Friday, April 10, 2015

Full Speed Ahead!

This week I was able to take a few days vacation and man, did I get some work done! The new sole is in, the new water tanks are in and secured, and I invented new companionway stairs that afford my eleven year old buddy, Fuji, the ability to easily enter and exit the boat.

The mat for the cabin sole has been cut to fit... installed, but is not laying down. I'm not really happy with it at this point from an aesthetic point of view, but perhaps it will lay down after a few more days of not being rolled up for weeks.

The water tanks are secure, but not plumbed yet... that's the next major job... maybe... probably... soon...

I tried to modify the companionway ladder a while back to help my old friend Fuji to gain entry and exit but the angle was still too steep for him. Going down was OK, but getting up and out was too hard for him, (being eleven and weighing 108 lbs). This problem had to be solved; he's my best friend!

After hours on the internet searching for something that would work and finding nothing, I decided to just start from scratch. The angle of ascent and descent must extend far beyond a normal companionway ladder to make entry and exit possible for an old dog, (am I talking about my pet or myself... hmmm?). The problem is that such an extension blocks off the Galley. The solution I came up with was a two part entryway. The top two steps are set and the second step slides in when I'm using the Galley and out when Galley access is not required, (the second step is also removable to allow Engine Room access).

The bottom half of the stairs easily move out of the way, allowing access to the Galley and the Engine Room.

I have to do some more trim work and I ran out of indoor/outdoor carpet to provide traction, (back to The Depot), but all in all, the stairs are strong enough for both myself and my best friend and provide both of us easy ingress and egress.

More pics at Annie's Facebook page.

Fair seas and God bless!


  1. Nice steps! We are looking at boats for purchase and one of them happens to be a Westsail 32. We too have an aging dog. My first thought was that the ladder access might make a Westsaila no go for us. But seeing your solution puts the Westsail back on the "1st choices" list.
    Might I ask for your plans or measurements?


    1. Actually Suzette, I ended up removing those steps... they were hard to move and block egress when raised. I went with a better solution: Pet Loader -

      This works great. I put them up for Fuji to go out, move them I aside and I follow him. Then I go down into the cabin, put them up and he comes down after me. They fold up nicely and stow on the starboard pullman berth. For a Westsail, you'll need the six step version but it's worth it if you have an old friend.

      Thanks for following.

    2. I mentioned it in a later post...