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Old 02-12-2013, 10:14   #1
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Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

Our new-to-us Sun Odyssey 43 DS has lots of head room. Too much head room for those of us built close to the deck.

I can reach up to latch and unlatch the overhead hatches, but am too short to push those hatches open more than a few inches, and reaching up to pull them closed if they are fully open isn't even a maybe.

I know there are those aluminum grabbers out there, but am not sure they'd be strong enough. Also, I'm hoping to find something more attractive as whatever I use will have to be handy all of the time. I've thought of a nice wooden shepherds hook, or modifying an attractive salad spoon. I've also thought of those folding step stools, but would rather something small I can just reach up with to pull or push the hatch to a position I can reach.

I'm sure there are some others out there with this sort of problem. Are there any creative ideas you could share with me?
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Old 02-12-2013, 10:25   #2
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

Be careful pushing up on the hatch with a gadget. If you do, be sure not to push on the lexan, it will damage seal, at least that is what happened to me(old port).

I'm not vertically challenged but I cannot get the main salon hatch all the way open either, I just go out on deck after unlatching, or get my hubby to push the hatch all the way open.
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Old 02-12-2013, 11:07   #3
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I'm sure there are some others out there with this sort of problem. Are there any creative ideas you could share with me?
I'd suggest a selected breeding programme involving tall partners , couple of generations should do it.

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Old 02-12-2013, 13:22   #4
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...


You can buy compact step at most hard ward stores. We have one that sort of rolls but when you step on it if does not move. I found platform shoes with 3 to 6 high heels come in handy also.
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Old 02-12-2013, 16:20   #5
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

I do like the heels idea! I'm afraid they may not be enough though, not to mention the comments I'd get for wearing shoes on the sole.

I'm long past the point where selective breeding would help me; thankfully my captain's forefather's helped us out in that respect--but that doesn't help me much.

Good point about not damaging the hatch. I'll definitely be cautious about that. Going out on deck to close the hatches works on a sunny afternoon, but not on a cool wet night.

The folding step is a strong plan B. Any other ideas?
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Old 03-12-2013, 14:25   #6
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...


Well, do what my wife would do, ask your SO to close it for you. After all she would have asked me to open it so its only seems logical I would be expected to close it.

We wear hard soled shoes/heels most of the time on the boat. I have never understood why boaters do not. Teak is a hard wood and holds up well. However, we carpeted the entire boat except the galley.
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Old 04-12-2013, 10:12   #7
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

Well yes, RH, I do that. But sometimes he isn't around, and if a downpour hits in the night, I guarantee I'm up and running for hatches before he wakes up!

We don't wear shoes in our house (with hardwood floors) either; it's a husband thing. Or perhaps a Canadian thing. It does help keep things cleaner though.
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Old 04-12-2013, 10:36   #8
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

A tall scandinavian blonde spouse would be a good idea.
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Old 05-12-2013, 06:34   #9
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

I used a wooden stick to push up the hatch, and had tied a piece of Paracord about 1 foot long around the hatch lever to pull it down on my 43DS.
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Old 05-12-2013, 09:06   #10
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

Some stateroom hatches are also meant to be emergency escape! Is the hatch meant to be an escape? If so not only open and closing the hatch put how would you escape, so you might want to added inclued in you thinking?

Our hatch is above the shower, which we open to let out the steam/moisture. I build a seat to be able to sit while showering and shaving, with foot steps that are used as shelves for shampoo, conditioner, body wash and other lotions/potions.
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Old 05-12-2013, 09:26   #11
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

Good thought rw. I hadn't thought of the egress aspect, but the hatch over the v-berth should permit an alternate avenue of escape. In that cabin I can stand on the berth to reach the hatch and should be able to hoist myself out.
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Old 05-12-2013, 09:57   #12
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

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Originally Posted by Prairie Chicken View Post
Good thought rw. I hadn't thought of the egress aspect, but the hatch over the v-berth should permit an alternate avenue of escape. In that cabin I can stand on the berth to reach the hatch and should be able to hoist myself out.
If you can stand on the berth to reach the hatch, then why don't you do that to open or close it when your taller partner isn't there?
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Old 05-12-2013, 10:37   #13
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

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A tall scandinavian blonde spouse would be a good idea.
I have just the gal for you, but she 's Dutch.
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Old 05-12-2013, 23:44   #14
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Re: Help for those of us with Duck's Disease ...

I assume this boat has hatches that vary in their accessibility. A lanyard tied to the hatch might help a bit with getting it started going downward.
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Old 06-12-2013, 00:03   #15
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Get a cane. They also come in handy when getting back your land legs after a long time on boat.
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