New Forehatch

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.

Fitted hatch.

From the inside.

I have some tidying up to do, and then we shall see if it leaks!

Yanmar Engine Mountings

Dead exciting..

Despite being installed less than three years ago, the new engine mountings were rusting badly. They may have been installed unpainted, in the rush to get the re-fitted engine back into Frank before Endeavour (the business doing the refit) closed their doors. The original mountings had been in terrible shape, rotted through and broken in at least one case.

The new port side mountings were rusted worse than the starboard side, so I think that the situation was exacerbated when Frank was hauled out and stood on the hard at St Croix Marine. Tilted just a degree or two down at the stern and to port, sea water in the sump under the engine and in the shaft transmission space was topped-up by rainwater leaking into the sump. 

So the port mountings stood in water from June until November, when I returned to St Croix and bailed out the sump.

The mountings are substantial, so will not fail for a good few years yet, but I put some Rustoleum (like Hammerite in the UK) on them. Not a pretty job, but the photos here belie the lack of space and limited access that I had.

Front port


Front stbd


Rear port


Rear stbd


Whilst I was at it, I painted the rusty clamp that holds the shaft to the gearbox. If I find the correct term for it, I will edit this!

Webasto Diesel Heater 

Frank has a Webasto Air Top 2000 diesel heater – it takes a minescule feed of diesel from the engine’s fuel tank and burns it, generating warm air which is ducted into the boat. 

The unit was cleaned and serviced before I left the UK, but it had a problem which caused the heater to shut down after 10 minutes, which was actually enough to warm up the boat during the winter. However, I was a tad concerned about using it, and eventually ignored it. Further south and west, I had no need of it.

This Thanksgiving weekend I fixed the wiring (corroded connections) and also fixed a small leak in the fuel supply feeder pipe.

Here is the new pipe, plus a couple of shots of the fuel tank which is in the port lazarette:


The heater seems to work, but I will need colder weather to give it an extended test.

Fitting the coachroof rails

Today (Sept 10, ’16) I drilled the holes and added the new rails. A couple of the holes were slightly out of alignment but the rails now fit and look good. I have to countersink the coachbolts, and one hole in the coachroof has lost is thread. i will fill the hole with resin and cut a new thread. Then I can cut the rails to length, round off the ends (is that “chamfer?” I shall check!) and perhaps round off the edges as well. 

I do not think there is enough depth to the rail for me to make and put caps over the bolt heads, but if there is, I will use the spare 12″ of teak to make them. Small circles of teak to sit over the bolt heads and hide them.

The next decision is – oil or varnish? Dunno. Oil is more practical, varnish more beautiful.