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Smart tab install question-gctid406558

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    I just installed my SX Smart Tabs a couple of days ago. I've had them for over a year but just now got around to installing them. The one thing I disagree with is the size of the holes you drill for the stainless steel screws. They recommend 7/32 drill bit for fiberglass. Way too small. I'm not a weak guy but I could not get the provided screws into my thin Bayliner 175 hull by hand. I even tried turning the driver with a pair of pliers. After it started cracking my gelcoat I ended up using a 1/8 bit. Even that was too small. I had to round it out a bit to get the screw in. Even though I drilled deeper than needed, they would not go all the way in. I ended up lightly turning the screws with a drill driver to get them seated. The screws provided with my SX Tabs were way way to fat to fit into a 7/16 hole. I wonder if the ones I received were larger than normally specified. Maybe the were larger trim tabs & got into my order my mistake. I wish I had measured one of the screws as to compare.

    Love the ride after installing the tabs. I only hope I don't get spider web cracks in the gelcoat as time goes by.

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    ok will be my next project thanks guys

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    Shwane wrote:
    The depth of the screw. Here's how I did mine:

    1- make a mark on your drill bit the same length as the supplied screws (i used black tape)

    2- drill to that depth

    3- remove drill bit and replace with one size bigger, then reverse your drill and drill the hole slightly (your want to get a bevel on the screw hole not actually drill into it, This prevents cracks in the gelcoat.)

    squirt some 3M marine sealant. I cant remember the number, but its the stuff that dries hard.

    4- Install tabs as directed

    I did this 3 years ago and haven't had any problems with them.
    +1 on all that, especially step 3. You really want a good countersink bevel, or else the gel coat will crack radially from the hole. Like a child's drawing of the sun. Use 3M 5200 (hard and permanent) or 4200 (semipermanent). Apply the sealant liberally and then wipe off the excess.

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  • Guest
    Guest replied
    The depth of the screw. Here's how I did mine:

    1- make a mark on your drill bit the same length as the supplied screws (i used black tape)

    2- drill to that depth

    3- remove drill bit and replace with one size bigger, then reverse your drill and drill the hole slightly (your want to get a bevel on the screw hole not actually drill into it, This prevents cracks in the gelcoat.)

    squirt some 3M marine sealant. I cant remember the number, but its the stuff that dries hard.

    4- Install tabs as directed

    I did this 3 years ago and haven't had any problems with them.

    Leave a comment:


  • Guest
    Guest started a topic Smart tab install question-gctid406558

    Smart tab install question-gctid406558

    When installing smart tabs how deep into the transome do you drill for the mounting screws? Should you call all the way through or just start the screw hole?
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