Pilot Berth

  • October 27, 2019 1:27 PM
    Message # 8079327

    I'd like to build in the upper pilot berth on the starboard side of the main salon in my boat but can't find any dimensions - nothing in the build manual.  I think the berth was pretty much a standard feature on most factory built boats  If anyone has the pilot berth in their boat and can send me the measurements for the bunk it would be appreciated.

    I need the measurement from the hull inboard, at the forward bulkhead and aft at the hanging locker. I suspect it should be about 24" wide at the forward end and about 29" wide at the aft end.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,  Don  

  • October 31, 2019 12:15 PM
    Reply # 8085873 on 8079327

    I'm #687 East Coast kit boat, but built by WS workers after hours (or so I'm told). Consequently, I have a factory finished boat with a hodgepodge of what ever the workers could sneak out of the WS facility. 

    My pilot berth is 76-inches at the front face, measured inside the lee-board.

    Assuming the pilots-berth shelf is bonded to the hull :

       Forward bulkhead (under mast) from hull to leeboard is : 23-1/2 inches

       Hanging locker next to chart table from ...... is: 28-1/2 inches

    It's not the most comfortable place to sleep, being high on the hull, and close to the deck overhead.

    Attached pic show the orientation. 

    Ed & Karen Hlywa

    CAPRICA #687


    Why a pilot berth? It's my experience that it serves only as a catch-all for bags, purses, laundry, and anything else that isn't properly stowed.

    If I could move my workshop close to the boat, I gut my pilot and pull-out berths and build a couch-like place to comfortably sit, lounge, or sleep.

    In fact I often muse about redesigning the WS 32 interior for comfortable two-person cruising. Apparently, back in the WestSail heyday, the major cruising boat metric was: how many people does she sleep? Every nook and cranny became a berth: even at the expense of interior comfort. 

    Think about it. You're on the hook for three days of foul weather. You sit at the dinette, or on the pull-out, or stand at the chart table and bump into each other on a 2-ft wide floor. Now think about those same three days if you were home in your family room. You'd have a place to sit, relax, work on your laptop, watch TV, and maybe even cuddle with your better half. 

    I wonder if there is interest in starting a new thread about WS-32 interior designs? Maybe make some guidelines like: cruising for two, (occasional guests?), computer/AV, nominal creature comfort dimensions,  convenient meal preps and dinning, etc.

    Just a thought ....  

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  • November 01, 2019 10:27 AM
    Reply # 8087155 on 8079327

    Ed - Thanks for the measurements - Jay wrote me off line last night with measurements as well - Thanks again Jay.

    Your PS question is a good one. This is our second W32, the first was a kit boat built more or less to factory specs with the upper pilot berth. We cruised that boat and found the pilot berth to be a secure spot to sleep during off watch passage making. And, while at anchor with two aboard, it was a reasonable out of the way place to stretch out without having to go into the forward berth. In our current W32 we don't have the upper berth and the lower bench seat is stationary. As built, it's too narrow for me to stretch out comfortably (I'm six foot 200 pounds) and is barely comfortable for Nancy (she's half my size).

    So, building the pilot berth is less about places to sleep and more about creating comfortable options for places for two people to relax while at anchor or on the dock. 

    I'm not dead set or even ready to start the build out right now, so I like the idea of hearing other options and opinions on the subject. We appreciate your reply and your comments.

    Don and Nancy 

  • November 02, 2019 8:23 AM
    Reply # 8088209 on 8079327
    Deleted user

    I have thought about doing this while at the same time being able to retain full use of the setee.  The plan was to add a fold-down piece attached to the edge of the shelf behind the setee using a piano hinge.  This would extend the width of the existing shelf immediately behind the setee and would rest on stops at each end.  One on the bulkhead and the other on the side of the wet locker.  Folded up we have use of the setee (storage etc.) and folded down the shelf widens and converts into a pilot berth.  But at this point I won't get to do it because Bloodhound is looking for a new home :-(