New Stainless Steel Bimini Frame

One of my boat neighbors installed 1000 watts of solar panels over the fly bridge of his Marine Trader trawler, and gave me the the stainless steel frame of his old bimini. I have great marina neighbors!

My old aluminum frame is a wiggly, bent mess that has been repaired at least twice. I left it up in a windy rain storm once, and it broke the long sections in two separate places. Photo below. . .

I sleeved the broken places with smaller diameter tubing, securing with screws and nylocks.

So it has been functional, if ugly. This was the opportune time for a new frame, because our old bimini canvas is wearing out in several spots where the boom chafes across it.

I had to take the new frame completely apart to configure it to fit our cockpit. I needed to cut about 15 inches off of the longest legs to fit under the boom, and then visualize what I wanted the frame to do in order to put it back together. My old frame had three bows, two of which were attached to the main longest frame member.  The new frame had five bows, so I needed to figure out how that was going to work.

I realized that I had enough material to stretch a larger piece of canvas over the new frame. This is a welcome change. I will actually get more coverage over the companion way and over the stern. More shade is better! Using all five bows but in a slightly different configuration, I’ve mounted it back on the boat. You can see from the photo below, that there is actually a bow aft of the backstay. The new canvas will need a zippered section to go around the backstay, as will the bimini cover.

Like my old frame, the whole structure is supported by the longest section.

I am so fortunate to have a talented wife. . .  She will do the sewing, bless her!

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