As some will remember, last winter I started a major modification to my beat up DSII to add a companionway hatch (ala jdoorly) along with a cuddy door that would fold up into the hatch. I've made some additional progress in the early months of this winter so I thought I'd pass along an update for (if) anyone who still has interest.
Last spring, before the boat got in the water I started to rebuild the hatch cut out having made it about 4 inches longer. That was so it would cover the open space using the "shoe-box cover" concept GL and jdoorly suggested, while bringing the previous cuddy roof lip back to provide a rain top for the hatch. Unfortunately, the weather got warm early, the boat went in the water, and as I commented elsewhere, suddenly the projects stopped and the work of learning to sail began.
This fall I intended to finish the fiberglass work on the hatch cover, but wasn't exactly sure how the cuddy door was going to work, so I decided to finish that part first in case it would impact the final shape of the hatch-cover (which it turns out it did). In these photos, the hatch looks pretty rough, but again thats because I've not put any work into finishing it yet. It's functional and waterproof but not very photogenic.
Also, I should comment that as I did with the companionway hatch, I'm roughing out the cuddy doors assembly with pine boards because they are cheap and easy to work with. Once I have the design completed, I will use those boards as patterns to remake the pieces out of sturdier more weatherproof materials.
I ended up using a very simple slot and peg mechanism for the door assembly, and it appears to be working pretty good. There are basically two drawer slide tracks, attached to outside edges on the bottom of the hatch assembly. The door was cut from a flat piece of (again for now) 3/4" pine with a curve cut into the inside edge to match the curve of the cuddy lip when the door is closed. That means the center of the door is taller than the edges, allowing it to tip up to slide in. There are simple pegs in the upper right and left corners of the door that stay in the track all the time.
This is a picture with the hatch and door closed.
It opens by swinging up and into the track on the companionway hatch.
Because the cuddy door is about 3 inches taller than the space under the hatch, I hinged the bottom 4 inches of the cuddy door so it folds under as it's going into it's storage place. There is an inside frame which the door closes against, and an outside frame to position and secure the door, as well as adding a better weather resistance. I will add weather seal to the outside edge of the inside frame when it's ready to be finished.
And then finally, here is a shot with the door folded in place and the hatchway open.
The hatchway has quick disconnect hinges so it can be removed completely, and I'm building, basically the equivalent of the companionway frame on the foredeck where the hatch will lock in place to get it out of the way, without having to stow it in the cuddy but it will be secure so it can't blow or fall off the deck.
More to come...
Thanks - Scott