by George Jack.
As part of a complete restoration of my Sonata, I decided to fit a single point lift attached to the keel bolts.
I removed the aft-most pair of keel bolts and their plates – not the single aft-most keel bolt but the next two, which form a pair. I cut a 16mm SS plate to fit the bilge. The plate has two drilled holes for the keel bolts and two tapped holes for the lifting eyes. I ground the bilge area around the holes to get a good bond. The plate is secured by the keel bolts and bonded to the bilge with International Watertight Filler.
To lift the boat, I screw two lifting eyes into the plate. It’s not possible to leave them in permanently because they are too tall to fit under the flooring. When they are not in use the tapped holes are blanked-off with grub screws to stop water getting in. The strop comes out through a 5-inch hole that I cut in the coachroof. The hole is covered with a screw-in white plastic deck cover when the lift is finished.
At the time of writing, I have lifted the boat once with this system and it lifted horizontally. I had strops loosly attached to the bow and stern in case it was out of balance but I don’t think they were really needed.