Home / FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How can the cut out cover such a large range?
We have designed the port to be a replacement port that would be easy to install, and cover most of the common sizes. The added benefit of the port fitting a large range of cut out sizes is that the inner flange and outer finishing ring on the port will usually cover any mess you might have made taking the old port out.

2. How do I adjust the cam dogs?
On the other end of the port wrench is a 6mm hex head. Insert the hex head in the top of the cam dog shaft. Turn the wrench Clockwise this moves the cam dog down putting more pressure on the gasket. Turning the wrench Counter Clockwise. This brings the cam dog up putting less pressure on the gasket.

3. How do I adjust the hinges?
Use our 17mm open end wrench to adjust the loading/pressure. Clockwise will move the top of the gasket away from the seating surface. Moving the hinge nut Counter Clockwise presses the top of the gasket closer to the seating surface.

4. How do I know when I have properly adjusted the hinges?
Turn the 17mm nuts on the hinges until there is no gap on the top seating surface. You can see this by directly looking down from the top seating surface. There should be no daylight between the gasket and the seating surface. You will know when you have applied the right pressure to the top hinges when the bottom of the gasket (near the cam dogs) has a gap of 1/8 ~ 1/4 of an inch between the gasket and the seating surface.

5. How do I know when I have the port adjusted correctly?
Obviously when it does not leak, and the cam dogs close smoothly. If you have followed the instructions carefully any slight mis-adjustment should be taken up by the rather generous gasket.

6. How long should my fasteners be?
Bolt length measured from the bottom side of the head (flat side) and is related to cabin side thickness plus the thickness of the main frame. For example, if your cabin thickness is 1 inch, the fastener would be 1 inch plus the port window frame thickness (0.200 inch), so you cut the bolt to 1.200~1.300 inches (not below 1.200 inches). Three threads will give you 100% of the working load of the fastener.

9. Is it essential that the fasteners go through the cabin wall?
No, it isn't. From an engineering standpoint, it makes no difference if the screws do not go through the cabin side. There is still plenty of surface area for clamping. You just need to be sure that you use a generous amount of caulking in this case.

10. My boat is an old 1972 Bristol 34 fiberglass. The hull is only 3/8 inch thick, made up of a 1/4 inch fiberglass outer layer and an interliner of 1/8 inch. What size spigot should I order?
You can use our standard port window with a 1.5 inch spigot if you use a teak spacer. 
For hulls from 3/8 inch to 1/2 inch, we recommend our 5/8 inch thick teak spacer. If your cabin side is thinner, you may still use the teak spacer, but also add a piece of veneer behind it. Another alternative is to special order a shorter spigot - contact us for a quote.

11. My cut out is about a half inch larger in height and in width than your maximum suggested cut out size of 6.5 x 14 inches for the 5 x 12 port window. Can I still use this size port?
Yes, you can, by filling in the opening so the cutout is no bigger than 6.5 X 14 inches.  You may accomplish this by using epoxy, but consult a professional if you are not sure how to use the material.  You'll still have good structural integrity because we bolt our ports in place.

12. My port is leaking. What is wrong?
There can be a couple of things at play here. One is that the port may not have been bedded correctly, or an improper caulk may have been used. The other possibility is that the hinges or closing dogs have not been properly adjusted for seal against the glass frame.

13. Some of our bronze portlights are leaking between the frame and the glass. Any suggestions?
Yes, you can pick up a small tube of black urethane to fix this problem. To do this, open the port and bend back the gasket. Stick the nozzle of the tube between the gasket and the glass and squeeze a bead of urethane all the way around the gasket. Don't put in so much that it squeezes out. If that does happen anyway, wait until it dries completely, then use a razor to cut and remove the excess.

14. What is a cut out range?
The cut out range is the minimum and maximum cut out size that any given port will fit in. For example, our 5x12 Port has a minimum cut out size of 5 ½ by 12 ½ and a maximum cut out size of 6 ½ by 14 inches.

15. What is a spigot?
The spigot is the stamped sleeve that has drains at the bottom and is perpendicularly attached to the main frame. The spigot passes through the cabin wall's cutout and also the finishing ring. The Standard spigot will sandwich a maximum cabin side thickness of 1-1/2". We recommend having a small amount of spigot protruding past the finishing ring so that water drains away from the port without wicking back towards the cutout. To calculate how much spigot will protrude, subtract the total cabin side from the length of the spigot (i.e. 1-1/2" spigot minus 1" cabin side = about 1/2" of spigot protruding past the finishing ring).

16. What is an extended spigot?
The Extended Spigot will sandwich a maximum cabin side of 2" and this size will fit most thick-walled boats. Longer spigots may be custom ordered.

17. What is bolt through construction?
Bolt through construction means that the port and the finishing ring bolt to eachother, thereby sandwiching the cabin wall in-between the finishing ring and the body of the port. This means that the structure of the port does not rely on "screwing and glueing" the port into the cutout.

18. What is overall size?
The overall size is the measurement from extreme edge to extreme edge on the port. For example, the 5 X12 port has an overall size of 8 X 15.

19. What size fasteners will I need?
Our bronze and stainless steel ports currently require 6mm (coarse) truss head machine screws (pan heads also work). We have full length fasteners available for purchase. You will need to cut the fasteners to the unique depth of your cabin. Fasteners will bottom when screwed into the 8mm (5/16 inch) hubs.

20. What size port do I need?
Our ports are named by the nominal glass size (i.e. the 5x12 port has a nominal glass of 5"x12"). A simple way to determine the port you need is to measure the outside dimension (overall length and height). Now look at our overall size to find a port that matches that size or one that is slightly larger. For example, a common plastic port has an overall dimension of 14 ¾" x 7 ¾". Looking at our ports you will find that the overall size of the 5x12 port is 15" x 8" which will make the proper replacement. When you pull your old port, you may find that cut outs vary considerably. You can remove cabin side material where necessary and fill gaps with caulk when the cut out is a bit oversize. Remember, our ports bolt through so a variance in cut out size will not matter to the structural integrity of the installation.