Join Date: Apr 2006
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Re: Enlarge hatch opening?
Done that, got the t-shirt.
IF the deck is not completely flat (trace a template for the new hatch if it doesn't come with one) then you have to build it up to be flat. That can mean making a wooden frame, or using fiberglass or thickened epoxy, whichever suits your skills. You also need to see how the inner trim will capture the headliner, which may just be stapled up to the hole in the deck before the hatch trim was installed.
Cutting the hole itself is easy work with a jig/sabre saw, a little slower by hand. No big deal, compared to building up the fairing to make the deck "flat" under the hatch.
IIRC Bomar used to sell the Pompanette(?) brand online as clearance, so if you're just looking for one hatch, that's a good way to keep the cost down. Clearance, returns, the hard part is finding them outside of the regular retail price channel.