While I knew Egret had changed from inside clip closure to a gasket and latch, I expected the design to be expertly done. Unfortunately after using the boat for a while some serious flaws in the hatch design became apparent. There was always water in the bottom of the compartments and any gear left in the compartments was wet and corroding. I put a camera inside the hatch to video what was going on when the boat was washed.
Water was freely flowing through the latch and into the compartment. I spoke with the latch manufacturer, Southco, and they confirmed that a slam latch is not waterproof and in a horizontal installation the latch is not even weatherproof.
To add even more leaks the gutter is cut out at the latch location to clear the latch on the Egret and there is no gasket on the gutter at that location. As is standard Egret practice, no caulk or bedding compound is used so water will also leak around the hardware and into the compartment. Clearly a redesign of the hatch and the latch mechanism is required in order to have dry storage on this boat.
While the wet compartments are very disappointing, there is a even bigger issue. The gas tank on the Egret is located under one of those leaky slam latches. There has been a steady stream of fresh and salt water over the gas tank and into the foam surrounding the tank. I do not expect the gas tank to last very long in the new Egret, yet the gas tank in my old Egret is still fine.