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snook91901 10-17-2011 03:55 PM

Building New Companionway Hatch - Columbia 29
The companionway hatch on my newly purchased 1963 Columbia 29 has seen better days, much better days. I am trying to plan a new one, but I have some question about the layup/construction I am hoping someone with more experience can address.
I have several somewhat rotten pieces of mahogany that I plan to use as guides for the radius of the hatch. My plan is the bend two thin sheets of marine ply over these frames and glue them together with a piece of chopped strand mat in order to induce the proper curve. Then glass the entire thing with ??? material and gelcoat. After that is dry I plan drill, pot, and tap some holes down the length of the hatch and attach the sides (that come down to keep the hatch on the tracks) which I will make out of some rabetted mahogany.
Anybody have any advice, or see any major flaws with this plan?

sawingknots 10-17-2011 04:44 PM

what is the condision of the hatch way frames,i built mine from scrach using balck walnut,i mostly used the old rotten frames for a pattern,the hatch its self i made from a solid 1/4 inch alumunum,a bit cumbersome but quite secure and effective,for the days i'm aboard [raining etc] i have a identical piece of plexyglass

snook91901 10-17-2011 08:47 PM

The hatch frames are in good condition. They were constructed a few years ago from mahogany. They need a little TLC from where the soggy plywood hatch has been resting on them but no significant rot.
How do you manage to get the aluminum to keep its form? Or is it a flat hatch?

sawingknots 10-18-2011 08:34 PM

its a flat hatch,i just slide it down into the frame groove

snook91901 10-20-2011 02:53 AM

I should be clear. I am not talking about my dropboards, but the sliding overhead companionway hatch.

simpsoned 10-20-2011 07:56 PM

Just built a new companionway hatch for my Newport 30 last winter...had similar issues...used the old frame as a reference and constructed a new one out of clear spruce (nice and light), and topped it with farm teak T&G flooring (3/8 inch thick and you can get it pre-finished ) for nice looks. When you try to duplicate the frame, make sure you pay attention to the angles for the slide and the clearances underneath for the supports to slid back over the lip at the rear of the companionway...I didn't and it "ticks" a little when the center support slides over it. the old hatch frame was teak, with a teak T&G top and was about twice as heavy as the new one.
Good Luck
Ed Simpson
Skipper (when my wife lets me)
S/V Das Dawg Haus

Ajdal 11-07-2011 03:19 PM

Companionway Hatch ?
Just Curious . How's the progress on ur new hatch ??

eleuthros 01-13-2012 09:17 AM

Companionway Hatch
I have the very same issue and have search other areas looking for a solution. I found your reply with a workable solution to my problem. Your fix is doable and makes great boat sense. Thank you

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