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Old 17-04-2021, 12:43   #1
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Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

44 ft sailboat, mostly water sailing">blue water sailing.

I am considering installing a large mirror on the main wooden bulkhead in the saloon. This is primarily cosmetic. Ive seen this on other boats and I like the way it makes the space feel larger; however, I donít want it to break and I am somewhat reluctant to hang things on the nice woodwork. It would be a fairly large horizontal mirror, maybe ~5x 2 ft. If I were to do this, what type of mirror should I use and how best to hang it? I would prefer not to drill holes in the wood if possible.

I am just doing some preliminary research, starting here...

Thank you in advance,

Russell
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Old 17-04-2021, 12:55   #2
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Most plastic suppliers have acrylic mirrors. Much lighter than glass. Non-breakable. Not as good optical quality. Easy to scratch when cleaning. The reflective coating seems to corrode around the edges faster than glass mirrors. My boat has a 1982 glass mirror in fine shape, the one plastic mirror needs replacement every few years.
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Old 17-04-2021, 13:01   #3
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Your 44 foot sailboat isn't big enough already?


said by all of us plebes who have tiny tiny boats - compared to yours.








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Old 17-04-2021, 13:09   #4
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Lol, point well taken, just assessing the feasibility


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Originally Posted by Stu Jackson View Post
Your 44 foot sailboat isn't big enough already?


said by all of us plebes who have tiny tiny boats - compared to yours.








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Old 17-04-2021, 13:12   #5
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

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Originally Posted by Bycrick View Post
Most plastic suppliers have acrylic mirrors. Much lighter than glass. Non-breakable. Not as good optical quality. Easy to scratch when cleaning. The reflective coating seems to corrode around the edges faster than glass mirrors. My boat has a 1982 glass mirror in fine shape, the one plastic mirror needs replacement every few years.
Any opinions on hanging, seems like museum putty and/or Velcro wouldnít be enough to handle banging around the Gulf Stream?
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Old 17-04-2021, 19:53   #6
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

https://www.loctiteproducts.com/en/p...20of%20mirrors.
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Old 17-04-2021, 20:47   #7
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Two things about art onboard. Try subjects which remind you land does exist.
Flowers, landscapes...something tranquil. Excitement, waves and shipwrecks are all round you. No need to add the exterior thrills to the interior decor.
As to mirrors. A cheap trick at boat shows but will only add to the grim reality of a green portraiture of seasickness.
Now I think manatees have twinkling eyes and beautiful smiles but I cannot say the same for myself as I emerge from the depths of the bilge. Mirrors? As one ages, suitable only in the smallest of sizes...and...to be hidden.
Hidden on the reverse side of cabinet doors or in a face powder compact.
It is a wise man who never speaks of the facial twists women employ using this device. Shaving cream, virus masks, large sunglasses and bandannas look frighteningly like horror movie props in anything but the smallest of mirrors.
There is a video on the web of a manatee doing a face plant at speed into the glass of an aquarium...which beautifully illustrates the dangers of mirrors.
He thought he was rushing into a kiss from another manatee.
Gentle original poster. Please consider supporting the community of artist and decorate with an original painting. With a huge mirror...offshore... You will need a lot more barf bags. Trust us on this.
Happy trails to you.
Captain Mark and his manatee crew who abstain from anchovy pizza off soundings.
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Old 17-04-2021, 20:49   #8
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

I have a 41DS and I hung a door mirror behind the door to the fore cabin to make it look bigger. The mirror already had hooks built into it and I used screws to hang it. In order to avoid banging from the bottom of the mirror I put a dab of 3M 4200 ...just enough to keep it secure. The mirror is tempered glass, beveled and frameless and it is still intact.

To the OP.....get the mirror. They are nice and you wont BARF unless you read what others say about it.

Abe
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Old 17-04-2021, 21:25   #9
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

I always wanted to install a mirror in the aft cabin because I thought it would be useful and also cover a blank space.

I thought it was going to be expensive but there were X 3 acrylic square mirrors for $16. I installed two stuck on with contact cement. Just below the mirrors I had to install a cover for the steering cable/pulleys so on top I made a place for shaving gear etc (I don't think you can see it in the photo)

I'll upload a photo but the cabin is not big enough to allow a good shot,
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Old 18-04-2021, 04:53   #10
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

As has been pointed out acrylic mirrors are light so maybe some double-sided tape would be fine to hold them in place?
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Old 18-04-2021, 05:04   #11
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

I'm inclined to think that any adhesive that would hold a large glass mirror when you go bang in a seaway would do more damage to the bulkhead than clips and screws. You can use pretty small screws - the force on them is in shear, so their depth into the wood is more important than their diameter. If you later change your mind, either fill the holes with putty and stain it to match, or drill them out and use tiny diameter dowels to plug the holes.
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Old 18-04-2021, 09:31   #12
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mabel Page View Post
44 ft sailboat, mostly blue water sailing.

I am considering installing a large mirror on the main wooden bulkhead in the saloon. This is primarily cosmetic. Ive seen this on other boats and I like the way it makes the space feel larger; however, I don’t want it to break and I am somewhat reluctant to hang things on the nice woodwork. It would be a fairly large horizontal mirror, maybe ~5x 2 ft. If I were to do this, what type of mirror should I use and how best to hang it? I would prefer not to drill holes in the wood if possible.

I am just doing some preliminary research, starting here...

Thank you in advance, Russell
I have large acrylic mirrors in both the salon and forward stateroom and we enjoy them. They certainly counter cabin darkness, provide an advantage for a quick glance into the areas, and give an expansive look to the cabin.

The one in the salon takes up the entire port bulkhead and the one forward covers the entire door (centered) into the sail compartment. I have never paid much attention as to how they are attached but they are quite stable and fixed in place...if our roundtrip voyage to Hawaii didn't shake them loose nothing will.

You have peaked my curiosity and I'll have a look at the type of fastening the next time I'm on the boat.

~ ~ _/) ~ ~ MJH
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Old 18-04-2021, 09:52   #13
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

This mirror has been here since 1981. I've seen pictures of it from back then. To the best of my knowledge this boat hasn't crossed an ocean, but we've taken it through several whirlpools at the wrong time (ahem, I know, a subject for another post) with no ill effects. The fact that it's hung fore to aft may have something to do with its stability.
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Old 18-04-2021, 12:51   #14
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

When you order a glass mirror they can coat the silvering with a protective sealant to prevent the silver from separating. This is a common practice in mirrors for bathrooms. I had to replace a mirror in my house and was asked if I wanted the coating. It cost a little more and they usually do just the few inches around the edges but for the marine environment I would have the whole surface coated. The glass company supplied mirror adhesive in a 10 oz caulk tube. Getting the old mirror off the wall was scary but with a lot of gentile levering it came off without breaking. The mirror sits in an aluminum J shaped extrusion that carry's the weight. Something like that should work on a boat too.

My boat has three large mirrors, two in the sleeping cabins and one in the head. They are held on by teak frames shaped to cover the edges of the glass. The frame cross section is pretty small. I have never had them off so I don't know if additional adhesive is on the glass. The mirror in the head has the de-silvering issue so someday it will need to be replaced.
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Old 18-04-2021, 14:21   #15
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Re: Installing a large mirror on a bulkhead

Varnish the back and edges of whatever mirror you come up with. The small plastic 'L' brackets with a small screw will do the least damage to the bulkhead should you decide to do away with the mirror at a later date. An adhesive will ruin a bright finish on the bulkhead. Keep paint and brush handy if you use an adhesive but change your mine on the mirror.
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