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Old 19-06-2007, 00:05   #1
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Hard Dodger

My latest and 3rd attempt at a hard dodger over the years. This one is 3 epoxy glued layers of 1/4" ply over a male mold. If anyone is interested, I will continue to update with construction methods, pics and answer any questions that I can. Please note:- I am doing this with 50% use of my right arm. Some of you have read my "unfamiliar snapping" thread and know what happened. I was going stir-crazy and just had to build something!
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Old 19-06-2007, 00:13   #2
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Looking good!!! That's as strong as my cabin top. Bullet proof.

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Old 19-06-2007, 00:25   #3
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Watching with intense interest. I'm considering something along these lines but have had so much advice I haven't managed to come up with anything concrete (not ferro) yet.
Holy s%*@ I've just re-read the thickness of the top. I was planning on about 1/2 that & then glassing it. Mind you. I'm only 30' so weight is more of an issue.
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Old 19-06-2007, 02:02   #4
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please keep the updates coming ...practical projects for practical cruisers !!
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Old 19-06-2007, 02:41   #5
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Marty,
Is there a reason why you made it 3/4? Are you going to walk on it or mount something heavy up there?
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Old 19-06-2007, 05:06   #6
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I think someone needs to fabricate some solar topped hard dodgers. If the panels can be flexible and high efficiency this would be a great place... Bimini tops as well.

How about mainsails with solar panels integrated into them?

Pity that solar technology is expensive and no flexible.

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Old 19-06-2007, 07:18   #7
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Wow guys...Great response!
NoTies:-Yes, weight is a wise consideration. This roof alone is 70 pounds with 2 layers of 10 oz. cloth on top and 1 layer of X-mat on the bottom. When building in the camber (I used 8 ft. radius), you always will need 3 layer of ply to hold the form. Even 3 will loose a litlle but not much when released off the male form mold. BUT...you could use 3 layers of 1/8" (3mm.) ply.
John:- The reason I made it 3/4" thick is that I enjoy Ballroom dancing with 6 Women...just kidding. Actually, the ply thickness itself is only 1/2 its strength and little of it's rigidity. The further away the upper and lower layer of glass are, the more rigid the unit becomes. In my earlier models, I had made a female mould, and used a foam core with a few layers of roving to achieve this. But the labour in a female mould is stagering.
Also, I am putting up 2 to 4, 13"x51" 50watt panels. This is what dictated the deminsions (53"for-aft, 66" beam). There will also be a single boom gallows if I want to secure the boom for any reason. Great consideration to the uprights design will come in play here since the boom can generate great force with a pitching and yawing boat in storm conditions.
defjef:- Stay tuned!!! The English have invented a solar fabric. Who knows where that might end up...
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Old 19-06-2007, 08:04   #8
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Jef - there are flexible solar panels - not much output though

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Old 19-06-2007, 09:28   #9
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I have book marked this thread and will look at it when I get back from Whitehorse Yukon which won't be until around the third week in August. So updates with photos, especially how you mount it, would be appreciated. I leave tomorrow - 20 June - so I won't be responding further in this thread but will look it up upon my return.
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Old 19-06-2007, 09:29   #10
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Some ideas...

I built a hard dodger on my old boat (catalina 27). As the boat was much smaller I made it out of 3 laminations of 1/8" luan doorskins. This is the cheap way, Okumae (spelling?) is better. I glassed over with some light glass and west system. I actually built it on top of the stainless tubes that would later hold it up. This served as a male mold of sorts and gaurenteed a good fit. It worked great and was strong enough to stand on. The curve gives it more strength. The weakest part was the stainless tubing.

Here is a link to the picture:
http://www.cruisersforum.com/gallery...p?i=2807&c=517

There are a few brands of flexible solar panels out there. Some roll up and some are not as flexible. I am a big fans of the Duralite panels. (sold at defender). They flex enough to wrap around a gentle curve.
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Old 19-06-2007, 09:35   #11
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How are you going to support it? I want to do the same project. I ahve been playing wirh several ideas of supportinging it with basic alum bows. Maybe a kit from sailrite. One of the magazines had an article about this in the last year, I think BoatWorks. Install the bows, clamp the ply to the bows and epxoy in place and trim. Build up the leading and trailing edges for hand hold and strenthg. Bolt it to the bows and paint. I was then going to add removable canvas windows attached with snaps.

Kepp us informed on this one.
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Old 19-06-2007, 16:43   #12
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CelestialSailor, just as a matter of interest, how much weight can a 3/4" dodger (actually close to 1" when glass is applied) hold?
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Old 19-06-2007, 18:12   #13
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Tnflakbait & Maddog:- The forward section will have fiber-glass upright supports incorporated from the roof to the sliding hatch cover. The rear supports will most likely be stainless steel of the 1 1/4" variety. I would not use aluminum myself.
DeepFrz:- Actually, with the 3, 1/4" ply pieces and glass, it is exactly 3/4". Ply is always undersized. What a scam that one is! But to answer your question. 2 adults could stand on it, but that is not the intent as much as a large following sea crashing down on it. It's amazing the force water can have.
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Old 19-06-2007, 23:19   #14
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New pictures

The roof is off the male form and 2, 10oz. cloth on top and 1, X-mat under (top left photo). The othe 2 photos was without the glass work.
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Old 20-06-2007, 19:31   #15
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6/20/07

Latest installment:-It now has some color with non-skid incorportated in it. I use to use a pigmented resin called polycore but I cannot find it any more and had to use white tint in surfacing resin. The result was not near as nice as I had in the past but oh well! Tomorrow I will take it back to my belove "Faiaoahe" and mount it temporarily, so I can build the supports for it...Stay tuned...Aloha
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