The V-Berth Project

The V-Berth is our first area for a revamp. One of the previous owners had obviously tried sleeping in here and found it too cold so made a brave attempt at insulating with panels of loft insulation, backed by hardboard and wrapped in a vinyl. In our opinion, the v-berth was too small for the colour choice, the depth of insulation made the area almost claustrophobic for me let alone Her who I felt would struggle in here…






So She set about ripping it all out.

The loft-insulation panels came away easily, with the hardboard already proving soft and mildew-riddled.

Next came away the original headlining, leaving a powdered black dust – the original 40-year old foam rotted away.

Lost of scraping and cleaning left us with this:


The plan is to clad the v-berth in Polyethylene (PE) Foam – Camping Mat Material. PE is a closed Cell Foam that should be moisture and mildew resistant.  It has quite a good insulation rating.  10mm thick or maybe double up to 20mm thick.

Inspired by Ken’s page here we thought we would try a painted finish.

Here I tested foam adhesion and tried to paint it ..

image image

The paint adhered OK – until you touch it. 

Unsurprisingly the paint flakes off after continuous pressing of the foam.
Not unexpected when the paint forms a brittle inflexible surface on a pliable foam – it was bound to give way:

imageI have read that perhaps Acrylic paint might provide a better coating but I haven’t tested it and I think we’re going to try and cover the foam in a white vinyl instead.


The Acrylic paint seems to have faired better. Two coats required at least.

But it passed a bend test.



I’ve placed the order with Intec Foams who supplied me with 50m x 1m x 10mm of PE foam delivered to the boatyard. 50m might be a bit much but I’d rather not run out, and can always use the rest for other projects or sell it on.


One Reply to “The V-Berth Project”

  1. Blimey! You had a padded cell there – looked quite cosy if a little cramped.
    On ‘Drift’, my ’71 Centaur, the previous owner had ripped out all the headlining and glued quality white carpet all around. Initially I thought it might be impractical with mildew etc, but it has turned out brilliantly. With a little care out of season mildew is kept at bay and if there is the slightest sign of discolouration a little treatment with a mild solution of bleach deals with it totally. NB: don’t sleep in there for a bit afterwards.
    The cabin is bright with a spacious feeling and very warm – even in March! In fact I had a couple of very cosy nights there last November.

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