After spending several hundred dollars & countless hours of my time
in custom designing & building my bimini room, I may not be
completely unbiased. However, I think my bimini room is better than a
combination of the OEM bimini top & boom room from GBI for the following
Many pieces of gear on the Rhodes 22 are designed to function in more
than one role. Factory standard examples of this strategy would be
the dining room table & the companionway hatch board. This strategy
has the advantage of providing greater capabilities while saving
weight & space. Assuming the goal is to have both a bimini top & boom
room, my design gives the capabilities of both.
Storage requirements with my bimini room are less because the bimini
top provides the roof & supporting framework for the boom room. These
components all store together rolled up under the bimini top. They don't
interfere with the operation of the bimini top, when that's all you want
& are more quickly deployable for the boom room when you need it.
The only bimini room components which must be separately stored are the
port & starboard side curtains. These components do not have any rigid
pieces/parts, they are just canvas. Thus, they roll up & store very compactly.
I don't know about the OEM bimini top from GBI, but my bimini top has
standing headroom under it while also allowing for light air sailing
with it up. On a hot day, this makes sailing MUCH more civilized.
Because the bimini top is mounted on swivels on the gunnel, it is
always readily available & quick to set-up. My front & rear roof
extensions deploy quickly from the bimini & don't involve setting up
any other supporting structure. With the pop top & bimini up and the
front & rear roof extensions deployed
Roger K. Pihlaja
13 Feb 2001
I don't have the GBI factory boom room. Instead, I built my own
using the bimini top folding framework. However, it is of similar size &
design to the factory boom room. There are a couple of pictures of my bimini
room on the photo website.
It really does double the boat's effective indoor living space.
Here in Michigan, at certain times of the year, there are a lot of
biting insects. So, having an insect proof living space is pretty important.
The pop top enclosure & boom room do pretty well here as long as you make
certain all the snaps & zippers are properly secured. The enclosure
canvas adds a lot of windage. Is there was a big blow coming, you wouldn't
want to leave the canvas up, especially if you were lying to an anchor. It's
hard on the canvas & the extra windage might tend to make the boat drag
anchor. However, in any reasonable sort of rain storm, the canvas does a
pretty good job of keeping out the weather.
With the enclosure up, no one can see in. But, it's a tent. Sound
travels thru it like it wasn't there.
Royal PITA Factor:
Its just one more thing you have to setup when you arrive & then dry
off, fold-up, & properly stow before you leave. However, even though it's
expensive & a bit of a royal PITA, if it keeps you from buying a
bigger boat, then it's well worth the money & trouble.
Hope this gives you a bit more perspective on the boom room, Al. If
you have any specific questions, then ask away.
S/V Dynamic Equilibrium
10 May 2001