With plans of living on Nirvana, we needed to figure out a way to make our companionway hatch easier to move back and forth. The hath was really tough for me to move, making a need for quick entry or exit difficult.
The first thing we needed to do was lift the two pieces of the hatch just a bit higher. Ken came up with the idea of aluminum strips from the local hardware store. He glued a strip along the entire length of the hatch, and then he glued another strip on the outer rear where the second (top) piece of the hatch sits. You can see in the first pic below the first strip that was placed to see how it would fit before cutting it the proper length. The second pic shows the interior (full length) strip and the exterior (shorter) strip at the rear. These strips gave the hatch pieces just enough lift to stop the dragging.
Lifting the hatch pieces helped, but we needed something to make the front hatch glide a bit more smoothly into the rear hatch piece. After hearing about "slick tape" on Facebook's Catalina 30 group, we decided to give it a try and ordered a roll from Amazon. After cleaning the aluminum and cutting the tape into thinner, shorter strips .. it was just peel 'n stick!
We hoped this tape worked as well as folks claimed it did, and we were eager to find out. We placed the hatch on top of the aluminum strips and were pleasantly surprised at how much easier the hatch slides. As Ken likes to say ... our companionway hatch is now "slick as owl shit"! I took a very quick video showing how much smoother the hatch glides .. I wish you could feel it. It's so much easier for me!
Stay tuned for new Plasteak handrails & the next step on our companionway hatch project ... replacing the rotten teak trim pieces with custom-made trim made out of Ipe wood by a friend. Below is a pic of some of the old & new trim required for this job ...
Hasta luego ... until then. Mid-Life Cruising!