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Discussion Starter #1
My wife has decided that she wants to make new cushions for the cockpit. She made the cabin cushions last winter and they came out great! We would like some help choosing the best foam and fabric as I am sure that every option is covered out there among the sailnet sailors!

We are looking at the following options and would like your thoughts:

  • Closed Cell foam (1 1/2") thick vs. Reticulated foam (1 1/2" or 2") [Reticulated foam has holes to allow water to pass through]
  • Vinyl coating (like Bottomsiders or C-Cushions) vs. Phiphertex mesh fabric which lets water pass through.
What would you choose and why? Are the closed cell foam cushions too firm or the reticulated too soft allowing you to "bottom out?" Any problems with staining from suntan lotions? Other things I haven't considiered?

Thanks,

Tod
 

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I have Phiphertex and closed cell foam. 2 inches thick. They are a little firm. We use cheap patio furniture cushions over top when not sailing. I have thought about trying the reticulated foam to see if they are any more comfy.

The Phiphertex is fairly see-through though so the reticulated foam may not look as nice as the closed cell.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Tim. That's what I fear, that they are a bit too firm. Wonder if the 1-1/2 is less firm as I've heard that foam firms up the thicker it gets. Anyone else with some personal experience on your behind??
 

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We had some made a couple of years ago, closed cell foam with vinyl overtop.
They are firm but we have found them to be very comfortable. Especially nice if you have to kneel on them.
Will be having some made for another boat this season, we are planning on doing the same.
 

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Why don't you buy a 2x2 square of closed cel to try it out? Covering it will not affect the firmness.
 

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I am sure you know this. There are excellent videos and instructions availible at Sailrite.
I made my own with Sunbrella. They were very nice looking but got dirty easily and you hated to step on them. That made them in the way sometimes.
Friends gave me Bottom Siders which I like much better.
rdw
 

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Discussion Starter #7
That's a great suggestion to buy a 2' square piece of foam to test out! Can use it as cushion for the bridge deck so it won't go to waste.

Sailrite is a great resource. Too bad their store in Annapolis closed. It was so convenient!

Thanks all.
 

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We used Sunbrella for the tops and 2" dry fast foam. Phifertex for the bottom to prevents water collecting in the cushions.

They're held in place with snaps and we leave them snapped in place all summer. They're two years old now, and the only maintenance is a quick scrub with a brush and some boat soap now and then.

The foam is a little stiff but they're a lot more comfortable than the old vinyl cushions. Plus we're not hauling cushions in and out of the boat every time we get there.

Jim



 

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Buying cockpit cusions

I'm looking to buy cockpit cushions. I'll probably go with Sunbrella rather than vinyl. Garhauer gave me a good price. Has anyone used them? Other recommendations?
Thanks.
 

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I just picked mine up from the upholstery shop this past week. I made a paper template and took that to a foam company. They recommended 3" thick and I think the density was 2 1/2 lb. Ordered Sunbrella...enough for both cushions and 4 throw pillows. It all worked out pretty good.
 

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I have found that it is very nice to have a cushion that provides back support, especially while reading and lounging in the cockpit. When sailing, I really don't like having cockpit cushions out as they can cause a false step and send you flying. (The only time ((knock, knock)) I have fallen while on board was caused by a cushion.) I discovered (from a thread here) that my camp chairs by thermarest are wonderful cushions for the cockpit in that they can lay flat, make a chair or be anything in between. They are thin, waterproof and stow easily. But they don't like fishhooks which has not yet been a problem.

However, they are not very "yatchy looking".

John
 
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