OK, before you get all over me about being in the "real" world, just give me a minute to explain ;-)

I bought a set of plans for the Joli boat from Philip Thiel. Unfortunately, this is not the right "season" in my life to really start building a boat. So, should I just wait and dream, or should I make some kind of forward progress?

My intent here is to keep a journal of my progress. I'll be using Google Sketchup to build my virtual boat. I'm sure that along the way I'll run across problems that need solving, trouble keeping on task, and moments of inspiration.

I'll include pictures and video as I progress. Click on any picture if you'd like to see it larger.

Maybe I'm crazy, but follow along and see what you think

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Standard Minimums and a New Footprint

I decided to take another shot at a floor plan for my Joli based on some minimum standards that I’d like to have along with some features that I would really like to include.

Starting at the transom, I want to have an outboard hanging on a standard transom, but I want it covered behind and above the motor as well as separated from the cockpit. It looks like this length should be about 29.5 inches. This sets the positions for frames number 1 and 2.

I’d like a larger cockpit than the original Joli design, but I’m drawing it at 4 feet for now. The back wall of the cabin will be angled, or tipped forward on the top. I think this will look nice as well as making it easier to enter the cabin from the cockpit. This sets the position for frame number 3.

I decided to set the bunk lengths at 74 inches. A standard queen bed is 78 inches long and a standard twin bed is 74 inches long so I think this will work for my family. This sets the position for frame number 4.

Next comes the dinette and galley area. The dinette makes into a double bed, so we know the total length between frames 4 and 6 has to be 74 inches. Frame 5 should be exactly centered between 4 and 6. So now we’ve set the position of frames 4,5, and 6.

After the galley comes the closet and head. I thought I’d be generous here and have a head that is 4 feet long. Talk about luxury ;-) This sets the position for frame number 7.

Now we’re up to the forward bunks. They need to be 74 inches, so this sets the position for frame number 9. Since I’m drawing my Joli with a more conventional bow, Frame number 9 isn’t clear at the front.

Frame number 8 is the front of the cabin. This frame will also be angled, or tipped in at the top. Not only does this make it easier to enter the cabin from the forward cockpit, but it also makes a nice backrest if you’re reclining on the front seats of the forward cockpit.

I would also like a lower floor area in the center of the forward cockpit. This makes it more useful for a sitting area and makes it easier to step down into the cabin. I ended up with a forward cockpit that is roughly 57 inches long. The sets the position for frame number 8.

Larger Video

We also need to talk about some standard minimum widths. A standard queen bed is 60 inches wide. I’m sorry, but I don’t think we can be that generous in our boats. I’ve set the width of the double bunk in the rear at 48 inches. I hope we can live with this.

I’ve set the minimum companionway and hatch width at 24 inches. Narrow but functional. If the dinette makes into a double bed, it should also be 48 inches wide. If you add 24 inches for the companionway and subtract the width of the frames, you end up with a galley counter that is 17 inches deep. Our vintage camp trailer has a kitchen counter that is 22 inches deep, but I guess an 8 foot wide boat only leaves me with a 17 inch counter. Oh well.

Now if we use the same logic for the forward bunks, 24 inch companionway in the middle and 2 frames at 3.5 inches, we end up with single bunks that are 32.5 inches wide. A standard single bed is 38 inches wide, so things are just somewhat tighter on a boat. So goes it.

Well, now that I’ve set some standards and defined my frame locations, I can start placing some bunks, seats, toilet, motors, and all the other stuff that needs to fit in my boat.

Oh yea, if you’re wondering, my Joli ended up at 27 feet long.

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