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Old 20-12-2013, 06:52   #1
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Location: Adelaide, South Australia
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More Comfort Required

Hello Cruisers,

Attached are four photos which I hope give a sense of our cockpit layout.

I am trying to improve comfort. The challenges are:

1. The Swanson 42 has a very tall deckhouse. Lovely to shelter behind in bad weather, but a right pain to see over. I am over 6' tall and I have to stand pretty upright to see over it.

2. My wife is a fair bit shorter and has to use a special step when steering.

After a while, if we are healing by more than 5 degrees, it gets pretty tiring to stand at the wheel, step or not. You tend to end up sitting on the ledge behind the wheel and standing up now and then for a look around. Looking through the wheelhouse is possible, but not ideal, as should be apparent from the photos.

I would really like to setup some kind of seat on the rear ledge just behind the wheel, but having looked at was on the shelf of the local chandlery, I was not convinced by anything I saw. The idea is to make steering more comfortable and thus encourage more hand steering and less use of the auto pilot.

Any suggestions on a seating arrangement that would make steering more comfortable would be very much appreciated. Photos would be even better if you have such a thing. I've been clicking through boats on various boat broker sites for hours without seeing anything that I think would work.

Thanks for looking,

Matt
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Old 20-12-2013, 07:05   #2
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Re: More comfort required

What about fitting something like this to sit on the ledge and the feet would be on the cockpit sole?

Or you could do something like a powerboat helm seat that sits on a single post. Put one base on the corner of the ledge so you can move the seat to the windward side of the boat. Or some kind of sliding track.
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Old 20-12-2013, 07:11   #3
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Re: More comfort required

Yes, sort of what I was thinking, but that particular one (aside from having an annoying musical website, what is with that?) looks like it needs a rail behind it.

Like the idea of two bases permanently installed, thank you. Need something that won't trip me over when I am moving around, perhaps a simple tubular socket...
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Old 20-12-2013, 07:18   #4
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Re: More comfort required

How about an autopilot with a remote? One friend I sail with used to have a box with enough wire that we could go sit on the bow and steer from there.
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Old 20-12-2013, 09:47   #5
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Re: More comfort required

Quote:
Originally Posted by GILow View Post
Yes, sort of what I was thinking, but that particular one (aside from having an annoying musical website, what is with that?) looks like it needs a rail behind it.

Like the idea of two bases permanently installed, thank you. Need something that won't trip me over when I am moving around, perhaps a simple tubular socket...
I hate websites with autoplay anything. Especially sound.

How about a seat like this Todd Freeport Helm Seat

And a socket style base like this LakeSport and 238 Series Socket Bases : Attwood Marine

It would be a permanent installation that would require cutting into the boat. But it would be low profile.

Actually, this one looks like it might work a little better Snap-Lock 1.77" Base Plates : Attwood Marine

Good luck. Post to let me know what you decide.
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Old 20-12-2013, 12:51   #6
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Re: More Comfort Required

I like those socket bases, and the seat is more like what I imagined would work too, but it needs a bit of height due to the height of the deckhouse. (Like the Catalina seat). I just can't work out if the socket bases can be used with some kind of seat pole. The look a bit like what I saw in the chandlery, in that it seems the sockets are for seats that are practically flush with the surface the socket is mounted in. Which makes sense from an engineering point of view.

As for the remote, yes we have one of those on the autopilot, the old fashioned sort on a long cable. (Feels like a karaoke microphone when you use it,) However, I am really keen to make steering more comfortable so we use the autopilot less.
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