Stainless Steel Anchor Nest on an Aluminum Boat
I have been asked several time over the years, “Won’t your stainless steel anchor nest on an aluminum boat degrade the aluminum?”
The short answer is, NO. The reason is, all of our stainless steel anchor nests, as well as our other stainless steel products, are powder coated, even the though they may appear to be an uncoated stainless steel, so your stainless steel anchor nest on your aluminum boat is not being touched by the stainless steel.
They are asking because of “Electrolysis”, when putting dissimilar metals together, the stronger metal, in this case, stainless steel, will want to destroy the aluminum.
Now, before you go replacing all the stainless steel hardware on your boat, and there is likely lots and lots. The main factor in determining the effect of a stainless steel anchor nest on an aluminum boat, as with any dissimilar metal, is the ratio of stainless to aluminum.
The reason boat manufactures and aftermarket suppliers offer stainless steel products for aluminum boats, is they know this rule.
To give you an example; let’s say you have a dime size piece of aluminum and set it on a 12’ square piece of stainless steel and set it on a rock at the coast, the stainless steel being much larger in relation to the aluminum, with the moisture in the air, especially in the salt air, corrosion will start much faster and take over the aluminum at a faster rate than if the roles were reversed.
For more technical information on electrolysis and the effect on dissimilar metals, you can find lots of information through the internet, so I won’t go into any technical details on the subject.
So to sum up the conversation of a stainless steel anchor nest on an aluminum boat, it would take enough stainless steel, more than the weight of your boat even if it was moored somewhere on the northwest coast to have any real effects to worry about