Last year I tried to repair the forehatch, getting a new Lexan (Perspex) clear panel made. It was less leaky but still not good enough. So I bought a new Bainbridge Storm 60 hatch with a flat base (easier to fit..) , and have been struggling to fit it these last few weeks.
The Bainbridge hatch is very flat. The hatch entrance is curved, the back more so than the front.
And the Bainbridge hatch base is surprisingly bendable! The hatch base screwed down and conformed to the curves nicely, whereas the lid did not. Ho hum. So I took it off, straightened it and built up the sides with teak shims and epoxy filler.
The hatchway. The back, by the babystay, has more curve than the front.
Grotty old hatch. Made in England – you don’t see that any more.
Bendy new Bainbridge hatch.
From the inside.
I have some tidying up to do, and then we shall see if it leaks!
I was umming and ahh-ing about whether to repair or replace the forehatch, and getting advice from the invaluable Sadler & Starlight Owner Forum this weekend. On Saturday, around 16:00, I started searching the internet for companies to make me a new window insert to replace the leaky one.
I called Bluff Plastics not expecting to get a response, and spoke to the owner, Charlie (“the old man” as he later termed himself). Yes, he was open, and yes, he did that sort of thing. I drove over with the old one.
He did not have any half inch in tinted, but he had clear. He quoted $85.60 or similar, and said it would probably be done “tomorrow” – Sunday. I was gobsmacked. He promised a call by 14:00.
Actually, he called at 11:00, and I went around to collect it. On the way back I stopped at a West Marine (newly opened, by the look of it) that I saw on the way to his place, bought some sealant, and then stopped at an AutoZone to buy window tint film.
Now to see if it leaks…
If it leaks, I will buy a new hatch.
And I have found someone to do the polycarbonate (aka Perspex or Lexan) for my planned replacement for the Chicken Coop!