Put in first portlite, fore-chainplate
Today we got to put in a portlight, which means more and more light inside the boat!

Gena is finally able to come topsides and get some sun as she has pretty much finished inside for a while.
As can be seen in the photo above, the portlight went in fine, and that was me welding!
We were very worried about how this might effect the cabin sides fairness, but in fact it enabled repair of minor bulges that weren't noticable, or we didn't notice them, until the frame was held up inside for marking.
The "sill" has a slightly wider breadth in the center which is how it should be considering there is a curve over the 22" of the frame itself.

Gena carefully welded in the forestay and solent stay chainplate with 309 wire ( SS to mild steel ) Keeping it straight wasn't too difficult considering the size of the welding involved here. She is going to place 2 pieces of plate on each side to add to the strength. As I mentioned before, piece of mind.

Only experience, it seems, can dictate exactly how much stiffening should be there, and at 17,000 lbs breaking strength on the forestay, calculations could vary greatly. We did do some research and this kind of joint isn't as strong as, say, steel to steel, or SS to SS just because of the two different metals.

On the other hand, when we were pulling in the radius plate a 3500 lb come-along buckled several times. This all hooked on to a 2" tongue of flatbar tacked on with 4 small welds! I have great confidence in the strength of a properly penetrated weld.
One other thing...everyone's an expert welder.....

To the left is my first little portlite after a couple hours of hard grinding, then light grinding and brushing. Wow!! It came out great!!. I started on the second but time ran out, and so did the muscles in my arms.

Well, it isn't a huge addition, but now I know it'll all work out and look good. The frame preparation took most of the time in total. With the bending, cutting, grinding, aligneing and welding per portlite probably totalled 4 hours. Then I put nuts on the inside and welded those on. This will hold the inner frame and the window in of course. The material for the inner frame is still up for debate. Gena doesn't like the idea of the windows mounting from the inside. I believe they will be very strong with the 20 bolts inside. We have made a compromise, unless I can find some evidence otherwise, that the 6 portlites, aft,in the poopdeck will be shelf mounted from the outside.

This could be as simple as just making a shelved seating and pushing the window in with a few screws, but the look of that wouldn't be appealing, especially when our windows are going to be a light amber. The seat area of the glass will have to be painted black to hide the sealant. I have seen what sealant looks like, bubbles and irregularities all around. Yuk!

Putting a frame around the glass edges is another solution, but this presents problems with color/material coordination.
We will be having a fair amount of shiney finished stainless on deck, including the bulwarks. Stainless is a good option but trying to polish it around a ( lexan/arcrylic )window in a deep indentation will certainly lead to abrasion of the window.

Another option would be to just not recess the windows at all ( except for the glass thickness ) then frame it with stainless.
This is far from what we would like though. Whatever the decision is, we have to make it soon!

Below is the design for the portlites, to give you a better idea of how it will go together.The exterior is to the right (haha!)


Day 143:
7 hours - Put in first of 8 cabinside portlights, welded in foredeck chainplate.

Cordless Mic style Marine Radios
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