Hatch props

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Hatch props

Postby TomS » Tue Sep 13, 2005 5:11 pm

I''ll be getting to the point in my build real soon when I need to decide how to support my hatch when open. I damaged my brain enough during my misspent youth. I don't want the darn thing conking me on the noggin while I'm fixing dinner. :?

I really don't want to install gas springs. I'd like to keep it simple. What works best? Photos would be very helpful.

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Postby mikeschn » Tue Sep 13, 2005 6:43 pm

I found the installation of the gas shocks very simple, and the use of them even simpler.

But they are not the only option. You'll find something that appeals to you!

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Postby Denny Unfried » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:17 pm

Hey Tom,

I used these mechanical props which are very inexpensive. I've been in some very heavy winds and have never had them unlatch but it you're worried about it coming down, when they are extended a couple holes line up that you can put a ¼" bolt through. The best price I've found is Austin hardware on the net.

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Postby Arne » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:33 pm

Denny, do you have a proper name for them (to do a search on)? They look pretty simple to install.
www.freewebs.com/aero-1
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Postby Michael W » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:33 pm

Tom,

We got our gas springs from McMaster-Carr.
http://www.mcmaster.com/
Page 1063 of their online catalog has a simple tutoral of how to calculate which springs will work in your specific application. If wait until the hatch is complete, the finished weight can be easily measured with a bathroom scale (if it's over 300 lbs., you did something wrong.) The center of gravity can be estimated by balancing it on a 2x4 set across a couple of saw horses. Knowing the weight and center of gravity, you can estimate which strut you will need to order. Make sure you consider both the compressed and full extended dimensions when determing your attachment points.
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Postby Arne » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:36 pm

Michael, thank you for the site... I took a look and you are right about learning more than you might have wanted to know about gas springs.
www.freewebs.com/aero-1
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Postby bdosborn » Tue Sep 13, 2005 7:56 pm

I used the mechanical props as well. I went mechanical because all the gas props on cars I've owned have pooped out over time and I ended up proping the hatch open with a stick.

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Postby Denny Unfried » Tue Sep 13, 2005 8:01 pm

arnereil wrote:Denny, do you have a proper name for them (to do a search on)? They look pretty simple to install.


Austin's web site is http://www.austinhardware.com but I think Grant Whipp and R W Johnson also handle them. They're a snap to install.

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Postby norm perkiss » Tue Sep 13, 2005 8:04 pm

Tom,
This is the link to the props I used, they work great and are very solid.
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http://www.austinhardware.com/dept.asp? ... E96JHG9AMC
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Postby Arne » Tue Sep 13, 2005 8:30 pm

Great, now I have both sites bookmarked. Will be needing a prop in a couple of weeks, so this is very helpful stuff for me.... thank you all.
www.freewebs.com/aero-1
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Postby doug hodder » Tue Sep 13, 2005 11:07 pm

bdosborn wrote:I used the mechanical props as well. I went mechanical because all the gas props on cars I've owned have pooped out over time and I ended up proping the hatch open with a stick.

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Bruce...I thought about those also...but was running out of time prior to going to Minden and didn't have the info for Austin....What is the scoop do you think on the weight capabilities of these supports....I ran into a situation with an upper shelf in my galley that was going to make the gas ones unusable. I opted for 2 mohogany sticks...Doug
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Postby larryl » Wed Sep 14, 2005 7:11 am

We used a combination of gas props and hinged 7/8" dowels. The gas props to help lift the galley hatch and the props because I do not trust gas shocks.
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Postby Shiro » Wed Sep 14, 2005 2:54 pm

Keeping it really, really simple, we use two lengths of broomstick and sockets on the counter and the hatch. ....
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Postby IraRat » Wed Sep 14, 2005 2:58 pm

Shiro wrote:Keeping it really, really simple, we use two lengths of broomstick and sockets on the counter and the hatch. ....


This is exactly what I plan to do.

My hatch isn't heavy at all, and in the meantime, I've been using my RAKE to hold the darn thing up.
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Postby bdosborn » Wed Sep 14, 2005 8:17 pm

doug hodder wrote:Bruce...I thought about those also...but was running out of time prior to going to Minden and didn't have the info for Austin....What is the scoop do you think on the weight capabilities of these supports....I ran into a situation with an upper shelf in my galley that was going to make the gas ones unusable. I opted for 2 mohogany sticks...Doug


They're pretty strong. My hatch is fairly heavy with the insulation, speakers, lights and such. The props are rock solid. I did replace the brackets that came with the prop, they were just too big and clunky for me. I went down to Camping World for brackets from gas props and used those instead. They have holes predrilled for #6 screws and placed the prop much tighter to the sides.
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