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Projects: Bimini for C34

This page describes C34 owners' Bimini for C34 upgrade projects.
Please contribute yours!


Subj: Bimini for C34
Ok, let's talk bimini's. I need one.
How much can I expect to pay?
Stainless or Aluminum?
4 bow or 3 bow?
Size - Width, length, height?
Do I stop forward of the backstay or go around it with zipper?
Where exactly will frame hardware attach to the boat?
I have a dodger, but I want it replaced. It is very faded and I want to change color. I'm not sure if I should use the existing dodger hardware. It is aluminum and not as strong as I would like.
Dave Veenhuis, "Amazin' Blue, '86 C34 #104

Subj: Re: Bimini for C34
Hi Dave
I have all the measurements for my great bimini if you want me to scan them and send to you in an attached file. (I attached it here, see below) LET ME KNOW! It is the best thing that could have been done, as we HAVE to stay out of the sun as much as possible.
For a picture of Bimini up go to http://kindred-spirit.net/boatblocki.jpg
Put the slits for the backstays. If you donít the rainwater will be dripping on your back all the time. Mine has one main bar with a Y at the top and another main bar attached right above where it attaches to the deck and another Y at the top of it...meaning FOUR bars holding the top up. Go stainless as the wind will blow sideways and flex the unit. Alum will be too weak.
My canvas is seven feet wide by 7' 6" long and then there is a windshield that connects to the dodger. Make a good dry cockpit. I am 6' 3" and can stand under mine. Watch the height though as the boom will hit and that will wear out the bimini before its time.
Capt Al ~~~~_/)~~~~~~~~~~~~(\_~~~~#55 C34 _/)
"Kindred Spirit" http://kindred-spirit.net
Check out our Catalina Upgrades http://kindred-spirit.net/upgrades.html

bimini.gif (43373 bytes)   CLICK ON PICTURE TO ENLARGE

Subj: Re: Bimini for C34
If you just need a bimini, would recommend one that goes all the way from the stern pushpit rail (zippered slots for backstays) to well over the companionway. (That is if you have as much sun as we do in S. TX). This would be 4 bow and would highly recommend 1"SS tubing. All legs attach to the top of the coaming. If you get this kind you can also get a vinyl "windshield" which zips onto the front of the bimini and attaches to the cabin top. This is the kind we had (came with the boat). Personally did not like it...now I have a conventional dodger, a 3-bow bimini covering the aft 2/3s of the cockpit with a zippered panel to connect the two.... Personally like this a lot better. Ordered this from Sail Tech in Ontario (advertise in mainsheet).... Couldnít beat the price, excellent quality.... Price for the dodger with snap-on window covers, bimini, zippered connector, 1"SS frames, SS struts on the dodger and SS handholds on each side of the dodger came to about $2000 US plus $100 or so for shipping. Installation was easy, just take time and measure twice!! The best $$ spent were for the handholds on the dodger.
Would suggest you contact them for a quote, no matter which way you go, multiply their time to do the job by 2 however.
Jack, C34 # 1169, Port A, TX

Subj: Re: Bimini for C34
The 1"SS dodger frame with SS struts is very strong, highly recommend it. When boarding/leaving the boat or going forward, the SS handholds are great...everyone who sees them wants to know where I got them.... Drilling 8 - 3/8" holes in the SS tubing to install the handholds got old rather quickly however.
Also, what I didnít like about the full-length bimini with 6'4" headroom is you couldnít really trim the main down hard when close hauled without the boom hitting the bimini. The separate dodger, bimini and insert eliminates that problem. You might check your headroom under the aft/clew end of the boom when trimmed hard on close haul.
Jack Mansfield

Subj: Re: Bimini for C34
We have a bimini and love it. We are in Rochester, NY and mostly no one had them when we started but there are probably 6 or 7 of them now. They are wonderful obviously for keeping out the sun but also for sailing in the rain. There are a lot of sailors here and there are times when we are the only people sailing because of the bad weather. We sail in most anything comfortably. My husband is the big sailor, I am the motor person....anyway he is 6'4" and needs to be able to stand under this thing. This is the second bimini we have had and he has strong opinions about what he likes and dislikes and can tell you lots about it, so I will be sure to tell him to respond. Initially he got it for me as I had been a water safety instructor with too much sun and wanted out but I believe he is pretty happy with it also. We did get side curtains as well which zip on when it is so hot you think you are going to cook we put those up and they cut the low setting sun, temp drops considerably. One answer to your question is get the stainless steel (the stronger of the two) they are definitely worth the extra money....people think it is a roof and will lean on it even when you warn them...the stainless steel is quite a bit stronger than aluminum. Also be sure the window in the top is lined up so you can see the top of your sail and we had to have some leather strips put on to prevent wear but Mike will tell you that also.
Good luck, you will love the bimini......unless you race, but that is another story and they can be dropped quickly somewhat like a convertible roof on a car.

Important: The opinions expressed here are those of the individual contributors to this page, and not those of the Catalina 34 National Association or Catalina Yachts, Inc. Additionally, this material has not been reviewed by Catalina Yachts, Inc. for technical accuracy. This page's maintainer cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information or the desirability of suggested modifications or upgrades. Please obtain assistance from a competent marine mechanic or boatyard prior to making any significant modifications to your vessel.   



Last modified by Phil Imhof, Wednesday, August 11, 2004 . Copyright © 2001 by Catalina 34 International Association.  All rights reserved.