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Thread: Locked out

  1. #1
    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    Default Locked out

    The door latch on the main cabin door of our boat seems to have broken. I was in and out of it all weekend and everything seemed to work fine but when I got home on Sunday I couldn't get in. The lock works but when I pull the latch the bolt won't move. All my windows are shut tight so that's not an option. Anyone have advice on how to move the bolt from the outside or how else to get in to the boat? It's a 26ft Hewes Pacific Cruiser.

  2. #2
    Member Ak Bird Brain's Avatar
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    I've got a 22' Hewes, my lock broke last summer. Once you get it open I bet you'll find the bolt is cast aluminum and is sheared in half like mine was. What I did was stick a knife tip into the bolt through the gap in the door, wiggle it back a hair at a time while sticking it again with another knife or sharp thin object so it doesn't spring out again. Work it for a bit and it'll open.
    You'll have to call Hewes for the replacement assembly at least I couldn't find an exact fit replacement anywhere. And of course the door latch assembly isn't covered by their warranty. If mine breaks again I'll save the pieces and have a stronger latch machined.
    Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day,
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    Member chico99645's Avatar
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    I had the same thing happen to me while motoring out to fish out of Seward 3 years ago. I came off a roller and hit pretty hard. When I got to Pony Cove, we couldn't open the back door. I went out the front and used a bait knife to move out the door latch Ketch while I pulled on the handle. Its made from Pot Metal so welding it is not really a good option. I called Deweys and my wife just so happened to be coming down to fish the next day so she stopped by to pick up the part. They didn't have the entire door assembly which when you buy it, its all one section. Just unscrew it out and put in the new one. However, they didn't have one in stock but did have an old one with missing parts. I just needed the broken part which was good, so I took it apart (Easy to do) and replaced the broken door ketch and I was back in business. It may be able to be fixed with JB Weld until you can get a new one if they don't have one in stock. There are some springs in there that are small so be careful when you take it apart. Good Luck!

  4. #4

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    The knife trick...happened to us on the Fish-Rite too. Pry a tiny bit at a time and lean on the door before pulling the knife, insert knife, pry a little, and repeat until in. If it doesn't work...hack the handle off and beat the center through...the ugly way.


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  5. #5
    Member polardds's Avatar
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    You may be surprised how easy it is to open your front hatch from the outside. Some have slots to use a screwdriver to turn the latches. We had to do this once.

  6. #6
    Member Gerberman's Avatar
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    I had to call the window company to take the window out, open the door, then have the window company to reinstall the window. It cost $95.00 for the service call, I put a new door knob on.

  7. #7
    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone that helped out with advice. Thankfully the bolts on these doors are somewhat soft and I was able to use two putty knives to slowly push the bolt back and open the door. Turns out, it was just as AK bird brain suggested, a broken bolt that was sheared in half.

    Any suggestions for replacing it? This sounds like a fairly common problem and I'd hate to have it happen when I'm way out and no way to latch the door. Worst case scenario I'll replace it with the same thing and just keep an eye on it but I'd sure like to fine a better more durable latch.

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    Member Ak Bird Brain's Avatar
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    When I replaced mine I was told they had switched to a new style, they only had a few replacements available as the supplier they bought them from was no longer making them. I don't know if you've got the newer style or the older style but I would just replace it with the same one if you can. I got 4 years out of mine before it broke,if the new one breaks within the next 4 years ill take the broke pieces to a machine shop and have them machine me something stronger and just replace the part that keeps breaking.
    Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day,
    Teach a man to fish and he'll also learn to drink, lie, and avoid the honey do list.

  9. #9
    Member patrickL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ak Bird Brain View Post
    When I replaced mine I was told they had switched to a new style, they only had a few replacements available as the supplier they bought them from was no longer making them. I don't know if you've got the newer style or the older style but I would just replace it with the same one if you can. I got 4 years out of mine before it broke,if the new one breaks within the next 4 years ill take the broke pieces to a machine shop and have them machine me something stronger and just replace the part that keeps breaking.
    That's exactly what the guy at Dewey's told me. I need to call Hewes on Monday to find out if I have the old or new style in order to try and get replacement parts. I like your idea of having a machine shop fabricate a better, stronger bolt. I might look in to that. Anyone know if there's a better latch setup that I could just swamp in to replace the one I've got?

  10. #10
    Member AK Fishkiller's Avatar
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    Doesn't it make all you Hewes owners that Dewey's doesn't stock a single part?? It's BS in my book...
    It's better to burn out than fade away.....

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