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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Looking for some experienced opinion on a fairly minor issue. Our boat happens to have a custom hatch cover into which the main hatch slides when open. Made of teak, it's bedded and sealed on 3 sides. It looks nice and all, but last summer I discovered a serious design flaw: No drain holes.

Because the roof is designed for water runoff to flow forward rather than aft into the cockpit, the hatch cover very effectively traps and collects the runoff until it fills up and overflows into the main salon. Plus the trapped water will stay there under the cover for days, maybe longer.

As a temporary fix at the time, I drilled two 3/8" holes into the front of the cover to let the water drain out. Water gushed out immediately.

Unfortunately, the wood was so waterlogged and rotten that the drill just kind of split and shredded it rather then making neat holes. Here's some pics:







My question is: What tools, techniques, materials, etc. could be used to salvage this without completely removing the cover? I'm thinking of using a cut-out tool to try to cut away the rotten stuff and leave neatly shaped drain holes.

But I suspect I'll just end up breaking a bunch of bits and/or shredding the wood some more.
 

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One of None
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Remove it. there is more rot on the inside then you can guess.
 

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Probably right, if it's punky on the outside then it's likely a mess on the inside. You'll need to remove the sea hood to find out what you have. Once it is off, you can assess if it is repairable or if a new one needs to be made. If the rot is localized you might be able to repair it by replacing the forward piece of wood, but I don't see any effective fix that could be done with the sea hood in place.
 

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As denise said. And you might want to get it really dried out, and then finish the inside with a penetrating epoxy or other waterproofing layer, to prevent the damp from attacking it afterwards. Even with drainholes, it may stay damp in there.
 

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A +1&2 for the comments from both Denise and Hellosailor. You don't have a lot of options, bit the bullet and remove and replace/rebuild as needed...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the advice everyone. If I had the time I'd definitely pull it off and redo it, but I'm trying to launch this weekend and the list is still quite long.

I think I'll just cut away what I can for now and try to not to make an eyesore of it. Removing and repairing that whole structure is going to have to be a project for the off-season. Not something I really want to tackle out on the mooring.

I'll post pics of the interim and final results, in case anyone's interested. And at least I know what it's called now. :)
 

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One of None
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It's mush on the inside. If it had been built with plug"able" type vents to let air move freely through it, it may not have rotted. You should still find good fiberglass under it. It's a sea hood, not likely you will need it unless you are planning some high seas adventure right away. I'm sure it was pretty when it was built.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm sure you're right Denise (unfortunately), and therefore I've added removal of it to the Fall/Winter project list.

The problem with just removing it now though, is that the sides are the original rails that the hatch slides on. I think the hood was constructed in place by dado-ing, gluing and screwing the additional parts. If the rails are not too sturdy now due to rot, I'm thinking I'd better leave the hood on for now, and hope it makes it through the season.
 

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If it's not too tough to get it off, you could sand it down and coat the interior with clear penetrating epoxy in an afternoon. If it's not too bad, CPE can repair soft wood to a degree. At least, it could prevent it from getting worse. Then see if it's truly repairable in the offseason, or you need to start over.

Every single major boat problem I've ever had can always be traced back to that one moment where I said, "what was that" or "that will have to wait".
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Just to finish up this thread, here's some pictures of what I ended up doing. Using a cut-out tool and a Dremel, I cut away the rotted wood and shaped it into a couple drain/ventilation holes. Seems pretty solid now, so I think it'll be good for a while anyway.

Drilling an emergency drain hole the previous year had done some damage to the deck:




Ready for paint:


 

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One of None
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Very pretty! Just a thought, make little swing over covers for the cut outs if/when you get into heavy weather? A fan from a hair dryer should be able to help you keep the inside dry when you are off season. Nice job!
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks, Denise. I thought about covers, or flaps, or something like that too. Seems like overkill right now though. :)
 

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Chris, Our 1968 Hinterhoeller HR28, hull 53, has the same kind of sea hood, but with a notable difference: the rails are independent, and the hood is open at the lower forward edge. It is also fiberglass, not teak. So our hood does not contact the deck at all.
 

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Covers might trap debris and promote rotting again also the air flow through the holes is a good thing. I don't think those holes are gonna cause problems if you take some blue water over the deck as they are made to drain out so the water going in will run back out and the amount making it in isn't going to be enough to worry about anyway, if you have a flood because the water going in isn't making it out before the next wave you have more serious things to worry about....

P.S. Nice job, it looks like it was supposed to be made that way.
 
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Discussion Starter #15
Chris, Our 1968 Hinterhoeller HR28, hull 53, has the same kind of sea hood, but with a notable difference: the rails are independent, and the hood is open at the lower forward edge. It is also fiberglass, not teak. So our hood does not contact the deck at all.
Yes, that sounds like a better design. Very cool to hear from another HR28 owner too!
 

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Hinterhoeller HR28
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Our rails are teak, and the hood attaches with screws. Since there is a "dam" molded into the deck under the hatch slide, I didn't bother to bed the top hood onto the rails the last time we removed the rails for refinishing; Works fine. One issue is that there isn't any handle inside, so opening the slide from inside can take dexterity. I was thinking of adding a teak "eyebrow" plate outside at the aft end of the slide, and a u-shaped handle that would straddle the lock mechanism inside...

BYW, Great to connect with another HR28 owner! Your decks look very good!
 
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