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  #1  
Old 06-05-2006
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columbia 22 hatch cover

Hello,
I've recently purchased a Columbia 22 missing its forward hatch cover. I'd really prefer to find an original. Any leads would be appreciated.
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Old 06-05-2006
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I suspect that building a replica will probably be far easier than finding an original that someone wants to sell. Then again, stranger things than finding an intact original have happened.

The original hatch was a simple fiberglass box with stiffening ribs. It is pretty easy to build a mold out of 1 x_ lumber and light weight plywood (luan door skins). It would be easier to core the hatch instead of constructing the striffening ribs on the original hatch. For a small hatch like the forward hatch of the Columbia 22 simple extruded polystryene foam (pink or blue board) will work reasonably well, but only if you use epoxy resin (which won't melt the foam) rather than the less expensive polyester resin (which will melt the foam). A little care and a long weekend and two or three short weekends and you will have new hatch.

Good luck,
Jeff
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Old 06-06-2006
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Thanks for the input Jeff, I suspect that you are correct. I may have to build a replacement hatch while I wait for an original to surface.
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Old 06-07-2006
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Why make it out of plastic?

You could make one out of wood easily. I think it would look nice too.

You can get oak plywood at the home improvement store. While it won't be quite as nice as teak or mahogany, it's relatively cheap and easy to find. I made new hatch slide rails out of oak on my last boat and they looked and worked great The USS Constitution is made of oak.

Soft woods like pine are unsuitable for marine uses. Don't ask me why, I read it somewhere. I think it's because they won't hold a screw and suck water like a sponge.
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Old 06-07-2006
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Main reason to avoid softwoods like pine is that they swell in size noticeably when they get wet. This makes them very bad for the things around them...as the expansion of the wood can cause major damage to things that are stuck up against them and have no room to move. This is also why they are used for the "emergency bungs" for the through hulls. BTW, the emergency bungs should be kept in a plastic bag, as they need to stay dry until needed.
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