By Don Casey
Revised by BoatUS editors in April 2012
Think "gasket" when you bed hardware. The mistake most of us make is squeezing the sealant out of the joint by over tightening. While the sealant is wet, snug fasteners just enough to form a continuous bead of sealant around the perimeter of the fitting. Crank down on them only after the sealant has cured for 24 hours (one hour for silicone). Turn the nuts only so you don't break the seal on the bolts. Tightening fasteners after the sealant cures puts it under compression, greatly extending the life of the seal.