Craigcat actually does sell a dog seat but my dogs would be jumping in before I got them settled. They are heavy hounds and not so swift when it comes to water.
The removable crane (atkinshoyle.com/files/products/6500t-low-profile-rotating-crane.gif} has a base plate that I am thinking about bolting to the stainless steel plate on the bow of the boat just under the bow pulpit and then drilling a large round hole through the teak bow pulpit for the standpipe and then putting other angled supports bolted to the cap rail. That way it would be centered on the bow so I could lift on either side. I would have to reconfigure the way the anchors stored as it is right over where the hole would be. I think I can move it forward or to one side and still launch it through the bow pulpit. I would need a backing plate on the inside also. I think I can get to it through the chain locker.
There are better photos on the atkinshoyle web site and the base plate can be mounted flat or on the side of a bulkhead. There is a pin that goes through the stand pipe. This is the same design that other cranes use like St Croix. Atkins & Hoyle are the guys who helped me with the stern platform and lift and the metal they use has held up under a lot of stress and elements.
I rarely steer from the cabin and if I do I am standing out the door steering. The starboard seat on the Craigcat can be removed by sliding it off and I don't think it will be a obstruction from the lower helm. You could actually sit in the seats if the boat was properly supported and tied down at rest or underway. There is power on the windless that I can use to power the 12 volt winch that is on the crane. The stand pipe would have to clear the life rail. It also is light enough that it can be removed and stored on the Craigcat or I could swing it forward and it would look like I have a 50 cal or a water canon on the bow (kidding).
The Craigcat has flat rotomolded plastic surfboard-like pontoons but I will have to measure to see if they would straddle the forward hatch. If not I will have to put some plastic lumber on the deck to raise it over the hatch and then figure out how to tie this puppy down. There is a cleat just aft of the windless and I am thinking that I could mount tie downs on either side of the cabin just under the side windows.
This is going to be expensive and I want to find out if anybody else lifted something this heavy on the bow and how the boat reacts. It did not work well on the stern but that is where the tank is and I think the weight back there added to the list. I am thinking it would counter act if the lift was on the bow. I am thinking the boat would not squat like it does now with the boat hanging off the stern. It took me several thousand and allot of trial and error to come up with the solution on the stern but it works pretty well but there is fiddling around that goes into lifting it out of the water and only I know how to do it. Not something I would suggest anybody else to try.