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T-top material

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  • T-top material

    We are looking to make a t-top style enclosure for our 26 open. My question is on choice of material. I had originally thought about making it out of a core material such as nidacore or divinycell with fiberglass over it. Now thinking about using 1/2” marine plywood, as the weight difference would be less than 50 lbs for the project. Obviously the core material would have to have the fiberglass skin, I would think the plywood would be fine with a good coating of West Systems Epoxy. I would also think the windows would weigh more than the top itself.

    Attached are are two rough sketches of the profiles we are choosing between. Fortunately for the final product I can built considerably better than I can draw.

    We will build mock ups to install on the boat to see if one looks better on the boat before actually building the top.

    For windows we are leaning to aluminum frame but would consider rubber frame. The sides would be fixed, the front will have an opening vent.
    1990 26’ open 351W

  • #2
    Solid fiberglass. 3 layers of csm with plates welded into the frame where items would be attached. Cheap, simple and lightweight.
    1988 26' cuddy
    1975 20' open
    31 Grand Slam
    16' Sandpiper
    14' Certified Fiberglass

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    • #3
      I like the 2nd rendering.
      it looks like it would be a nice addition.
      Richard
      78 20' cuddy
      2004 pcm 351 HO FWC
      BW 1:1

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      • #4
        Originally posted by RC65 View Post
        I like the 2nd rendering.
        it looks like it would be a nice addition.
        ditto.........
        1988 26' cuddy
        1975 20' open
        31 Grand Slam
        16' Sandpiper
        14' Certified Fiberglass

        Comment


        • #5
          I prefer the 2nd profile also. Are you doing removable side curtains for more windy or rainy rides?
          Karen
          Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania
          1986 Shamrock H/T with RWC 330 hp PCM, dual hydraulic helm
          1992 Mako 211CC w/Mercury Optimax 175
          3 other smaller OB boats and a trusty old canoe...

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          • #6
            Don't know where you are, but if near Fl check out Marine Salvage in Ft Pierce. Or, I have a sheet of 1/8" alum big enough for it in Baltimore

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            • #7
              Jerry, is my understanding correct that with csm you use polyester resin? Also is that something you would have to make a mold to build? If so for a one off part is there any real disadvantages to what I believe is called cold molding? My very limited glass work has always been with epoxy with one layer of 1700 biaxial cloth usually over 1/2” marine plywood. But I’m always open to new methods.

              Jerry, RC65, and Karen, your thoughts for the second profile matches the consensus at home. Thank you.

              Karen, yes will will be doing side drop curtains for extra protection. We would have liked to have something more permanent but any bigger would limit access to get between the leaning post and console.

              Argo, we are in Point Pleasant, NJ. It’s about midway along the Jersey Shore. Thank you for the suggestion.

              Attached are several photos of a quick mock up to see how it would look on the boat. I’m fairly happy with the profile view, but may soften the angles slightly. Not happy with the view from behind the console. We were going to make an electronics box approximately 10 inches tall to flush mount the electronics on top of the current gauges/glove box but it was very restrictive for the view.

              My new thought is to cut back the glove box even with the gauges and then flush mount the electronics to the right of the gauges. This would allow the windows to be 8-10 inches taller, giving a more open feel and much better visibility. The only other thing I can think of is to bracket mount the electronics where the current Garmin is, but much prefer the flush mount look.

              Again in thank for your thoughts and suggestions, they are appreciated.

              Mark
              1990 26’ open 351W

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              • RC65
                RC65 commented
                Editing a comment
                I like the flush mount idea.
                Plus it is hard on your neck looking up at an electronics box.

            • #8
              Simple. Get something slick and flat. Glass works best. Formica or anything else. Spray it with PVA. Spray the gelcoat. Lay the glass, polyester is more than adaquit. The whole boat is built with polyester. After the layup has set, roll or spray gelcoat. Spray PVA. After it has set, lift it off the glass and trim to shape wanted. Fiberglass 101.
              1988 26' cuddy
              1975 20' open
              31 Grand Slam
              16' Sandpiper
              14' Certified Fiberglass

              Comment


              • #9
                Once it is done on the glass is there enough flexibility to put a slight radius in it? Would prefer not to have the top flat.
                1990 26’ open 351W

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                • #10
                  More flex than you need. Like this. Click image for larger version

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                  1988 26' cuddy
                  1975 20' open
                  31 Grand Slam
                  16' Sandpiper
                  14' Certified Fiberglass

                  Comment


                  • #11
                    Thanks Jerry.
                    1990 26’ open 351W

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