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Old 03-24-2012, 04:02 PM   #1
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 2
Default Provision for storm shutters

Hi all,
I am planning on offshore passages within the next year or two. I have a late 70's vintage Rawson 30 with the typical period aluminum framed windows in the cabin side. This summer I am planning on glassing the areas in and installing opening ports. Probably use the Lewmar 7x14 ports due to price, availability and product support. I want to avoid traditional bronze or stainless due to condensation problems that would occur in Alaska.
As such I think it would be prudent to include some sort of built-in attachment system for storm shutters especially considering all the glass work I will be doing. What I am thinking is glassing in barrel bolts around the ports and then milling some 3/8" lexan to size with pre-drilled holes for fastening screws. I worry a little about weepage around the barrel bolts. Also imagine it would be difficult to line up everything in the 'stink'. I would appreciate any advice on the subject. Would the Lemar ports be sufficient on their own? Or just stick with my current plan and carry some strategically shaped plywood and self drilling screws-clean up the mess later.

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Old 03-24-2012, 08:10 PM   #2
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 58

What I know about lexan is that you're not supposed to stress it in a small area with screw holes and such because it cracks. Seems like your barrel bolt would do that.

I've seen storm covers for a big port window on a power boat before. Those were made of clear lexan or plexi or whatever it was to stay clear and not get sun damage. They were slid in and connected to the boat with a channel above and below the port and the important thing I remember was a couple bars between them and the real window so they could nt bend in and hit that port glass. That lexan stuff can move a lot when it gets hit by water. These were not maid for water proof but to keep big water from breaking the power boat window.

Probably you can find better designs for storms covering big ports on power boats than sailboats.

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Old 03-24-2012, 11:02 PM   #3
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Home Port: Washington DC
Vessel Name: SV Mahdee
Posts: 3,236

7x14 ports--those aren't so big as to be a worry I'd think. My own bigger worry would be that I'd do a sound job with the fiberglass in those areas along the sides of the cabin where the Rawson has big fixed port lights.

Storm shields are placed over the windows on all sorts of boats. The nicest I've seen are framed and they mount on studs via the framing.

We have large framed glazing sections in our charthouse--there we've chosen to install hurricane film on the inside of the existing (uv-resist polycarbonate) glazing and where we replaced clouded Lexan glazing in opening butterfly hatches, we installed laminated tempered glass with the addition reinforcing hurricane film inside and bronze bars on the outside.

We carry plywood aboard for emergency repair but we expect that our cabin itself would be damaged and carried away before our (theoretically hurricane-proof) glazing is damaged. Even saying that, at some point we do plan on installing studs that we can mount actual slitted wood shutter boards over the glazing. Our boat originally had these traditional slitted wood shutter systems but they were removed when a previous owner took out the original large opening window and replaced them with fixed polycarbonate windows. Such slitted wood shutter boards can break up a wave headed for the glazing and lessen the impact. This is similar to fishing boats which use screens over the windows or houses in Florida that during hurricanes use something called storm-catcher screening over patios and open areas as well as windows.

I don't advocate the following method but this is a common attachment of storm glazing over port lights (the example is on a 50+ foot Gulfstar):

"Do or do not. There is no try." - Yoda

What we're doing - The sailing life aboard and the Schooner Chandlery.

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Old 07-03-2014, 03:25 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jun 2014
Home Port: Fort Worth
Posts: 65

Howdy Folks! (howdy = ahoy)

I thank Redbopeep for the comments above and the photo posted. As always, good info to consider.

I am surprised this subject has not gotten more traction on this forum. ??

I would be interested in seeing more examples of what people have done to add storm shutters on their boats, if they have.

Of course I don't expect that many will have added any at all.

But, surely there are some?
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port storm shutter

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