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Old 08-05-2015, 18:57   #1
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Repairing teak hatch frames

Howdy Folks,

Our boat came with a nice set of teak framed screens for all the hatches. We're very happy with them and use them a lot but during a recent trip across the gulf, one of them got knocked lose while opening the hatch and cracked at a couple of the corners. We've been babying it, but I'd like to go ahead and repair it as cleanly and permanently as possible.

I've considered a good wood glue in combination with some stainless frame brackets but though I'd ask here to see if anyone has other suggestions. I'd like to stay away from having to buy any special tools but am open to suggestions.

Thanks,
EB
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Old 08-05-2015, 19:11   #2
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I'd try epoxy first in the cracked area, I'd varnish over the epoxy and the teak,
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Old 08-05-2015, 19:31   #3
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

Great looking screens!
Here is the method: open the crack a little bit without damaging the mating surfaces, then mix and pour epoxy, with a syringe being careful not to overfill - squeeze a bit and wait for it to penetrate into the crack, then squeeze a bit more, etc. until it does not go down any more. Then wrap duct or gorilla tape to press the joint together. The epoxy will not stick to the tape.
Wait 24 hours, sand any excess and varnish.
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Old 08-05-2015, 21:36   #4
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

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Originally Posted by SVTatia View Post
Great looking screens!
Here is the method: open the crack a little bit without damaging the mating surfaces, then mix and pour epoxy, with a syringe being careful not to overfill - squeeze a bit and wait for it to penetrate into the crack, then squeeze a bit more, etc. until it does not go down any more. Then wrap duct or gorilla tape to press the joint together. The epoxy will not stick to the tape.
Wait 24 hours, sand any excess and varnish.

Thanks SVTatia, I really appreciate the details. So stupid question, but any specific epoxy?

Much appreciated.
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Old 09-05-2015, 02:46   #5
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

I can see why you want to repair the screen. They look great and someone really built them right with 45 degree cross grain in corners.

Stay away from a "5" minute epoxy which is too brittle for this. West System sells a small repair kit with two small packets similar to ketshup packs you mix together. Other manufactures I'm sure may have similar. Tatia has the procedure right. Just make sure you keep flat when epoxying up or will have a permanent warp.

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Old 09-05-2015, 04:23   #6
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

Those are some nice pieces, I can see why you want to keep them (looking stock).

It looks as if the joints already have built in diagonal, wooden, reinforcements at the joints. But thanks to wear & tear, these have cracked at the joint.
Knock on wood, they shouldn't be too difficult to replace. Simply make some fine, partial thickness cuts into the frame on both sides of the old reinforcing cross pieces. Using say a fine woodworker's saw, or in a pinch, a hacksaw. And then carefully chisel out the broken bits.
- Ah, & make sure that when you're doing this, the framework is in a supportive jig. Preferably one made out of materials which epoxy wont stick to.

Then once you have the old ones/bits removed, & the joint groove cleaned up, you can manufacture some new reinforcing cross pieces. Making sure to sand them to fit the old joints. And that the final sanding pattern, if any, matches up with the one on the hatch.

Although, if you like, you can get some composite reinforcements, in the form of Tows, or very thing glass, add this into the joint, underneath of the new wooden cross pieces. But be sure to allow for this thickness when sanding the new wooden reinforcements to fit.
Also, if you like, you can add a thin layer of composite reinforcements to the joint on the underside of the frames also.

And either way, with or without composite reinforcements, make sure to follow the usual precautions when gluing teak. Plus, as already mentioned, things like clear plastic packing tape is good for taping off anywhere that you don't want any epoxy to wind up. Plus, it's good for holding things together while the glue dries.


PS: For projects of this size, it's easy enough to make your own reinforcement "Tows". Just put on a pair of rubber gloves, to keep your skin's oils, off of the glass or carbon fiber, & "unweave" some heavy cloth at the edges. What you're after is those 3mm-5mm wide bundles of fiber, which are tightly packed together, & all running in the same direction.
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Old 09-05-2015, 08:00   #7
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

Less than ten dollars for an angle clamp at home despot six bucks at harbor freight will help to keep joint tight and straight while curing epoxy. Of course protect clamp as mentioned above with tape or plastic.

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Old 09-05-2015, 08:19   #8
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

The miters are poorly constructed. They should have slip feathers with the grain oriented at 90 degrees to the miter. Easy to do on a table saw.
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:05   #9
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

Haven't read the other posts but I can tell you that is not the way to make a screen frame for a boat. They should have been lap joints. I would route away the corners,half the depth of the frame and then epoxy a teak 45 degree gusset in there on 4 corners.
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:49   #10
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

I agree the joint looks a little odd but some 2 part epoxy should do the trick. I have rebuilt several teak hatches on my sailboat with good results. Clean out the joint the best you can. Acetone helps. West Marine sells a small epoxy repair kit as previously mentioned. They also sell syringes so you can get the epoxy into the right place. Try to work clean... Disposable gloves, drop cloth, rags, etc. Epoxy sticks to everything. Clean up any spills with acetone. Sand and refinish as necessary. Should last for s few years
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Old 09-05-2015, 09:53   #11
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

This is the joint required, a slip feather.

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Old 10-05-2015, 09:15   #12
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Re: Repairing teak hatch frames

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Originally Posted by ErBrown View Post
Thanks SVTatia, I really appreciate the details. So stupid question, but any specific epoxy?

Much appreciated.
Any epoxy but the 5 minutes one. The ones recommended above are fine, you want the viscosity of milk so that it can flow. You could even apply with the mixing stick, letting it "drip" over the opened crack. If you want to be extra careful, put masking tape on the areas adjacent to the repair, and if you use gorilla or duct tape to press the joint together, these will come out easier without damaging the varnish, since its on top of the less aggressive stick glue of masking tape. Good luck.
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