Cockpit grate kit parts and assembly
We offer a precision precut kit that can be
easily assembled in your own shop with a
bare minimum number of tools.
Each section comes notched and can be
purchased with or without a tenon for insertion
in a grove in the skirt or a mortise.
Grates can be ordered in mesh sizes
from1/2"X1/2" up to 2"X2". The smaller the
hole size the more a grate will cost.
Remember, Teak is not the only wood you
can make grates with, It's just the best.
Mahogany, Cypress, Iroko and Opepe are just
a few of the other woods available.
Start by laying out the bottom (usually the
longer pieces) and then the cross pieces. Put
the two end cross parts on to line up the
frame. Apply a drop of glue in each slot and
insert a cross piece. (Tight Bond III) is a good
glue to work with but you must move right
along when assembling the parts. If you are
assembling a large grate you may want to use
3M 5200 adhesive for more working time. Do
not force the parts as they will pop right in with
a light tap of a rubber mallet. Don't go crazy
with the glue as you will have to clean it up
later if it drips out of the joint.
When everything is assembled it should look
something like this. This grate has the tenon
tabs. Yours may not. Clean any dripping glue.
Carefully slide your grate onto the clamping
surface. Make sure all your parts are seated
Another option is using countersunk screws to
fasten the strips together and it does work well
with stainless screws. It will also make repairs
easier. Install the screws from the under side
and no one will ever know.
For a one shot deal use a piece of plywood under
the grate and large fender washers and screws on
top to clamp the grate together while the glue is
drying. More is better in this case because you
need even pressure to help keep the grate flat.
Snug the screws up but not to tight. Leave Tight
Bond and epoxy clamped for 24 hours. If you are
using 3M 5200 leave the grate clamped up for the
recommended 7 days for best
results. We always
use epoxy and a vacuum bag for this because it's
part of our normal process in the shop. A vacuum
bag clamps at 1,750 pounds of pressure per
If you have decent bench plane, sharpen it up
and use it to remove any high spots. It beats
using all that sand paper. Watch the grain and
take small shavings. Be smart and avoid belt
sanding if you don't want little divits. An orbital
sander with 80 grit paper will work well to level
out high spots followed by 220 grit paper for
the final leveling. Wear a mask as teak dust
from sanding is not good for you.
If you take the time and pay attention to detail
your grate will look very professional and it will
serve you well.
You can apply finish to your grate but we
would recommend that it be a two part like
Interlux perfection or Awlgrip albright urethane.
There is only one way to apply this and have it
look right and that would be spray done by a
properly equipped shop.
If I could find a SKULL & CROSS BONES in my
clip art it would be inserted here because all
this stuff kills brain cells.
Remember if you put a finish on you will
eventually have to take it off so use the best
A Few Things To Avoid
Strip grate systems are not very stable and
tend to curl or warp with very short service
They are basically thin strips of wood layered
into a slot cut into the cross member.
They are not as strong as an interlocking
grate and usually do not look as nice.
Edge work is also not fastened as well.
They are usually found on low end yachts.
Next time you go to a boat show check them
Low quality grate systems usually exhibit some
dimension creep as you can see in this photo
At twenty inches this grate is already an eighth
of an inch to long. On longer grates this makes
alignment of multi panels look sloppy and very
noticeable. The long stick protruding out to
the right is a spacer plug needed to align the
strip and grove system. It's just another item
that causes poor alignment.
Cut alignment becomes very important later
when replacement strips are needed.
A view of the under side of a strip grate
shows its lack of support so important to
stability and longevity. As you can see the
wood is already beginning to twist with
nothing to stop it.
Telephone (978)618-4854 email
Kit pricing varies with the type of wood and if
you want tenons cut into the ends or not.
Average pricing per square foot is about
$65.00 for Teak and about $55.00 for
Mahogany. Edge trim is also available
Other more exotic woods may cost more.
There are no production lines here and
every kit is custom made just for you.
We have a new DVD available for those of you
who would like to build their grate from scratch.
It's loaded with all the tricks and tips you'll need
to produce a professional quality grate.
Everything from selecting wood to setting up
your tools and assembly is professionally
explained in this 45 minute DVD.
It is an excellent investment at $22.95 and will
save you a boat load of time and money.
Call The Yacht Shop and order now at