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Old 31-08-2011, 10:56   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Miami, Florida
Boat: 1976 Hudson Force 50
Posts: 49
Companionway Hatch - Replace with Same or ?

Last summer we replaced our companionway door with a nice white, 1.5" PVC based door with 2 smoked color windows. It has held up well, and we love the visibility.

My companionway hatch however (top slider) is now leaking from the rails the hatch slides on and is generally in need of a serious rebuild or replacement. I have identified the leaks as the result of the manufacturer driving the brass screws through the slider rails into the coach roof and into the supporting substructure. I see that I have 3 options.

1) remove the old hatch/rails and replace with new rails, ensuring that any bolts that secure the new rails are encased in epoxy (1/2 hole, filled with epoxy, then redrilled with 1/4 holes to keep any leaks from reaching the core). Reuse the old hatch for now until It is deemed unusable.

2) Do the same as above but replace the slider with a white PVC to match the door, with possible skylight. (smoked clear PVC that matches companionway door) If we go this way we are also looking for a better slide design.

3) Do away with the sliding hatch completely, and put a hinged hatch in it's place with hydraulic support struts. The hinged hatch would most likely be a 1.5" PVC as in option 2 above, hinged on the back side with 4 dogs to tighten the sides down snugly

4) - Do away with the top hatch completely. We could always put in a fixed hatch frame and cover (like option 3, but without the hinge, just secure a top white PVC board with screws on top of a frame, That way we could remove it if necessary for removal of large items as needed.

Option 3 or 4 seems like it would be the most overall watertight way to go, my boom is high enough where clearance is not an issue. Of Course a seahood could always be used with option 1 and 2, to improve water tightness. I am not sure why more hinged hatches are not used on companinonway's but seems like an easy approach. We rarely open the top sliding hatch anyway, but I hate to do away with it completely.

Any thoughts ?? Has anyone been there done that ? Anyone got pictures of having any of the above options taken or know of a site/blog where I can look at the project. I have great fiberglass skills and wood working skills, so not afraid of the project, but just looking for advice from someone who has done this project befroe.

yacht_planb is offline   Reply With Quote

companionway, hatch

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