Sometimes a process is so complex it baffles me. And then I wake up deep in the night and solve it about a hundred times–sometimes in the delirium of dreams, in ways that make no sense; sometimes in some sort of semi-wakefulness that also sometimes makes no sense. By morning I am too tired to do it anyhow. But somehow, it comes together. These goddam hatch lids were one of those. So many different gutters, so many not-quite-square shapes, so many converging dimensions and angles.

Anyhow, today we got ‘er done. We cleaned and leveled every gutter. I cut every unique hatch rim out of White Oak and dropped it in each gutter, pre-rabbetted for the lid. Once we had everything working okay, coming in flush with the decks, etc. etc., I cut the miters and shimmed them all into place with tongue depressors and stirring sticks, keeping them off the edge of the hatch hole, and off the edge of the hatch lip. Just so. 

Then took each one apart, 5-minute epoxied every joint, and reassembled them with all the shims holding them just so again.

Once the epoxy kicked, I carefully removed each frame, laid it upside-down on each piece of plywood designated for that hatch, marked the plywood, cut it, and epoxied it into the rim. (Yesterday we fiberglassed and flow-coated these lids so the interiors of the hatch lids are now done.)

Tomorrow we see how well the pipe-dreams worked. If the lids still fit, we’ll round and glass the exteriors, flow-coat them and sand them for final paint. Then hinges and latches.