Blue Turtle Cruising

V-berth makeover

Even with all these strange winter storms we’ve had lately, Randy and I actually managed to get a boat project done. When we bought Blue Turtle over 3 years ago, we always planned to address the interior walls. Our old boat has some very dated, mildewy, stained and ugly wallpaper that is peeling up in several places. One of the worst areas in the boat was the v-berth so we resolved to address it first. Given our time and budgeting constraints we decided to paint the interior v-berth walls in lieu of re-papering or veneering. We decided that if painting worked out well in the v-berth and we liked it, we would do our cabin next and then finish off the main salon.

The old peeling wallpaper. We were ready for it to go!
The old peeling wallpaper. We were ready for it to go!

So last Saturday we tackled the initial prep of the v-berth. We had no idea what we were getting into. As always, with a boat a small project inevitably turns into a big project. It took us the entire day to peel the old wallpaper (using a steamer), remove all fixtures and prep the area to apply a layer of Kilz. We opted to use Kilz since there was a layer of glue left after removing the wallpaper. The Kilz would help the flat interior latex paint adhere to the surface.

We also used this opportunity to remove some old (some non-working) brass lighting fixtures and replace them with new ones. Along with the prep work came with a whole lot of cleanup. Our boat is 41 years old and no matter how much I dust and clean, it generates an endless supply. With the wallpaper removed and the disassembly of everything this gave us a great opportunity to thoroughly clean every part of the v-berth.

Two old lighting fixtures were on each side of the v-berth
Two old lighting fixtures were on each side of the v-berth
Randy removes the old light fixtures
Randy removes the old light fixtures
Steaming the old wallpaper off
Steaming the old wallpaper off
Wallpaper partially peeled
Wallpaper partially peeled
Prepped and ready for paint
Prepped and ready for paint
We used Kilz as a primer and then a flat interior white latex paint
We used Kilz as a primer and then a flat interior white latex paint
Randy applies the Kilz primer
Randy applies the Kilz primer

On Sunday, with the v-berth walls prepped with the Kilz, we were ready to paint. We applied 2 layers of the white latex paint and decided to paint the wood surface under the mattresses. The end result was a super clean look for our v-berth. We were very happy with how it looks and I can’t wait to tackle the peeling paper in our cabin. I love cheap projects that make a world of difference.

With the mattresses already removed, we went ahead and painted the wood under them
With the mattresses already removed, we went ahead and painted the wood under them
Our freshly painted v-berth interior
Our freshly painted v-berth interior
New led reading lights installed
New led reading light installed on the starboard side
The freshly painted port side v-berth
The freshly painted port side v-berth

 

A cleaner and fresher look for the v-berth interior
A cleaner and fresher look for the v-berth interior
Corey's barometer installed after the paint
Corey’s barometer installed after the paint

6 thoughts on “V-berth makeover”

  1. Looks great! We just bought a ’87 41′ Defever that is very similar to yours, same layout. Our boat was not cared for, for several years and, needless to say, she is a bit of a mess. I have so enjoyed watching Blue Turtle evolve over the last 3 years into the beauty she has become. I have hope for our Moonstruck!

    Reply
  2. Looks amazing. We’re redoing the interior of an 84 Egg Harbor. When I pulled the carpet off the walls I found a fiberglass layer below it. Any advice on how to smooth that surface before applying wallpaper or paint?

    Reply
    • Hmmm, I don’t have any experience with fiberglass. You might do some online research or call a local boat yard and ask them what they would recommend since they would be familiar with working with fiberglass.

      Reply

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