Cutting out hatches???

Discussion in 'Boat Yard Basics' started by pgmelton, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. pgmelton

    pgmelton I Love microskiff.com!

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    Hello, I am working on a 13ft 3in skiff that I posted about in "Bragging Spot" New to forum, new to skiffs, and 1st Rebuild. I have been trolling and I am very impressed with the work many of you are doing. I have to raise the bar big time. If anyone will share how they cut out hatch covers. the cuts are fantastic and very clean. The only thing I can imagine is using a router and a jig for each individual hatch. and even that would leave a gap larger than what I have seen in this forum.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Brett

    Brett > PRO STAFF <

    Electric jigsaw with a fine tooth blade makes the cuts.
    Starting the cuts is done by using a drill and bit the same diameter as the jigsaw blade is wide.
    Drill is used to make multiple connected holes on the cutting line.
    Once the holes have created a space long enough to fit the jigsaw blade in,
    it's a simple job to cut slowly and accurately, following your hatch outline.
     

  3. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Brett I'll be taking a slightly different approach this time. The tight gap I had last time lead to the hatch and deck rubbing together and rubbing the paint, and eventually the resin, off the edges. This time I'll be using a router bit and making the gap atleast 3/16" wide after I cut them.
     
  4. pgmelton

    pgmelton I Love microskiff.com!

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    Firecat, if using a router, will you make a jig for each hatch or will you free hand. Quite frankly, I don't trust hand for that one I would need to make a jig. I see the jig taking longer to make than cutting the hatch out. :-/

    Brett, same for the jigsaw. I brace us a straight lines with metal guides, but the curved corners, again I need a jig or some type special tool. My Roto Zip tool has am attachement for making circular holes. I will test it out on scrape plywood and post my findings.

    Thanks!!!!
     
  5. DuckNut

    DuckNut Brandon, FL

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    I have never had a jig saw cut a 90* cut. The blades always seem to bend out to the right on every jigsaw I owned. Caused me so much aggrevation I threw them away.
     
  6. firecat1981

    firecat1981 BBA Counselor

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    Never had any issues with cutting with a jigsaw other then my lack of talent with one. This time I only need to make one hatch and I'll be using 3 commercial hatches elsewhere.

    I will cut it out the same way I did last time. I'll use a circular saw free hand for the straight sections, then cut the rounded edges with a jigsaw and sand them to match. After that is done I'll use the router to take an additional 1/8" or so off the hatch before rounding the edges.