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RNR-Marine™, Inc has Factory Original-Equipment (OEM) Canvas for 1,000's of boats and manufactures the T-Topless™, Montauk-T-Topless™, Shadow™, Montauk-Shadow™ and Flats-Top™ folding and removable tops for Center Console and Flats Boats
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Why mount an after-market T-Top to the Floor with Wood Screws?

If you are considering an after-market T-Top, it is important to understand how most are mounted.

Since it is very difficult to get below decks to install backer plates for bolts/nuts, most after-market T-Tops are mounted by drilling holes into the fiberglass deck (being careful not to hit a fuel tank, wires or fuel lines) and screwing the top to the floor with wood screws. Most manufacturers recommend bedding the screws/legs to the floor with 3M® 5200® marine sealant, which helps a lot, but ... Wood Screws Suck

Wood screws simply can't hold up to the load a T-Top exerts on its mounts when its pounding in the waves at speed.

Factory installed T-Tops are through-bolted with bolts, washers and nuts through backing plates (typically aluminum) beneath the floor at the factory , which makes them much stronger and most will last at least 5-6 years. 90% of after-market T-Tops are simply wood-screwed to the floor, since it is difficult or impossible to get to the underside of the floor.

Your boat's center console and windshield grab rails are built to withstand forces exerted by passengers hanging on in rough water with the boat at speed. For this reason, RNR-Marine™ chose to mount its folding T-Tops directly to the stainless steel windshield grab rails found on most center consoles (notice how these grab rails are rarely aluminum?).

"Attaching Hardware to Your Boat"
by David Pascoe (YachtSurvey.com)
http://www.yachtsurvey.com/hardware_attachments.htm

Mako® T-Top Wood Screws Pulled Out
After-Market T-Top Wood Screws Pulled Out on this Mako

Water intrusion through Screw Holes damaged the Coring on this Boat.
Water intrusion through Screw Holes damaged the Coring on this Boat
Read more here
Read about some of the issues others have had with after-market T-Tops screwed to their boats ...

" Keep in mind, if you put a t-top on your boat, it is screwed to the deck-not thru bolted to the deck. It will come loose if you run in the rough stuff on a regular basis. I know from experience. Mine is now screwed and 5200'd to the deck. "
- yelowdog http://www.carolinaskiffowner.com/showthread.php?15942-238-or-258-help&p=127596#post127596

" Hello, I need a answer on the proper way to make repair. The front leg of my t-top came loose from deck due to screws backed out when we where out in the gulf. It was rough and could not make any kind of temporary fix. Took top off so now I need to repair oversized holes and re-install top. Holes are not completely round due to not noticing it untill it was to late. Any help will be greatly appreciated. Also the is no way to put backing plates under deck and do not want to cut access holes . "
- tailfisher http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/331112-non-skid-deck-repair.html

" This weekend I hit a wave a bit fast and the resulting slam managed to pull the screws to my port forward leg of my t-top out of the deck. "
- zx7king http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?p=1511365

" I even know of someone who had his tee top pull out from the floor mounting on same model, while running at 25 MPH. "
- LHG http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum3/HTML/009906.html

" I found that all the T-Top mounting screws are loose and many stripped. I need some advice and help with: 1) T-Top mounting screws on front of CC, there are two round mounting plates with 3 screws each, are all stripped out and useless. They used 3/4" SS wood screws which mount into the CC plywood structure. ... 2) A few of the T-Top mounting screws on rear legs going into the deck are also stripped out. Again I'm thinking of using SS backing plates and bolts, but don't know what the OEM mounting is? Are they wood screws or bolts with backing plates? "
- Longboardebo, San Francisco, CA http://robaloboatowners.net/forums/lofiversion/index.php?t578.html

" SCREW IT! Graphic Reasons Why Screws Shouldn't be Used to Fasten Boat Parts "
by David Pascoe (YachtSurvey.com) http://www.yachtsurvey.com/Screwit.htm

" I have a 1989 Mako 251 and my T-Top has come loose again. ... I used toggler bolts to reinstall the t-top posts instead of the screws which were originally used as they had reeemed the holes out and were no longer holding the t-top post down. Last weekend the toggler bolts stripped out and so now I think my only option left is to cut a hole in the deck and install bolts with washers and nut under the t-top leg post to hold it then install a small deck plate. "
- Gene, FL http://www.wmi.org/www/boating/boatboard/t25291.htm

" The T-Top is held in with a lot of SS Screws. Some of those screws have stripped the fiberglass they're screwed into and won't stay screwed in anymore. "
- i386, Way down yonder on the Chattahoochee..., GA http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?p=2880257

" It appears he installed them with 5200 and some heavy duty ss self tapping screws. The holes are all worn out. I tried to fill them with glass matting dipped in epoxy. Stuffed it in the holes, let it set, re-drilled and re-installed the screws. The[y] are already coming loose after 5 trips. "
- crackerasscracker, James Island, SC http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/109432-t-top-floor-mount-repair-advice-requested.html

" Where the poles that hold up the hardtop meet the hull (metal to fiberglass) the screws have started to back out. Is there any type of loctite type material to use or should I just tighten the hell out of the screws? "
- Graham, Baton Rouge, La http://www.spearboard.com/showthread.php?p=88615

" 5200 never held for my T-top! I kept a ratchet strap in the console for when the screws ripped out. "
- ROCK BOTTOM, Southeast Louisiana http://www.spearboard.com/showthread.php?p=88615

" Bout the only method to truly hold over time in a pounding boat is the find a way if possible to thru bolt to a backing plate. Fiberglass and even some wood deck material have a tendency to eventually wear out the holes. I have tried resins,5200 and a coupla other chemical solutions on my T-Top and leaning post but a SS bolt,nylon/SS locknut and a bolt up thru the backing plate are the only thing that'll take the abuse. I have moved the screw holes as well to get a new bite on the glass/glass joint wher the console hits the deck. My ultimate solution will be to buy a better designed boat next time. "
- 100days-a-year, Jacksonville, FL http://www.spearboard.com/showthread.php?p=88615

" I noticed that my T-top was moving--loose like---last time I was out (probably from crew holding on to it while running). I tried to tighten down the SS screws but they just spin and do not grab. What is the solution to the screw problem in fiberglass? Thanks in advance for your input " - DAVUS, Jacksonville Beach, FL
"Might wanna check for wood rot too. " - Dengle, FL http://forums.floridasportsman.com/node/125681

" Aaagh.. I've had problems with the feet of my T-Top coming loose from the deck on my Parker 21.
When they came loose before, I rebedded in 5200, filled the old screw holes as best I could with epoxy, and added more 3 more screws around the flange....(Each foot had only 3 screws. Now they have 6).
That worked well for a while, but now one of the front feet is coming loose again. It's annoying as hell, because when I run the boat, the top will flex and make a funny noise. I vaguely recall some instructions about "whirling" an allen key into the soft wood of the screw holes and filling with epoxy, but I'd sure appreciate very specific instructions and suggestions. There is basically zero access to the underside of the deck in that area, and I'm loathe to cut access holes, especially unless I'm sure I won't be blocked by a stringer!
"
- feralcat, Cary, NC http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/33813-t-top-foot-coming-loose.html

" Alright guys, I need some advice. The legs for my t-top are just screwed into the floor of my boat. There are a few screws that are stripped out and have no bite what so ever. My plan is to fill the holes with some sort of epoxy and drill new holes for screws. Wondering how good an idea is that. Also, any recommendations on what product to use. There is no access for thru bolting which I would much rather do. Much appreciate any advice. "
- Barryrod, West Palm Beach, FL http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/16846-stripped-screws-fiberglass-repair.html

" I have spent considerable time over the years with various boats putting in access covers (deck plates) along with bolts, nuts and backing plates to replace screws - we somehow gotta get the message to the manufacturers on this!!!!! "
- LI Sound Grunt, CT http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/16846-stripped-screws-fiberglass-repair.html

" I have 2 loose screws loose that will not tighten anymore in the front port and starboard base of my T-top. Any suggestions on getting something in those holes to make these screws tighten would be great. I have tried some 5200 in the hole and on the screw but it is very hard to get it in the hole. The T-top is not loose at all but I would feel better to have all the screws tight as I do a lot of ocean fishing and the boat takes a lot of rough riding. Thanks, Robert. "
- knot@work http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/26712-t-top-mounting-screws-loose.html

" Hello, my t top is mounted in 6 spots, 2 to the center console and 4 feet attached to the deck, not sure if there is a backing plate, helicoils or inserts for these four feet. problem a couple of the screws have become loose to the point that 2 of the feet actually move a tiny bit. This will only get worse I realise. "
- spitfisher http://forums.iboats.com/showthread.php?p=2249977

" I recently bought a nice 2004 Boston Whaler 170 MONTAUK that had been fitted with an aftermarket T-Top. I have a problem with [the T-Top] anchor bolts coming losse and allowing water to leak into the hull. I noticed the screws coming loose, so [I] took off the T-Top -- sure enough the sealant had broken loose. I sucked about two cups of water out of each side of the console with my shop vacuum. I need your knowledge on this situation. How will I know when the hull is dry? Is there a better way of sealing? Thanks. "
- dwfrank7 http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum3/HTML/018048.html

" The T-Top probably became loose because it put too much force on the mounting fasteners. The 170 MONTAUK was not really designed for a T-Top. When Boston Whaler adds a T-Top to a boat, they include substantial reinforcements in the hull at the points of attachment, and they use fasteners that can handle the load. The point of attachment of the T-Top to your hull is probably not properly reinforced, and as a result the fasteners have loosened and created larger holes. The holes are a conduit for water to get into the hull. "
- jimh http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum3/HTML/018048.html

" Hey guys I need a little help. The screws on one of the four base legs from the T-TOP are all strip[p]ed out of the fiberglass. Is there anything I can do instead of new fiberglass work? "
- CHICO, FL http://www.pensacolafishingforum.com/f23/t-top-repair-38027/

" My T-Top fastening screws to the deck have hollowed out on my last run offshore(only one side). I can pull them out and actually drop them back in place with no resistance. "
- speakeasy http://www.coastaloutdoors.com/ibf/index.php?showtopic=20535

" I noticed this spring that the screws in the deck holding the t-top down were loose. From the t-top moving underway they opened up the holes in the deck and the screws would not bite. Some water did get in and the deck and wood was a little wet adjacent to the screw holes, a very small area. "
- rtk http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum3/HTML/006391.html

" No matter how tought the T-top looks, if the screws in the deck do not reach the Whalerboard plates or are not even on the Whalerboard plates you can count the top coming loose. Been through this on my 21' Outrage, luckily the mounts were right above the Whalerboard so all I had to do was replace the 2" screws that pulled out of the glass with the 4" screws that were ment to go through the Whalerboard. 3rd party T-top manufacturers I have found do not know this. "
- tully_mars http://continuouswave.com/ubb/Forum8/HTML/000553.html

" Okay the t-top screws are pulling out of the floorboard. There is absolute[ly] no way to get to the bottom side to put like a board to catch the screws. I know you can put "bigger" screws in but when they pull through then what? Go bigger again....... "
- KRT, Lexington, SC http://www.scducks.com/forum/showthread.php?t=25143

" The T-top on my 20 foot Pro-liner is extremely loose<. Two of the four screws in each of the front feet to secure to deck just pulled right out. We went 25 miles out in the Gulf last week and I had to tie down the top with the bow line from the top for fear of loosing it as we where running through 2/3 foot seas. What type of screw can i use that will "spread" below deck, as the hole has worn too large just to use a larger screw? Or any other process known. thanks "
- Ray01 http://forum.doityourself.com/marine-boating-sailing-pwc-gps-navigation/349803-re-securing-t-top-deck.html

" Yesterday I had 4 screws that mount one of the t-top legs to the deck pull through and the holes are now stripped out. I'm thinking my only option is to put bigger screws in but does anyone have any other suggestions on how to fix this? "
- tksmitty http://www.tidalfish.com/forums/showthread.php/230094-T-Top-issue?s=c80bd18ce401f4dfd2780a60290c0e08

" Its a problem retrofitting... Mounting the upright footers to the deck with screws is a no go, they will work loose and allow water in over time. They have to be bolted, if theres no access I'd make access by cutting the floor open under the console and doing the surgery to get under the mounting points. "
- jonesg http://www.stripersonline.com/surftalk/showthread.php?p=7469871

" My T-Top fastening screws to the deck have hollowed out on my last run offshore(only one side). I can pull them out and actually drop them back in place with no resistance. "
- speakeasy http://www.coastaloutdoors.com/ibf/index.php?showtopic=20535

" the t-top, which is beautiful, was installed by the dealer with screws, not bolts. Screws are begining to loosen and a couple have stripped. "
- Scout Owner, Virginia http://my.boatus.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=43236&PN=119&get=last

" I had a couple that were loose around the legs of my T Top and this is what I did. "
- tprice, Anderson, SC http://www.thehulltruth.com/boating-forum/118620-wallowed-out-screw-holes-fibreglass.html

" It appears that water has been getting in to the core of my deck/floor right around where the t-top feet are screwed in. I'm to blame - I did not seal it very well when I reattached it last year. "
- Chaatham Squire, Lake Bluff, IL
" Had exactly same prob w/ my T @ purchase. Wimpy mixed bag of 1- 2" screws that held to ply had shaken loose & basicly filed the holes larger every time a wave was hit. Then, of course, before getting to the repairs; we had our worst hurricane season & the boat drank some serious stormwater. "
- rockark, South Florida http://www.fishtheclassic.net/forums/showthread.php?t=19858

T-Top Stress Cracks

" Note the multiple deck cracks, caused by insufficient anchoring - this top was screwed down, not through-bolted. "
- http://hookedonfishingboats.com/ttops.htm

Try your own search to find more recent issues:
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aunofficial&q=%22t-top%22+screws+loose+OR+out+OR+pulled+OR+ripped+fiberglass+OR+deck+OR+Hull+OR+Boat+-car+-weatherstrip&btnG=Search&aq=f&aqi=&aql=f&oq=&gs_rfai=
Wood Screws Suck

No Wood Screws Mounts to Windshield Grab Rails Mounts to Windshield Grab Bars T-Top Through-Bolted T-Top Screwed to Floor T-Top Screws Pulled Out


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