V-Berth Storage

Has anyone ever cut open the spaces below the shelving in the v-berth (or in the quarter berth)? It looks like lost space that could be used for storage.

Mike Reed
Bellingham, WA


Kit Wiegman, 4/9/08

Cassiopeia has storage in both areas, in fact I removed a 60 gallon water tank out of the bow! I then installed a 35 gallon water bladder and put a floor and sole over it.

We now use this space when cruising for large bulky items, spinnaker, sleeping bags, extra cloths, etc.

The space under the quarter berth is also usable and we store engine and trans type stuff in there. However both spaces could carry more.



Tim Shea, 4/10/08

Due to leakage at the seam, I had to replace the original holding tank several years ago and it was quite the project. I agree that it must have been installed before the top was put on. I had to cut the shelf in two places that held the old tank and then work it out of the cavity it was placed in.

I bought a HDPE tank from West Marine with a similar gallon capacity as the old one. I prefabricated a couple of braces to support the old shelf, angled the new tank into place and using my third & fourth arms was able to hold the tank, hold the shelf and use the screw gun to secure everything into place. I then reinforced the area with polypropelyene strapping.

Everything has held up well except there is some movement during those times I find myself plowig the bow into a wall of water or healing over at an 85 to 90 degree angle ( something about being over canvased, blah blah blah )

Good luck with the project and wear nose plugs.

Lean Times


Don Henderson, 4/11/08 Another thought on holding tanks.

I replaced mine ten years plus ago with a 10 gallon unit, which was the max size I could get positioned under the V-berth after removing the drawer unit on the port side (some islanders don't have drawer's there - mine is a 1976). It is secured with belt straps to the bow side of the V-berth steps.

I water tested it to ensure integrity of the lines et.al. Then decided to not use it (smelly under V-Berths)and untimately installed a LectraSan sanitation unit on a shelf just aft of the mast and before the head sink. Works great, and my wife loves it!. To handle the amp requirement I installed two more batteries in the port lazarette area. Putting in the LectraSan, which is Coast Guard approved in most areas, is a bit of an exercise --had to remove the shelf under the head sink in little pieces, install a new shelf for the LectraSan, run heavy guage lines to the new batteries and a 60 amp circuit breaker.

Just in case the rules of the sea change, I've kept the unused holding tank and have Y valves that allow me to switch from the LectraSan if every needed. Cost of the Lectra-San some years ago was around $1K, $300 for the battery wiring/circuit breaker, plus the cost of the two additional batteries, which also service the autopilot/radar etc.

Don Henderson
Kindred Spirits

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