Nicknack's Port Replacement 2006 Part 1
"Which Ports to Buy"
Since the purchase of Nicknack in 2003 I have planned to replace the original Beckson 4x14 ports. I had experienced minimal leaking, most of which seemed to come from the lense seal and the worst of which was in the V-berth where the cabin house slants back and the windows were designed to be vertical. Water would collect on the window and after 25 years, well they just needed replacement. Note also that around 1981 (Nicknack was built in 1979) Beckson redesigned the ports slightly to have large lense attachment ears and also designed a window with drains to alleviate the problem of sitting in a slanted position. The plastic was also showing some cracking on the exterior due to UV and the lenses were fogging up and yellowing. Hey, they are Plastic!
The decision was made to look for new metal ports and after comparing many products I felt that New Found Metals offered the best Stainless Steel replacement port both for the money and for the ease of direct replacement. I'll never use the word ease again in a sentence referring to sailboats. The NFM ports are great but there is no perfect match for the Tartan 37c. Following is a quick look at their product with pictures, something their website lacks at this time.
|The NFM ports include an exterior cast and polished frame with bolt castings eliminating a through bolt system with exterior heads and possibly less palces to leak. The stainless steel screen with it's rubber seal fits on the inside of the window. The one negative in the Tartan 37c is the thin cabin house walls (1/4" glass with a 1/8" interior teak plywood) and the fact that the smallest standard flange is 1.5" on the NFM ports. This necessitates either having the ports milled to 1" or including and interior spacer. They sell a teak spacer ready to go.|