The bases for the hand rails have now been installed.
They are ready to accept the polished stainless steel rails. These will not be manufactured until closer to the launch date so as to minimise the chances of them being scratched or damaged and to facilitate easier fairing and paint application. Due to the fact that the rail is stainless steel and the superstructure is aluminium there could be a chance of electrolytic corrosion between the 2 metals. To overcome this the following steps are taken. Firstly aluminium sockets are machined up on a lathe, which are then welded into cut-outs which are performed where each railing will meet the bulwark. Into each socket a solid fibreglass rod is inserted and fixed using epoxy. Once the area has been faired and painted, onto this rod a Teflon washer is placed. Then the railing is installed over the top of the fibreglass rod down onto the Teflon washer, and this is held in place with a grub screw. Using this method there will be no contact between dissimilar metals and hence no electrolytic corrosion.