32-200 Leaky portlights are fun

frosero7744

Member I
Before i open the can of worms, i thought i would channel some insight here. My Gal has leaky port lights. Well the 4 non opening portlights have leaked at some point you can tell from the wood damage. Currently only the one over the nav table leaks from the glass at the bottom and drips off the screwhead when it rains. The weird thing is the windows are sealed off on the outside with plastic and taped shut. I'm worried its leaking from higher up and running in the deck to the window. Moisture was scanned at survey with low readings. From reading others posts, my current thought is to replace the portlights with Lewmar size 1 and open the holes up a bit bigger. i would like a out of the box replacement but dont really find any options except Bomon in Canada but its $$$$. Anyhow, last time to the boat i tightened up every screw in the cabin top i could find. ill find out this weekend if any difference was made. Any thoughts on a possible source for the leak or reasoning why it could leak when sealed outside the boat? Also thoughts on best approach for refurb or replacement of portlights.

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Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
One thing to do is to remove the inner cover* of the fixed ports. That gives a view of the sealant beneath. Have somebody else direct a strong hose jet at the glass from outside, probing for weaknesses.

Is the leak from the bedding, or from the gasket that holds the glass, or both?

The fixed ports can have sneaky leaks. Water enters invisibly, then migrates invisibly between the veneer and the glass of the cabin house. It enters the veneer through its own raw edge around the frame, where old caulking has lost its sealing power. Water in there lingers, even if the port is taped over.

It seemslikely that the fixed ports themselves are the issue, so give a full investigation priority.

*The inner covers are decorative, Just take out the screws.

(Also, open the ceiling liner zippers above the fixed ports and feel around in there for peace of mind).
 
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frosero7744

Member I
One thing to do is to remove the inner cover* of the fixed ports. That gives a view of the sealant beneath. Have somebody else direct a strong hose jet at the glass from outside, probing for weaknesses.

Is the leak from the bedding, or from the gasket that holds the glass, or both?

The fixed ports can have sneaky leaks. Water enters invisibly, then migrates invisibly between the veneer and the glass of the cabin house. It enters the veneer through its own raw edge around the frame, where old caulking has lost its sealing power. Water in there lingers, even if the port is taped over.

It seemslikely that the fixed ports themselves are the issue, so give a full investigation priority.

*The inner covers are decorative, Just take out the screws.

(Also, open the ceiling liner zippers above the fixed ports and feel around in there for peace of mind).
The water springs up from between the glass and metal frame just above the screw then drips off the screw head. I'm waiting for this weird weather to dry up and get things apart and ill do as you suggested with the hose test. Thanks for the tips
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
Ah. Now our fixed-light gasket replacement experts will step in. Here's a start:

 
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kapnkd

kapnkd
Ah. Now our fixed-light gasket replacement experts will step in. Here's a start:

Thanks for the prestigious but overstated title Christian. Said project was indeed a real learning experience to say the least, especially getting the larger aluminum frame halves back together.

Only thing to add to that information he may want to try first would be using some Capt. Tolly Window Sealer along the vinyl to glass seals (especially on the outside facing glass). If the leaking areas aren’t too large, this may just work. After all that rebuild, we DID have two minor leaks but Capt Tolly is a very thin liquid silicone that penetrates into the path water takes. It worked perfectly for us. (Capt. Tolly Window Sealant is sold at West Marine.)

-kerry
 
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frosero7744

Member I
Thanks for the prestigious but overstated title Christian. Said project was indeed a real learning experience to say the least, especially getting the larger aluminum frame halves back together.

Only thing to add to that information he may want to try first would be using some Capt. Tolly Window Sealer along the vinyl to glass seals (especially on the outside facing glass). If the leaking areas aren’t too large, this may just work. After all that rebuild, we DID have two minor leaks but Capt Tolly is a very thin liquid silicone that penetrates into the path water takes. It worked perfectly for us. (Capt. Tolly Window Sealant is sold at West Marine.)

-​kerry
Looks like a spanking good time. Thanks all y'all
 

markvone

Sustaining Member
From reading others posts, my current thought is to replace the portlights with Lewmar size 1 and open the holes up a bit bigger. i would like a out of the box replacement but dont really find any options except Bomon in Canada but its $$$$.
I replaced my four fixed portlights with identical replacements from Mark Plastics in Corona, CA, a still operating original supplier to Ericson. Details including pricing in post #9 & 11 here:


Owner is Mark Heacox at (951)735-7705

My original acrylic lens were crazed badly so my new portlights are tinted glass which won't craze. I had no leaks between the lens and frame in my original portlights and the vinyl frame still looked good when I replaced them. The white vinyl portlight frame is a much more durable vinyl in the current version and can be painted if the white bothers you. I didn't.

Get the Lewmar size 1 opening ports in stainless so you never have to replace then again.

Mark
 
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Rick R.

Contributing Partner
Break out some boat bucks and buy Bomans. I did and I’ve never seen a more dry view of high humidity and salt spray from the arid comfort of the 32-200 cabin!
 

Christian Williams

E381 - Los Angeles
Moderator
Blogs Author
(Hmmm. Resurrected the wrong thread. Oh well, these problems never go away)

I haven't had to take apart the fixed portlights, but if there's an issue reassembling them this may help:

 
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kapnkd

kapnkd
I haven't had to take apart the fixed portlights, but if there's an issue reassembling them this may help:

Hi Christian,

Thanks for your vote of confidence on my old posting of how I handled the problems of replacing rubber/vinyl glass seals. (Seeing it again reminded me of why I started drinking. Fingers crossed I will be out of rehab before much longer!)
:egrin:

Hopefully too you’ll never have to replace your old seals. Almost 20 years of Florida sun inevitably had A LOT to do with the deterioration of mine.

If ports start leaking/weeping small amounts of water for others - a product “Capt. Tolley’s Creeping Crack Cure” is worth a shot before taking on the ominous task of rebuilding ports/windows.

Also, there’s a company in Ohio, name eludes me at the moment, that sells the seal extrusion at a better price than Catalina’s Kit.

...Offshore Sailing - the BEST way for the new trend of “Social Distancing”
;););)
 
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