Drill my T-165

I finally took the plunge today, and picked up a new (leftover) WS T165 (kevlar).

I need some advice on the best way to drill a few holes in the topside. I want to mount a compass in the forward pocket, and a U-bole on the rear deck for a security cable.

I have power drills, and a wide selection of bits.

BTW, what’s the model number of the Brunton compass that fits the tempest. Dealer doesn’t carry them, and didn’t know the price which I wanted to know before I asked him to order one.



T-165 Compass
The Brunton website lists the Model 70P Marine compass with an MSRP of $100.


Use masking tape over areas to be drilled. Tape will reduce/prevent gel coat chips and give you a better surface to mark on before drilling. Double or triple it and the bit will have that much less chance of slipping when starting the holes.

For the U-Bolt, be sure you can reach it easily enough from inside to attach properly. Use a backer plate inside to distribute force/load, etc. Other thoughts: The bigger the plate the better? Round the corners - or use an oval plate. (:slight_smile:

Drill my T165
Would I be better off using a brad point bit, or a normal twist bit, starting small, and increasing the diameter?

just drill it
I do dozens of these installs and I just drill 'em with a speedy, sharp bit. over 1/4" start with a smaller bit.

On the Brunton 70 P get #4 X 40 machine screws and neo washers and nylocks replacing the sheet metal screws. they will tear up your gear.

If you can’t find 'em shoot me an e.


congrads on the purchase. good luck with the install


Don’t forget the red LockTite on the nuts!


All stainless too, of course NM

or use
nylocks. especially made for locking down.


Drilling T165
Thanks for the replies. Always helpful as usual.

There is a West Marine store that has a good stock of stainless fasteners. I always use stainless-capnuts and loctite are part of the package.



Search around and save
I’ve never paid more than $75 for a 70P. There are deals to be had on the 'net if you shop around.

Good luck getting the nuts off…
…if you ever need to remove the compass. Loctite #271 (red) is meant to be permanent and requires heat to break the bond. You’re better off with either Loctite #242 (blue) or #222 (pink/purple). Both of these will prevent the nuts from vibrating loose, but will allow disassembly, if necessary.

I think the loctite was for u bolt NM

tape both sides
the drill bit usually chips the side it exits

OK to drill Perception Airalite?
I assume it will be fine, but while we’re on the subject, I’d better ask. Has anyone drilled Airalite material, and does it need a larger backing plate when attaching a U-bolt?

Just picked up a Sonoma 13.5 for calm-water paddling, and need to add some place to thread a security cable.