Cutting new Portlights in a Sailboat (alberg30)

Discussion in 'Sailboats' started by wesley Sherman, Feb 2, 2020.

  1. wesley Sherman
    Joined: Jan 2020
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    Location: New York

    wesley Sherman Junior Member

    In the current process of a complete rebuild of Alberg 30, I am contemplating cutting in new portlights for more light and for visual above the deck. I would like to find out if the locations I am wanting new portlights are viable or what are the problems I am may or may not get later on.
    Here I would like to install a Portlight in the Vlocker, I would fiberglass a recess on the outside to fit it to the exterior. The size is not exact just estimate of location. Would I be creating structural issue here. At this location I have approx 3/8" grp thickness.
    20200201_145918.jpg

    Next
    20200201_145601.jpg

    ]Here I would like to cut another portlight forward of the Head, Again size is not exact but just the area in question. If this wont work I will at least have a hatch above the cabin.

    Both of these I will fiberglass in a recess to place the portlight in on the exterior.

    Thank for any input ... this is a Alberg 30 1968 Solid Layup in both these areas.
    Wesley
     

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    Last edited: Feb 2, 2020
  2. fallguy
    Joined: Dec 2016
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    fallguy Senior Member

    You cannot cut into structural tapes.

    generally speaking, that is within 2-4" of any edge....you must determine structural tape locations, not me

    in a moulded boat, I am less sure about edge constraints

    You must also make sure the ports are hull rated; many are not..
     
  3. wesley Sherman
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    wesley Sherman Junior Member

    Thank you for your response, I realize one cannot or should not go to the edge. I would have 2.75" from the start of the rolling edge of the corners. not center of the roll but start of the roll in the fiberglass, the rolling edges are rather large.
     
  4. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    Openable ports are not permissable below, but I believe, you are above waterline.

    I like your idea.

    Another thing is most hull rated ports are required to be NOT proud of the hull and thus recssing may be required. However, I can't tell if you are proud. In facf, it appears otherwise, although the pictures are rather difficult to assess well. And you suggest recessing, but if not the hull exterior absolutely, I see no reason for it (assumptive).
     
  5. bajansailor
    Joined: Oct 2007
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Wesley, I can see why you feel you need to have more light below - but you are currently in New York in winter time, and your winter sunshine is pretty weak.
    If you are planning on sailing to low latitudes, you will be more concerned about keeping light OUT of the boat.
    Ventilation will be more important than light - in the tropics you will welcome a small opening hatch in the cabin top in way of the main cabin in addition to the forward hatch - this does not have to be big enough to function as an escape hatch (like the forward hatch).
    Even a small hatch will funnel in a lot of air if you rig up a wee wind scoop above it.
    And while opening portlights in the cabin sides appear to be attractive, you will rapidly go off them when one leaks and drips water on to your bunk below......

    Edit - I just had a look at the general arrangement drawing here - SailboatData.com - ALBERG 30 Sailboat https://sailboatdata.com/sailboat/alberg-30
    It shows a wee Dorade type vent aft of the mast, in way of the heads / bathroom - will you be having one of these vents here in this location?
    If not, you could perhaps have an opening portlight in the cabin side in the heads compartment instead. If the portlight leaks a bit it will just go into the heads rather than dribble down on to a bunk.
    I would also maybe look at a small deck hatch in the coachroof forward of the companionway hatch garage. It doesnt have to be very big - 12" x 8" would still send a howling gale down below if it opens forwards and you are at anchor in typical tradewind conditions.
    I would not be too keen on putting a portlight in the 'step' in the coachroof, as you suggested above.
     
  6. wesley Sherman
    Joined: Jan 2020
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    wesley Sherman Junior Member

    Thanks Fall guy and Bajansailer,
    The portlights are top of the deck area, when done would look like they were made that way, by recessed I mean they would be flush with the hull will be fiberglassing a frame on the inside so that the lens is flush with the hull . So that pressure from the outside will not force the lens in.
    The reason I want them is not mostly the light, All my life I have been a bit anxious of things not seen,

    When my father and I were cruising the pacific one thing I couldn't stand was being inside and not being able to look forward, There was always one port or starboard side looking at the water heeled and the other looking at the sky. And still to this day I don't like not being able to see forward whilst inside. I feel more at ease if i can look at the mast and sails when inside messing about. I have always had on my other boats flush mounted lenses in the boat and never had a leak from them so not to worried about leaks. They way I found to install them on the exterior with floating fasteners has never caused me to ever change or not do them due to leaks. Also as to keeping light out I make shades to clip on them. So not worried to much about that.

    Also this is my personal last boat (unless its destroyed somehow and i have to do this again) and she will not have a forward v berth per say, yea it will sort of be there but it is never used even at dockside. It will be my cabinet area and storage. I am not making this boat for resale, I am making it for me and my comfort. I am making custom foam core with wood framing laminated with fiberglass, for the custom cabinetry in the v berth. I like a viking will have my ashes put aboard and i'll be sunk in the deep, which is unlikely but if i am lucky I'll be lost at sea one day when I am in my 90's, possibly eaten by a shark because i was too old to climb back in the boat and I will shat all over the sea bed. I was born in the ocean and if i get lost there i'll be ok with it LOL.

    Yes I have four cowl vents to install, the kind that let air in but allow the spray and water to pass out. They cowls have rotatable heads on them.
    All very good points.. to think about for sure.. thank you.. .
     
  7. wesley Sherman
    Joined: Jan 2020
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    wesley Sherman Junior Member

    Sorry been away for a bit... I want to add either a portlight forward to see the forestay area and add a hatch on top to look up at the mast from inside..this is really my intention not to make more light...I don't like the idea I cant see my forward area. So what I was seeking was any comments or info about anything structural i should be aware of in this regard.
     
  8. bajansailor
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    bajansailor Marine Surveyor

    Last edited: Aug 19, 2020
  9. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    In looking at your boat, I see that is a structural bulkhead.

    I think you ought to go small if you mess with a port. I think you only get a bit of light, but it may help with the closed in feeling.

    I installed Vetus ports. Really unbeatable pricing.
     

  10. fallguy
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    fallguy Senior Member

    If the mast is not supported by the BH or other mast related things; it seems like it would work. You need to make allowances for things like trim and most ports need a flat surface; so you can't build them easily onto round surfaces. They will usually leak I've read.
     
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