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Old 08-17-2017, 05:30 PM   #1
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Flybridge & Exterior Cushion Foam Failure

Two years ago, I had new cushions made for the FB and other exterior cushions. The canvass maker used Sunbrella covers, Stay Dri open cell reticulated foam, and Phifertex mesh underlining. The idea is that moisture will drain through the cushion system and and promote fast drying. The foam is even treated with an anti-microbial agent to suppress microorganism growth. He did a first-class job – very nice!

While these are outdoor cushions, my practice is to stow them below when the boat is not in use. The majority of the time they live in the V-berth. If they got wet, I gave them plenty of time and space to thoroughly dry.

The Sunbrella is patterned (tan background with black stripes) and has started to fade – not bad, but noticeable. I guess that’s to be expected over time, but rather disappointing.

Then within a period of the last 4-5 weeks, the foam in the 2 of the cushions “deflated,” for want of a better word. The thickness is maybe 30% of new.

I called the canvass guy and he just groaned. It turns out that the sportfisher guys around here got onto Stay Dri (another brand name is “Dry Fast”) as the latest thing in 2014. I think that’s how I heard about it. My call to him was the 5th or 6th he’d gotten in the last 6 months. He, in turn, contacted his supplier. Their response: “Was it exposed to salt water? Salt water will decompose it. It’s only really intended for fresh water exposure, like on a backyard deck.”

If you’re planning a project like this, you may want to consider my experience. I’m now getting mine “refilled” with regular foam, I guess.

Anyone else have experience with this?
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Old 08-17-2017, 05:40 PM   #2
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Speaking about your sunbrella blemish did you use any protectant? If no I would advise to use 303 line of product, fabric protectant against UV and fabric guard against water. No affiliation, just used them and they are very good products

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Old 08-17-2017, 09:45 PM   #3
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The foam on my flybridge has turned to concrete after 10 years of texas heat and humitity (+8 years in the caribbean). I have never seen anything like it. It didnt disintegrate, it petrified.
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Old 08-17-2017, 10:24 PM   #4
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When our cushions get wet, we stand them up in the shower....works pretty well!
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Old 08-17-2017, 10:39 PM   #5
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I replaced my vinyl covered foam cushions with coated closed cell foam. Totally waterproof.
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:15 AM   #6
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Call Sailrite we are doing the sundeck wrap around and they are very helpful. They explained the different types of Sunbrella
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Old 08-18-2017, 06:33 AM   #7
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Drb1025....if you don't mind, where did you get the closed cel coated cusions done?
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Drb1025....if you don't mind, where did you get the closed cel coated cusions done?


I had the cushions made here: http://www.ccushions.com/marine.htm
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:54 AM   #9
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Thank you
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:19 PM   #10
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Sailrite sells open cell foam called 'Dry Fast'. Not sure if its different to the stuff the OP is referring to?

Its working fine for me, so far at least, and a bit over 3 years old. But it is mostly wet by just rain, although the Portuguese Bridge seats get some salt spray occasionally. I have vinyl covers with phifertex on the base, so I imagine the foam has little exposure to saltwater. I'm starting to think a closed cell foam with anti-mould treatment will be the way to go if i do get a problem.
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Old 08-19-2017, 06:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lou_tribal View Post
Speaking about your sunbrella blemish did you use any protectant? If no I would advise to use 303 line of product, fabric protectant against UV and fabric guard against water. No affiliation, just used them and they are very good products

L
A word of caution...
303 products are great...I've used and like them.
303 Fabric Guard is recommended by Sunbrella for retreating for water repellency.
303 Aerospace Protectant is meant for vinyl and rubber...blocks UV and provides a nice finish...but I don't believe it should be used on fabrics as it will reduce / remove the water repellant properties.
303 Fabric Guard while great for fabrics should not be used or overspray be allowed to get on vinyl windows... it will remove the plasticisers and make vinyl windows brittle and or sticky.
I am not familiar with all of the special purpose 303 products they now market..
I suspect they are basically one of the above original products.
Best advice read the labels carefully and completely before using... I have contacted them and they were very helpful with more details on best practices using their products.
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