Boat Skylights

Related to the last post…When we bought our friendship sloop, one of the few areas that needed a major rebuild was the cabin roof. This created an opportunity to build any kind of skylight that we wanted. The skylight that most people think of when they think of a classic wooden boat is the traditional “butterfly” hatch. I have always loved the look of these, but know of few that do not leak. What we decided to do instead was to build a version of this hatch that, as far as I know, legendary builder Bud McIntosh developed. It looks like a traditional skylight, but actually functions more like a large “dorade” ventilator.

Drawing of skylight

              This solution has proven to be a particularly good one for our boat because when the boat is at anchor or on a mooring, air is continually circulating in the main cabin because of the way the skylight works. The Skylight looks great, allows for a lot of natural light below, and does not leak.

Skylight from the front

             Another alternative to the more traditional butterfly skylight is to build a regular hatch opening and build the actual hatch in the shape of a butterfly skylight.
I took this picture of a hatch on a Jarvis Newman friendship sloop at one of our gatherings. It is fairly self explanatory.

Hatch/skylight
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3 Responses to “Boat Skylights”

  1. Jeff Says:

    Excellent. I can attest to the beauty and functionality of your skylight.

    I would think it more functional than the version on the Jarvis Newman since it lets in air all the time, and does not require to be opened.

  2. Arthur Ebert Says:

    Do you have plans for building a dovetail skylight. I want to put one in my boat and need detailed plans to build one.

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