|SJ23 Tech Tip C04, (Updated 2004-02-17) Bob Schimmel|
Forward Cabin Layout, Panache.
INDEX - Cushions, Backrests, Speakers & Pole Storage.
Cushions - I replaced Panache's
aging settee cushions with 3" thick medium density urethane foam. This left
enough ceiling height for a 5'10" person to sit comfortably with adequate support
for sleeping without bottoming out (170 lbs). See
Tech Tip C08.
All of my cushions
are covered on the top and front with a high quality fabric and the
bottom, back and ends covered with vinyl. I chose vinyl for the bottom so the foam wouldn't wick up water from wherever it might leak or condense. This way I can stay high and dry during the night.
Its been a wise decision on more than one occasion. I usually
flip them over for dining to protect the fabric from spills during meal time. Wiping
up a spill on vinyl is easy. There is a zipper around the back for removing
the covers for cleaning.
The original factory backrests that covered each opening were made
of 1/2" plywood covered with foam and fabric, stapled a
zillion times at the back. They looked very 1970'ish, so
they had to go! There was also a low fiddle along the edge of the shelf
to keep the stuff there when the boat heeled.
Construction - The back rest door hinges are positioned at the bottom, level with the tops of the cushions. Positioned as such a door flips down to lie flat on the cushion. I used stainless steel hinges, veneer for the edges and teak finger pulls in the holes to prevent splinters. The finger pulls were expensive but they improved the appearance so much that it was worth it. All the teak is coated with hand rubbed satin tung oil for a very durable, washable finish. Now I have a smooth wall to sleep against and a slightly wider berth to lie on. With my 5' 10" height I don't have sufficient headroom for sitting. So I slump a bit and stuff a cushion behind my back. This works OK, but I find it much more comfortable to sit upright against the bulkhead (full head height) with my legs extended along the bunk. The cushions are also handy for those guests who are inclined to spend a little longer drinking their grog on a rainy day. EVERY BOAT has its compromises! TOP
peek at the photo above will reveal a speaker
installed in the top of the bulkhead. This was done by the
previous owner. While I would never
recommend cutting a 5" diameter hole into a load-bearing bulkhead, the plywood
has shown no sign of fatigue. I'm sure this is due to fact that I
smoothed the inside of the hole perfectly round to distribute the forces uniformly and saturated
the wood with epoxy to strengthen it. A better
technique would have been to surface mount a speaker enclosure against the
bulkhead. When I bought Panache my two sons
were quite small and loved to poke sticks into everything, especially speaker
cones. This prompted me to construct the speaker enclosure shown
at the left which does triple duty as an "after dinner roll holder" and
nightstand for anyone sleeping on the forward berth.
There is a slightly different design of a similar unit on the port
bulkhead that stores a small fire extinguisher and the forward hatch bug screen.
Both of them restore
some strength to their bulkhead. The cabin of a SJ23 is not an acoustical chamber so I stuffed the inside
of the each enclosure with fibreglass insulation to minimize sound
reverberations and a small hole to let air pass for the speaker cone. The speaker wires are located on the forward side
of the bulkhead, right against the hull where they are hidden. If
I had to install speakers from scratch I would have chosen a speaker enclosure on a mounting bracket on the aft side of
the bulkheads. They would be out of the way without compromising
the strength of the bulkhead.
Construction - Here is my original pencil sketch for building the speaker enclosures. Please verify the measurements for your installation. I used 3/8" thick solid oak to build the enclosures and Minwax cherry stain to match the teak. TOP
Sleeping Bag Storage - I store a light polyester sleeping bag on the forward side of each bulkhead, one with a pillow in an old sail bag. They are loosely stuffed in their bag to preserve the loft and stay bone dry to be warm at night.
Whisker & Mooring Pole Storage- Most small cruisers lack proper storage for whisker, spinnaker or mooring poles. They are always in the way. Another compromise? The design on the right has served me well since I installed it. No more stubbing my toes on deck! Moreover, my son always knows where to find the mooring pole, which is his job. The poles have never come off their hooks, regardless of how rough the water is and they never make noise. They also double as a handy clothes-drying rack!
To mount the hooks I installed a (1x2)" piece of teak with the top end
wedged behind the roof
liner and the bottom end wedged behind the teak fiddle on the
ledge. The back is shaped to
match the curvature of the hull. The teak is fastened with stainless screws at the
top through the hull liner and at the bottom through the teak fiddle. The J hooks that hold the poles are made from 1"
wide stainless steel strapping that I bent into a 1700 curve
with a 1.5" inside diameter. They are fastened to the teak straps with two screws to
prevent turning. I applied vinyl electrical tape on the inside of each J
hook to protect the pole from scratching. Leave sufficient space between
the upper and lower J hooks to conveniently remove the lower pole. I
suppose you could add a third set of hooks for a fishing rod but I
thought this would make access to the narrow shelf difficult. There is nothing
wrong with installing a fishing rod holder on the port side though! TOP
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