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Old 07-08-2015, 23:34   #16
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Re: Companionway door ideas

I think about hatches.

In general, I think most are jokes! Most remind me of the boards that teenagers break in Karate class. :big grin:

I am no expert on hatches and don't have the high latitude experience of some here or miles of many here, so take my comments with a splash of saltwater!
___________

I think Snow Petrel has the rare high latitude experience and right ideas here.

Hatch boards are OK for daysailers and calm seas or coastal cruisers or most boats. But, for true "adventure yachts" or Expedition Boats (high latitude boats), I would want something more secure.

Of course not everyone wants to go to high latitudes or even envisions being in a boat in a real storm. And that is OK, as there are many places to sail and many different types of boats and sailors.

But, even in places as commonly sailed as the Med...

I recall reading a story this past year here on CF about a knockdown (Greek isles as I recall) where the lexan hatch boards (on an offset hatch) failed and the water poured in the boat. Almost a loss of boat and scary for the crew.

The BethandEvans example is what I would seek for my own (future) boat.

Of all the boats I have seen, I have developed a 10 point list of things I would like as features or characteristics of my ideal boat's hatch:

Steady's Ideal Companionway Hatch
1. permanently attached,
2. Watertight
3.able to withstand a boarding sea (e.g. being pooped)
4.easy and quick to close in a second or two (when you see that big gray beard approaching from behind)
5.intuitive so anyone knows instinctively what to do (Pull that door shut!)
6.no parts to lose,
7.able to be secured inside or outside with "big dogs" so easy to handle with gloves on or in the cold,
8.has a view port that is small
9. lockable when away from the boat.
10. Low maintenance (no varnish) with Stainless or aluminum my preference
I personally would prefer there to be a single swinging door of moderate size (easy and quick to close), with a companion top hatch (sliding or lifting on a hinge) that has a Bubble or Dome for looking out at the sails and around the boat/cockpit while still below.

I have been collecting examples for a while, here are a few photos from my files.
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Old 08-08-2015, 00:02   #17
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Steady, on that hatch failure, was it truly the Lexan which failed, or the bits which held it in place? I ask, as even in the thinnest pieces, it'd damned tough stuff. And unless it's been exposed to a LOT of UV, I have trouble seeing breaking it. Though if it's thin, bending it enough to get it to pop out of place is plausible. But for hatch boards, I'd take it over teak, or any other wood for toughness.

As to companionway doors, it seems again, that we're on the same page.
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Old 08-08-2015, 00:17   #18
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Re: Companionway door ideas

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Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
Steady, on that hatch failure, was it truly the Lexan which failed, or the bits which held it in place? I ask, as even in the thinnest pieces, it'd damned tough stuff. And unless it's been exposed to a LOT of UV, I have trouble seeing breaking it. Though if it's thin, bending it enough to get it to pop out of place is plausible. But for hatch boards, I'd take it over teak, or any other wood for toughness.

As to companionway doors, it seems again, that we're on the same page.
I understand your point and agree.

But as I recall it was the lexan piece drop board that fractured. I cannot recall the name of the event or boat or member. Someone here will know. It happened in Greece, at an anchorage, due to a very sudden strong wind that blew into the anchorage. It was discussed at length on cf.
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Old 08-08-2015, 00:19   #19
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Lexan is very flexible. Under water pressure I can see it popping out of its grooves on a dropboard setup, unless stiffened with something else.

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Old 08-08-2015, 00:20   #20
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Doors are not water tight as I have no plans for off-shore. Rubber seals could be added later if plans change.

Sliding hatch would be more difficult to make water tight. As it is, I purposely built a 1/2" gap around 3 sides of the perimeter to act as the ships ventilation point (I removed the dorades and welded the penetrations shut).

Door latch is a sliding, spring loaded bolt (similar to a standard household door knob bolt) actuated by that circular fitting at the top of the starboard door. Again, if planning an off-shore passage, I would probably add a dog (like the one SnowP. drew) at the bottom of each door.

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Old 08-08-2015, 00:38   #21
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Panope - Steve,

That hatch looks great! I really like the rounded shapes and naked metal finish on the exterior. It shows a good eye for design and craftsmanship too!

Well done!
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Old 08-08-2015, 01:00   #22
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steady Hand View Post
I understand your point and agree.

But as I recall it was the lexan piece drop board that fractured. I cannot recall the name of the event or boat or member. Someone here will know. It happened in Greece, at an anchorage, due to a very sudden strong wind that blew into the anchorage. It was discussed at length on cf.
Google helped me find the original article I mentioned above.

See following excerpt:

"The big CQR was holding well, and all our earlier preparations were still in place, but visibility was nil in heavy rain and the noise was unbelievable as we tried to monitor the situation on deck. Suddenly, the boat lurched sideways with a loud bang echoing from forward and in a matter of seconds, we turned beam on to the wind and were immediately knocked down well past 90 degrees. As our much-anticipated hot meal flew over our heads, we tumbled to the boat’s starboard side, which had become the cabin sole. The offset companionway submerged, and an instant later, the 5/8-inch Lexan washboard broke in half, allowing a massive flood to pour in through the lower companionway opening.


While I fought to slow the torrent of seawater with a cushion, Lee managed to start our electric emergency bilge pump, rated for 4,000 gallons-per-hour, but we were flooding waist deep along the starboard side and the bilge pump wasn’t going to be effective as long as we remained on beam’s end. For a short time, it looked as though we would lose the boat, and even worse, our nearest exit was through the cascade of seawater pouring in through the companionway opening.


As suddenly as it had come up, the wind eased, and the boat righted far enough to empty a large portion of the water from the cabin into the bilge where the pump could clear it. I jammed a larger cushion into the companionway opening just as the wind howled back to life, and we rolled the mast under for a second time. The starboard chart table was almost completely submerged by the time the wind finally eased again, and we stabilized at about 45 degrees of heel."


In the Wake of a Storm - Practical Sailor Print Edition Article
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Old 08-08-2015, 05:17   #23
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Re: Companionway door ideas

No idea if your layout allows, but self stowing washboards are great!

https://youtu.be/6USBW0EEw-o
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Old 08-08-2015, 05:28   #24
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Quote:
Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
No idea if your layout allows, but self stowing washboards are great!

https://youtu.be/6USBW0EEw-o
That's interesting, I like that. Unfortunately at the bottom of where my washboards go to is my engine bay. So no I can't do that.
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Old 08-08-2015, 06:53   #25
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Companionway door ideas

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Sorry for the crappy iPad pic, it's the best I have on here.
It's a Diamond Seaglaze hatch with two dogs that make it secure and waterproof.

I'm sure it's not everyone's cup and of tea, but I like the solidness and practical aspects.
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Old 09-08-2015, 17:16   #26
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Quote:
Originally Posted by Strait Shooter View Post
Attachment 106962

Sorry for the crappy iPad pic, it's the best I have on here.
It's a Diamond Seaglaze hatch with two dogs that make it secure and waterproof.

I'm sure it's not everyone's cup and of tea, but I like the solidness and practical aspects.
Hi.

It is unusual looking. I don't mind unusual when it works!

The photo you posted is one view. Do you have others? Perhaps from the side showing the forward end of the housing that appears it slopes/curves down into the cabin top?

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What follows is NOT any criticism of your boat, your modifications, or your work!

I took a quick look at your blog and see you have a lot of skill working with wood. And, I like INGRID as a boat design. And, I like the cabin top (with forward portlights) you have on your boat. I am sure it will be very nice when finished, as it appears you are putting a lot of personal work into it. I wish I had your wood skills and tools and shop too, as I think it would be a very satisfying thing to work on a boat and finish the interior etc.

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My thoughts on using a "door" style hatch on a smaller boat: If I were modifying or designing a boat for going offshore off the Washington, Oregon, Alaska (PNW) coast, I would want a very secure hatch and easy way to get in and out but still secure.

Given the size and location of the hatch/door (offset to side), I would want one that is "self closing" too. In fact, I think the fail safe would be to make it close by itself, and only when I really need it open would I be able to "fix" it open (e.g. at anchor or marina or when motoring in side passage etc. I mean this so when offshore sailing (heeled) and in any seas. When the sea is flat that would be different.
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Old 09-08-2015, 17:55   #27
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Another idea, not trying to suggest buying these necessarily, but I like the idea that the original hatch boards are still useable
http://www.zarcor.com/products/c-doors/index.php
I may buy them unless I can come up with something better?

On the Lexan doors breaking, I seriously doubt it, ordinary acrylic often called by the name of plexiglass, yes I can see that breaking, but lexan is very flexible, soft and easily scratched because of it, but it can be bent a lot before it breaks


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Old 09-08-2015, 18:22   #28
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Re: Companionway door ideas

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Now THAT is a door! Or two doors actually. It took me a few seconds to fugure out what I was looking at as I originally thought I was looking at an oven or washer / dryer. Clearly out doors though???

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Old 27-09-2015, 05:20   #29
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Re: Companionway door ideas

Got some pictures for you. This door is on lift off hinges so it can be quickly removed. There is space behind it for the original drop boards. Works so well that it's not normally removed.

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Old 27-09-2015, 06:04   #30
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Re: Companionway door ideas

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Originally Posted by Snowpetrel View Post
Got some pictures for you. This door is on lift off hinges so it can be quickly removed. There is space behind it for the original drop boards. Works so well that it's not normally removed.

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O o o o, that's what I need. That's exactly it, yes
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