A creative solution for Atkins & Hoyle hatch repairs
It wasn’t till we anchored and I began to open some ports when I found the problem. One of our port hinge springs had broken, shooting the broken piece of metal across the cabin.
On Yofy we have 12 opening ports. It’s one of the features that first impressed me about our boat. In warm climates, opening ports make such a difference to onboard comfort. I would go as far as considering them essential and when you’ve got 12 of them, the air flow down below is about as good as it gets.
Our ports are manufactured by Atkins & Hoyle and they’ve stood the test of time. However many of the parts have succumbed to wear over the years. For sailors who live in Canada or in close shipping distance, Atkins & Hoyle will ship you new replacement parts or even do a major overhaul of the ports for you. And we did check out that option, but when we saw the costs involved we realized that we needed to find another solution.
The port hinge springs look like this
We were quoted $25.00 a spring. After a close check of all our ports we realized that we soon would need to replace all the springs – that’s $300.00 before shipping. Manny decided he needed to get creative.
Instead of using a spring to hold the port open, Manny tried using a latch that would fit into the curve made by the locking knobs. When the port was in the open position, this curve sat up against the cabin ceiling. The latch could be permanently screwed into the ceiling at the point where the curve met, and still not interfere with the window or be in the way when not in use. Locking the window open would simply mean raising the port frame and pinching the latch open and releasing it into the curve .
He found the perfect latch in our parts locker and it was the type of lock used on boat lockers and drawers. It has worked out to be the perfect solution, and each latch cost about three dollars. We now have replaced all but one of the springs on our ports.
This is the type of locker latch we used.
Open port and hold the frame against the ceiling using the latch to line up with the curve in the frame.
Mark the spot with a pencil on the ceiling.
Release frame and line the latch up with the marked spot. Using a small screw, screw into place in one of the screw holes (each latch has 2 holes).
Line latch up before screwing the second screw in place.
Manny checking the correct position for the latch and screwing it into the cabin ceiling.