Monday, February 2, 2015

No-see-ums? No Thank You!

While our dreams of floating lazily around at anchor in a pleasant Caribbean breeze are getting closer and closer to reality, we know that it won't always, in fact, be a reality. We may be in marina for a variety of reasons, in a harbor well protected from the wind, or maybe, just maybe there isn't any wind. Crazy thought I know, but when there is a lack of wind, there's generally a plethera of bugs, the unpleasant kind of course.

I'm specifically referencing these tiny, silent, vicious little bugs called no-see-ums, a type of gnat, that leave nasty, itchy welts as the only evidence of their presence. Bonus; by the time you've been bitten, most likely a bunch of times, it's too late and you'll be doing your best to mitigate the side effects while trying not to scratch yourself raw. Sounds pleasant, right? I'm gonna go with no on that one.

These little no-see-um miscreants are able to come right through normal  screens and feast away so in order to give ourselves a space to escape to should we come under attack we're switching out our old hatch screens and making a companionway screen with no-see-um screens.

Fortunately our existing hatch screens we in good shape, all we had to do was remove the old screen and glue/sew the new screens in place.
Cutting the seams got a little annoying with the seam tape.

Kind of hard to tell but the holes are MUCH smaller in the new screens
Now we just need to create a companionway cover from scratch, as soon as we find where we left one of the four the papers with the measurements - yes, we had to take measurements four times because we kept loosing them. That's embarrassing.


  1. Thanks for posting. This is our next sewing project after the solar panels install on the bimini. Where did you get the screen from? I was going to go through Amazon but haven't started the search yet (assuming that Amazon will be less expensive then the big box stores). I can't wait to see your companionway screening - so I can pilfer the idea. :) I read somewhere that some people use a large netting (the kind that goes over a baby stroller) and then use the hatch boards to hold it in place - however, I am not loving this plan.
    ~Stacey on s/v Smitty

    1. Hi Stacey! We got the screen from a local fabric store, $4/yd I believe, a little more than Amazon but we were already there for other materials anyway so we bought what we think is enough to do both hatches, the companionway and possibly cover the opening ports. We plan to make a companionway cover that attaches to the frame around the companionway, adding a zipper down the middle. With the irregular shape of area, as in nothing square, the project should be interesting!

  2. Hey! Fortunately Luna Sea came with screens for the hatches - the Velcro is just completely dry rotted. That is definitely on our pre-Spring repair list! The gnats here are CRAZY. Also planning on screens for an enclosure for the cockpit. Looking forward to your companionway screen! I'm not sure if we have one of those stashed away somewhere or not - and we'll certainly need one. Keep on chuggin' along on those projects!!