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Dave_E 08-18-2013 10:31 AM

Hatchway alternatives?
Hi All,

This might sound like a dumb question, but I've never lived aboard or extended cruised on a sailboat before. The wife and I are in negotiations for an Allmand 31. It has a 4 section entryway set of boards. When your staying aboard, is there any alternative to piecing together the boards overnight? Doesn't seem safe in case you had to get out in a hurry.


scratchee 08-18-2013 10:51 AM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
My boat has a single piece of smoked plexiglass-like stuff.

Ironically, I have been planning to replace it with a three-section wood hatch. I think three pieces would be easier to stow underway. I also might make the middle or top section replaceable with a clear piece so I can see out if I have it closed while inside (I rarely sleep aboard.)

That said, I don't think the difference between four pieces and one piece would make an appreciable difference in an emergency evacuation. Whatever difference in time there might be would be easily outweighed by the general situation down below: are you in the V-berth, the head, the rack, etc?

sawingknots 08-18-2013 11:19 AM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
ah,not a new problem! hatch type and storage is always up for consideration,everything , I mean everything always has advantages and disadvantages,i personaly use a one piece lexan hatch,it is bulky and hard to stow,but its relatively leak free,and strong[not easy to break into]I do like the segmented boards but then again theres the never ending mantainence of wood,right now i'm thinking about cutting mine into two pieces [cut on a 45 degree angle] basically its your ultimate decision

Alex W 08-18-2013 11:44 AM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
Our boat (Pearson 28-2) came with two ways of closing the hatch.

There are traditional hatch boards that you'd want to use in a storm or when sailing offshore (though this isn't really an offshore boat).

It also has doors on hinges with smoked plexiglass that let in a lot more light. The hinges are the lift off sort, so you can stow the doors below when sailing. I also added some hooks so that I can hook them in the open position to the sides of the companionway when sailing in light conditions, that is easier than storing them.

I wouldn't want to only have doors, but the option of either is very nice.

sawingknots 08-18-2013 12:03 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
got you!

MarkofSeaLife 08-18-2013 12:35 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
1 Attachment(s)
Heres my security hatch. Air flow too :)
But it let this strange person in!!

hellosailor 08-18-2013 03:53 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
Dave, if you really want to get out in a hurry, you lay up a couple of shaped charges or some primer cord against the hull and deck. That way when you want to get out "NOW NOW NOW" you just slap the big red button, and there are unobstructed exits in all the convenient places.

You know, if you own the boat, you have all those options.

I don't know why you'd ever need to evacuate the boat so quickly that you couldn't lift out hatchboard(s) but you do of course have all the options. Hinged doors, louvres, screens, grates, one board or two or three or four...this is why we say "Whatever floats your boat."

mad_machine 08-18-2013 09:08 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
honestly, even with hatchboards in place.. a couple of good swift kicks (especially adrenalin fueled) would probably knock them out into the cockpit if you really had to get out in a hurry.

TQA 08-18-2013 10:17 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
I can only think of one time in 11 years cruising I have slept with the washboards in.

I have two sets both 1/2 inch acrylic in two pieces with a lipped joint to prevent leaks.

One set has ventilation holes which is the ones I use.

sawingknots 08-18-2013 10:19 PM

Re: Hatchway alternatives?
if the situation is that desperate,your already screwed

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