Changing 12 portholes isn’t cheap! However, after spending 9 summers with very little air circulating in the boat, we knew we couldn’t leave for the Caribbean without opening ports; we would simply bake in our own little oven!
We (Dan) shopped for many hours in order to find the best fit for our aluminum boat. We wanted custom opening ports in stainless steel with tempered glass at an affordable price. That is a tough order.
We found a company located in Vancouver, but unfortunately, the dealings we had with their representative didn’t inspire confidence. When we are discussing spigot, angles, degrees and precise dimensions, there is no margin for error and a language barrier can be quite the obstacle. We weren’t ready to drop a couple of grands no knowing if the ports we ordered would actually be what we ordered!
For 9 years, we searched for the perfect company and this past January, we finally found the one that was able to make the portholes custom to our dimensions and meeting all of our criteria.
Pompanette (Hood) in the U.S. was able to meet all of our expectations and demands!
Then came the hard and messy job of removing the old ports and welding the holes shut in order to make holes with the right dimensions for the new ports.
Our welder Jeff did a fantastic job and after 3 days of hard work, sweat and a tiny fire!! the holes were welded and the prep work could begin.
Grinding the weld, prepping the aluminum, epoxying and fairing, priming and then painting, we are now ready for the install. The process is endless and we haven’t been blessed with nice weather lately, having to deal with rain, wind and cold weather that impeded the drying and curing process.
Furthermore, Dan had to remove most of the cabinetry inside the boat in order to access the areas where the ports would be. He had to make major adjustments to some of the cabinets to create room for the opening handles…
It is now almost mid-October and we are now at the install stage.
I decided not to let these setbacks affect me. It’s not like I can control anything and I certainly don’t want to stress Dan more than he already is!
Here are some pics of the process.