keeping the galley hatch open

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keeping the galley hatch open

Postby nslouden » Thu Oct 12, 2017 11:55 pm

Howdy from the new guy from Texas!

bought a nearly finished teardrop from a do it yourselfer who lost interest. Need to finish it by May because it is my kid's graduation present from grad school. Currently it has support springs to keep the galley hatch open and they are placed on the outer edges of the hatch which works for me because I'm 6" tall. HOWEVER, my dtr is small framed and all of 5'3". She can't hold up the hatch and reach the springs to close the hatch. I'm thinking of moving the springs more toward the middle of the hatch which will then become easily accessible for her. I've never seen it done this way and am wondering if you guys have any thoughts or experience with this placement. I can add gas struts, but the springs are so much easier!

Thanks in advance!!
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Re: keeping the galley hatch open

Postby tony.latham » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:30 am

nslouden wrote:Howdy from the new guy from Texas!

bought a nearly finished teardrop from a do it yourselfer who lost interest. Need to finish it by May because it is my kid's graduation present from grad school. Currently it has support springs to keep the galley hatch open and they are placed on the outer edges of the hatch which works for me because I'm 6" tall. HOWEVER, my dtr is small framed and all of 5'3". She can't hold up the hatch and reach the springs to close the hatch. I'm thinking of moving the springs more toward the middle of the hatch which will then become easily accessible for her. I've never seen it done this way and am wondering if you guys have any thoughts or experience with this placement. I can add gas struts, but the springs are so much easier!

Thanks in advance!!


My brain needs a photo.... and BTW, I can't imagine anything easier than gas struts.

Sounds like a worthy project. :thumbsup:

Tony
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Re: keeping the galley hatch open

Postby Socal Tom » Sun Oct 15, 2017 8:26 am

Personally I would consider adding a pull down strap she could use to extend her reach.
Tom


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Re: keeping the galley hatch open

Postby working on it » Sun Oct 15, 2017 10:15 am

nslouden wrote:...bought a nearly finished teardrop from a do it yourselfer who lost interest. ...Currently it has support springs to keep the galley hatch open and they are placed on the outer edges of the hatch which works for me because I'm 6" tall. HOWEVER, my dtr is small framed and all of 5'3". She can't hold up the hatch and reach the springs to close the hatch. I'm thinking of moving the springs more toward the middle of the hatch which will then become easily accessible for her. I've never seen it done this way and am wondering if you guys have any thoughts or experience with this placement. I can add gas struts, but the springs are so much easier....
Socal Tom wrote:Personally I would consider adding a pull down strap she could use to extend her reach.
Tom
  • Originally, on my trailer, I just used simple 1/2" dowels and adjustable-angle flagpole holders (dowels inserted into the holders, and tightened with thumbscrews). this method was simple to use and held the uplifted vertical hatch in place, even against high winds. But, then my left shoulder rotator cuff became torn, and it was no longer easy for me to lift the hatch over my head with my left arm, while securing the dowels in place. So, I resorted to a gas strut/spring to lift the hatch to a level high enough for me to easily complete the dowel into holder operation.
  • from a prior thread
    working on it wrote:
    • Though I didn't previously use spring-type supports on my heavy, vertical hatch (my squareback TTT uses a 48"x 49" piece of 3/4" plywood as a hatch door), I do have to use manually-inserted 1" dowels to support it (and lock it in place, to secure it against the wind seizing it). After a few thousand? lift-install-tighten operations (actually, a dozen or so different hand operations are involved), while holding the hatch overhead, and the same reversed movements taking it down, I grew weary of it all. Not only did I have to insert and tighten the dowels in place (using variable-angle flagpole mounts), I had to use extra pieces to lengthen them, to account for topography (I lengthen the dowels to allow more clearance underneath), so that required even more effort and holding up the hatch for a longer time.
    • I envisaged using a linear actuator, to replace the dowel supports entirely, but couldn't find a good place to mount it, a convenient switch location, nor an ideal length at my desired price-point. And, I didn't really want more wiring to deal with. So, I switched to using a gas spring.
    • It took a little trial and error doing, some calculating (using seldom-used old math skills), and my accustomed redneck engineering, to find the proper placement and strength of the strut to be used, but it worked out well for me.
    • My hatch is heavy, and requires opening to 105-110 degrees, well past the range of movement of most trailer hatches, usually teardrops. And, most hatches are skins over a framework, and lighter than the solid plywood (with heavy steel hardware attached low on it) I used. The calculators I found here, and on the web, weren't entirely accurate for my needs, but helped me get "into the ballpark" as to how long, and of what strength, of gas spring(s) I might need. Plus, to complicate things, I was undecided on whether to use them as stand-alone supports, or as helpers/temporary holders for my hatch, while still using the dowel system.
    • Further complications were the lack of free space to mount the springs inside the galley, and the the proper attachment hardware need to get it to work. So, I came up with a multi-part, cunning plan. I bought two springs of sufficient strength to be able to raise the hatch all the way overhead (to 110 degrees angle) when used as a pair, or halfway up, when only one is used, centrally-mounted. I bought curved mounting brackets to gain extra mechanical advantage when in use, to lessen the apparent load to the spring(s), for longevity.
    • As it turned out, I couldn't clear the need space for twin mounts, so I went to the "single" strut option. The curved bracket bent too easily, when pulling the (slightly offset from center) single strut closed, so I recalculated mounting point for the hatch-side clevis, and got it to work without the bracket (though later, I realized I could've use both, in tandem, to work). So, now, the single gas spring works great, opening the hatch automatically to 90 degrees, where I easily raise it overhead, and leisurely attach the dowels and fittings, with little or no effort. Reversing the operation, it requires no more than one hand to close.
    • Overall, the gas spring is a success, saving me a lot of effort (a good thing now, especially since my left arm has a bad rotator cuff and other injuries-I'm getting old-), and I have the other gas spring standing by, for when it fails (they eventually do). Well worth the time and money spent on this project! The full process I followed is here: http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=21&t=61432
    • 125896 dowels and extensions as hatch supports
    • 125894 using various calculators during planning stage
    • 125904 final planning stage placement sketch
    • 125895 single gas spring, offset central placement
    • dimensional weight analysis graph- gas spring.gif

      I used math and dimensional graphing to determine spring mounting points
  • 2013 HHRv,"squareback/simple" TTT, semi-offroad? 4x8, 2000+ lbs travel weight
  • featuring: 3500 lb Dexter axle w/brakes & HD leaf spring system > riding on General Grabber 27x8.5-14LT tires, LED lighting inside, A/C & heat, AGM battery 12vdc, 110vac from extended run generator onboard or park power, Coleman dual-fuel stove & Northstar lantern
  • 147697148333
  • 148599125895148106
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