Westsail Owners Alliance - Thread: "Cockpit Awning"
Westsail Westsail Owners Affiliation
 Important information about this site! 

Thread: "Cockpit Awning"

12,268 posts on 2,444 threads   •   From Mar 07, 2004 - Jan 08, 2012


Text Strings  

Full Phrase  


All Words  

Any Word  


Message Text

Text & Author  


Cockpit Awning

Jerry Turberville

If you do have a cockpit awning what are you using? Can you sail with the awning up, or do you have to take it down? I just saw what I think is a T type awning on a boat in Florida. I think any hard dodger or awning would be custom, and probably pricey. Since we're going to live aboard I'm also looking at installing removable side panels. I seem to remember seeing a W32 with this arrangement, but can't quite remember where I saw it.

Randell 'Randy' Kocurek

Hey Jerry,
Satori's set up is a bimini that extends from the aft edge of the dodger to a rail on the boom gallows. Seems to work fine under sail based on what I've seen so far. Also, prior owner Ken had rigged up some nice, sensible, relatively cheap, I presume, break away side panels that attach to the stanchions of each side of the cockpit. All seem to work very well.

Jerry Turberville

Thanks for the reply. Just "looking" I thought a bimini would work while sailing. I'm just thinking ahead a little on what can be done. I don't think I'd want to sail with the side panels in place, but definately would like to keep the bimini up.
I've seen a couple of home built fiberglass dodgers that didn't look bad at all, but think we'll stick with canvas and frame for the cockpit enclosure. One thing that does concern me a little is adding too much weight, such as a large wood cored T top etc. I'd rather conserve and have alittle more water, fuel, and food. I'm a bit reluctant to modify configurations without being sure I'm not mucking up a critical structural or load bearing point. I guess that's why this board is so important.
Thanks again.

Michael Dougan

Hi Jerry,

Sannyasin has a dodger that snaps to the front of the turtle hatch cover, and has a SS frame built up over the companion way. Sunbrella with clear windows snap onto this frame. The dodger is really really important for keeping the person on watch comfortable on a cold wet night.

Then, I have a piece of Sunbrella that slides into a groove on the top of the dodger frame, and stretches back to the boom gallows and forms a sunshade for the cockpit.

There are side curtains that I've never put up, but they would snap to the sides of the sunshade and hang down for a full cockpit enclosure (with windows).

I find the sunshade and dodger to be sufficient.

You can probably see some of that in this picture.


Fred K. Cheney

What a pretty boat! I'd love to see some closeup photos of the turtle hatch and dodger arrangement...

Jerry Turberville

I agree with Fred that is a gorgeous boat, of course I'm a little biased. How long have you had the dodger, or rather the isenglas (sp?) up and in the weather? I never liked trying to look through it after it had been up a few years. I'm thinking the life could be extended if it's taken care of regularly and not left fade to the elements. Well, that's why it's called maintenance.
As far as the side panels, we will be living in northern CA for a while and my thought was it would extend the winter living area while at the dock or at anchor. I don't think it would be a good idea to try and sail with them up.
Thanks for sharing.

Michael Dougan

Thanks Fred and Jerry,

Jerry, the PO had created a cover that is draped over the windows on the dodger when not out sailing. I think it is the sun that causes it to go opaque. After a few years, they are only slightly less clear. But, I decided to remove them one winter, to keep them from providing excess windage during storms, and found that for daysailing, there is better visibility without them. So, I just have them down-below until going off-shore. On SF Bay, I'd probably use them a lot more.

Fred, that's not a part of the boat that normally attracts a photographer's attention, so, these are the best I can do. One showing the snaps on the Turtle, the other showing more of the frame, and the eyes where the windows snap in to the top of the dodger frame.



Jerry Turberville

The covers sound like a good idea given the time and available funds. They could also add a little to the privacy factor for cockpit lounging.
Thanks for posting the photos.

Michael Dougan

Found one with the covers on....


Ken and Debra Bridger

Jerry, the side panels are made of Phiffertex material and are for shade at anchor. They could be up while sailing but I also like to see all around while moving. They were designed to let go if a wave did hit them. They are easy to put up and take down. One thing I wanted to do is make the awning with battens to bow the awning up so water would run off better and give a little more headroom. Just have to watch the boom clearance. Ken

Mark and Patti

HI Michael, Sannyasin really looks good. Are those wood spars? If so did you make them? Mark, S/V W28 Patricia A.

Michael Dougan

Hi Mark and Patti,

Thanks, they are wood spars. I didn't make them but the boats previous (and original) owner did.

More pics available at:


  Forum Archive Home    Back to Previous Page   Show Posts w/ Images   Windbag Newsletter 
This site is provided as service to Westsail Owners by Jack Webb on Westsail 32, Hull #438, at http://HighSeasDrifter.net,
This site is provided as service to Westsail Owners by  Jack Webb (s/v Drifter, Westsail 32, Hull #438)