12, 2013 10:16 pm

the other way to break the "triangle" is to keep the electrolyte (salt water in this case) completely out of the junction of the two metals.
If it's already assembled, like it sounds to be, using a dielectric oil will help to do exactly this.

There are anti-rust solutions in our market, Krown, Rust-Check, but new engine oil will work well too. When I get a new car, bike, trailer (did this on my aluminum/steel tongue Mac trailer), or anything, before it sees water, I go around and put a drop of oil under all metal fittings, fasteners, nuts, and threads that I can reach. Capillary action will draw the oil in to the smallest crevices, which will keep water, or any other electrolyte present, out. I would think that a low-viscosity liquid containing lanolin available in your market, should do nicely.

I made a special tool to apply this; it's a squeeze bottle with a short piece of clear poly 1/4” airline, heated and drawn out into a fine (<1/32”) point, and cut. Quickly dispenses the exact amount, exactly where I want, in tight spaces, and even upside down. Conventional oil cans are way too crude, and fine needle oilers need to be refilled repeatedly.

You might have to do it every year or two, depending on a whole bunch of things. :D

If you are doing electrical connections too (like grounds, or “earths” as you might know them) like I do, it's important that there be no sulfur in the oil when applying it to copper wires.

You're just out to slow down the corrosion process in an quick, easy-to-do way – you won't really eliminate it.

-Brian. :wink:

cruiser
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Location: Brisbane, Australia. "Myuna" Macgregor 26S, 8HP Nissan outboard

Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by cruiser » Fri Apr 12, 2013 6:59 pm

Relackson wrote:I have been able to acquire a new Load Rite trailer in Australia. Chance acquisition - and am quite confident about it after all the positive comments stated on this forum. (Huge thanks)
But one thing does concern me: electrolysis. During my research, I've noted that all the local manufacturers of aluminium trailers use plastic washers or product like Duralac to help prevent non-similar metals touching. From what I can see there has been no attempt to do this on the Load Rite.
How have the longer-term Load Rite owners found the trailers in respect to electrolysis - or any other issues?
Do I need to worry about this?
If so, what steps might I take to help alleviate electrolysis?
Any comments on these trailers (e.g. performance, modifications, repairs, etc.) would be appreciated.
Many thanks, Stan
Your trailer sounds like a lucky find.

I tend to use both Tefgel and Duralac on my boat.

Duralac for the larger flatter surfaces - say fixing the plate of a spinnaker pole ring to a mast. It is not so good on sharp bends, moving bolts or areas that may not be totally sealed (for instance if a fitting does not sit totally flush with the other surface.

I use Tefgel on virtually all bolts - both to stop corosion and to stop binding and galling. http://tefgel.com.au/

Perhaps if you applied the same idea to your trailer it may work out OK. Tefgel does not tended to wash out so easily - it is a bit expensive but you don't need to use a lot. I also put Tefgel on all my motor bolts when I take anything off.

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RobertB
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by RobertB » Sat Apr 13, 2013 5:44 am

Interesting description on Tef-Gel in West Marine:
"Tef-Gel eliminates seizing galling, corrosion and friction welding of stainless steel, inconel, and other nickel alloys. When both surfaces are coated and mated with Tef-Gel there are no voids for electrolytes (saltwater) to be drawn in by capillary action over extended periods of time."
Does not go into benefits with aluminium.
Tef-Gel is a PTFE paste.

Duralac Zink Chromate Paste on the other hand is described for use in saltwater with dissimilar metals. Zinc Chromate - sounds like how we always installed steel fasteners in aluminuim structure on the F-16 (used paint) - but Ray has already suggested this method.

If you use either Tef-Gel or Duralac, forget using your torque wrench - useless with a lubricated fastener. Recommend you use your calibrated wrist and tighten until it feels right (should be at the point of yield).

On my recent trailer work, mainly around the axes, I have coated everything either with bearing grease or sprayed with CRC corrosion inhibitor. I also spray anything that looks like it may corrode with BoeShield. BoeShield wicks into crevices with an oily/wax coating to prevent moisture intrusion - designed for aircraft in saltwater environments by Boeing. Really works well.

cruiser
Engineer
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Sailboat: MacGregor 26S
Location: Brisbane, Australia. "Myuna" Macgregor 26S, 8HP Nissan outboard

Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by cruiser » Sun Apr 14, 2013 1:14 am

RobertB wrote:...................Duralac Zink Chromate Paste on the other hand is described for use in saltwater with dissimilar metals. Zinc Chromate - sounds like how we always installed steel fasteners in aluminuim structure on the F-16 (used paint) - but Ray has already suggested this method................
My understanding is that Duralac was developed specifically for the aircraft industry. It actually contains Barium Chromate which I gather is very toxic. Hence need to be very careful using it and certainly only with gloves on. I use a respirator as well when I handle it.

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Phil M
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by Phil M » Sun Apr 14, 2013 6:18 pm

Relackson wrote:I have been able to acquire a new Load Rite trailer in Australia.

...

Any comments on these trailers (e.g. performance, modifications, repairs, etc.) would be appreciated.

Many thanks

Stan
My LoadRite trailer inhaled water through what I believe was the inner seal of one of the wheels. The other three wheels are fine. They have sent me a new inner seal, which I have not yet installed.

I have modified the trailer to perfectly suit the 26M. One of those is posted in the mods section.

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Neo
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Re: Load Rite and Electrolysis

Post by Neo » Sun Jun 16, 2019 7:11 pm

Hi Relackson,

9 years on ... How are you going with your Load Rite Trailer... Would appreciate your experiences on that.

All the best.
Neo

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