Cleats Ripped out of Fiberglass

Jan 16, 2005
- - Dallas Texas
I have a 25' 1977 O'Day, cleats(2) ripped out of fiberglass in a storm in Dallas. I cannot place an "underneath" support, cannot get to that part of the boat. I have sanded and laid one layer of fiberglass kit down but am not comfortable than any number of fiberglass layers can allow a safe reattachment of the cleats. I have been advised to lay down three layers of resin treated fiberglass and then place a resin treated piece of teak wood down and then attach the cleat to the teak wood.

Sep 25, 2008
Alden 50 Sarasota, Florida
I’m assuming screws rather than bolts with big washers was the cause of the first failure. If so, making that mistake of using screws again with extra glass and a teak block won’t change much.
Jan 4, 2006
Hunter 310 West Vancouver, B.C.
using screws again with extra glass and a teak block won’t change much.
Maybe make it a little worse next time.

If I understand correctly, someone is suggesting using the wet resin as glue to attach a piece of teak to the new fiberglass. Next time you have a heavy load on the cleat, you're looking at the strength of the screws into teak as compared to the strength of screws into FG. I'd bet on the screws into the FG as the screws into the teak would be screwed into what, maybe 3/4" stock teak.

Hate to be the bearer of bad news but you're going to have to come up with a backing plate in there and use heavy machine screws for the cleats.

Sure there's no way to get a midget or small child back there ? Probably illegal in both cases but if you're a dedicated boater ................................
Mar 2, 2019
Oday 25 Milwaukee
As on owner of an ODay 25 myself ,I'd say there is most definitely a way . Our bow cleats are screwed all the way through into the V berth and are attached to tasteful backing plates . They look factory . 15 summers being moored on Lake Michigan show no signs of weakening ,leaking or movement.

Ward H

Nov 7, 2011
Catalina 30 Mk II Barnegat, NJ
As @Timm R Oday25 says, There is a way to get there, you just haven't found it yet.

I really doubt if the pulpit and cleats are/were held in place by screws and agree that wood screws to a piece of teak fiberglass onto the deck is a mistake.

I had an 1982 O'day 25 and the stern cleats were held in place by 1/4-20 machine screws, which are bolts, not wood type screws. That area of deck was reinforced with 1/4" plywood sandwiched into the fiberglass. I would expect yours to be the same.
Look closely in the area of the damage and see if you can tell if there was plywood sandwiched in the fiberglass. You should do the same for your repair.
Try a search for videos of Ripped Out Bow Cleats or even How to Repair a Hole in a Boat Deck.
There are tricks for repairing that kind of damage without accessing the inside, I'm sure.

After you make the deck repair, you will want to drill new holes for the cleat, then add a backing plate of metal, resin soaked wood or heavy duty fender washers and through bolt the cleat.

My 82 had a removable panel in the v-berth that gave access to the bow area. You may not have a removable panel so you may need to cut an access hole in the forward bulkhead in the v-berth to gain access.