Hinged Engine Room Hatches

Hatches1For some time now, I’ve wanted to hinge my engine room hatches. They have an extra layer of sound deadening insulation on them, so are quite heavy. It seems like no matter where I put them, they are continually in the way when accessing the engine room of my 32’ Nordic Tug. Since the helm seat on our tug is deeper than stock, the hatches could not be raised to vertical when opened. They would hit the front of the seat well before being vertical.

I solved the problem by adding three spacers between the base of the helm seat cushion and the top of the cabinet beneath the seat. These spacers are positioned above the stock knees that support the seat cushion sliders. The hatches can now be raised to vertical when opened and are held in position by bungee straps. They are completely out of the way when working in the engine room.

Hatches2An added benefit is that I now have a place to store my paper charts and large chart books in the area between the spacers. I added some nylon straps that snap into place to prevent the charts from sliding forward, out of their storage spaces, in rough weather.

The hinges are standard 3” brushed nickel-plated brass door hinges held in place with inch and a half stainless screws. I used two hinges for each hatch.

Charlie & Sharon Billings
Nobska – NT 32-057