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Old 20-10-2015, 15:24   #1
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Input on Minimum Bunk Size For Cruising Couple?

would like to hear some real world input on how big a bunk is needed for a cruising couple. currently the main bunk area is the V berth. the size is adequate but the head room is horrible. I am thinking of expanding/modifying the salon settee birth to acomadate a couple regularly. it is currently a rectangle and is long enough. I can make it a bit wider with a slide out type thing but am limited by the keel stepped mast. I can expand it more towards the hull but will end up with a truncated right triangle shape. obviously the wider end for the head and shoulders with less space for feet and leggs. not to different than a V birth.

what do you think is needed minimal width at the shoulders and feet would be for regular use as primary bunk for extended cruising couple.

this is a 30 footer so a minimalist mindset is already in place

thanks for your thoughts and experience
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Old 20-10-2015, 15:44   #2
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

Yeah, hard to say. So your current V berth has deck completely over? I don't mind a V berth but none of mine have had deck over the chest and head area... just cabin top and more headroom.
Nice thing about a V berth is it is usually really wide at shoulder area. Sometimes a bit cramped on the feet though.
I think a berth in your walking area will prove to be a real PITA. But I would suggest you two lay down together on a bed and put a board blocking at various widths and move a round a bit and see what you can live with.
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Old 20-10-2015, 16:28   #3
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

I like at least a 4 foot by 4 foot square at the head end. It can taper down to about a minimum of 1 or better 1.5 foot at the foot end if needed. Sitting head room is great, but you can get by with much less.

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Old 20-10-2015, 16:33   #4
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

there is a small section of cabin top but even with a very thin pad I barely have enough room to sit up and that is only if I am right back against the bulkhead. then the forward part of the cabin top where it slopes down to the deck is only inches infront of my face. I could not lean forward without hitting my head. the other draw back for me is the entry into that berth is a rather small portal narrower than my shoulders and the hight of the opening is less than desired. if Isit in the berth with my leggs through the portal iI have to duck as I lean forward so I dont hit my head as I exit.

as far as a berth blocking my walkway that is not an issue as the fore/aft walkway is on the other side of the mast.

it is one thing to "mock up" a narrow bunk at home and think this will do. it is another thing entirely to cruise like that for months or make a long passage where that is all you got. that is why I am hoping to here from some folks that have done it.

thanks
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Old 20-10-2015, 16:42   #5
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

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Originally Posted by Snowpetrel View Post
I like at least a 4 foot by 4 foot square at the head end. It can taper down to about a minimum of 1 or better 1.5 foot at the foot end if needed. Sitting head room is great, but you can get by with much less.

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so you get by with 4' at the shoulders for a couple? you are not hobbits or anorexic waifs, are you?

I could deal with lack of headroom if I could sit on the edge swing my feet up and roll in roll out. but having to snake, wiggle or contort to get in and out is bad enough solo, bug is a recipe for disater for two

I think I could get a four foot width at the top and taper down to three at the foot. maybe she wont have to go after all
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Old 20-10-2015, 17:08   #6
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

This is a what I consider a minimum, the key measurement is the 4 foot from the head by four foot wide. Tapering from four foot to a narrower end will make the bed too narrow where your knees are. Length should be just over the length of the longest person. In my case I use 6' 3 or so.

More width at the head helps, but the matress doesn't need to be wider than a standard double. People have got by with less, and many need more. This works for me and my long suffering lady, we are both about average size.

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Old 20-10-2015, 17:27   #7
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

The berth question interests me also. I'm a small woman, 5 feet tall, 110 lbs, but even I have my complaints about v -berths. I swear every boat designer should be required to sleep in their creation for at least a month.

I think one could sleep quite comfortably, and live quite nobly, in a berth in your salon. I suggest a nice easy, tailored bed spread and a few bolsters to transform the bed into a day lounge. That is not much different than a "day bed" and those have been used quite successfully in small apartments forever. Of course you will probably want a lee cloth too.

As far as size goes, we are pretty average, not too thin or thick, and we do well in 4' of space. But we like one another quite well.
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Old 20-10-2015, 18:07   #8
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

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The berth question interests me also. I'm a small woman, 5 feet tall, 110 lbs, but even I have my complaints about v -berths. I swear every boat designer should be required to sleep in their creation for at least a month.

I think one could sleep quite comfortably, and live quite nobly, in a berth in your salon. I suggest a nice easy, tailored bed spread and a few bolsters to transform the bed into a day lounge. That is not much different than a "day bed" and those have been used quite successfully in small apartments forever. Of course you will probably want a lee cloth too.

As far as size goes, we are pretty average, not too thin or thick, and we do well in 4' of space. But we like one another quite well.
yes the convertabile bunk in the salon I think will work quite well if I can expand it to work for two over the long haul. it would certainly open up longer non-solo adventures

thank for the input
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Old 20-10-2015, 18:26   #9
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

I am 183 cm tall (6'0") and wear XL shirts and never would sleep in a v berth, even alone, for more than a couple or three nights. Just too hard to get out of and too confining for me. So, it is up to your personal taste.
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Old 20-10-2015, 18:29   #10
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

Just think how nimble you will be after a month of sleeping in the V-Berth. Those contortions you go through wiggling in and then wiggling out have to be good to keep your body young.

That is if you do not pull every muscle in your body...

Practice your crab crawl...

Ok - all kidding aside. I agree 100% you got to make a better place to sleep. The space (width) you need depends on how you sleep. If you sleep on your side's you need 44" wide. If you guys toss and turn or sleep on your back/stomach you need 52" at a min.

How much width can you squeeze out of the dinnette area?

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Old 20-10-2015, 18:45   #11
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

I made a pair of convertable berth flats for the settees in our salon. When not underway we put them together athwartship to make a full queen-sized (60" x 80") berth and we sleep very well at night. We are both tall and like to sprawl, anything smaller would not work for us.
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Old 20-10-2015, 18:52   #12
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

Quote:
Originally Posted by farm sail View Post
would like to hear some real world input on how big a bunk is needed for a cruising couple. currently the main bunk area is the V berth. the size is adequate but the head room is horrible. I am thinking of expanding/modifying the salon settee birth to acomadate a couple regularly. it is currently a rectangle and is long enough. I can make it a bit wider with a slide out type thing but am limited by the keel stepped mast. I can expand it more towards the hull but will end up with a truncated right triangle shape. obviously the wider end for the head and shoulders with less space for feet and leggs. not to different than a V birth.

what do you think is needed minimal width at the shoulders and feet would be for regular use as primary bunk for extended cruising couple.

this is a 30 footer so a minimalist mindset is already in place

thanks for your thoughts and experience
An island queen was a must have for us. We've never found a v berth we like. In fact a v berth is a pain all round IMHO.

The sizes of berths vary from vessel to vessel but our Liberty 458 island queen is almost the same size as an Aussie queen size bed. The bottom corners are cutoff but its not noticeable when sleeping or chilling out.

Our boat also has the forward head directly behind the sail locker. Great sail locker access and 6'6" head room from fwd to the island queen.

We have two split level singles just forward of the salon. The top converts to a double. You have the full beam here so the width is good. Just for a couple.

I can upload the widths if you're interested.

An easy way to find the minimum width is to find sleeping bags you feel comfortable in and then lay them side by side. This will be your absolute minimum comfortable mattress size.

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Old 20-10-2015, 18:56   #13
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

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Originally Posted by Delancey View Post
I made a pair of convertable berth flats for the settees in our salon. When not underway we put them together athwartship to make a full queen-sized (60" x 80") berth. I am 6' 3" and my wife 5' 10" and we sleep very well at night.

There is some stepping up over each other when going forward but seems like only a minor inconvenience and doesn't happen very often so it really a problem.
do you have a photo of them set up/in use. I have vaguely contmplated this idea as well. how difficult is it to store the pad and bedding in the morning when you want regular use of the salon?
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Old 20-10-2015, 18:57   #14
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

I wasn't familiar with the Faralon 29, so I googled it. Kind of a unique V-Birth arrangement. Its hard to gauge from the pics how much room you have over your chest.

I think your idea to construct a salon birth is wise. If you're not comfortable sleeping, it really takes a lot of the fun out of sailing.

We have 3 of us in our V-Birth these days. Me, my wife and my son. Needless to say- I often find somewhere else to sleep.

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Old 20-10-2015, 19:00   #15
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Re: input on minimum bunk size for cruising couple?

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Originally Posted by leftbrainstuff View Post
An island queen was a must have for us. We've never found a v berth we like. In fact a v berth is a pain all round IMHO.

The sizes of berths vary from vessel to vessel but our Liberty 458 island queen is almost the same size as an Aussie queen size bed. The bottom corners are cutoff but its not noticeable when sleeping or chilling out.

Our boat also has the forward head directly behind the sail locker. Great sail locker access and 6'6" head room from fwd to the island queen.

We have two split level singles just forward of the salon. The top converts to a double. You have the full beam here so the width is good. Just for a couple.

I can upload the widths if you're interested.

An easy way to find the minimum width is to find sleeping bags you feel comfortable in and then lay them side by side. This will be your absolute minimum comfortable mattress size.

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thanks for the thought/input but those numbers just dont work on a 30' mono
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