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Date: 20 January 2018. Draft Prevention using Foam.


I have a drafty boat. When folks say things like "be sure to crack a window when you're using your oil lanterns" I laugh. Really?!? Aboard Seaweed there are breezes even when she is closed up tight. Here is how I help seal the door into my cockpit.

You can see daylight through the top of my doorway.

Red arrows point to a STRING that prevents a lantern from banging the window when the boat rocks.

Side note regarding the string (red arrows) as seen above: When the wind and waves are "just so" the oil lantern would bang into the glass insert in the door. That was noisy. It irritated me. I saw no way to lock the lantern in place. Instead I opted to prevent the lantern from hitting the window.

This system of a string spanning the doorway does work. The lantern cannot hit the door. Instead it bounces off the string. This is also a pain in the transom when going in or out. Fortunately the conditions requiring the string barrier are few and far between. Thus I live with this "temporary" solution.


← Photo repeated for your convenience.

The problem is wind. When the temperatures drop a cold draft blows inside Seaweed. I have in the past shoved a tea towel at the top of the door. That helps.

A large gap above the sliding door lets in a lot of cold air.



It has been really cold here in St. Pete. Keeping the boat warm is harder
when the north wind blows in. My transom faces north incidentally.

I a well aware that to some 52 degrees is not terrible. I am a southern gal. It is too cold for me.

Keeping the heat inside Seaweed is imperative especially as temperatures plummet.

I was talking with my friend Tom in Apalachicola the other night. I met him a few years back and we have kept in touch. He is a former merchant marine and has more miles at sea than anyone I know. I like Tom.


Side note:
Irene taught me the benefit of calling friends [see the
Lonely No More article] a few years back. I have enjoyed keeping in touch. Tom is one of my phone friends.


This is Tom. He made the chain he is holding. Boaters have many talents and hobbies.


Doing things the old way is often economical. Tom suggested that instead of a towel I use foam. He said it would make a better seal. I just happened to have a piece of 2" square foam leftover from my Moby-Cool project.


In 2016 with the help of my friend Edwin I was able to have a permanently installed 5000btu air conditioner on Seaweed. It is a great addition to my happiness quotient. Because of the Moby-Cool cover I have my $100 a/c unit mounted. This is neat and tidy, out of the way and easy to use too. Basically, Moby-Cool is the perfect solution for those of us who use *wall-bangers.

*Wall-bangers: The standard room air-conditioner found in a house.


Edwin makes friends everywhere.

Edwin is the reason the Moby-Cool project was completed so quickly. Thanks Edwin.


Here are two articles describing the Moby-Cool project:



But I digress...
Tom suggested I use foam around my doorway into the cockpit. He said that it would compress and seal the door better than my towel system. He was right. Thank you Tom for the great idea. It worked. This was easy.

Best of all I had all the components aboard Seaweed necessary
to fix the drafty door. I was fortunate. Life does not get much better.


FOAM PIECES are shoved into the gaps.

A 2" square by 15" long block of foam came with my Moby-Cool kit. I cut the foam lengthwise using scissors. The cut is jagged. I should have used a different method to get an even cut. Repeated passes with a razor blade would have resulted in a neater end product.

My doorway into the cockpit is 21" wide. Therefore I took one of the 15" x 1" strips and cut it the appropriate width to fill in the rest of the gap at the top of the door. The excess piece was tucked into the side of the door.

As you can well imagine, the cuts using scissors are not perfect.

I wanted to put away a 2" cube, not a jumble of foam pieces. That is when I got out my nail polish.

THREE DOTS at the center of the long piece, then ONE DOT and TWO make rearrangement simple.

When I remove the foam from the door it is an easy matter to put the pieces all back together so they fit smoothly. Then I tuck the threesome at the back of my microwave. They will not move.

As I get older I have discovered something about myself: I prefer easy. Effort takes more endurance than it used to. Lack of stamina drives the urge to make everything as simple and straightforward as possible aboard Seaweed.

Stored out of the way yet easily accessible... that is exactly what I wanted for the foam.

On any boat it is a battle to keep visual clutter to a minimum. During Christmas I do not even try. Now I have my home back to normal and am therefore more relaxed. My happiness quotient continues to rise.

If only the temperatures would do so as well...

Addendum, 24 January 2020: Though this method does indeed work, I found a more permanent solution. Details on that can be found in the Inexpensive Draft Stopper article.

Is your boat drafty too?
How have you stopped these cold winter winds?

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Categories: Boat Talk, Characters, Comfort, Gear, Locations,

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