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Old 08-22-2016, 06:59 AM   #1
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Fiberglass - Crazy Idea?

I know this has been done somewhere, or I think it's been done.

I have "slider" aft-cabin windows (see boat photo). They're old, leak, get stuck from time to time and look rough. I may replace them with some Wynne Enterprises windows, but another -odd- thought occurred to me.

I was curious if anyone on the forum has ever fiberglassed over sliders and installed portlights instead? I'm completely ignorant of the costs to do this, but thought I would ask because there are way smarter and boatier people here than I.

How much labor time and cost would this likely be? I can look up portlights, cost, but want to get a sense of how much labor. I think this would be a better way of keeping my cabin drier long-term, but am afraid the extra structure to create this would be cost-prohibitive. I can break down the existing structure and windows, but I am not confident enough to re-construct in a reasonable time frame.

Thanks!
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Old 08-22-2016, 07:15 AM   #2
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First of all, IMO, Wynne windows suck. The ones I have seen first hand are not marine water tight. Fine for an RV.

To your question, what is the finish of the wall on the inside of the windows? It may be hard to make it look descent if it's other than painted or gelcoat. Also it may look odd from the outside if the back windows don't match the front. This may make resale difficult.

Ted
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Old 08-22-2016, 07:24 AM   #3
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First of all, IMO, Wynne windows suck. The ones I have seen first hand are not marine water tight. Fine for an RV.

To your question, what is the finish of the wall on the inside of the windows? It may be hard to make it look descent if it's other than painted or gelcoat. Also it may look odd from the outside if the back windows don't match the front. This may make resale difficult.

Ted
Hi Ted - Yours is the first negative comment I have heard about Wynne. Can you be more specific as to the age of what you saw and where leakage was occurring? I've seen boaters on this forum usually speak well of them.

I have portlights forward in the hull, so I'm not too worried about the look, but more so about the cost and structural rebuilding. It may be the structural would be complicated and costly.
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Old 08-22-2016, 07:36 AM   #4
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If the Wynne's fit perfectly where the old windows go, I would not mess with it. Glassing over and installing portlights would be more expensive and more tedious than a plug and play window.
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Old 08-22-2016, 07:46 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben View Post
I know this has been done somewhere, or I think it's been done.

I have "slider" aft-cabin windows (see boat photo). They're old, leak, get stuck from time to time and look rough. I may replace them with some Wynne Enterprises windows, but another -odd- thought occurred to me.

I was curious if anyone on the forum has ever fiberglassed over sliders and installed portlights instead? I'm completely ignorant of the costs to do this, but thought I would ask because there are way smarter and boatier people here than I.

How much labor time and cost would this likely be? I can look up portlights, cost, but want to get a sense of how much labor. I think this would be a better way of keeping my cabin drier long-term, but am afraid the extra structure to create this would be cost-prohibitive. I can break down the existing structure and windows, but I am not confident enough to re-construct in a reasonable time frame.

Thanks!
Ben
I have similar "windows" and I am just in the process of scheduling to have them removed,serviced and reinstalled. They don't appear to be leaking but that's why I'm doing it.
Not sure why you would want to change the styling as these windows have been around for a while. I think your opening a can of worms you may regret if you change the style of windows. People expect to see thst look on this era of boat changing the look may make it difficult for resale as stated above.
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Old 08-22-2016, 07:52 AM   #6
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The ones I have seen used an extruded aluminum frame that was bent into shape. The junction was not welded as it would ruin the anodize finish. The junction leaked. While fine for side windows going into seas, the sliders leaked in quartering seas from the driving spray. Probably haven't seen any built in the last 3 years, so they may have changes they're construction.

If you want the best (IMO) Marinelite are the windows of choice. They build for the commercial fishing industry. Have had their windows in my chater boat for 12+/- years without ever leaking a drop. Have had green water on the sliding window more than once without leaking. Their windows are expensive....the best usually is. Look at their customers under "Example Installations".

Ted
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Old 08-22-2016, 08:02 AM   #7
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While I can't dispute Ted's facts on the Wynne windows, mine have been fine now during the last 4 round trips to FL and back . They have seen driving spray and pouring rain and no leaks. And many marine type aluminum framed windows I have seen, sooner or later loses its paint job...in fact I had less faith in the wayyyyy more expensive ones up that are on our commercial boats. I don't see the Wynnes failing or being an issue on my slow, intracoastal trawler any more than a $200,000 RV roaring down the highway at 70 through driving rain.

I did NOT put sliders in the main saloon because I hate sliders for many reasons, but do have them around the aft trunk cabin. I put top hinged on, one in the middle of the front, 2 rear with the thought that front and back would give better flow at anchor than side sliders. If at the dock, the 2 doors allow breeze side to side.

I would not go through the hassel of glassing up the boat and putting in ports. Just install decent windows correctly and realize after 10 years that rebedding may be in order as PM. The newer windows, such as Wynne, clamp on and make removal and rebelling very simple.
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Old 08-22-2016, 08:22 AM   #8
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The actual glass work would not be expensive or difficult. However, the cosmetics would be both. For the glass work a glass shop would make up panels of fiberglass, cut then to size and glass them into the holes. Grinding/sanding everything smooth, fairing and either gelcoating or painting would take much more time than the actual glass work, particularly since you would have to finish both sides. I would expect removing the existing windows, glassing up the holes, finishing the repairs to make them invisible and then installing new ports to run 60-80 hours. Locally that would cost $3,600-$4,800 plus materials.
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Old 08-22-2016, 09:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by O C Diver View Post
The ones I have seen used an extruded aluminum frame that was bent into shape. The junction was not welded as it would ruin the anodize finish. The junction leaked. While fine for side windows going into seas, the sliders leaked in quartering seas from the driving spray. Probably haven't seen any built in the last 3 years, so they may have changes they're construction.

If you want the best (IMO) Marinelite are the windows of choice. They build for the commercial fishing industry. Have had their windows in my chater boat for 12+/- years without ever leaking a drop. Have had green water on the sliding window more than once without leaking. Their windows are expensive....the best usually is. Look at their customers under "Example Installations".

Ted
Very interesting. A good compare/contrast to Wynne. This is super helpful - Thank you.
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Old 08-22-2016, 09:39 AM   #10
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While I can't dispute Ted's facts on the Wynne windows, mine have been fine now during the last 4 round trips to FL and back .

I did NOT put sliders in the main saloon because I hate sliders for many reasons, but do have them around the aft trunk cabin.

I would not go through the hassel of glassing up the boat and putting in ports. Just install decent windows correctly and realize after 10 years that rebedding may be in order as PM.
I am definitely leaning re-window existing windows from everyone's helpful comments. My conclusions:
1. Sure, I can glass the whole sides and install portlights. But there are more risks to that approach.
2. Harder than just doing replacement. Risk of badly changing the look. Certainly more costly.

I need to get our boat up in the yard and do this. I will need to replace interior cabin wood when I do as the leakage has damaged the wood.

Wynne and competitors either way would be better than my (30-year-old) windows I have now. We are light cruisers, so I don't anticipate running the boat to the North Atlantic on a lobster run any time soon.
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Old 08-22-2016, 10:50 AM   #11
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On all the salon windows I screwed plex a glass over the windows. This solved a number of issues, prevented water touching the windows, stopped air draft leaks, acted as double plated storm windows holding in heat in the winter and warm air out in the summer, and eliminated condensation on the Windows. It was the quickest, easiest, and cheapest way. Being the plex glass is clear they are not noticable, but they sure are a plus. I also have them over the back and side pilot house windows.
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Old 08-22-2016, 12:00 PM   #12
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My last boat had all Wynne windows. While I was happy enough with the quality of the components, like Ted said, the sliding windows would allow water through under certain circumstances. In my case it was rare enough and not an enclosed space so only annoying. If I wanted to use them in a space that I would want to always keep dry like a salon or cabin I would not have been happy with any leaking.

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Old 08-22-2016, 12:07 PM   #13
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I have had Wynne windows in the past and been very happy with them. I have not had the sliders, only top hinged and they never leaked. You have mitered windows, never as strong as radiused windows. Pressure points in the corners weaken them.
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Old 08-22-2016, 12:48 PM   #14
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What about Freeman windows? Are they not highly regarded???
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Old 08-22-2016, 12:55 PM   #15
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freeman are excellent windows and doors. Also Marinelite from Canada are excellent.
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Old 08-22-2016, 02:30 PM   #16
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There are several great manufactures out there and you pay for it. But many marine window manufacturers aren't all that much better for 2X the price of the Wynne windows.

Plus when working with the design department, Wynne was hands down the easiest to work with...important for all my variations on a theme with what I wanted.

Wynne probably manufactures 10X the windows as many as the are either the largest or one of the largest RV window manufacturers out there.

I would definitely have bought better windows if I was going to try some blue/brown water cruising....but for strictly US/Bahamas cruising and a price that was 5% not 20% the cost of the boat....they are fine.
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Old 08-22-2016, 03:20 PM   #17
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Guess we're all happy with our choice of replacement windows.

Ted
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Old 08-22-2016, 03:32 PM   #18
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Guess we're all happy with our choice of replacement windows.

Ted
For your materpiece....I would have had the windows anodized with gold....
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Old 08-22-2016, 03:48 PM   #19
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I recently installed 17 custom (fixed, sliders and hinged) windows from Bomon in our boat This is the third boat in which I have installed Bomon windows. I am so pleased with these windows ..... well I've done it three times in the last 20 years

With the Canadian dollarette in the toilet, a quote from Canada may be worthwhile
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Old 08-22-2016, 03:51 PM   #20
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For your materpiece....I would have had the windows anodized with gold....
Different boat. These are in my work boat.

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