bulwark covers

hello all,

my hatch covers are done, winch covers coming along and it’s time to tackle the bulwark covers. any of you have any pointers? what’s the best way to handle the arc as the bulwarks follow the curve of the hull? i suppose i can just jump in, but hmmm…i’m sure someone out there has a better idea.

in any case, thanks for taking the time to reply.

jo anne,
I made bulwark covers for our BCC Odyssey. Pictures are in the forum gallery. The “secret” is a paper pattern made with a roll off paper and lots of wide masking tape. Lots of pieces of paper taped together like your are wrapping the bulwarks as a present. Don’t tape anything to the bulwarks if the cover is to wrap the bulwar as on the BCC. Just use the tape to get the paper to cover the entire areas you want covered. Once it is all covered, carefully cut the paper along the place you want the material to overlap. Be sure to add an inch or so to the cut edge on the pattern to make an overlap suitable for turn snaps.
If the cover is going to be in an area where it does not wrap around and will be held on by snaps, it will be necessary to create a tape border that is stuck to the edge of the paper. When it is peeled off, match a second piece of tape to the sticky side when you create a pattern.
Remember, the secret is lots of pieces of tape holding pieces of paper together. Don’t skimp on the tape!
Good Luck

Attached are Cover Pics




what sort of paper roll did you use- a soft pattern paper or something more stiff like brown package paper? you think transparent paper would make it easier? also, did you back your snaps with material so there was no chafe against the side of the bulwark or did you find that was not necessary?

i’ve got a little different scenario than your project. i need to cover the bulwark posts as well since they are varnished on my boat.

thanks for sending along the pics.

jo ann,
We used a roll of brown newsprint like paper. I think it came from the hardware store, probably used for masking off when painting. I taped and covered the whole 28 feet then cut it in half to make a front and aft cover for each side. The smaller the section being covered the easier and it is amazing how accurate and taped pattern can be. Cut small pieces of paper and tape the devil out of it to cover the smallest areas. If you are going to cover the posts, maybe a practice on a section or two would help.

When dock walkers ask what the secret to maintaining varnished or cetoled bulwarks is, the answer is always “covers”. I have not found that the turn snap backs cause any scratches at all. Hope this helps.


i found a “patterning” paper at the sewing store. it’s made of polyester and advertises itself to be able to be cut in any direction without fraying and “pinable”. they also had a 3m tape which is repositionable.

all sounds good… now to add the human element!

thanks for the help