This project by Charlton’s Marine Canvas of Yorktown, Va., involved designing, fabricating and installing a full upper and lower enclosure on a Leopard 39 boat to give its owner more living space when the weather is iffy. The primary challenge, according to Charlton’s Marine Canvas owner Mike Charlton, was connecting the upper and lower enclosures and having them flow together as one. The upper portion is rigid polycarbonate and the lower is 40-gauge flexible vinyl. The Docril fabric was chosen because of its stiffness—it resulted in a clean, flat panel for the project, Charlton says. “I used rigid and soft flexible glass in different areas depending on what worked functionally best for the customer,” he adds.
All of the lower enclosure has a full set of attachable screens to block out the sun when needed. The challenge here was to make sure that all the zippers would work interchangably between the screens and the glass panels.
Charlton completed the project in two weeks, which included a 90-minute drive to get to the boat. The final product turned out well and the customer was very happy. The project earned an Award of Excellence in the Powerboat—Rigid Enclosures category and an Award of Distinction for Marine Exterior Upholstery in the 2021 Marine Fabricators Association (MFA) Excellence Awards. It also won a 2021 International Achievement Award (IAA) and was designated “Best of Category” in the marine category.
Materials: Docril® by Docril Fabrics® LLC, SolarFix® thread by Solar Fix, Makrolon® by Plaskolite Inc., O’Sea® polished 40-gauge vinyl by O’Sullivan Films Inc.
Design, fabrication and installation: Mike Charlton, Charlton’s Marine Canvas