The cover for our Beneteau
50 is finished. The yearly cost will be $200, instead of the $1500 the marina charges for shrinkwrap. Total cost this year was even less than $1500. Much less. Here is a picture of the frame.
Here's a shot with the cover, before it was really done. (It was dark by the time she was completly covered and everything was tucked in tight.)
The whole thing disassembles into some managable pieces, for easy reassembly next winter. For instance, the 1.5" PVC ridge has a very taught 1/2 inch nylon line running in the center like a "spinal cord". This means by loosening (but not removing) the line, all the pieces at the top come apart, but stay in the same order for next winter. Likewise, the 13 PVC "wings" fold in (or fold up and over) so they can be easily moved. There are a few experimental aspects of the design, like arched ribs (tensioned like a bow-and-arrow's bow), side supports and mid-arch supports. I want to see how they fare over the winter.
The fore section was really the simplest part of the design, since she's less beamy there.
By keeping all the ribs at 10 feet, it worked well with the 20 foot wide tarp. this picture was before I gathered-in all the excess material at the bow. (The same thing that heat guns
do to shrink wrap, can be done to tarps with some light line from the inside.) Note also this picture was before finishing-up where the tarps meet.
Each year, we'll need a new 20x30 cheap
tarp for the bow, and a tarp for the stern as well. For the stern, I used a 50x30, so what you see is one piece, without any cuts. The tarp actually folds at the topping lift
and covers the stern quite well.
I may using a 30x40 in the future for the stern if I change the design a bit or if I take the mast
out. (The design does not need the mast
and boom in place, the frame is self-supporting.)
If anyone wants more details, please let me know. There are a bunch of things done to make it easily removed, stored and reassembled.