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Old 01-07-2008
JohnRPollard's Avatar
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The hole saw is the way to go. I described the process a few weeks ago:

Originally Posted by JohnRPollard View Post

In case you missed it, there is a wide ranging, on-going thread ( cabin heater ideas ) that discusses pros and cons of various cabin heaters. Some discussion of solid fuel heaters there.

As for your question "3- how do you cut a hole in the deck?" First you procure the correct size hole saw (the kind that plumbers use, that have a smaller drill bit as a pilot -- our Dickinson required a 3" hole for its chimney) and a powerful drill. After measuring all dimensions carefully, make a small pilot hole from the inside out. Then go up on deck and use the small pilot hole to guide the pilot bit for the hole saw.

Initially, run the drill in REVERSE. This will prevent the teeth of the hole saw from binding up and or chipping away harshly at your gel coat. Run the drill in reverse until you have cut through the layer of gel coat and begun penetrating the fibreglass. Then you can switch the drill over to the normal forward setting and begin cutting more aggressively. Let the saw and drill do the work and don't rush it.

So that's how you cut the hole in your deck. If you want more help/advice with installation, etc, I would suggest that you post the questions in the Gear & Maintenance forum... Good luck to you.
If you have other questions, fire away. I installed a P9000 last spring and still remember the process fairly well...

Last edited by JohnRPollard; 01-07-2008 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 01-07-2008
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Scott, odds are oyu have a lightweight filler in the deck, if anything. I think a standard 1/4" portable drill shouldn't have any trouble--since you are starting with a brand new sharp hole saw. As long as you don't bear down hard on the drill, it will slowly eat its way through without any risk of burnout. It can be hard to see your centering mark past a saw that size, so if you start a pilot hole with a regular bit, that should also help ensure the big hole is in the right place.

Assuming the deck is cored--remember, you want to chew out some of the coring material around the hole, refill it with epoxy, and let that set up then redrill/sand as necessary for a good fit.
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Old 01-08-2008
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Thanks for all the input. I'm understandably trepidacious about cutting a hole in my boat. Especially so, since I've never done so before. I'll let you know how it goes.

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