FAQ

Your most frequently asked questions… answered.

Editor’s notes (2019)

The FAQ and discussion below has been mildly edited to eliminate typos, make it clearer who the authors are and which boats they themselves have (by hull number and boat name if known). Wherever possible alternative (i.e. current) references to products & suppliers are provided.

The bulk of this FAQ was originally generated as a Q&A in the period 2005 – 2015. In this period Lester Helmus acted as a clearing house for questions and responses, but some respondents would also write direct to each other, hence some of the overlapping answers you see in the FAQ. In places there are 2019 and subsequent comments, drawing either on my own experiences, or from other Corbin 39 owners and sources, including our Corbin 39 Group on Facebook. More comments are most welcome and this FAQ will inevitably grow.

We have attempted to contact all contributors to the 2015 version of the FAQ. All responses have been most supportive, thank you. If you are a contributor who has yet to respond please contact us.

As will be apparent there are multiple viewpoints on some topics. Sometimes, but not always, this can be traced to differences in arrangement between the boats of the various authors. Some of the topics raised are not so much a Q&A, as simply being a statement of why a particular owner thought something was a good idea, which of course it may not have been at all. Make your own mind up.

If you have further comments or suggestions on any of these questions, or wish to pose new questions, or describe various issues you have faced and/or overcome, then please contact us either via the Facebook Group or via the Website.

[Remark as of November 2019: Quite a lot of the links to drawings & photos are not yet reinstated due to workload. However I also know quite a few of the relevant images have gone astray. You may find the relevant photos in the individual boat’s entry. Please email us if you have any of the missing photos, drawings, etc.]

EXTERNAL FITTINGS

a. I talked with Tops’n’ Quality in Marysville Michigan and they said they have supplied many of the stainless pulpits for Corbin. I know of no vendor for the fuel tanks, I would imagine getting the tanks built will be an easy thing to do. Gene Whitney (#069, Joint Effort) b. The tanks, as far as I know, were fabricated in Montreal–don’t know the supplier– if anyone has a set of blueprints, the dimensions of all tanks are noted for local fabrication–I do have a set for the Corbin39-3es (ES = Edition Special, the mk2)– the latest version, aft cockpit. as for the pulpits: Tops-In-Quality Marysville, MI 48040 last phone # 313-364-7150 Doug Archibald (#158, Chaos !) c. As the Corbin factory sold the majority of boats for owner finishing they probably only had one off orders for tanks and pulpits. Probably one of the biggest orders for pulpits was mine, for members of the Toronto Boat Builders Co-Op, 7 boat sets, in Sept 1980. They were made to my specification, including all deck measurements, by Tops In Quality, now in Port Huron, MI. Tel: 313 982 1900. The photos on my website give an idea of the appearance. starboardbow.jpg The bow pulpit has a 10″ drop at the front for easier access. The mast pulpits (granny bars) have a curved top in plan view (other designers have used a straight back rest). I also have the hull profile to accommodate boarding ladder standoffs, located at about 20″ forward of the stern. However, we didn’t go with this but later designed a 3 part folding ladder to go at the lifeline gate, near the forward end of the wheelhouse. All stanchions are 30″ high. Tops In Quality may have dimensions on file. Photo of 2 satisfied customers attached. pulpits.jpg Regarding tanks, the same comment re Corbin factory applies. Many boats would have different tank requirements. Our stainless fuel and water tanks were made by Klacko Mfg, Oakville, Ontario. They are still in the same business and made tanks for other owners. tel: 905 825 0015. They are pricey, but perhaps not so bad for U.S. customers. Hope this helps, Regards, David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity) d. I bought all my pulpits from Marine Exchange Corp. in Peabody, Ma. They are still in business. At the time the father was building a Corbin and had a good source for the stainless work. Now the sons run the business and may be able to help. Bill Schwartz (s/v #090, Moonshadow) e. Marine Exchange was run by Kevin Montague and family. After it went out of business Kevin started up North East Rigging Systems. His contact in Needham, MA, is (781) 559 8416,Kevinmontague He also has a website now. I have used his company for several high cost purchases (e.g. Profurl, Electric Windlass) as well as many lesser items and he is very competitive and also knowledgeable. As noted, his father had a Corbin 39. Kevin is a rigger but also good for most other boat equipment. Regards, David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity)

“What Sealant Do You Need?” by Don Casey. In every Marine Center you will find an array of different sealants and caulks sufficient to make your head spin. With so many choices, how do you know which one you need? It is not as difficult as you might think. Virtually all modern marine sealants fall into one of just three types, each with specific characteristics that make it the best choice for some jobs and unsuitable for others. Selecting the right sealant is essentially a matter of identifying the materials you are wanting to seal–specifically if any component is plastic–and of determining the likelihood of ever needing to separate these components. If neither component is plastic and if you want to preserve your ability to disassemble the joint, use polysulfide. Polysulfide is the most versatile of marine sealants. It is a synthetic rubber with excellent adhesive characteristics, and you can use it for almost everything. As a bedding compound it allows for movements associated with stress and temperature change, yet maintains the integrity of the seal by gripping tenaciously to both surfaces. It is also an excellent caulking compound since it can be sanded after it cures and it takes paint well. However, the solvents in polysulfide sealant attack some plastics, causing them to harden and split. Specifically, you must not use polysulfide to bed plastic windshields or plastic portlights–either acrylic (Plexiglas) or polycarbonate (Lexan). Don’t use it to bed plastic deck fittings either, including plastic portlight frames. Plastic marine fittings are typically ABS or PVC, and polysulfide will attack both. If you know that the plastic fitting is made of epoxy, nylon, or Delrin, you can safely bed it with polysulfide. Below-the waterline through-hull fittings are in this group, but when there is any doubt, select an alternative sealant. Polysulfide adheres well to teak (a special primer improves adhesion), and is unaffected by harsh teak cleaners, making it the best choice for bedding teak rails and trim. The black caulking between the planks of a teak deck is invariably polysulfide. For this application, a two-part polysulfide gives the best results. Polysulfide is the slowest curing of the three sealant types, often taking a week or more to reach full cure. Because it will adhere to almost anything, polysulfide has a maddening propensity to get on everything, so neatness is called for in using this sealant. Polysulfide sealants will have polysulfide printed on the package, or sometimes Thiokol–the trademark for the polymer that is the main ingredient of all polysulfide sealants regardless of manufacturer. If you want the two components to be joined together permanently, use polyurethane. Think of polyurethane as an adhesive rather than a sealant. Its grip is so tenacious that its bond should be thought of as permanent. If there seems to be any likelihood that you will need to separate the two parts later, do not use polyurethane to seal them. Polyurethane is the best sealant for the hull-to-deck joint. It is also a good choice for through-hull fittings and for rubrails and toerails, but not if rails are raw teak because some teak cleaners soften it. Like polysulfide, polyurethane should not be used on most plastics–acrylic, polycarbonate, PVC, or ABS. The cure time for polyurethane is generally shorter than polysulfide, but still may be up to a week. For bedding plastic components or where insulation is desirable, silicone is the default choice. Calling silicone a sealant is something of a misrepresentation. It is more accurate to characterize it as a gasket material. If you accept silicone’s adhesive abilities as temporary, you will find it is the best product for a number of sealing requirements. It is the only one of the marine sealant trio than can be safely used to bed plastic. It is an excellent insulator between dissimilar metals–use it when mounting stainless hardware to an aluminum spar. It is the perfect gasket material between components that must be periodically dismantled–beneath hatch slides, for example. Silicone retains its resilience for decades and is unaffected by most chemicals, but it should not be used below the waterline. Because it depends upon mechanical compression to maintain its seal, silicone is not a good choice for sealing hardware on a cored deck. Exposed silicone is a magnet for dirt and repels paint, so never fillet with silicone, and don’t use it on any surface you plan to paint. Silicone sealants typically set in a few minutes and reach full cure in less than a day. For an adhesive seal of plastic components, select a silicone/polyurethane hybrid. An adhesive sealant maintains its seal even when stresses pull or pry the bedded components apart. The sealant stretches like the bellows joining the two sides of an accordion. This accordion effect can be especially useful for plastic portlight installations where the portlights are captured between an inner and outer frame. Although silicone has amazing elasticity, its lack of adhesion means any expansion of the space between the frames is likely to cause the seal to fail. Either polysulfide or polyurethane would provide a more dependable seal, but polysulfide is certain to attack the plastic, and polyurethane prohibits any future disassembly. The answer to this dilemma is a hybrid sealant–part silicone and part polyurethane. Marketed by BoatLife as Life Seal, this mixture promises a longer-lasting seal for portlights and other plastic fittings where compression of the sealant cannot be assured. For more information about sealing and bedding, consult Sailboat Hull & Deck Repair by Don Casey.

What’s a good davit for hauling a dinghy? I am going to build a davit for my zodiac (both boat and engine, 15 hp). I need something strong and good looking. I’d like to know if there are members of the list who had pretty good results, and the way they did it. Do we have any images of good-looking davits for the Corbin ? I need the zodiac to be high enough in heavy seas. On top of the davit, I will install solar panels. Thanks a lot for any help. Bernard V. (#124, di Rosa)

a. We don’t have davits; there are some out there, I don’t know the names. I was brainwashed into thinking that davits were incompatible with ocean cruising. Regards, David (s/v #050, Opportunity) [Ed. Note: (1) I agree. Dinghies belong on the deck of the mother boat when sailing offshore, where a disabling blow or gale can spring up on a moment’s notice. (2) If you add davits, be prepared to spend more in slip fees.]

b. Here are my davits, Frank Bryant (s/v #186, Visitant)

I’m interested in getting some info and ideas from other owners on designing an arch for a solar panel and wind generator. Bob Becker (#100, Emmalou).

a. Visit my site and look at my arch built by Gatean Duchesne, www.dream-sailboat.net Normand Bouchard, (#140, Urantia)

Asked by Lester Helmus (s/v #010, Insouciance)

a. I used 3/8″ Sheffield Hyzod Polycarbonate with a bronze tint. [Do a Google Search on “Sheffield Hyzod Polycarbonate”] I removed the teak frame on the outsides, removed the old lexan and had all the screw holes and bolt holes re-glassed and the whole PH re-gelcoated. I then used methylacrylate to bond the new poly in place with a bead of Sikka 295 UV around the outside. I then painted a UV shield around the outer edges of the poly with black Awlgrip – much like your car windshield. As soon as the pictures are developed I’ll send some to you. Now I have no holes in the PH for leaks. I did a lot of research before doing this.

A5b: applyingcaulkpart1.jpg by Vincent Salese
A5c: applyingcaulkpart2.jpg by Vincent Salese

Vincent Salese (#005, Witch of the Wave)

b. Thought you may be interested in this approach to replacing the pilot house windows, I designed them using CAD-CAM and then NC milled them from 1/2 inch 6061 T6 aluminum and then had them powder coated. The Glass is 6mm tempered 1/4 bronzed tinted and the windows in the front were bent to fit. They were fastened with 1/4 inch allen head cap screws exposed. and allen head nuts as well ( flush on the inside). It was a bit expensive but I think the price could be improved. The glass was $ 1200 and the material for the frames were $ 1100. I did all the drafting and surfacing on the parts and a friend did the NC milling. I engineered the fastening and that would cost a couple hundred more for the parts. There was some time and labor involved in finishing the parts for powder coating. There was also some time involved in hammer forming the front frames to fit the proper radius of the the glass( which were bent and tempered. ) I have all the radius for the front glass surfaces along with the shapes, surfaces and fasteners for all the windows.
Gene Whitney (#069, Joint Effort)

c. I am in the middle of a fairly major job that I have put off doing for some time, replacing the windows in the wheelhouse. Actually, I am only planning to replace the side windows at this time, the flat ones. I may have told you that I installed my windows by bonding them chemically to the fibreglass. Because of the differential expansion of the Plexiglas and the fibreglass I have had a couple of major cracks. However, the main problem has been the breakdown of the bond at several places on the perimeter flange with resultant leakage. This in spite of caulking all around the groove at the side of the windows. I have now managed to remove the 4 windows (shearing some of the gelcoat on the flanges where the bond was still complete). It was apparent that the polysulphide in the perimeter groove had not bonded well to the Plexiglas. This time I am going to use Sikaflex 295UV as well as the special cleaner, Sika Cleaner 205 (in Canada, Sika 226 in the USA) and Sika Primer 209. This is supposed to give a much better bond to both the Plexiglas and the fibreglass. I don’t believe I used a prime for the original installation. I had attempted to correct the leaks by replacing the polysulphide in the perimeter groove, using a styrofoam bond breaker at the bottom of the groove. However, the lack of a primer obviously negated this effort. I will also use a bond breaker this time, so that the caulk only contacts two sides of the groove and not the bottom. The Sika literature also recommends painting a black band on the outside of the Plexiglas, overlapping the flange bond area, to lessen UV attack. It points out that car windshields have this black band for the same reason. It appears that the black is on the inside of the windshield glass on my Toyota.
David Salter (#050, Opportunity)

Promised summary of wheelhouse window replacement

We have replaced only the 4 side windows in the wheelhouse. These are substantially flat (planar). Our problem was that the Plexiglas windows were originally chemically bonded to the fibreglass flanges. Over time, with the thermal expansion and contraction, we got cracks in the two larger windows and the bonding began to separate. I had 4 new Plexiglas windows made, using my original templates. Where the originals were 1/2″ thick the replacements are 9 mm (about 3/8″). The reason is that the 1/2″ windows are overly strong (I believe) and they did not finish flush with the fibreglass. The technique used for the new installation involved using Sika 295UV urethane caulk and called for a bond film thickness of about 1/8″. This results in the new windows only protruding slightly. We do not have complete stainless frames as used on many boats. Instead, a late modification uses stainless strips along the top and bottom edges of the windows.
Removing the old windows required some leverage at the disbonded section of the window and then a good blow on the inside. The window came out tearing off the surface gelcoat on some parts of the flanges where the bond had remained strong (about 1/8″ thickness removed).

The first repair job was to make a smooth flange surface. I made up dummy patterns for each of the two window shapes (port and starboard were a close match) from 1/2″ thick low density polyethylene. The flanges were sanded and cleaned with acetone. The dummy window had the area contacting the flange coated with mold wax (3 applications). The imperfections in the flange were buttered with thickened epoxy and then the dummy flange placed in position. This was held by means of several small “turnbuttons” of plywood, using the holes that previously held the stainless plates in place. After the epoxy cured the dummy window was removed. The first attempt did not yield good coverage over all the flange imperfections so these were touched up with more thickened epoxy and smoothed with a spatula. Sanding was needed on this. Subsequent windows showed better results the first time with only small areas to be re touched. All flanges were then sanded with wet & dry paper and treated with acetone.

The Sika procedure was well descibed at http://www.sikacanada.com/ind-mar-window-instal I couldn’t get the USA site to appear nor could I re-acquire the Technical Data Sheet that was a useful adjunct to the Procedure sheet. The key for a good job is to use:
1. Sika Cleaner 226 to degrease the bonding surfaces (named Sika 205 in Canada!!). Expensive but you need very little.
2. Sika Primer 209 on both the gelcoat and the mating Plexiglas surface (previously roughed up with 80 grit sandpaper)
3. Sikaflex 295UV for the bonding, maintaining the specified minimum film thickness. I used the little rubber crosses intended for spacing ceramic wall tiles on the suggestion of the Sika tech rep (1-888-832-7452).
Quantities of material for the 4 windows: Sika Cleaner 226: 30 mL Sika Primer 209: 250 mL Sikaflex 295UV: 4 @ 310 mL (10.5 fl oz) cartridges
Regards, David (s/v #050, Opportunity)

Where can I obtain the original pilothouse window frames ? I’ve been building my Corbin for about 21 years now and don’t think I’ll ever finish. I’m redoing things I did years ago for the second or third time now. Anyway I’m not looking for rectangular bronze portholes but for the frames that went around the windows that were offered from Tanner-Stephens Yachts or from Corbin themselves. They were produced to fit the pilot house windows of the early models and the side windows for all hulls. Bill Schwartz (#090, Moonshadow)

a. In regards to your need for window frames contact Klacko Spars Ltd. They may be able to help you. 663 Third Line Oakville Ont Canada L6L 4A9 Tel 905 825-0015 Fax 905 825-5353 web = http://www.klackospars.com/ Good Luck and regards Ernie Hartmair (s/v #115, Melodia).

Consider relocating mainsheet traveler from the bridge deck to pilothouse?

This submission is based on the premise that the author makes that the pilothouse roof (the “bridge deck”) is not strong enough to carry the loads of the traveller & mainsail. The author’s was the only Corbin known to have made this modification, and no adverse effects have been observed on any other Corbins as a result of directly mounting the traveller onto the pilothouse roof.

a. We did this. It requires a strong “bridge” for the traveller, to transfer the load to the side decks as I feel sure the wheelhouse structure would be seriously stressed if the traveller was attached directly to it. This position certainly gives unimpeded access to the companionway. It also makes it possible to have a dodger, with the mainsheet well forward of it. However, it provides a smaller bending moment to the boom. We have a 3 point attachment for the mainsheet to the boom to spread the load and this has worked well for 5 seasons  (We sail in the summers on Lake Ontario).
David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity)

b. Looks to me like the traveler is attached to the pilothouse, not the sidedeck aftquarter . Am I missing something, David?
Lester Helmus (s/v #010, Insouciance)

c. The photo probably doesn’t show it but I have stainless steel Z-shaped brackets each side of the wheelhouse, just inside the window, to which the traveller is bolted and which are in turn bolted to the side decks. I will try and get another photo sometime but the brackets are painted black on the side showing through the window (polished on the inside) deliberately so that they aren’t prominent (My son has the boat off cruising for the rest of the week). See my photo . The bracket is quite visible, including the nuts on the thru deck bolts, between the two lights.
David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity)

see also photos at http://corbin39.org/050-opportunity/

I would like to post a question about replacing the 8 port lights in the hull. Mine are leaking badly and I was hoping to get some feedback from other owners who may have already done the job. Vince S. (#005, Witch of the Waves).

a. I am presently replacing all the acrylic windows and the hatch lens as well. Use ½” cast acrylic, tinted in the shade desired. Make sure it comes with peelable paper on both sides. Use Cast–not extruded, it’s stronger. There is one extruded with a scratch resistant coating, if you want, but Cast is quite scratch resistant. Don’t be tempted to use Lexan (polycarbonate) just because it’s what they use in bulletproof glass. It isn’t as stiff as acrylic – it bends easily – that’s what absorbs a bullet, but you don’t want it to bend and pop out of the window frame. It also yellows quite quickly and scratches easily.

You will need to take out a window and make a template. My center cockpit has radiused edges. I laid out a cutting pattern that accommodated all my windows on the size of sheet I was working and cut them on a table saw. The corners are radiused as well and I did that with the saw and final shaping on my bench sander. I made a router stand and rounded all the edges with a ¼” roundover bit.

Don’t take the paper off until you want to install them.

Making them was easy – cleaning all the silicone out of the boat window frames is an ongoing job. I ground an old kitchen spoon handle to the shape of the cove and sharpened it. It works OK but it takes 2 hours per window and up here it’s usually cold rain while you do it. Silicone Remover doesn’t work very well. Did I tell you I hate silicone!

I did a lot of research on how to get them to seal when they are installed and talked to our 3M rep. They suggest using 3M 730 clear hybrid sealant. It doesn’t react with acrylic and a lot of things like polysulphides do. I am even considering a strip of the bedding Butytl tape, that MaineSail sells, along the inside edges of the frames, and the 730 out from that.

You need to clean the acrylic with acetone before you install it to make the adhesive stick well. Usual caveat – don’t touch the glueing edge after you clean it.

Note: do not use windex to clean your acrylic. We did that at work and watched the spider cracks ruin a lot of good acrylic. Use soap and water. The plastics shops won’t warrantee it if you do.

When I took off out stainless frames the screw holes were in bad shape. I will be Dremelling out the cracked ones and filling with epoxy – then redrilling.

John G. (#181, Spinnaker)

d. Obviously it’s a seal problem. You did not say whether they were existing or new that are giving you problems. When I replaced my own, I used 1/2″ tinted safety glass. Because the new glass was absolutely flat, I had to router out a bit of the curvature that was in the old frame cavity. Because it was glass, I used automotive grade silicone sealant and everything was fine. (Had I used Lexan or any other plastic, I would have heated it to adapt to the shape of the existing window cavity and then used Sika Flex or something that would bind to plastics.) In any event, it’s an easy fix. Good luck with this Vince, Frank B. (#186, Visitant).

e. I replaced all the portlights in the hull and pilothouse; a long job but now, no leaks.

You will need: a scraper, a knife, sander, drill, epoxy, screws, caulking, and the windows

Caulking: I used butyl rubber tape. This stuff is very sticky and a guaranteed seal. It does take time to complete the job because you need to gradually tighten the frame screws, squeezing the excess out. There are many types of this tape; the link (http://www.pbase.com/mainecruising/butyl_tape) is the best out there.
What you may find, if your old ports are Lexan, the caulking used did not stick. If you use new plastic portlights and you do not want to spend the money for the butyl tape I suggest you do some research on caulking that works with the plastics. Another caulking to look into is the stuff used on buildings that have glass siding; this is usually two parts sticky tape, to mount and hold the window in place, and then a caulking to seal the edges.

Windows: I used laminated glass in both pilothouse and hull except for the ports in the forward cabin. There, the hull curves, so glass would not work. If you choose glass you can take one of your old windows to the glass shop and they will make a pattern and have the windows made. If you choose laminated glass one tip is talk to the glass shop about how well they will match the two pieces of glass to make laminated glass. What happened to me was the two halves (inside/outside) did not match perfectly.

This was mostly a problem with the pilothouse windows. As with the pilothouse the forward portlight windows need a little grinding to put a slight bevel to the inside edge. For a good match around the edges the place that makes the glass can grind them but I understand that gets expensive, Just be aware. If I did it again I would look into tempered safety glass.

Carefully remove the stainless frames. Use a thin scraper, flat on one side, pointed on the other. Find a weak area in the caulking, push in the blade, and work around using a wedge to hold the frame away from the hull as you break the caulking seal.

Next step is to remove the caulking from the frame and the hull. I found the caulking was much harder to scrape off from the hull than from the pilothouse. The tool I used was an Exacto knife (the bigger one) with the blade that angles around 45 degrees. After cleaning both frame and fiber glass you can start preparing the hull.

You will likely find that some of the screw threads are stripped out from the fiberglass. For any hole that was slightly poor, I drilled out and ground out (Dermal Tool) the cracked and broken fiberglass, filled with fiberglass epoxy, then drilled new holes. I polished the frames and secured them with all new screws.

The other thing you might find, especially in the pilothouse, is the fiberglass insets vary in thickness and require some sanding to make them level. You will also need to sand flush your epoxy hole repair. Once you have your frames clean and your fiberglass repaired, you can temp mount your frame, mark, and drill the holes you repaired.

Now you are ready to install the windows. First, you might want to check the evenness of the window to the fiberglass surface. Depending on the sealant you may need to build it up thicker in certain places. I had the window held in place, then went inside and marked the fiberglass frame with a pencil for areas I felt I should build up with the butyl tape. Remove the window and add layers of tape as needed. Next stick the window in and recheck if you need more tape in any places.

Next get your frame lined up and gently install the screws so you do not strip them out. If you use tape, snug up the screws and as you work your way around the frame the tape will ooze out. If you are doing this on a cool day the butyl tape will be hard so be careful snugging the screws. The butyl will take weeks to gradually snug up. You can trim off the oozed out excess as often as you like. With tape you should have a good waterproof seal right off. If you still have some gaps you can pack in some putty with a putty knife.

After all the tape was squeezed out I prettied up things with 3M 4200. I masked off the ports inside and caulked the seam with white 4200. On the outside I masked and caulked with white 4200 where I had the stainless next to white fiberglass and black 4200 between the stainless frame and the glass.

Two problems; the butyl tape continued to ooze out in places through the 4200 and in the sun the black 4200 was getting gooey. It continued to ooze for about a year. I have trimmed of some of the 4200 on the outside and I do not see any drawbacks having the butyl rubber seam exposed. I might try something beside 4200 eventually. It sure looks good having the edges finished off with a well beveled edge of 4200. Kind regards, Gene & Patti S. (#158, Swell Dish)

f. Thanks for your responses. I was too broad in my original question. The questions I should have asked are: What have others used to replace their port windows? Has anyone found a manufactured “off the shelf” fixed or opening port light that works? Has anyone had custom manufactured port lights made? Who made them? Cost? etc etc.? What unforeseen problems arose in the installation and how was it handled? If you maintained the original set-up (glazing in the indent and frame on the outside), what materials were used for the glazing? What was used for the exterior frame? What sealants were used?

I know there’s one port area that could be a problem, and that’s the forward ports on the bow. That area doesn’t look flat to me. It actually looks like it twists: ie the rear end may be 10 degrees from vertical while the forward edge looks to be 15 degrees.

Boman [Bomar?] Marine is willing to manufacture the portlights, but the indent in the hull area either has to be removed making the opening larger, or filled in, making the opening smaller. Also the cost is considerable.

I’m leaning right now to just staying with the existing set-up and replacing the glazing with acrylic and having frames made that match the footprint of the original fiberglass ones. I can have them made in polished stainless steel or anodized aluminum. This seems to be rising to the top as the most cost effective and simplest solution.

Again thanks for the response and feel free to comment, advise, chastise etc.
Best Regards, Vince S. (#005, Witch of the Wave)

g. I am replacing mine now and what I understand from the portlight supplier, I must use a special sealer that they use commercially. It is specific to the material that the portlight is made from, either acrylic or Lexan. I replaced the pilothouse portlight and it was successful. Removing the old caulking, sanding and washing with acetone seem to be the secret. Talk to your supplier, he will give you all the tricks. Good luck. It is a tedious work but worth it. Valois N. (#096, Giva).

#050, Opportunity is covered for winter now, but the weather has been quite warm for working on projects. Today we tried out the newly completed outboard motor crane and it worked well. See photo. homemadehoist.jpg It is partly copied from the Forespar design and has an internal halyard that leads to a sheet winch. The halyard runs over Harken Exit Boxes and these were quite tricky to install in the 1 1/2″ stainless tubing. I made the pulpit/crane attachment and pivot blocks from UHMW (polyethylene), drilled one way for the 1″ pulpit and at right angles for the 1 1/2″ crane tube. David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity)

What’s a good homemade dinghy to build?

a. Right now, on the cool, wet days, I am building another boat! This is an Optimist style dinghy for our grandchildren, using 1/4″ ply and the stitch & glue technique. Progress photos attached. dinghyassembled.jpg and dinghywiredup.jpg Regards, David Salter (#050, Opportunity)

b. See http://buildinggalene.com/ . Click on Progress, then on Dinghy .

Guardrail stanchion bases?

a. In reference to my stanchion bases I was able to have them made here in Halifax. Excellent job for about $90 and better quality than original. If anybody needs any I can provide details. stanchionbasesnewandold.jpg Capt. Hillary Shea (#028 Arjuna)

If any member would have recommendations for a bow thruster I would appreciate it. Regards, Guy Viger (#189, Tangaroa V).

a. Regarding the bow thruster: I am satisfied, the power is OK and the consumption of electricity is reasonable. If I have to say something is wrong is the fact it has a double propeller which gives me a hard time to clean off barnacles, because you don’t have access inside to clean without taking out the propellers. If you have only one propeller, you can clean it with a snorkel. Excuse my english. Normand Bouchard (#140, Urantia)

b. I have bought the Volvo Penta model QL-06-CT600-12. It has a 132 lbs thrust and is a single prop with a tunnel size of 160mm, ( 6.29”). It is compact, internal dimensions are 12.44 ” X 5.91 ” . The cost is at bit less than 3000 $ + installation when all accessories are included. I could have chosen a more powerful model, but with the space available, that model seemed the most appropriate. Normand had already answered me after your request for info. I guess he forgot to copy you. Regards, Guy Viger (#189, Tangaroa V).

Is it possible to install a thru-hull at the bow lockers so seawater can drain overboard without coming into the boat? Charlie Haskell (#066, Pinguescence).

a. Our Corbin came with the bow lockers interconnected via a small hole in the separation nearest the bow and one drain on the port side. Works very well and drilling a through-hull above the waterline would be simple. Best regards. Gerry & Brigitte Stuurop (#087, Octopus I) [Ed. Note: Or simply allow the water to drain from the bow anchor locker into the nearby bilge, from which it will automatically pump overboard.]

b. The bow lockers on my Corbin, Perpetua, drain directly to outside. A little water tends to collect at the bottom, but, for the most part, they stay pretty dry. I believe the drains are just a simple hole, with a stainless steel vent cover located on the outside of the hull. Good luck! Bill Gifford (#078, Perpetua).

c. I imagine most Corbin bow lockers are different if they are owner finished. Mine has a sloping bottom (down towards the bow) where it is above the foot of the forward-cabin berth. The forward end of the locker has an athwartship “bulkhead” resulting in a well each side after the central divide is installed. I have a drain at the bottom of each well, where they exit the hull, about 12″ above the waterline, I have small stainless clamshell vents (see West Marine P/N 180356 type) with the opening facing aft and angled down slightly. See photo Sail Locker Drain. The base of these wells is a continuation of the forward berth. It is more or less “dead” space but I have put some chain there. I took care to make the sail lockers entirely sealed off from the rest of the boat interior. Originally I had some mildew form on the underside of the locker lids so I installed vents there and that cured the problem. It allows any wet ropes, etc. to completely dry out although I generally don’t put anything wet in there. Your rot problem might have been accentuated if the lockers were not ventilated. I presume your central locker divider is where the inner forestay is attached, which is what I have. Where the chainplate is attached I doubled up on the divider. I recall that this wood is 3/4″ ply. Everything is heavily glassed over. I hope this is helpful. Regards, David Salter. ( #050, Opportunity).

Where can I obtain aluminum toerails? Hi all. I am looking for information on aluminum toerails. We have a teak toerail and it’s in pityful shape. We want to put an aluminum toerail on but don’t know where to start to find one. Are they bought preformed for the Corbin? Do I have to bend one to fit? How would I do that? Thanks. Paul Melanson (s/v #058, #058, Quintana Grande)

a. Cruising World magazine, several issues back, had an extensive article on replacing toerails. Regards. Frank Bryant (s/v #186, Visitant)

b. The Cruising World article is in the September, 2001 at page 104. I will email you a copy if you request it. Lester (s/v #010, Insouciance)

c. Back in about 1981 I designed and had fabricated a set of toerails for the Corbin. I had to order enough for 8 boats (I believe) (500 kg of aluminum extrusions) and all were sold. This was a BIG project. I looked at various toerail sections available and then made a drawing of the required size for the Corbin. The key was the dimension of the deck to hull join and the need for a groove to coincide where the bolts attaching the two parts were installed by the factory. This becomes the caulking groove. Then I had an extrusion mold (die) made by Alcan Aluminum who did the extrusion of the straight rails, each 16 ft long, 32 of them. After the extrusions were delivered I then had a machine shop make the required slots in the vertical web and drill and counterbore for 1/4″ bolts to be spaced between the factory installed bolts (6″ spacing I believe). They then pre-bent the rails with a hydraulic bending machine to my specification. I had calculated the curve of the hull and the two sections of rail per side (one fwd of midships and one aft). I had the rails all bent to the same curve, the average of the fwd and aft sections. For installation the aft section had to be bent more, at its front and back ends while the fwd section had to be squeezed in the middle to straighten it slightly. A special midship fairlead was fabricated to join the two halves of the rails open side. This was done with large c-clamps as the amount of bend was not great with the already curved rails (it would almost certainly not be possible if starting from straight rails). I should mention that after the machine shop bending operation I then had to take all the rails to an electroplating plant. The rails were all hard anodized, some black and some bronze, as per the customer’s requests. The material used was “aluminum 6061T6″ which is good for anodizing and has good saltwater corrosion resistance. Corbin factory never had rails made and did not buy any of mine. They used a teak caprail. This may not help you much unless you can get a group of Corbin owners to join in the venture. The aluminum toerail adds to the strength of the hull and the slots, which were sometimes referred to as C & C rail, provide plenty of places to attach snatch blocks, fenders etc. Regards, David Salter (s/v #050, Opportunity)

d. I have an all aluminum toe rail that I haven’t seen on any other Corbin. It’s clear anodized aluminum and stands about 2″ high. It has holes every 1′ to 6” for attachments and fits right over the deck to hull joint. This was bent to fit the Corbin and…I have to say… the fellow that had it bent was very persistent. Generally the curve is smooth everywhere but it starts to buckle a bit at the stern end around the sharp bend. I can try to find out where the builder purchased it for you. Jack Verheyden (s/v #127, Kathrian)

e. Paul, It’s actually relatively simple if you take your time and prep correctly. Most rails come in twenty foot lengths. After removing the teak you’ll need to reglass the old holes and fair the surface evenly. Now starting from the stern, position the aft most end of the rail and drill a hole. Use a halyard to hold the forward end of the rail level and other lines to keep it from moving around. You haven’t bent anything yet. And you’re not sealing anything yet either. With the first bolt in and hand tightened start moving forward using the rail holes as a guide to where you need to drill. I don’t recommend drilling through the predrilled toerail hole but sometimes that’s the only way to do it. Now you start bending the rail as you move forward. Clamp the rail a foot at a time and drill every other hole marking the other holes to drill later. At the aft end you may want to do two consecutive holes at first just to keep it steady. Continue forward like this and you’ll slowly bend the rail to the hull. Once you’ve got the rail bent and your guide holes drilled, remove the rail and drill all remaining holes. Clean-up the mess inside and out and have a beer. Now, sealing is a matter of preference, use what you are comfortable with Life Caulk, 5200, Dolphanite (my preference). I’d run a bead down the deck side edge of the rail and in and around each hole The hull side you want to be able to drain back overboard, but check the camber of the surface under the rail – if it cants toward the deck run a small bead very close to the hull side of the holes but not on the edge. the purpose of all this is to not trap water under the rail. Now reinstall the rail in the same manner as before but this time put all the bolts in as you go. Remember to use a corrosion inhibitor between your stainless bolt and the aluminum rail. When you’re all done, clean up have a beer and invite everyone in the yard to come and look at your handiwork. By the way – you use the same technique to install rubrails. Good luck, Vince Salese (s/v #005, Witch of the Wave )

Are manual wipers over plastic windows adequate for the job? Are electric wipers okay over Lexan, if not used too often? Could a glass plate be put over the Lexan without distorting vision too much? Is a thick glass plate the only way to go? All three windshields or just the center one? Please email me your experiences with this problem. Send pictures, if you can. And what wipers do you recommend buying? I would like to add all responses to our QandA page, unless you tell me not to. Lester (s/v #010, Insouciance)

a. Wipers on plastic is not a good idea. I do recall of a piece that some boats have used instead. It consists of a unit that you cut into your plastic. When turned on it spins the water off. I believe that they are actually made for airplanes. Hope this helps. Bill Schwartz (s/v #090, Moonshadow)

b. HI Lester, I’d like to recommend an alternative (albeit an expensive one) to traditional windshield wipers. I’m sure you’ve seen them on every commercial & military bridge. It’s the Clear View Screen from Vetus, “The toughened glass rotating screen reaches its maximum r.p.m. within 25 seconds. The centrifugal force enables all rain, snow and spray to be cleared instantly from the screen. Also dirt and salt will not cause any smears, as a result of which your vision will remain completely clear.” – Vetus. I saw one of these in action first hand aboard Ron & Katherine Jacks’ Corbin, Yankee (hull #199) during a horrific thunder-storm in Newport harbor. It was blowing to 60 knots and dumping rain. Ron flipped the switch and in a few seconds the area of the screen was like a hole was punched in the windshield. Absolutely clear vision thru the window. I was really impressed. Here’s a link to the Vetus Clear View Screen. [Lester note: These screens cost over $1300.] Vince Salese (s/v #005, Witch of the Wave)

c. Lester this is for the person asking about Clearview screens. You said that Vetus sells them for $1200 US, they are a little more popular up here in Canada since we get more ice and such than you do. So here they sell for $650 US, ($995 Canadian). For more information write to Peter Bennett (General Manager for Stright Mackay, marine store peterb@stright-mackay.com.Paul Melanson [s/v #058, Quintana]

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