leaking deck hatches - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 07-29-2007
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leaking deck hatches

After replacing the weather seal on our 10 year old deck hatches I noticed that a couple are still leaking. I tracked the leaks to the black silocone or caulk bedding that is in between the glass of the hatch and stainless frame. The hatches are top quality so I dont want to replace if possible to fix. They are unlabeled but I think they are made by Mainship. I would like to attempt to recaulk them myself if possible. Does anyone know how this is usually done, difficulty level and material needed? Also, I noticed one is leaking from the hatch's securing handle (that twists to secure the hatch when closed). Are the handles typically set with a simple rubber washer that can be replaced? Any thoughts are appreciated. Thanks much.
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Old 07-29-2007
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Doug-

Can you post some photos... since you're not sure of the maker, it would help if we could see what you're talking about, especially if your guess about who made them is wrong.
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Old 07-29-2007
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Doug, usually you can't really make a long-term fix unless you first remove the glazing from the frame, then rebed & reset it properly. The handles should also have a way to be taken apart and reinstalled with new o-rings, washers, etc.

No brands or logos anywhere? In the handles or hinge areas?
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Old 07-30-2007
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Although it will not correct any leak between the glass and frame or around the handle (take "Hellosailor's" advice), you can certainly reduce the water ingress if you elevate the entire hatch above the existing surface to allow water to run around it, This means removing the hatch and bonding/fairing on a ring of epoxy-saturated ply, say 19 mm high, then rebedding the hatch into the elevated structure. There are more details and an illustration (taken prior to final fairing) at www.handymariner.com.au

Cheers

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Old 07-30-2007
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If the hatch is leaking as described, it usually means the seal is breaking down and the bond is not what it was. As a result it should be relatively easy to remove the glazing and start over. Replace the glazing if it's crazed or getting opaque. These hatches are crazy expensive so it's worth a shot at repairing them.

I removed and recaulked/rebonded the glazing on one of our hatches with good results - masked off the frame and the glazing, used excess sealant/adhesive, wiped off the excess once seated and unmask. I used some Dow Corning 795 that I had leftover from another project and so far it's holding up.

Now if only I could find the correct gasket material for the hatch lid seal......
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Old 07-31-2007
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I confirmed with Hylas it is Mainship Mfg. The glazzing that is leaking is a soft black silicone. The hatch is plexiglass or similiar and frame is stainless. Can I just dig this out and replace with a black 3M product or similiar?
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Old 07-31-2007
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Go to home depot and get a can or three of "Wind Jammer" in the caulking section. It is a removeable sealant that works GREAT and just peels right off without any tools or chemicals when you want to change it or take it off.

I use it a lot. To make nice seal on something you open and close often, lay a bead letting it dry first around the port or hatch then closing it so it makes like a little gasket. If I'm hauling out for like the winter, I lay the bead around them with it shut and it seals nicely for the fall through hot and cold weather.
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