The following photo essay provides information on how we changed the hatch and turtle from Westsails earlier models to the later model 32 Turtle and a modern hatch. And it began...

Companionway Flip Flop

As we started to refurbish Elysium one of my earlier projects was to add the tongue and groove ceiling to the companionway hatch. I added some reflex insulation, the tongue and grove wood. Then I put it in place and W/ went to check it out. All 100 lbs of her struggled mightily. This was not looking good.

I came up with an alternative. At boat shows many of the modern hatches were thick plexi. You could stand on them and they slid easily. Why not make a slider like the modern boats and make a turtle like our 32 had. A bit more modern than the earlier model Westsails. Quite a bit lower and yet traditional enough that we don't have a clash of two boat cultures.

One change I made from the traditional turtles is the lack of caulking in between the teak strips. Keeping any coating on those on our last boat was a real pain. The look didn't impress me all that much so we installed them without the caulking.

After all, we love the classic look of our home and wanted to keep her looking as lovely as when new.

Our new saying as we redid many of these projects became, "Well she's not New.... She's better than New!"