Wednesday, 15 February 2012

New hatches? [Job you wish you had never started mkI]

Once again in a fit of 'I must do something to the boat as it's soon going to be the start of the season,'......I must fit some new Kajaksport oval hatches to fit to Tootega.. 

The original cedar ones aren't 100% watertight and I wanted something reliable, and prefer the Kajaksport ones to Valley covers as they are easier to get on and off especially with cold fingers.

It was a big hole at the front...
and a smaller hole at the back...same enormous hatches though..
Got the hole boxed in to the level the rim will locate into. Suddenly it doesn't look so severe, I'll be filing the rest with Fomex strips, and then a bit of body filler, which will create the mould for the fibreglass insert. I built in a flat panel for a compass insert.
Hole now filled with Fomex strips, superglue and car body filler. As it's a one off I won't have to get a perfect finish as this surface will be on the inside of the boat. 
The exterior will be a layer carbon fibre.

Internal mould removed
Hatch rim in place in the surround. I beefed up the hatch surround from the inside with a couple more layers of cloth and tape. A pig of a job, but a bit easier as the holes are so big.

Finished at last. 
Boat now weighs 28.5kg including the electric pump; not exactly lightweight, [but it is a big boat similar in size to a Tiderace XploreX]
I've since replaced the seat with a P&H Cetus seat


BG! said...

Ooh - looks like a recipe for disaster - how much structural integrity will you have to hack out?

Dr Blug said...

its a big hole but new fibreglass insert will be just as strong. Will lose some storage space though, trade off for ease of use, but old wooden hatches were difficult to seal and made it hard to pack the boat out efficiently as the internal bungee method was hard to do up.

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