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Old 01-01-2018, 11:05 PM   #1
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Memory foam topper vs full cushion replacement?

Guys, I need some help on my v- berth cushions. I wanna increase my comfort for this spring (and for the long term. I very well may be a full time liveaboard by 2019).

The factory cushions on my 2000 Camano are in very good shape (both the covers and the cushions). BUT I'm not exactly overjoyed with the comfort level of them. Lol.

The easy route seems to be: Buy a huge piece of memory foam and then cut a "topper" to size. Then just cover the v- berth with a sheet and comforter. But that seems like it may not be the most aesthetically pleasing option....Unless I then have that section of foam covered with more upholstery?

The harder route: To remove all the 3 v- berth cushions and then have the internal "guts" removed and filled with memory foam.

Also, is there a better material than memory foam? If I do take the "harder route" should I do a stiff bottom foam and then the memory foam on top?

HELP! I wanna start on this project by February.....
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Old 01-01-2018, 11:14 PM   #2
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I put memory foam toppers on all 3 of my berths and then put a pseudo pillow top mattress pad /cover on top. Happy with the results and pretty inexpensive.

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Old 01-01-2018, 11:42 PM   #3
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We have a memory foam mattress with a memory foam topper. Love it. Very comfortable.
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Old 01-01-2018, 11:48 PM   #4
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Thanks guys. But don't forget, I have a v-berth. Not an island queen. So I have 2 big separate cushions and a small middle cushion to form a sleeping surface.

Whattya think?
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Old 01-01-2018, 11:50 PM   #5
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Right, you can make vee berth cushions out of any foam. I would use memory foam to make them, with maybe a foam topper. I like it soft...
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Old 01-02-2018, 12:51 AM   #6
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I bought cheap memory foam mattresses and cut them to shape. The V berth in my bow took a queen size mattress to cut to fit due to the hull curvature. I used 10" foam, which has about 2" of memory foam on top of cheaper non-memory foam below.

I have an Accu Cutter 360, which is like a jig saw with carving knife blades instead of a saw blade. Also has a plate with wheels on the bottom to make your cuts vertical instead of all over the place. It does a beautiful job, you just raise the mattress up a little on dowels or slats so the plate can travel underneath the mattress without binding as you cut.

I did the mattress and all of my settee cushions as it is a sleeper settee and I wanted to upgrade everything at once. Not as cheap as you can go, but more than satisfactory and way more comfortable than the original mattress.
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Old 01-02-2018, 06:58 AM   #7
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I had a regular firm foam mattress on board that finally was going south so I put a 4 inch memory foam topper on it. Worked for a couple years the was bad.

Ditched that and because it is nearly a regular queen, bough a higher tech memory foam mattress. Loved it at first. The mutliple layers of different foamvwere perfect. It was light and easy to deal with, especislly to get through the stateroom ladderway that is too small for anything but fokding mattresses or one that can fold or roll.

After 3 years, it has broken down enough to be uncomfortable again.

So now I am debating super expensive , custom innerspring, or just another high tech, multi foam mattress and hope for better materials.

Bottom line in my book, not all foams are created equal for full time use.
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Old 01-02-2018, 08:15 AM   #8
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We have an ikea memory foam mattress and really like it. We will buy the same for our “new” cabin when its complete. Cheaper than buying from a foam shop, I would cut one up for a vberth. Heavy though. It comes rolled up like a sausage and you cut the straps that hold it then it fills the space. Damn nuisance getting it out of there if you need to but sleep like clam.

If you can’t find the real tool, buy an electric carving knife from the Sally Ann for a buck or two. They cut foam very nicely. Watch out for the blades, they are as sharp as a filleting knife.
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Old 01-02-2018, 10:47 AM   #9
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As stated above, not all foams are equal. We have been using memory foam in various places for years. Very comfortable at first, but within 3 to 5 years it breaks down, loses its memory (Alzheimer's) or just gets hard. At the moment our boat bed is a varied density 10" mattress, used for years by the In-laws as a seldom slept on spare, then on our boat for the last 10 or so years and still as comfortable as when new. You get value for the extra $pent.
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Old 01-02-2018, 11:09 AM   #10
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The Rolls Royce of mattresses is made from natural latex rubber using the Talalay method (google all this). It is what many burn units in hospitals use.

Most any small mattress manufacturer can make one.

Through layering and coring you can get any firmness desired.

I had one made for two of my previous boats and recently bought a king size for my condo.

The up charge is not much more than a premium memory foam and it will last longer than you or the boat.

And....it is made from real trees
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Old 01-02-2018, 02:22 PM   #11
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we took the cheapie route and bought a well-reviewed foam with memory foam top (6" and 2" on top I think?), cut it to shape on the dock with a fillet knife using the old as a template, and then slapped a pillow top over the whole thing, tucking the excess underneath. Probably $200 start to finish. We're 3 years in and it's starting to get lumpy. We'll probably repeat the process in a year or so. Theres a little funk showing up under the mattress now anyway.
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Old 01-02-2018, 03:19 PM   #12
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We have had a memory foam mattress at home for 6 years now. No sign of breaking down. Had it on the boat for 2+ years without any problems.
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Old 01-02-2018, 03:20 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by South of Heaven View Post
The easy route seems to be: Buy a huge piece of memory foam and then cut a "topper" to size.

The harder route: To remove all the 3 v- berth cushions and then have the internal "guts" removed and filled with memory foam.
Confronted with the exact same quandry, I took the "middle road". Took the existing 4" cushions to the foam shop (Best Foam & Fabric, Tacoma).

They cut duplicates from high density foam--because they were able to piece and glue from odd remnants, the price was nicely discounted. The fact that the owner was a retired sailor didn't hurt either; required no explanation at all. Less than an hour while I waited.

No covering required as the new cushions ride under the old ones which have excellent covering. The 4" bunk coamings conceal the raw foam and the shape of the v-berth and associated cabinetry hold the upper layer firmly in place.

Quick, cheap and comfy, esthetically correct and I got to patronize the firm of some very nice folks.
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Old 01-02-2018, 07:24 PM   #14
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My wife's chiropractor recently purchased a new Purple mattress and loves it. She remarked that when you have hundreds of chiropractors as Facebook friends you get a whole lot of actual, first-hand feedback on things like beds... Her second recommendation was Tuft & Needle, primarily as it's 50% less than a Purple.

Anyway, our queen centerline berth has high-density foam with a memory foam topper. After 5+ years of sleeping on it, we have decided it's time to replace with something new. I realize this is not super helpful to the OP as he's dealing with a v-berth, but the rep at Purple told me they are fairly easy to cut to shape for fitting. That would, of course, void the warranty. Since they have a 100-night money back trial we're going to order one and sleep on it for at least a few weeks without cutting the angles at the foot of the bed. If we like it, we'll keep it and then cut to fit.

Could be an option for a v-berth...
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Old 01-04-2018, 11:12 AM   #15
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Thanks guys. I can't wait to start tackling this next month.

AlaskaProf: It took the shop one hour while you waited?! That's amazing service!
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Old 01-04-2018, 05:26 PM   #16
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AlaskaProf: It took the shop one hour while you waited?! That's amazing service!
It might have been longer, but they got right on it and we had engaging conversation... But as my broker says, "past performance is no guarantee of future results."

I'd recommend them to anyone in Western WA; probably a bit of a drive for you.
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Old 01-04-2018, 05:41 PM   #17
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I wanted a thicker mattress than the 4" original so I took my V berth cushions to a custom mattress shop and had them duplicate them in thicker mattress foam.

Before you think about using the existing covering, open it up and check the condition. Mine turned out to be badly mildewed and smelled terrible. Since I was having thicker mattresses made, I couldn't have used it anyway.

This wasn't cheap but if you're going to sleep on it for a couple months straight, it's worth it.

What I ended up with was covered in the same fabric standard mattresses are covered in and the edges had a fabric welt just like a commercial mattress has.
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:40 PM   #18
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it might have been longer, but they got right on it and we had engaging conversation... But as my broker says, "past performance is no guarantee of future results."

I'd recommend them to anyone in western wa; probably a bit of a drive for you.
haha!
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:42 PM   #19
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I wanted a thicker mattress than the 4" original so I took my V berth cushions to a custom mattress shop and had them duplicate them in thicker mattress foam.

Before you think about using the existing covering, open it up and check the condition. Mine turned out to be badly mildewed and smelled terrible. Since I was having thicker mattresses made, I couldn't have used it anyway.

This wasn't cheap but if you're going to sleep on it for a couple months straight, it's worth it.

What I ended up with was covered in the same fabric standard mattresses are covered in and the edges had a fabric welt just like a commercial mattress has.
Thank you. Decisions, decisions......I can't do a damn thing now; we just got 13 inches of snow today. Ugghh
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Old 01-04-2018, 06:51 PM   #20
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We did use a Costco memory foam topper which we cut to shape with heavy shears so it matched the V berth cushions. WOrked well for us for the last 8 or so years.
The topper pieces were simply wrapped with a matching colour sheet and then pinned together.


It is now time to replace all of it but it worked well for us.
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