Saturday, September 17, 2016

Fitting the Portlights

The cabin wall is only 3/4 inch thick where the portlights go, and because they have substantial flanges that I did not want to alter or cut down, I made spacers from more 3/4 inch plywood to mount them to.

Cutting a neat hole in the cabin itself where the portlight flange protrudes out the front presented a challenge.  I could not use a saw for obvious reasons, and hole saws are rare and expensive at 8-1/2 inches.  I also could not fit a router either from inside, or outside.  So I put a 1/8 inch spiral pin bit in a Dremel, and made a circle cutting jig with a 3/4 inch nut, a hose clamp, some aluminum angle and a 1/4 inch bolt.  After drilling a 1/4 inch hole where I wanted it, the bolt from the jig went therein, and I was able to cut a clean circle.  It took some time however.  The plywood spacers did not get such finicky treatment as the cutouts are hidden; I used a plain old sabre saw on the bench after tracing the circle in place through the neat hole.

I still have to take it all apart and glue, screw, and caulk everything.

I know that the portlights look a little low from the outside, but they are just right on the inside.  I wanted Lorri to be able to look out without standing on tippy toes, and also I have some ideas for trim treatments swimming around in my head that will compliment how they look from inside the cabin.

It seems our stretch of hot sunny weather is over and the Monsoons are returning.  No problem for me though.  I got everything done that I needed to do with paint and decking.  I'll build the hatches in the garage and install them during the reprieves we do get in the rain.  And there's lots of really fun stuff to do inside!






11 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Dennis! You're up early on a Saturday...

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    2. I am not sure of the time zone of the time stamp, I will check when I post this

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    3. I am on Mountain Daylight time, an hour later than the time stamp. I didn't think I was up that early on a weekend!

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    4. I thought about that hour difference way to late to delete my reply :-)

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  2. "Cutting a neat hole in the cabin itself ... I could not use a saw for obvious reasons ..."

    And what exactly were those obvious reasons again?

    Yoda

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    1. Sorry Yoda...I do make assumptions. There wasn't any room to maneuver a saber saw, and even if there was it would butcher the hole (at least in my hands). I could not think of any kind of saw that would have cut through the cabin other than a 8.5 inch hole saw. Hole saw being a rotating cylinder with teeth on the edge...They make them but they are expensive, not available locally nor do any of the rental places have them.

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    2. Now I get it. That thought crossed my mind, but couldn't be sure from the photos about clearances and whatnot. Yeah, used hole saws a time or two, and wouldn't want to locate, pay for, and then try to use one 8.5 inches in size, especially freehand. I can just imagine. All in all, an ingenious solution -- your signature -- and a nice-looking result.

      Yoda

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  3. Looking good!

    And I appreciate the comment about Lorri's view relative to window placement. That's a feature that gives me design fits... Anke's six inches shorter than I am. Balancing all the various lines of sight with headroom and clearances takes us forever!

    One hole-cutting tool I've been curious to try is the Zip Tool. It's like a Dremel, but made for sheetrock and 'thin' plywood, using a spiral, side-cutting bit. They're cheap and the bits come in packs. Seems like if one went slow, it should work about the same. Still, a Dremel wears a lot of other hats!

    Dave Z

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    1. Thanks Dave. I had a Dremel already and decided to give it a try with a homemade jig. But I would have bought a Zip otherwise (made by Dremel too). I would still have had to work out my own circle jig though. As for building one's boat to fit one's own body - well you can't get that store-bought! Well worth the effort.

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