New Cabin Top Hand Rails for Andrea Lynn
For a long time I more or less took for granted the hand rails on top of Andrea Lynn's cabin. I would
periodically sand and varnish them to keep them looking good. However in recent years I noticed rot
developing along the base where the hand rails attach to the cabin. More recently the hand rail on
the port side broke completely in the middle leaving a screw sticking up dangerously. This was a wood
screw that extended into the top of the cabin only 1/2 inch or so. This is a fairly weak means of
fastening the hand rails to the cabin.
It was time to rectify this situation.
The following nine pages detail the construction and installation of the new hand rails.
Design - May 22, 2018
I had several requirements for my new hand rails.
I came up with a design similar to what is pictured here. After drawing this I realized
that T nuts would provide good through bolting strength. Unlike the acorn nuts pictured here
they would permit a flush surface. The mounting blocks would be glued
permanently to the cabin top with epoxy to minimize leakage between the block and the
cabin top. The hand rail would be bedded to the top of the block with dolphinite putty. The
bolt would be bunged and varnished to prevent leaks from the top.
- They were to be securely through bolted for strength.
- They were not to leak. Or if they did the water would run out quickly rather than sitting
inside and fostering rot.
- They were to be easy to remove in the future.
For guidance on typical hand rail dimensions I looked to Practical
Practical Sailor: Design for building your own handrails