The hatch is one of the integral components of a boat with multiple cabins. It supports different functions of the boat to make it safe for everyone. The hatch helps separate the living compartment from the engine compartment, and protects the vessel from submersion when the casing is damaged due to different reasons. Boat hatches possess a rugged construction, which makes them heavy and difficult to manage manually. This is why nowadays boat hatches are automated using linear actuators. Electric linear actuators are chosen for the task owing to their increasing popularity, today, you can find several boat hatch actuators with different manufacturers. Although they all support motion, these actuators are not made the same and possess different performance capabilities. So, if you wish to select a linear actuator for boat hatch, there are several things to be addressed. What are these important factors of consideration? Read this post to find the answers and more.
Electric Linear Actuators and Their Increasing Popularity in Boat Hatches
Opening or closing a boat hatch may not be easy when the boat sails in choppy waters. Nowadays, electric linear actuators are largely used to automate these hatches. This is largely owing to the different benefits that they offer. The actuators are compact sized, which makes them fit for confined areas, and their sleek design enables easy integration to any boat equipment. Unlike other types of actuators there are no concerns of oil leakage with most electric linear actuators. These electric linear actuators are available in different loadbearing capacities, which makes them suitable for vessels with massive and lightweight hatches. In short, these actuators help reduce manual labor as well as the energy and time required to manage the lifting and closing of hatches in boats, luxury yachts, and ships. Owing to these features, nowadays, electric linear actuators are massively used to add luxury touches to huge and small marine vessels. They can be used to automate TV lifts, as well as automate different types of furniture in these vessels.
Tips to Select an Actuator for Your Boat Hatch
Typically, 12V DC actuators and 24V DC actuators are used for automating a boat hatch. Although knowing your boat specifics will help in choosing between these two types of actuators, that is not enough. The following pointers must be kept in mind when selecting an actuator.
- Force Required to Open and Close a Hatch: The force is a function of weight. Thus, to determine the maximum force, the weight of a hatch must be taken into consideration. This calculation becomes easy when you consider the worst case scenario, where the hatch remains closed. When it opens, the entire weight concentrates on the hinge, and the actuator utilizes less force to open the hatch.
- Stroke Length: This is the measure of how far the linear actuator moves in one direction. You can find linear actuators in different stroke lengths from 1″ to 60″. Again, this stroke length will depend on the weight as well as the physical dimensions of the hatch.
- Physical Dimensions: Understanding of physical dimensions of the hatch will help you choose the right actuator length. For instance, you will require an actuator with a high stroke length for a large hatch.
- Speed: Do you want the hatch to move fast or slow? Generally, the linear actuator speed is calculated in inches per second. The speed and force are opposite to each other. This means, the actuator will move slowly if high force is applied and vice versa. Most vessel owners prefer high speeds for opening and closing hatches.
- Environmental Protection: The boat engine hatch actuator or boat hatch lift actuator is exposed to saltwater. So, it is always better to choose the actuators with high IP ratings. This is because these actuators are designed to withstand harsh and challenging environments.
In addition to these, the quality of the actuators and their expected shelf life must be taken into consideration. To get it right, it is always better to partner with an experienced actuator manufacturer for boats and vessels because they understand the factor discussed above and also know how to design actuators that offer you the best value for investment. Venture Manufacturing is one of the leading manufacturers of IP65 and IP66 grade electric linear actuators for boat hatches. These actuators guarantee high speed and precision in different boat applications. Venture regularly designs and manufactures boat hatch lift actuators, as well as actuators for engine controls, navigation and steering, elevating platforms, TV lifts, and so on.