Shame on Lewmar

flimsy hinge clutch attachment on new Lewmar escape hatches:

I can only hope that this failure was due to a worker using the wrong size rivet, otherwise, Lewmar should know better than to use such a failed design in the attachment method of the hinge clutch to the frame.

It is easy to see that the flimsy aluminum rivets were not long enough to even go through the flange on the hatch frame. 

This two part "spring/clutch" is attached between the two hinges and is supposed to keep the hatch from swinging wildly when opened. In my case, the second time I opened the hatch, the attachment broke off.  

This is very poor design. At close to a thousand dollars a piece, it is not unreasonable to believe that details like this would be so under designed. 

Yet another opportunity to improve upon the work of a manufacturer.......Tomorrow I will bring the escape hatch to the local farm and ranch hardware store and buy two beefy stainless steel fasteners to replace these two flimsy rivets......only down side will be galvanic corrosion due to dissimilar metals but I may not have a choice. 


The Incredible Hull said...

See if you can locate monel rivets.

Happy New Year


CrashGybe 22 said...

There is a way to prevent the corrosion caused by dissimilar metals and that is to bond them with a suitable paste.

I use stainless rivets in aluminium all the time and always use what is known as an electrical jointing compound normally used to ensure good joints in underground aluminium electricity cables where they are bolted together with stainless steel bolts.

This sort of thing...

Unknown said...

good idea about the Monel rivets......AND the dielectric paste. Bet they don't have those at the farm and ranch supply store....

Unknown said...

I shouldn't gripe, I was luck enough to get the last of the few remaining escape hatches that Lewmar made. ( they don't make them any more )

S/V Nakia said...

Sorry to have to inform you, but this is just the beginning of your problems with Lewmar hatches. 1) those clutches contain copper washers which will corrode and freeze up when you finally get this boat to the ocean. When the copper washers lock up, you try to open the hatch and break the clutch arm in the process. 2) if you bought the trim kits with fly screens, the fly screen frame will corrode and rust as soon as you get any scratch in the fabric. I installed 4 Lewmar Ocean hatches 4 years ago and have been cursing the Lewmar engineers for the last two years.