In between all the drama from the Great Epoxy Fiasco of 2008, Pam and I got the portlights (windows) removed. They had to come out due to the extreme lack of a seal around them. Right after I bought the boat I watched in horror as it rained and the portlights leaked so bad it was pouring water inside the boat. A very bad thing. So we knew from the start that they would have to be either replaced or at least removed, cleaned and resealed.
First, the removal.
Most of the screws holding the portlight brackets/frame in came right out, but there were several that wouldn't budge, and a few were completely stripped. So I got one of those cheap screw extractor sets that you lightly hammer one side of the bit into the offending screw, and then use the other side of the bit with a drill to back it out. The first shot at removal saw the extractor bit breaking off into the old screw. Hmmm, now what? On a trip to the store to replace the broken screw extractor bit I'd just damaged I found one called Grab-It! The Grab-It had much beefier bits than the cheapo one I'd just broken, and wouldn't you know it, it removed all the offending screws, except the one that had the broken extractor in it. Luckily, that one came out with a pair of vice-grip pliers. Whew!
That's an entire paragraph just about screw removal. Ha!
The portlights were held in place with a little piece of metal and a few rivets. Rivets are sometimes hard to remove, but my hammer won!
Not exactly sure how I'll secure them when we put them back in, but you can bet it won't be with rivets!
Then, of course, all the gooped up globs of prehistoric silicone had a good grip as well, so with a lot of prying and pulling they finally popped out.
Here are the portlights removed.
Poor Wahoo looks all naked (pronounced neckid in the south) without her windows!
It took quite a while to remove all the silicone from around the windows. I hate silicone. I know it has it's uses, but I seriously hate the stuff. Something about the way it looks when it's aged with years of dirt and grime. I think the only way I can put silicone on my boat is if it's white. That clear stuff just creeps me out, yo.
The lack of windows will provide a little added ventilation for the upcoming epoxy jobs, so we'll leave them out for a while. And since there doesn't seem to be any replacement options that will work without cutting bigger holes out of the deck or making them smaller, I think we'll just clean these up and reinstall them. Hopefully with a little care at installation and some good sealant they'll work fine.
The frame parts of the windows are aluminum and had been painted on the inside, but most of the paint seems to be coming off with some acetone and a hard brush. I don't like using acetone if I can avoid so i think we may try lightly sanding it.
So, despite the Great Epoxy Fiasco of 2008, things are progressing well.
Cheers and happy boat repairing!