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Need experienced opinions

Concerning the Beneteau Oceanis 393 2006:

After years of sailing a traditional full keeled sailboat on the Red Sea, we are making some big changes in life. As we near retirement we have decided to relocate to the Med for summer liveaboard / sailing. With that in mind we have been looking at boats that are more user friendly for Med mooring, maneuvering in tight places, dinghy access and have more roomy and comfortable below deck accommodation. After over 30 years living aboard small boats we want some comfort. LOL.

Over the past 20 years we have had many many opportunities both as a delivery team and as crew to think about what suits us and what doesn't. So we've narrowed the field to the Beneteau 393. We sailed on this boat for over a week a couple of times through all sorts of weather and lived aboard one this fall for a few weeks in Turkey.

But one thing concerns us. This fall I found the sleeping accommodation in the forward berth to be uncomfortable for a couple. Everybody seems to rave about the berth but I found myself squashed against the inside wall and "climbing the wall" in the middle of the night. Even in our 30 foot boat the berth is more comfortable.

So before we take the leap, my question is:
Has any other couple had this issue?
Or could it be due to old berth cushions that need replacing?
Robyn

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Re: Need experienced opinions

I've had my 393 for 12 years and have completed a circumnavigation.
The forward berth wants good new cushions. The die earlier as you're always sleeping on that middle seem.
Also I have a 2 inch 'topper' on it. Bliss.

The taller partner get the wall side, the shorter partner gets the aisle. Sorry.

I am fine with it. It's a great cabin especially in summer. No other boat has 2 big hatches right above the berth.

Mark
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Re: Need experienced opinions

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
The forward berth wants good new cushions. The die earlier as you're always sleeping on that middle seem.
Also I have a 2 inch 'topper' on it. Bliss.

The taller partner get the wall side, the shorter partner gets the aisle. Sorry.

Mark
I have given this a lot of thought, because of trying to talk my wife into an eventual cruising or live-aboard life. So far, we have only done charter trips. This means we have always slept on the standard stock cushions, which my wife finds completely inadequate and uncomfortable.

I have worked through many plans in my head, of how I might make a boat of our own more comfortable for her. I have thought of Mark's idea of a thick plush memory foam topper.

My thought is that I would buy a 2 or 3 inch memory foam topper that is as wide as the widest part of the berth. That may mean getting a full size or queen-size topper and cutting it to fit the shape of the V birth. Considering that it raises the bed 2 or 3 inches higher, it seems to me, that you would be able to take advantage of a couple of inches wider space, where the curvature of the hull is wider. It might require cutting the edge on a bevel to fit the sloped side of the hull. This would give you a couple of inches wider bed space.

I have not yet tried this myself, but I believe that I read about one couple doing this on their year-round liveaboard in a marina in New York City.
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Last edited by midwesterner; 3 Weeks Ago at 04:12 PM.
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Re: Need experienced opinions

We had 2" memory foam toppers. When they wore and got too dirty, we replaced them with 4". Seriously night and day improvement, for pennies more. We cut them to size, with an electric carving knife.

My initial reaction was that no one's opinion could possibly override your actual experience and discomfort on the bunk. There is a possibility that a serious memory foam topper could be a game changer. It was for us.

Just know that not all memory foam is created equal. There are different densities and I think the entire spectrum appeals to different people. Soft vs firm. Just make your most educated guess, based on general soft v firm preferences.


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Re: Need experienced opinions

My wife and I have chartered a Beneteau 393 several times and I thought the fore cabin was great. At least it worked for us. I'm 5' 9" and she's 5' 0" and like Mark said I took the inside.

But if it doesn't work for you, it doesn't work.

I know if I were going to live aboard, a centerline queen would be high on my list of desired features.
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Re: Need experienced opinions

I had a forward V-berth in my last boat and slept quite happily there on and off for 18 years between captain's jobs. It was fine for my wife and I (much better with a topper) and even better after she left.
But nothing improves the liveaboard experience more than our present centerline queen! And having a berth that can take an off the showroom floor mattress and sheets is a huge improvement over cobbling together pieces of foam and having covers custom made to fit a V-berth. And for those of us who like to sleep on nice crisp sheets? No more paying exorbitant prices for "custom" made sheets to fit that V-berth.
If a boat is to become your home, there are a some things that may need to take preference over the sailing/performance part of it all.
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Re: Need experienced opinions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minnesail View Post

I know if I were going to live aboard, a centerline queen would be high on my list of desired features.
The Bene 423 has this. It's a good boat
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Re: Need experienced opinions

My experience with the Bene was visiting Mark's boat. The forward berth seemed OK. I certainly agree with Capta... if you have the option go for a CL double in an aft cabin. My Contest 36s offers the owner the option of a typical V just forward of a walk thru head or a large berth in the aft cab where standing is only possible at the entry to the cabin. You can sleep either fore and aft or athrwartship. We use standard sheets but it's hard to make the bed because you have to crawl on do it from on top of the bunk. And it's far away from the head whereas the V is adjacent. Our aft cabinet has more lockers and excellent ventilation and communication with the cockpit

My friends have a 36s and are quite tall and sleep in the V and use the aft cabin for a catch-all whereas I use the V for guests and as a catch-all walk in "closet". We've tried the V and find it harder to get in and out of. Were I to get another boat... a CL aft walk around would be high on my list. This usually means a center cockpit.

We have adapted to the 36s but I would never want to use a V for my sleeping cabin. Look for a boat with a CL berth!
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Re: Need experienced opinions

We have a forward queen. You can exit from either side. It has and additional 3” memory foam and the flat German flat plastic springs under. Memory foam gets hot. Uses micro fleece sheets and a mattress top.
It’s as good as the bed at home.
Find on passage unless downwind everyone wants to sleep behind the mast. Find the big double berths aft on many current boats uncomfortable as too much room and no where to wedge when it’s bumpy. Best berth was pilot berths but never seen anymore. Oh well.
At present sleep forward at anchor. In saloon berths or the quarterberth underway.

s/v Hippocampus
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Re: Need experienced opinions

Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkofSeaLife View Post
The Bene 423 has this. It's a good boat
I like that 2-cabin layout.
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