Before we departed last fall, our friend Glen suggested that we rivet together our bimini frame, so that the set screws wouldn’t separate in high winds. I listen to Glen’s advice, but because we didn’t have the new bimini installed, I didn’t want to permanently install the frame. (Plus we simply ran out of time to get it done.)
Fast forward to our crossing from Green Turtle Cay to Fernandina Beach, Fl – as the remnants of TS Beryl crossed well to the north of us, it brought 30 knot winds on our beam as we sailed to the Gulf Stream. With the boat heeled 20 degrees, I watched the bimini frame start to separate as the wind was hitting the bottom of the bimini and lifting it up.
I hurriedly lashed the bimini frame to the toe rail and we sailed to Florida. When we arrived, rivets went back onto the To-Do list.
Now that we have a new bimini it was time to finally install the rivets. Yesterday we worked through the heat to remove each brace and install rivets through the stainless steel tubing into the end fittings. The result is a rock solid bimini frame that we’ll never have to worry about again in heavy weather, but it looks exactly like it did before we started.