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Cutting A Hole In A Bulkhead

Advice Required
Posted: 9 Mar 2015 - By: Sruth


In order to run a new gas line and access a dead space below a locker floor, I need to access the lazaret which I can't do through the lazaret deck hatch as it is too small. My plan is enter the locker space by cutting through from the aft cabin via the aft bulkhead. I have the construction and design plans for the Rival 41C and this bulkhead does not appear on the bulkhead drawings, so I assume it is not structural and it just separates the lazaret from the aft cabin.

The hole would be approximately 400 mm long by 300 mm wide. Once I have finished the work I will glue in a flange and then glue onto the flange the section that I have cut out. The drawings below show the arrangement of the aft cabin and stern. I am also considering just bolting the cutout onto the new flange bedded on sealant and filling the gap, retaining easier future access. The bulkhead is covered in foam backed vinyl, so as long as the finish is smooth, no issues from an aesthetic point of view. On the drawings below, the oval circle is the bulkhead and the rectangle is roughly the position of the cutout.

On the stern, on the inside of the lazaret is a glassed in web for the back stay tang but I doubt that this bulkhead adds to the stiffness of this area although that is just a guess. The spinnaker sheet blocks are anchored in the quarters just forward of this bulk head but the deck thickness is massive at that point so again I doubt that the bulkhead plays much role in stiffness for the combined loads, however, I don't really know. 

Any comments or advice would be appreciated.







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