I was hanging my surfski back on the rack today and I could hear, as I was tilting it, water running inside the hull back and forth. I bought the boat towards the end of last summer and I have been taking it out during the winter and practicing remounts and I think the water is the result from those practices.
Bottom line… I think is time to get a hatch installed to provide access to the hull and better dry the boat when needed… is there anybody that could give me some direction as to recommended sizes and installation procedure… This is my only boat, I love it and don’t want to screw up the installation…any help is very much appreciated.
steven wort 02/13/11 #10070
Don't you have a drain plug in the bullhead right in front of your feet?
I would suggest pulling the drain plug, and storing upside down, and stay away from hull surgery needed for a hatch, unless you get a recommendation from epic on how and where.
Jeff Hegedus <jhegedus@…> 02/13/11 #10071
Hi Gerardo. I put a hatch in my V10 ultra for the sole purpose of letting it dry out while not paddling. Its a very good idea, in my opinion. Call me anytime at 739-0161 and I can describe a lot of aspects of approaching this task.
I just installed a screw in lid type hatch on my OC-1. I've installed them on many of my skis over the years. You want a screw in lid type as opposed to a pop in lid. You want one large enough you can stuff a small dry bag in if you choose to. i.e. about 5“ in diameter opening. They need to be installed on a flat surface or one with very little curvature. I've posted a link below to a local supplier but Jude at Huki has them also along with a lot of other places. I like the type which come with a nylon bag attached to a ring. That lets you drop your phone and keys in a safe place. The bag is easily removed for air circulation. Buy the hatch before you cut a hole. Duh. Read the instructions carefully regarding hole diameter or measure twice and cut once. It is a good idea to put masking tape over the area you will be working, completely covering it. Draw the circle with a compass. I've used a Dremel tool with a cut-off blade or most recently a Rotozip tool to make the cut. Check the hatch works then seal the new cut edges with 5 minute epoxy to prevent the foam core from ever soaking up any moisture. Screw the lid firmly into the hatch ring with the nylon bag in place and place it in the opening. It looks best if you get what ever is written on the lid upright (level) when the hatch is installed in it's final resting position. I always bolt mine in place (as opposed to rivets) and if you decide to do this have the bolts (very small) you need on hand, usually ss flat-head countersunk #8 or 6. Dry fit the hatch, drill the bolt holes, check you can get all bolts in, remove the tape then caulk the area the hatch ring will contact and instal. Gradually install the bolts and tighten as evenly as you can. Clean up any caulking that runs out and check that the lid screws in nicely. Leave it alone for 24 hours. Should only take about 1/2 hour if you have everything you need on hand. Just kidding. Putting the slippery tiny nuts on the bolts can be very frustrating. It is good to have a dog you can kick or a wife you can yell at handy when you drop a nut into the bowels of the ski and it is just out of reach and you didn't buy any extras.
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll definetly start by storing it up side down with the drain plug off and I'll contact Epic to see what options I have for installing a hatch.
Gerardo Andaluz 02/14/11 #10076
This is what I was looking for… I have seen these in several of your guy's boats . I think I was a little misleading, in my original e-mail, when I was talking about “installing hatches” those can get pretty big. I'll do a little more research and have all the necessary components and get in touch with you and Jeff before actual installation.
Very much appreciated.
Jeff Hegedus <jhegedus@…> 02/14/11 #10078
Try a 4” Sea Dog deck plate Seadog.com . Exact same as the Huki hatch (Viking brand) including hole pattern, except that the gasket can be replaced when it wears out. On the Sport 4“ should work; the main thing is to keep it well above the water line. I removed and filled in the existing vent (then you can mount the hatch higher); I drilled a small hole in the middle of the hatch as a vent (through a nipple inside the center of the hatch) and covered it with slotted velcro to hold my gps (keeps rain from dripping in but still vents). The Sport will have a spline inside, be careful of this when you cut (cut two half circles first, then cut the spline one inch in). If you want a fat bag, cut out just a little more of the spline, the less the better (I don't use one, mine is just for drying). Don't use silicone as a sealant (Sterling's advice, which I always take). The hatch keeps my boat dry as a bone in between sessions, which is a good thing. Consider letting Sterling put it in, he did mine, its worth it. Good luck.
Redden Marine on Roeder Dr. has a good selection of hatches. So does West Marine. Larry B
tahalsted <tahalsted@…> 02/19/11 #10108
Hola Gerardo -
I've also put hatches in my kayaks (first time was 30 years ago). If you don't go to Sterling,USE DECENT WASHERS on the backside, whether you use pop-rivets or screws. The first time I did it, I didn't use larger washers, and pulled the pop rivet through. My neighbors learned some new cuss words, and I had some fixing to do…
They don't have to be fender washers (TOO big), just big enough to spread the pressure out and avoid pulling the rivet or bolt through.
I know you'll do fine.
See you on the water, soon!
I really appreciate all the input, but at this point, I have decided to contact Sterling and let him do the job.
Hope to see you on the water soon…
John Rybczyk 02/21/11 #10123
It is a wise man who is reluctant to drill a hole in his own boat.