A Proposal for a Martha Jane
By Curtis Barrow email@example.com
I have been working on a birdwatcher-type design modification for
the Martha Jane. I think I have come up with an attractive compromise, more headroom
and light, without adding too much weight topside. (See drawings
First, the birdwatcher-type cabin is only part of the cabin roof.
The floor plan and bulkheads are left the same. The stern end of the cabin
roof is raised up about a foot (more later on the exact height). It is only about
four feet long, the BW part. It ends at the foot of the forward berths, leaving them
under the original cabin roof. I accidentally drew this at about six feet at first,
and I do like the longer lines also. It would leave about four foot of the original
The open width of the BW cabin is the same width as the hatch
opening of the original plan. There are two windows (smoked lexan?) on each side of
the raised section, and one in each roof section. There are also windows on the
forward and stern ends of the cabin on each side. The forward windows have a short
sun visor extending out over them. The BW section construction is light, using 1/4
inch ply and the lexan. There is no need to ever go on top of the cabin, since it
can all be reached from within.
The original cabin roof should probably be reinforced because
there is no longer a need for the hatch stringers, although a hatch in the cabin roof
might eliminate all need to go onto the original roof except to get to the forward
cockpit. There can be a couple of deadlights on each side of the cabin.
In the BW section folding shelves allow both for a galley and
berths under. The stern end of the cabin is still the original cabin end, but
extensions of the raised wall run about two or three feet towards the stern along side of
the cockpit, and curve down to meet the gunwales. There is a
lexan window in each extension, and a triangular piece as a roof on each side. This
will provide a bit of shade and weather protection in the cockpit (my wife is very sun
sensitive). The overall silhouette is much like the Tennessee, or older commuter
boats. Without these extensions, it looks much like an AS29.
The exact height of the new roof should be determined by someone
sitting on the cockpit seat; the roof needs to be high enough for comfortable sitting
under the roof. Unlike most BW cabins, I didn't set this one up for watching from
inside the cabin, but for sun shade in the cockpit. Taller seats or longer windows
(down into the hull) would make viewing from inside possible. Actually, higher seats
in the cabin under the higher roof make sense to me, and sitting headroom would also allow
for a folding table with some leg room. It could be a folding shelf opposite the
galley shelf. Folding seats from the wall? Really thick seat cushions?
This is my concept (still years away from building...anyone have
one for sale cheap?), and I would appreciate any comments.