Open Cell or Closed Cell Cockpit Cushions?

Nov 10, 2012
53
Catalina 36 mkII Havre de Grace, Maryland
I want to replace the cockpit cushions in my new to me 2003 Catalina 36 mkII. Catalina Yacht Store has the option of open cell (3") or closed cell (2") cushions. Am I correct in that closed cell cushions are more waterproof? I sort of like the idea of thicker cushions however. What would you choose?
 
Feb 21, 2013
3,774
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
You are correct............closed cell foam is water proof and will not absorb water. Closed cell foam also floats – if your cushions go overboard they will not sink and can serve as floatation devices if a crew member goes overboard unexpectedly. Closed cell is hard – not as cushy as you might like to sit on, but very stable for walking on when you go to reef a sail, etc. They are very durable , hold their shape and resistant to mildew, rot, and UV rays. More information here: Cockpit Cushions: what are my choices for materials? - Sailing Eurybia. Also suggest covering th closed-cell foam with Sunsure, a woven fabric made with PVC-coated yarn. My cushions have 2" closed cell foam covered with Sunsure and look like the ones in the photo below.
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Nov 10, 2012
53
Catalina 36 mkII Havre de Grace, Maryland
You are correct............closed cell foam is water proof and will not absorb water. Closed cell foam also floats – if your cushions go overboard they will not sink and can serve as floatation devices if a crew member goes overboard unexpectedly. Closed cell is hard – not as cushy as you might like to sit on, but very stable for walking on when you go to reef a sail, etc. They are very durable , hold their shape and resistant to mildew, rot, and UV rays. More information here: Cockpit Cushions: what are my choices for materials? - Sailing Eurybia. Also suggest covering th closed-cell foam with Sunsure, a woven fabric made with PVC-coated yarn. My cushions have 2" closed cell foam covered with Sunsure and look like the ones in the photo below.
View attachment 200251
Thank you for your response! If you don't mind me asking, where did you get your cushions from?
 

Rick D

.
Jun 14, 2008
7,004
Hunter Legend 40.5 Shoreline Marina Long Beach CA
I have had both. Since in SoCal, we don't get much rain and I have a bimini I have good open foam. Recovered once in twenty one years. However, I had closed cell before and still do for my dinghies. Those really get beat up and weathered and have held up for those same 21 years. Comfort? Toss up IMHO. (BTW, I did have the dinghy closed-cell cushions covered with vinyl after they got a little tattered.)
 
Feb 21, 2013
3,774
Hunter 46 Point Richmond, CA
Closed cell foam is not at all uncomfortable in my opinion. I also like the fact that it holds its shape/
 
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