Inspection Ports

Discussion in 'Sunfish Talk' started by Walter Cotting, Oct 23, 2015.

  1. Walter Cotting

    Walter Cotting New Member

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    I have had a blast with a new-to-me older sunfish this summer and just garaged it for the winter. I opened the deck drain screw, tipped the boat on it's side, and a half-cup of water came out. I have read that you can't always remove all the water that way. The boat has the rear storage compartment off the cockpit and no inspection ports currently.
    I am contemplating adding inspection ports this winter to aid in drying it out. Thinking of adding one or two in the front wall of the cockpit and not sure about the stern.
    Looking for some reccomendations of what, if anything, should be done.
    Also found a link on this forum to a site that shows the internal foam locations, but it does not work. I have seen this around somewhere but can't find it now. Any ideas?
     
  2. Sailflow

    Sailflow Member

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    How much does your boat weigh?

    If it isn't supper heavy, just air test and find the leak so you don't get more in.
     
  3. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    I would start with one port up front, about half way between the daggerboard slot and the coaming, with the left side of the port on the centerline of the hull. That should allow you to evaluate the situation.

    As far as the construction of the hull is concerned, look under
    Sunfish Knowledge Base
    General information
    Construction
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2015
  4. Alan S. Glos

    Alan S. Glos Active Member

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    My bias has always install a 6" dia, port centered forward of the daggerboard trunk and aft of the inner "V" of the splashrail as this port gives you access to the mast hole and the daggerboard trunk if you ever have a problem with these two structures. Then install a 4" dia. port centered on the aft deck under the tiller as this will give you access to the deck eyes for the mainsheet bridle if they ever pull out (it happens). If you want a complete dry out, buy a 6" dia duct fan at Home Depot, Lowes etc, and run it through the hull for a few months with both ports open. If you do this outside, be sure to tape screen over the 4" port opening to keep critters out of the hull. There will be foam blocks under your port openings in both of these locations; just saw through the foam with a long sabre saw blade. It will not affect the integrity of the hull.

    Alan Glos
    Cazenovia, NY
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 9, 2015
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  5. Dearmad

    Dearmad New Member

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    I'm curious why LP never thought to build these into the boats in the factory. Is it the one-design nature of the boat? Ignoring a practical solution? Cost?
     
  6. beldar boathead

    beldar boathead Well-Known Member

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    There usually isn't a need for a port - most boats don't leak or need big repairs during their lifetime.
     
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  7. Dearmad

    Dearmad New Member

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    haha. Oh. I guess I've acclimated to the "reality" in forums seeing: leaky boat, made inspection ports, drying out my boat so often I started to think this was the norm. heh.
     
  8. signal charlie

    signal charlie Active Member Staff Member

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    If all you got was 1/2 cup of water and the boat doesn't weigh over 139 pounds, I'd leave it alone and just drain it after each sail.
     
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  9. El Mar

    El Mar Member

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    Anyone ever install a 6" one of these??

    Just scored one on eBay. Hoping I can get it between the splash guard and centerboard trunk without to much problem.

    Stow-Away™ Deck Plate bags by Beckson

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    I haven't installed one, but have seen similar ones on other boats.
     
  11. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    I'd given up on finding a replacement for my 6" Holt & Allen "bayonet" mount inspection port, which has been badly degraded by weather and sun. However, a lengthy Google search turned up one 6" model (AA13566) made by "Victory" (of Chinese manufacture). While it's not thoroughly waterproof, the cover does remove easily in a one-eighth turn of the wrist.

    It also got me thinking that a rectangular port placed in the forward vertical bulkhead would fully accommodate forward storage of a floating "extendible-handle" paddle or a kayak "take-down" paddle. (And/or "The Guppy" propulsion device).

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  12. Kevin Mc

    Kevin Mc Member

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    What I'd like to find is a bungee cargo net to go over the aft storage compartment.
     
  13. Walter Cotting

    Walter Cotting New Member

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    Intensity sails has another interesting option. It is an inspection port with a recessed water bottle holder built into the port cover. I'm thinking of going with that on either the fore deck or front cockpit wall. Won't hold a paddle but should keep a mojito safe yet readily available.
     
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  14. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    I found one of my two (used) rectangular ports, which is to (maybe) go into the forward bulkhead. :cool: They were expensive when new, but for $5 each, I couldn't pass them up at a marine flea market. :D

    It's very strong, and not particularly heavy, so I won't use the matching interior trim—which would double its weight. I haven't decided whether to mount it with the hinge up or down, but I will be needing three nylon wing-nuts (or round knobs) to "dog the hatch". It has a rubber seal, and I expect to bolt it in.

    [​IMG]

    This isn't the first time I've used a "different" inspection port!
    First post; need help picking out car to tow Sunfish | Page 2 | SailingForums.com
     
  15. El Mar

    El Mar Member

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    Got my Beckson in the mail today. Here's a question.

    Is it best to cut the hole in line with the centerboard trunk and tip of the splash rail or off to one side? I have read both ways on the forum here, what are the pros and cons of each?
     

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  16. Light and Variable Winds

    Light and Variable Winds Well-Known Member

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    With only one cup of water, I'd say you really don't have a problem. However, you wouldn't do any harm by using a small aquarium air pump and a ¼" hose during the long off-season. Outside air would displace the moist internal air, and leave the hull through the center vent and past the ¼" hose.
     
  17. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    See my earlier post (#3). You won't be able to work on the mast step from that location, but that wasn't the issue in this thread.
     
  18. El Mar

    El Mar Member

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    What about the block and deck cleat location? My deck cleat is missing, that is the main reason for the port to gain access, may change the pulley block to an eye eventually to but would like to gain access to everything in case problems arise later.

    What advantage does the off center port give? Is there foam in the way?
     
  19. Wavedancer

    Wavedancer Upside down? Staff Member

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    To replace the pulley block the port will have to be in front of the splash guard, unless you have VERY long arms.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2015
  20. El Mar

    El Mar Member

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    I do.

    Can it be reached linearly or is there something in the way?
     

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