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Old 08-05-2021, 16:59   #76
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

Quote:
Originally Posted by redneckrob View Post
Again to apologize for the thread drift, but seriously, if one isn't even aware of what constitutes international waters (12 NM offshore, with a bunch of caveats I'm happy to discuss if you are familiar with them), then why would one think one was in any position of expertise on international law to tell someone who literally did this for a living that they're wrong?

International law is a somewhat arcane and very different thing from what folks generally think of as "law". If one hasn't taken some courses or studied it, they're going to be sea lawyering their way around with their personal opinion on how they think the world should work, which can vary vastly from how the world actually works.

In reality the Coast Guard is not an organization of jack booted thugs hanging out 15 miles outside Sydney boarding Australian cruisers. But it wouldn't be at all uncommon for you to find them 500 miles offshore from American Samoa a whole lot closer to Australia than the mainland U.S., and under international law they legally can board your vessel regardless of your feelings on the matter or the fact there is a picture of your boat on the internet or anything else that has been brought up here. The chances they will are vanishingly small, but that doesn't change the fact that they can. You can certainly disagree with if this is right or not, but unless you have some background in international law, I'd respectfully submit that you aren't in a position to determine its legality under international law. One would hope that instead of yelling at the messenger about how wrong thy are, one would thank them for informing them of something they didn't previously know and be happy for the opportunity to learn something new? And maybe, if one found the whole area of international law interesting, take some courses or do some research to learn more?
i was actually thinking of the usofa EEZ which extends up to 200nm (15 is less than 200 btw)

for the rest : suggest you read and try to understand post # 75 by Dsanduril. he has put the facts very well

cheers
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Old 08-05-2021, 19:13   #77
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

btw just saw this - happened 2 days ago:

The USS Monterey embarked a US Coast Guard Advanced Interdiction Team (AIT) which “discovered the illicit cargo during a routine flag verification boarding conducted in international water in accordance with customary international law.”

https://www.jpost.com/middle-east/us...nalysis-667625
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Old 09-05-2021, 03:22   #78
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

One disadvantage of getting rid of escape hatches... a friend of ours removed his and fitted glassed over plywood inserts, fibreglassed in. He did this in Vanuatu before sailing back to Aus, didn't want to do the passage with leaking hatches.

As a result of doing the job in a fairly remote location, the job wasn't faired and painted, just left as glass over ply.

Back in Aus, during the customs search, the customs officer asked what was behind the plywood.

"The outside, there were hatches there, but they keaked so I filled them in."

"Is there some sort of storage under there?"

"No, as I said, the tunnel between the hulls is through there."

She left, looking suspicious.

Later on she returned, with a search party!

Apparently it took quite a while and several trips outside to look under the bridgedeck to convince them....
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Old 09-05-2021, 04:21   #79
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
No need for those of you taking thread off course to apologize...just act...and move the unrelated conversation to another thread. In fact there is an active thread on the boarding subject right now.

https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink/top...ink_source=app

I second this, Start your own thread about whether boardings are legal or not, and you guys can drop your drawers and compare notes. The rest of us are here to discuss the OP's topic of escape hatches.
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Old 09-05-2021, 04:39   #80
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
One disadvantage of getting rid of escape hatches... a friend of ours removed his and fitted glassed over plywood inserts, fibreglassed in. He did this in Vanuatu before sailing back to Aus, didn't want to do the passage with leaking hatches.

As a result of doing the job in a fairly remote location, the job wasn't faired and painted, just left as glass over ply.

Back in Aus, during the customs search, the customs officer asked what was behind the plywood.

"The outside, there were hatches there, but they keaked so I filled them in."

"Is there some sort of storage under there?"

"No, as I said, the tunnel between the hulls is through there."

She left, looking suspicious.

Later on she returned, with a search party!

Apparently it took quite a while and several trips outside to look under the bridgedeck to convince them....
Yeah, a recent rough fiberglass job would look suspicious. At least they didnt take saws-all to it!

I know people who have had their boat really trashed by officials in the USA. No effective recourse.
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Old 10-05-2021, 12:12   #81
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

Our Leopard 44’s escape hatch was just inside the door in the floor, as you enter the saloon from the aft entertainment area. Pretty pointless if you ask me, except when you were sweeping the floor of the saloon


It was always wet inside, but luckily the water could go nowhere but out again. I know of a number of cases where an unlocked escape hatch was used by thieves to gain access. I also know of one boat, was either Lagoon or FPJ, that sank as a result of the hatch been left open in the Seychelles.

On reflection it’s probably not a bad place to have one. Damage would be minimal if left open, you would realise it pretty quickly. If the yacht did end up wrong way around it would be easier to move to the bridge deck rather than swimming out and under between all the mess of sails, sheets, ropes whatever.

My 2 cents!
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Old 10-05-2021, 12:17   #82
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

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Originally Posted by Nahbrown View Post
Our hatches were getting salt creep so we had the seals replaced and Now they drip water.


I decided that I wanted them sealed permanently and have requested quotes from a few places. One yard responded that the Coast Guard wont certify our boat if we do this job.

I was under the impression that escape hatches were a European requirement.

Thoughts or references?
You are missing one very important thing. The words “ESCAPE HATCH.” They are meant to ONLY be opened if the boat were to turn turtle. They should be locked at all times!
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Old 10-05-2021, 13:20   #83
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...-209310-2.html
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Old 10-05-2021, 17:42   #84
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

Maybe a solution for the resale problem?
You might replace your complete hatch, the moving part and the fixed frame, with a piece of solid fiberglass (polyester, vinylester or epoxy like your hull). Screw it on using the original screwholes, and use a decent sealant (a sealant, not a glue, so you can get it off again). Use screws of the original quality, but a bit longer.

The acrylic of our escape hatches is 12 mm. You may replace the hatch with 12 mm fiberglass I think.


Our hatches also leaked a lot. What we tried:
- New seals: if these are hollow, do not forget to drill holes in them to equalize the air pressure; otherwise temperature effects will unseal the seals
- Put wax on the seals
- We put teak trim around the hatches at the front and bottom side. The Outremers have thin fiberglass protectors. Both these reduce the force of the slamming waves on the seals.
- We put a "saugschwamm" (this is an incredibly well absorbing sponge) between the lower closing handles on the acrylic. It fits there snugly. When the hatches leaked this would absorb, and protect the woodwork. On rough passages we had to squish the sponges every hour. We just crossed 3 days in French Ponynesia. The sponges were dry! Finally victory!
They are square Moonlight escape hatches. Contrary to the normal hatches, they have 4 handles and the acrylic is 12 instead of the standard 10mm.

But I don't want to say they are better than others; on our Mahé we had Goiot escape hatches that did not leak, but these are mounted higher above the waterline, in the forward bathroom; an excellent location giving a lot of ventilation. In our present boat they are under the stairs from hulls to bridgedeck. The bridgedeck froms a kind of venturi creating overpressure, resulting in a fantastic airflow in the hulls. Being high, little chance of water entering on the anchorage.
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Old 10-05-2021, 18:17   #85
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Re: Fiberglassing over escape hatch openings, is this legal in the USA?

I'm a bit puzzled.

I guess I am not surprised that some production builders use an inexpensive solution for these hatches, which does not hold up so well to 'real' use.

But building escape hatches that will not leak is not that hard, it is a solved problem. #1 you need a wide sealing area for the 'gasket' - like 50mm of a good gasket material (like Neoprene or silicone rubber sheet) all around the edge or a double o-ring design, #2 you need even pressure on that gasket all around the hatch edge - need structurally rigid hatch (can be done with proper composites) to spread the pressure evenly and usually screw down clamping (which can still be fast opening depending on design) (rather than lever handles) usually at least 4 point clamping and #3 you need to protect the edge from direct wave hit - usually best done by making the hatch flush with the outside skin of the boat.

This is not 'theory - I've seen this done DIY on a trimaran and it was relatively inexpensive, not hard to construct, and worked perfectly for a decade.
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