1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: V-berth Cabinetry Storage Boxes

Summer has officially arrived, but for more than a month it’s been miserable in the tent. When it’s a beautiful day outside, it’s hellishly hot and humid in that plastic bubble. Using fans helps how I feel, but epoxy has a very short pot life even when I use the slowest hardener. It’s very frustrating. That said, I’m still making progress in the V-berth.

Time to install the bed foundation

Glued and screwed gussets

Mark the cabinet cut lines and rabbets in the big bed foundation panel

I use aluminum angle to guide the router

The track saw extrusions work well as a router guide, too

I use this handy little plunge saw with only 1/16″ kerf to cut the cabinet opening

Then I finish the corners with a jigsaw

This will make a nice cabinet door

Cut the last rabbets on the back-side of the foundation panel

The panel is ready for installation

But first, I’m going to make the cabinet box and attach it to the panel. I considered doing it after I installed the panel, but I think it’ll be easier if the box is installed first.

The back of the cabinet box

Trimmed here and there to clear the hull framing

After cutting the rest of the cabinet box panels, I took them home and varnished them. I’ve got a bunch of cans of Varathane, lacquer, Minwax polyurethane and Helmsman Spar Varnish I’d like to use up. The inside of these cabinets is a good place for it.

3 coats of Minwax Helmsman Spar Varnish looks pretty good

Dry fit…looks pretty good!

Dry-fit the box…we’re ready for epoxy

Glued and clamped together

The hot temps in the tent make it challenging to glue the box together. The epoxy kicks really fast. First I wet out the rabbets and the matching panel edges with straight epoxy, then I add wood flour to the epoxy and apply it over the wetted out areas. Next, I fit the pieces together and clamp until I get some of the thickened epoxy squeezing out of the joint. Then I wipe down the joint with alcohol to remove any excess epoxy, and it’s on to the next piece until it’s all assembled.

Next day, epoxy the joints and mate the box to the panel

Support the ends of the panel and weigh down the middle

I have one more box to make, then I’ll insulate everything and install the cabinets.

Next up in our 1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: More V-berth Cabinetry Storage Boxes

1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: More V-berth Cabinetry

Things are moving along in the V-berth, though not as fast as I’d like. In other words, it’s about the same as since I first started this project!


The panels fit nicely

Next, I need to prepare them for installation.

With the panel square to the floor…

…it’s not square to the wall!

The V-berth bathroom wall was cut, fitted, and installed by a clown of a contractor who was working for me a few years ago. Since he didn’t install the wall with the leading edge perpendicular to the floor, everything that attaches to it is off. And that means it takes more work to make things not look too goofy. I’ll eventually put a piece of veneer here, but it would have been nice to have the panel installed right from the start.

Mahogany 1″ x 1″ cleats will back up each joint.

The vertical cleat used to be part of the original mahogany toe rails that I recycled.

All framed out

Looking good!

Bed base panel is level but too tall

Normally, you wouldn’t use a level on a boat. But I’ve leveled the boat by adjusting the boat stands with a 4′ level on the floor. I recheck it every few months to make sure it hasn’t settled and thrown off the level.

Knocking the top off of the panel

Bed base gussets tie all the panels together

Remove the panels and cut the insulation

Wetted out and edge sealed with epoxy, then insulation is pressed in place

The marked off area and the bottom edges will get epoxy sealed

Floor cleats are glued and screwed in place

With sticky epoxy everywhere and super high temps in the tent, I called it a wrap.

Next up in our 1969 Chris Craft Roamer 46 Refit: V-berth Cabinetry Storage Boxes