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Old 19-06-2005, 04:17   #1
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Question Interior Design

Ahoy, All;

Can anybody point me to resources for good ergonomic ideas on interior sailboat design? I'm starting from scratch in the salon and galley, and would like something to get me thinking "out of the box" of what used to be there...

Thanks in advance!

Geoff
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Old 19-06-2005, 20:27   #2
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Have you considered going to a caravan showroom as they will have a subtely different slant on the same problem.

Dont forget that one of the principles of boat interior design appears to be to reduce the distance crew can be thrown around in rough seas/knock down, thus passageways and spaces are made smaller than necessary.

If you then look at modern catamarans you will see a big difference.

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Old 21-06-2005, 06:01   #3
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Capt. T, That's not a bad idea, for some idea generation. I'll no doubt walk away envying the squareness of your average RV'ers habitat!

I wouldn't mind seeing a source for some basic ergonomic rules o' thumb: ie, how high a countertop should be, or a settee. There also might be some nuances that aren't obvious; e.g., good and bad places to put galley sinks, stoves etc.

What I probably should do, is get out and go to more boat shows; but there won't be many of those until the fall.
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Old 21-06-2005, 09:37   #4
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A lot of boat manufacturers have good websites with interior layout pictures and design detail - get googling.
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Old 21-06-2005, 16:25   #5
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One mistake I've seen is putting the stove towards the out edge of the hull. They should be installed closer to the center where moisture can disapate up and out a hatch.
Also if you have a flame up, less chance of a burned overhead. And if the boat is pitching and rolling the pots and pans are closer to the pivot point.

Sinks should be deep as well.

That my input......................._/)
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Old 02-07-2005, 04:51   #6
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Geoff - it would be helpful if we knew more details of your project, such as what kind of boat are you working on, what is her size, what is your intended use and whether you are starting to build up an interior from scratch or are re-working an existing layout.
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Old 24-07-2005, 18:00   #7
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Re: Interior design and ergonomics

Here is an excellent web site http://www.triton381.com. Click on The Rebuilding and then click on Interior Projects. I have gotten many ideas from his incredible reporting of progress on rebuilding the Triton.

I have also gleaned information to build our galley from the following books.
1. The Galley Book, Janet Groene
2. The Boat Owner's Fitting Out Manual, Jeff Toghill
3.Yacht Joinery and Fitting, Mike Saunders (This text is full of ideas and ergonomic dimensions.)
4.The Finely Fitted Yacht, Ferenec Mate (The subtitle says, "Over 200 projects - interior and exterior - to enhance teh seaworthiness, safety, beauty, and comfort of your boat." This is an excellent idea book with lots of photos and diagrams.

I found all the above books on www.Amazon.com used and at bargain prices.

Hope this helps. Regards, Peter
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Old 27-07-2005, 15:46   #8
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Thanks, Peter, that's a wealth of information. I will delve into many of those.

Capt. Harry, worthy questions indeed. She's a centre cockpit ketch, 59' OAL, 53' LOD. She's a bit less beamy than most boats her size, though, at only 14'6". Our use of her will be Caribbean/coastal on a part-time basis for the next ten years or so; afterwards hopefully something closer to liveaboard/offshore.

We have gutted the galley, and are starting from scratch, but I haven't got much "out of the box" latitude here given her overall layout: the galley is on the starboard leg of a "U" shaped area that wraps around the engine room and cockpit floor, thus it necessarily is going to be one-sided and linear (the mirror-image port side is the nav area). Because there are two important structural bulkheads fore and aft, I don't have the luxury of expanding the galley forward into the salon or aft into the aft cabin. And, I'm too covetous of my cavernous salon to move the galley to that area. So, my parameters seem reduced to what order in the fore-to-aft lineup to put fridge, stove and sink, with some counter space between, and how to arrange the overhead cabinetry. One nice feature is a large overhead skylight placed about 1/3 of the way aft of the forward bulkhead, which will give a lot of light and ventilation. I'm tempted to put the stove under that, but I wonder if we'll use the stove as much as the sink or food-prep counter area. Perhaps the stove could be placed anywhere in the lineup, with the addition of artificial light and ventilation (small fume hood with a muffin fan?) The most accessible end is forward, as it's open to the bottom of the companionway stairs; I'm thinking that's the place to put the fridge. I realize that a diagram would be helpful here; sorry for all the verbage!

Thanks all, for the input!
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Old 28-07-2005, 02:11   #9
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Interior Egonomics

I have a book called "Just the Fitting Out to Go" by Roger Simpson, available at Boat Books in Sydney Australia, www.boatbooks.com.au.

Contained in this book is a chapter about sizes and dimensions to construct to, and in summary, critical dimensions as follows:
- Benchtops - 900mm from floor (galley etc)
- Table top - 700-720mm from floor
- Seat 400 - 450mm from floor - this is top of cushion
- Seat depth, approx same as seat height
- Seat back should be sloped 50 - 80mm over the height of the back.

These are all approximates, and you may want to try and adjust as necessary, but they are all pretty close to fit the average body size and shape.

Good luck with your fitout, I am fitting out a Hartley 32 at present.

Regards

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Old 28-07-2005, 05:06   #10
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Thanks, Steve, those are useful rules o' thumb indeed!
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Old 10-08-2005, 16:20   #11
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Geoff, something I forgot to mention about ergonomics. As we were planning our galley I did some proto types in our kitchen to test ergonomics for my wife. Sharron had back surgery years ago and does not do well stooped over (even a little stoop) for a long period of time. What we did was to build an island in our kitchen and used different heights to check out what was most comfortable for her. In this way, she could spend a considerable amount of time working at a counter top at different heights. We were amazed to find out that a counter top at 38" was the most comfortable for her. When it was at 36" she experienced back fatigue and at 38" she did not. Sharron is 5' 3". I'm 6' and enjoy the extra few inches of height as well. My point being, ergonomic figures are averages and not exact for every person.

If you don't buy another book, be sure to have a look at Yacht Joinery and Fitting by Mike Saunders. Part II of this text is titled, "The Shape of Things and Humans." Saunders spends a lot of time with drawings and graphics to help us understand ergonomics. But, don't forget these figures are average, for most people and not good for everybody.

We looked at a lot of boat interiors and took hunderds of photos with our digital camera and are incorporating lots of neat ideas. One in particular comes to mind that we are going to use that I've never seen in a vessel. I bought some tools on ebay and ended up in a lively email conversation with the seller who built the interior of his boat. We drove down to San Pedro where he invited us aboard. We came away with several ideas we could incorporate in our boat. The most important one was a circular shower curtain, the track screwed to the overhead. The shower curtain envelops the person showering keeping water off of the bulkheads.
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Old 10-08-2005, 16:44   #12
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One item that often gets short shrift is the location of sink bottoms. Typically the rim of the sink gets mounted at 36 inches above the deck. That means that the working surface of the sink at the bottom is closer to 28 inches above the deck. I have recently seen a galley for a man with a bad back in which the lip off the sink was roughly 4 inches above the counter top. That is probably a bad idea on a small boat but seemed like a great idea on this rather generous galley where it was installed.

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Old 11-08-2005, 16:52   #13
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Good stuff, guys, thanks. Peter, the idea of bumping up the galley counter by 2 inches intrigues me. By sheer coincidence, you and your wife have the same height differential that we have; Rachel is 1" taller than your wife, and I'm 1" taller than you. With us, it's me with the bad lower back rather than her. We just rigged a temporary 38" tall surface in our home kitchen, and she says it seems fine; I like it a LOT better. My carpenter had a couple good questions, though: 1) is 38" your final height including any chopping surfaces (cutting board, etc.), or does that bump actual food-prep height up another skoche? 2) What depth of fiddle did you put on the counter edge? and 3) How deep a sink did you put in?

My guys are roughing out the galley this very week, this is a timely discussion!
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Old 18-08-2005, 15:01   #14
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Geoff, sorry for not getting back sooner, been way too busy for my own good. Yes, the 38" height is the final product. I plan for the lip of the sink to be 1 1/2" from the edge of the counter. The sink is 8" deep. I haven't got for enough for the fiddle question. My thoughts are for a fiddle about 1". It has been my experience a taller fiddle is not really necessary. I will not place a fiddle in front of the sink. Regards, Peter
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Old 19-08-2005, 04:16   #15
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Thanks for the reply, Peter, and no problem on the time; as usual, "Island Time" prevails and it's not at all too late to set our main specs.

So, to further beat the subject to death, is your actual finished counter height actually less than 38, as you're adding the thickness of a cutting board? We're intending to do tile as a counter surface, so we have to extrapolate down the 1/2" or so that the tiles and adhesive will need to determine the plywood build height.

I agree with your assessment of useful fiddle height; 1.5 inches or more seems like overkill, and uncomfortable to rest your arms on. And I agree, there isn't much use for a fiddle in front of the sink. Your sink seems a tad shallow; was your depth of sink limited by what is underneath, cost (I know that deeper is spendy), or do you find 8" deep enough?

A survey question for all: between sink, stove and counter (with fridge below, or not), which to your mind is most important to have under a source of natural light and ventilation?

Geoff
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