Attaching interior handrails ?

Sven

Seglare
Now that the new portholes are getting in place it is time to start looking at how to install interior handrails. I want to install them under the portholes along the molding in the picture below. (They will not interfere with the porthole dogs.)

DSC_4008.JPG


What worries me is that I have no idea what is behind the molding or how solidly attached it is. I don't want to do destructive investigation of the construction but I also don't want the handrail to break free the first time it is grabbed in panic.

Any insights ?

Thanks,



-Sven
 

Guy Stevens

Moderator
Moderator
Why?

My question would be why you want handrails there at all?

The handrails at the tops of the berths is very sturdy, easy to reach, and is correctly positioned for a hand hold. Having been offshore on a 39b I never noticed that there was a lack of hand holds. (Then again I am average height, if you are significantly taller your milage may vary).

Hand holds should be lower than your shoulder height. If they are higher than that you subject your shoulder to forces it was not designed to support. This can cause rotorcuff tearing. I know a lot of old sailors with really bad shoulders from falling against their own arms while holding on to a handrail above shoulder level.

If you really feel that you have to have them I would replace the existing trim with a piece of teak trim that has a large lip to use as a hand hold. Valient yachts have a good example of this. You get the trim and a handhold and it looks good.

Guy
:)
 

Sven

Seglare
Hi Guy,

While you certainly have a good point the problem is that the "shelf" behind the berth is used. That means you can't grip what would otherwise be a hand rail because there is stuff up against the back side.

An alternative might be to put a lip inside the shelf to keep some clear space but unless the lip is tall stuff will still lean up against the back side when it is to windward.

I appreciate the input and we'll do some human factors analysis this weekend to follow up on your suggestion.

Thanks,



-Sven
 

mherrcat

Contributing Partner
I don't think there is anything behind the molding except the panel it is attached to and the inside of the coach roof. When I removed one of my portlights to rebed it I could see that the there was a gap between the back of that panel and the coach roof. Around the edge of the window cutout there were also some wood strips attached to fill that gap; presumably to eliminate flex when the window trim ring is tightened down. At the bottom, the trim molding was attached with screws, through the vertical panel and into the fiberglass.
 

Loren Beach

O34 - Portland, OR
Senior Moderator
Blogs Author
Jus' Tryin' to get a Handle on things

Guy's point is well taken. And if the motion-of-the-ocean is rough, you are crouching to some extent, knees flexed, to maintain balance. Reaching straight out makes sense.
(I have also seen such a teak grab rail retrofitted to a boat with ss thru bolts with the heads on the outside of the cabin. Gross Ugly solution.)

One thing you could also consider is to put some strategic vertical 1" or 1 1/4" ss rails inside. Ericson did this in the 80's and lots of C&C's have that. IIRC you have a teak counter galley structure to starboard that you could attach to.
I found a picture of a stock rail on a 38 and will attach it here.

If I run out of projects someday I do plan to add a couple these vertical rails to out interior, anchoring their bases on the front of the nav table and sink counter modules respectively. Someday. :rolleyes:

Loren
ps: I just realized that you could also add a full length teak hand rail to the vertical face of the top front of each of those sturdy teak fiddle boards. Put the bolt head on the invisible back side with a fender washer and the nuts will be covered by teak plugs on the front. I mean... if that large fiddle is meant to be a hand hold anyhow, and it is, then my idea just makes the "hold part" a lot easier to grasp. What with a 4 or 5" cushion depth, no one is going to bump their head as far as I can imagine.
 

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Martin King

Sustaining Member
Here's what I did. The moulding is attached to a shelf such that you
can get your fingers behind. You could do something similar.

 

Tom Metzger

Sustaining Partner
One thing you could also consider is to put some strategic vertical 1" or 1 1/4" ss rails inside. Ericson did this in the 80's and lots of C&C's have that. IIRC you have a teak counter galley structure to starboard that you could attach to.
I found a picture of a stock rail on a 38 and will attach it here.
I have always assumed the stainless post is to support the coachtop since it is located where there are plenty of secure hand holds on my E-34. It is a good grab rail though.

That said, the idea is not original - see the historic pic of a NYC subway car. Back in the 60s they weren't stainless.

http://www.nycsubway.org/perl/show?6426
 

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