Hull Reinforcement.

So far I did not have major problems with the hull integrity, but I also did not experience very bad conditions, so it remains to be seen how strong Catalina hull is for a storm. There were some minor issues with one bulkhead in the bow section. After navigating in heavy seas and a lot of slamming when trying to motor against the waves, the bulkhead tabbing became detached. I simply grinded it (it was inadequate - about 2 mm. thick and had an overlap of only 5 cm. on each side - no wonder it would detach) and replaced with several layers of fiberglass cloth (maybe 5 mm. in total) and epoxy, and made the overlap 12 cm. That solved the problem. I also strengthened two more bulkheads as a preventive measure near the keel box.

When I replaced the original shroud turnbuckles with heavier ones, I was left with several used ones and decided to use them for strengthening the hull-deck joint where the bow stay and rear shrouds were attached. The Catalina shrouds and stay attachments on the deck are inadequate. There were cases when the bow stay plate would be ripped from the bow, and Catalina Direct even sells a reinforcement kit. In fact, my Catalina seems to have suffered this fate in the past, because there was a repair job just under the stay attachment point. The rear shrouds are also attached only to the deck, so that under high load they might pull the deck apart.

For the rear shrouds, I glued and screwed small (20 x 40 cm.) plywood boards to the liner. Ideally, one should put a backing plate behind the liner, but since this was not possible, I made this "front plate," and spread the loads by means of a dozen of screws and epoxy.

To this "front plate" two pieces of L-shaped stainless steel were attached, and to them was attached the turnbuckle. At the deck, the shroud bolt holds a L-shaped piece to which the upper part of the turnbuckle is connected.

The deck loads are spread through this system.
The port side.

A similar system was also installed for the bow stay.

The front shrouds could also benefit from such a system, but in doing so I would ruin completely the V-berth (there, the turnbuckles would convert the V-berth to a one-person berth, so I decided to leave it for the time being).