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any advice on upholstery
Justin Butler
149 Posts
29th April 2019 - 7:04 pm


As it seems highly likely that the present Mrs Butler will revoke my citizenship of liskeard  imminently, it seems only prudent to deal with the festering issue of cushions and upholstery. Its one of the things that has bothered me right from the start with Roquetta, and it's moving up the list now. Having assessed the situation, I need new cushions and covers. Has anyone dealt with this? Can it be outsourced.. Who does work like this? if anyone's had it done can they speak to the cost?




John MacMullen and Ann Musgrave
154 Posts
8th May 2019 - 3:41 pm

Hi Justin,

Here's something of our experience with upholstery:

We replaced all the old cushions a long time ago. At the time we were based in Southampton and we went to Julie Hobbs of Comfort Afloat in Gosport. They did an excellent job. We templated everything, using a heavy duty wallpaper lining paper and where the edges were to be other than perpendicular we measured the 'offsets' and marked on the lining paper. This worked well and Julie was happy with it. I imagine that many makers might prefer to do the templating themselves.

When we were looking most suppliers were pushing us to have Dralon or equivalent covers. We decided against as we were planning on hard use and wet down below (hopefully not too often!). We chose a good quality PVC which has lasted 28 years so far. For the saloon berth cushions Ann has made removable loose covers which are much nicer to sit on and give a more homely look.

I'd add some planning thoughts on how you achieve a good and useable result (and maybe same some ££). If Roquetta has trotter boxes I'd suggest that you consider doing as we have and don't have full cushions in them. Your feet don't need them. We made an elevated loose bunk board in each with a thin (about 12mm) foam cushion on it's top surface and the PVC fitted around the board. It also means that we've gained space under which we use for tertiary chart stowage. In the Fo'c'sle  we initially had a full length cushion on each side. This was very cumbersome and a pain for accessing the lockers under. The Mk11 version has a short (2/3 length) cushion on each side and then the forward end has 2 small triangular cushions which makes access to the stowage bin under so much easier. We also had a triangular infill cushion to make a double berth in the fo'c'sle. The Flap down locker doors in the saloon originally had 50mm foam. We felt that this was too thick and went for 25mm which is just fine.

Today our cushion world is much more Spartan. We have taken to sleeping athwartships  in the saloon. This makes a double berth for harbour use which is fine for us though it is a pain to have to make up every night. As we only sail two handed the Fo'c'sle  cushions now live in the loft at home. It's surprising how much extra space that gives for sail stowage etc.

Hope this is all helpful and that you and Mrs B. have a blissful season.


Justin Butler
149 Posts
8th May 2019 - 3:52 pm

Very helpful, thanks John. I hadn't thought of doing that under the trotter boxes, definitely food for thought. Its just me and my 5 year old daughter usually but the existing cushions are completely spent.




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