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Old 22-01-2020, 05:33   #1
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Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Like many production boats, mine has these damn Lewmar low profile deck hatches. It is an awful design...like there was an engineering competion to come up with a hatch design with the largest possible number of points for leaks and failure.

Ive spent many hours resolving issues with this ridiculous design not only on my boat, but on boats in charter fleets too.

The hinge design is absurdly complicated and prone to failure (even Lewmar recognized that and issued a replacment kit...which wasnt much better, but failed less often), the hatch frame has two joints in it, three pieces of hardware pass thru the lens (creating more leak points and increasing their probability by being in flexi acrylic). Just a terrible design.

After yet another start of season repair things damaged by these damn leaky hatches and temporarily getting them to stop leaking (their flimsy/flexible design gaurantees they will leak again), Im ready to rip these damn things out and replace them with a better design, but what?

I would prefer a drop in solution which matches the existing hatches sizes as close as possible.

Lewmar makes at least 2 other series of hatches: a medium profile and their "Ocean" series...are these any better?

Better products by other manufacturers?

Suggestions, and real world experiences, appreciated!
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Old 25-01-2020, 04:51   #2
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Crickets...does everyone else love their Lewmar low profile hatches...or just no better ideas?
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Old 25-01-2020, 06:27   #3
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

The option I know is gonna make you cry once you learn of the price tag so I thought it wiser to give you a bit more time to prep yourself
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Old 25-01-2020, 07:49   #4
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Go ahead, I can take it!

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Old 25-01-2020, 11:16   #5
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Go ahead, I can take it!

Okay, you asked for it

There’s only one: https://www.defender.com/product.jsp?id=85827

I recommend to get them in bare aluminum, no powder coating.
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Old 25-01-2020, 12:35   #6
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Jedi View Post
Okay, you asked for it



There’s only one: https://www.defender.com/product.jsp?id=85827



I recommend to get them in bare aluminum, no powder coating.
YES! Hardware attached where it should be...directly to metal frame. I had some Bomar hatches on a previous boat, never had these kind of troubles...never had any troubles for that matter and they were 20 year old hatches. Maybe I can find a wholesale source.

Ive also thought about modifying the Lewmars, weld that stoopid 2 part frame together, add metal plates fore and aft for the hardware to attach too...maybe a better Lewmar. I can do that at a local machine shop in Volcan for about $20 a hatch (I have them do a lot of little fab projects for me, they are good, and dont charge much).

Food for thouht, thanks.
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Old 25-01-2020, 13:53   #7
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Our 1981 Bomar cast aluminum hatch bit the dust last year when the lens finally cracked. Replacing it would have entailed removing the handles, which were aluminum with ss pieces that pivoted through part of the aluminum frame... That meant they’d have to be drilled and hacksawed apart, and Bomar doesn’t make new handles for this 40-year old design. A new replacement hatch from Bomar would have cost about $2000 more than what we paid for our Lewmar. It doesn’t leak... yet.
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Old 25-01-2020, 14:19   #8
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Quote:
Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Crickets...does everyone else love their Lewmar low profile hatches...or just no better ideas?
Reference:

http://bomarinc.com/wp-content/uploa...ar_Catalog.pdf

Bomar is one of the companies owned by Pompanette LLC, link to Pompanette's hatch catalog. http://pompanettellc.com/product-category/hatches/
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Old 25-01-2020, 15:09   #9
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

I’ve been very happy with my Bomar Voyager hatches. A bit cheaper. No leaks, Nothing has broken. The stainless lid frame (aluminum deck frame) looks great and I believe it flexes less than aluminum so less prone to leaks at the gasket (assuming your deck is flat). Not quite as beefy as the 100 series but vastly better than Lewmar.

https://www.defender.com/product.jsp...3577&id=110157

If you want to stick with Lewmar, consider the Ocean. These were designed by the “old” Lewmar before cost cutting replaced engineering.
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Old 25-01-2020, 15:24   #10
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

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Originally Posted by psk125 View Post
Our 1981 Bomar cast aluminum hatch bit the dust last year when the lens finally cracked. Replacing it would have entailed removing the handles, which were aluminum with ss pieces that pivoted through part of the aluminum frame... That meant they’d have to be drilled and hacksawed apart, and Bomar doesn’t make new handles for this 40-year old design. A new replacement hatch from Bomar would have cost about $2000 more than what we paid for our Lewmar. It doesn’t leak... yet.
It only took me 30 minutes per hatch (I have 5 of those). Your old hatch was worth many hundreds of $$$
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Old 25-01-2020, 15:30   #11
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Re: Lewmar Low Profile Hatch Loathing

Certainly no brand loyalty to Lewmar, but same or very similar cut out would be nice. Will check it out.
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