Pip's Porti-Potti and Cooler Modification
by Diane

To the left, you can see the final modification for placing the cooler in the starboard berth.

The top of the starboard berth is cut out using a jigsaw. When cutting out the top of the berth, leave 3 inches or more of the sides of the top to retain as much structural integrity as possible. Also you will notice that most of the small bulkhead underneath the berth top (at the front of the cooler) is left intact. Only a small portion of the top is removed to allow for the cooler handle. The opening for the cooler is just large enough for the cooler and trim around the edges.

Unfortunately, there is not enough room under the cockpit seat to raise the lid of the cooler, so the hinges were removed and the top is held down with a bungee cord. To access the inside of the cooler, the cord is removed and the top is then taken off of the cooler.

To empty out melted ice from the cooler, a manual bilge pump is used and pumped out into the cockpit. Also, the "berth" deck side near the step was weakened by the modification and she wanted to beef it up some since it's a place where people tend to step when going below, so an additional support was provided (not shown) inside the side wall between the cooler and the porti-potti.

The following is a "crude" drawning of where the modifications were placed.

To the right, you can see the final modification for placing the porti-potti in the starboard berth.

Not only is the top of the starboard berth removed for the porti-potti but an opening is made in the front so that it is easier to remove the porti-potti for emptying. The porta-potti is supported on the bottom with a 4X4 to keep it from sliding around on the hull and to place it at the correct angle. As soon as she is satisfied with that placement, she will epoxy a support underneath in a more permanent fashion.

For trim she used some white oak that she had in her woodshop and supplemented with some white oak molding from the local wood supplier. She attached the trim with epoxy after lightly sanding the boat surfaces first. The trim is finished with several thin coats of spar varnish.

She found that most adhesives didn't work well to attach wood to the inside of the hull and recommends that you sand, clean with acetone, and then use a two part epoxy.