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duchess of montrose 02-01-2012 02:12 PM

offshore modifications...
So in preparing my boat for the first passage im ever going to make in the mighty ocean ive been researching various modifications and i came across a site with a fellow with a coribee who sailed it all the way to greenland from somewhere in europe and it seems like he had two very easy but seemingly very seaworthy modifications to the cockpit and the companionway he reduced cockpit colume by enclosing the space between the seats under the tiller which i imagine with a little muber for bracing and some plywood and some paint could easily be donte and reduce the effects of being pooped, and the companionway was pretty much completely redesigned and it was glassed over and the sliding hatch at the top was replaced by a lumber plate almost wihich had a plexiglass hatch on it shich he opened and closed to get in and out any thoughts on how effective these would be for reducing danger during pooping/ a roll or a knockdown, also any ideas on construction materials and thicknesses ie for the companionway how to structuraly block it off with strong materials. Oh yea and my boat is a 1970 Contest 30 mark a

olson34 02-01-2012 02:20 PM

Easy and authoritative place to start is to D/L a copy of the the Offshore Racing Requirements, and then bring your boat up to Category One status.
You can find a copy via some searches on the www.

Be prepared for some raised eye brows when you do the calculations for minimal drainage of a flooded cockpit (at least on most production boats).

Be safe,


jameswilson29 02-01-2012 02:22 PM

Robin Lee Graham, subject of the National Geographic articles and the book The Dove glassed over the cockpit of his Cal 24 to reduce the loss of steerage way when pooped.

It would seem uncomfortable and would probably reduce FMV, but you could certainly use fiberglass with balsa or some other core material to glass over the cockpit. A simple bridgedeck (if you do not already have one) might accomplish the same thing and cover the bottom of the companionway while still leaving some foot room for you in the cockpit.

The other fellow's solution sounds a bit extreme to me, speaking as one of the uninitiated coastal sailors.

duchess of montrose 02-01-2012 02:49 PM

currently for drainage there are 6 scuppers about 2 inches wide so to me that looks like alot o drainage combined with a short seat height but i figured closing it all up would give some peace of mind in a storm i don't really like the idea of having alot of water weight in my cockpit and i do have a bridgedeck but i have heard stories of washboards being smashed in when yachts take breakers over the stern. again i'm probably being over cautious but id rather be safer than necessary

Brent Swain 02-01-2012 04:12 PM

Don't make the cockpit safe for the boat , but dangerous for the occupant.
Aluminium makes the best hatches. Its cheap in scrapyards, around $2 a pound , and easy to work with.
Sliding hatches are impossible to seal completely. I switched to aluminium doors decades ago, and would never go back to sliding hatches. Most round the world racers have also done so.

duchess of montrose 02-01-2012 04:32 PM

how do i make the doors and what do u mean by dors rather than hatchboars iknow hatchboards are rather leaky and dangerous can u give me some advice on how to contstruct it how about the top sliding hatch what do i do about that its a big heavy thick wood one how do i modify that and do i need to cut the aluminium myself how do i do that

duchess of montrose 02-01-2012 05:01 PM

*doors hatchboards bad keyboard

Brent Swain 02-01-2012 05:11 PM

A jigsaw, table saw, or skill saw will cut aluminium easily. Do all your own cutting and layout, to minimize what you have to pay others for.,
A good slope on the back of your cabin makes a bubble over the companion way, and a single door on hinges ,work much better. How much slope does yours have?
A brake press can be used to fold down edges. If you do your own cutting and take it to a sheet metal shop with a brake, that shouldn't cost too much.
Aluminium doors, locked form the inside, with a lock you reach thru a vent to unlock, makes a very tough boat for a thief to break into.

duchess of montrose 02-01-2012 05:21 PM

can u show me a pic and my coachroof is flat i have a doghouse so im guessing now id have to build a bubble ut of say balsa and glass over it., my decks solid glass btw but it looks like this i dont have a pic of my boat but heres one on the internet Redirect Notice

mitiempo 02-01-2012 11:44 PM

1 Attachment(s)
This is what Brent means below. If building new, especially in steel or aluminum, it can make sense but I wouldn't try on your boat.

As far as making the cockpit well smaller, if you have 6 drains of 2" size - you are way ahead of most of us. Remember the boat you read about, Ming Ming, is much smaller than your boat so a footwell full of water in a 21' boat is a much larger issue than one on a 30' boat. The easiest way to reduce the footwell size is to store something there as long as it is sealed for protection from water.

From the Origami group:

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