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Old 16-12-2019, 10:55   #46
MJH
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

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Originally Posted by whiskybuoy View Post
Looking for advice on monohull models 40-45 ft where the steps of the companionway are easily managed by someone with medium knee/mobility issues as I get older. Many pictures (and boats I've been on) show extremely steep companionway steps with large rise, shallow treads and hand holds only on 1 side that are often quite a reach! This could be an issue for us, as we intend to be liveaboard for 6-8 months a year. Any advice? Thanks.
There is more than one way to approach this issue. First, see a good physical therapist to get your knees into the best possible shape and recommendations on daily exercises to maintain them; you'll feel better both on and off the boat, I do. Second, go down the ladder facing aft. Third, not all sailboat make and model years have the same number of steps. Steps on the original version of the Tayana Vancover 42 only went to the galley level plus there is a one step down from that into the salon level. Later models put it all on one level with more and steeper steps. Lastly, when working around the boat use a set of knee pads to prevent further damage.

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Old 16-12-2019, 11:31   #47
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

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Love the Beneteau Sense for this. Also like the separation of noisy from sleeping.
As an owner of a Sense 46 and all so fairly advanced in years (60) I would most defiantly recommend this boat. Not sure what cruising ground you will be applying your hobby but I am based in the med and the large open cockpit for quiet anchorages is fantastic. Also excellent access to the sea from the bathing platform with lifting seats which also makes getting on and off tenders doddle. Three very gradual steps (30 degrees) to main saloon with plenty of grab rails and a hull with chines that are designed to lean the boat no more than 20 degrees, even in a blow, makes this a very manageable boat. Add in electric everything and the perfect craft if you want to continue sailing a mono-hull until the grim reaper has other plans.
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Old 16-12-2019, 12:54   #48
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

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Pretty much all recent beneteau will give you regular stair companion way.

We are on a 35.1 oceanis, and if you canít use our companion way with out problem the solution is a trawler

Aircool beat me to it! The "stairs" were one of the factors which made my wife happy to purchase the 35.1 as she has developing mobility problems.
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Old 16-12-2019, 13:24   #49
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

I saw a recent Tartan where the bridgedeck was only an inch or so above the cockpit floor. Also the Caliber 40 was done this way. Easy in and out for older folks
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Old 16-12-2019, 14:52   #50
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

A lot of us have weighed in re different boats with different companionways. The Admiral had a double knee replacement 2 boating seasons ago. The companionway on our H38 has nice wide steps ( a boon for me and my size 15 feet) and a reasonable slope on it with a good handhold on one side. She had no trouble with it when she first got back on the boat. Her problem was getting on and off the boat (high freeboard), and especially into the dinghy from the sugar scoop rear steps.
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Old 16-12-2019, 16:06   #51
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

When I bought my boat, I found plans in the hold of the boats design. It was custom built by Hood as were the other LH58s. Anyway, on the drawings for the companionway steps was a hand written note that said to extend the run of the steps, because the customer has Basset Hounds. It's very comfortable and the hand holds are along the sides as rounded cut outs. The rise is pretty much standard.
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Old 16-12-2019, 16:16   #52
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

Go to the gym, and work out.
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Old 16-12-2019, 18:41   #53
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

Ideas. 12 volt winch with remote ($90.) and a strap like a bosens chair.
A electric lift like used in a van to lift wheelchairs. Some are like Davits with just a pole that lifts dinghys.
Or like tv commercial where people sit and go up stairs. Just ideas. I bet you can come up with some 12volt electrical assist.
Lots of brainy people to help you design.
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Old 16-12-2019, 18:56   #54
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

https://www.bruno.com/scooter-lifts/mini-vans
Bruno curbsider (brand name). I have seen lifts/cranes like this used for sale.
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Old 16-12-2019, 18:59   #55
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

Wireless remote 12 volt winch $70
https://www.harborfreight.com/2500-l...oaAkUcEALw_wcB
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Old 16-12-2019, 19:21   #56
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

Replace the steps. It's not that hard.

I've done this several times, to help aging parents and a wife with a bad knee. Most recently I added step to my F-24, for me.

Change the steps!
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Old 17-12-2019, 14:26   #57
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

I am 71. My wife is younger but has more arthritis than I do. I am sympathetic to your concern.

As others have stated, I find the newer models of the Beneteau Oceanis series have easier companionways than most other sailboats. The Beneteau Sense series, which was discontinued last year, has particularly easy companionways.
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Old 19-12-2019, 03:42   #58
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Re: Companionway steps as you get older

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99% percent of people who are liveabords six months of the year it seems almost always do so in a Marina, the boat is their affordable Florida home, they donít cruise.
If a realistic look finds you in that majority, then a power boat is most often a much better Marina Florida Winter home.
Sailboats only really make sense if they are covering long or relatively long distances.
Agree. A cat is better than a mono for me. Had a few of each and sails are for the younger sailors!
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