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I have a C27 with an M-18. Agree that access is a pain but I would advise against a deck plate on the cockpit floor. I don't think the access gain is sufficient for the negative tradeoffs. I drilled a smallish hole under my pedestal guard feet to run autopilot wires from cockpit to below. My scuppers were clogged and I was shocked at the amount of water ingress. Obviously the pedestal guard feet needed to be resealed but the lesson was that holes in the cockpit floor should be carefully considered. The potential structural issues are also a concern. It sometimes takes some gymnastics and creative use of tools but the three access hatches work especially if you remove the hatch. Is there something specific you are having difficulty accessing?

Given the number of C27 owners out in the world I generally keep an eye out to other peoples solutions to C27-related issues since almost certainly someone else has experienced them before me. With that said, I've never seen a C27 with cockpit floor deck plate. That alone would make me think twice. As always unique problems/situations and novel solutions are always possible.

I have seen people add a second access hatch in the starboard quarterberth. If you do end up installing a deck plate you will find three layers of material to reach the engine compartment: deck fiberglass (0.5"), plywood support (3/4"), fiberglass engine room ceiling (1/8"). There are air gaps inbetween layers.

Lastly you might send a note to the IC27A mailing list and see what others have done.

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