Our boat is a '98 model, so I did a pretty thourough refit
when I bought it. Both engines were brand new so mechanically it was good, but all the windows were toast because in '98 when the industry went to polycarbonates, they didn't know the adhesive
they previously used for acrylic
was too aggressive and eventually ruined the polycarb. We cut, milled and replaced all 14 windows on my catamaran
. The boat already had a good SSB radio
and color radar
that has worked flawlessly.
I replaced the bimini
and stack pack, and most of the running rigging
, bought a new Mason anchor
, replaced the chain, mounted an electric windlass
, a friend that helped me with the windows and I installed 16K btu of heat and air along with a 2KW inverter/charger. The sails
were good but I had a light wind
headsail made to complete my sail selection.
I said that to say this... a lot of my systems were new and I really didn't have many problems for the 5 months we were out.... other than dirty fuel tank
issues (ethanol) due to non-use prior to my purchase
. Once I got the tanks
clean (the first week) we really didn't have many issues. If I would have been out for 2 years or more I may be singing a different tune, but 6 months on fresh gear
was a breeze.
The only equipment
I had trouble with I abandoned, it was the watermaker
, there was a factory defect that showed up 3 months in. I rebuilt it and it still didn't work, so I just bought water
.... Now that I'm home I'll send it to Katadyne so they can play with it a while like I did, they may have better luck.
If anyone is interested to see what I installed or changed on the refit
, we blogged the trip at WWW.SittonOnTheBeach.com
look at December and January.
When people talk about spending lots of money
cruising I wonder if they are considering hireing everything done. First off, in real life it's hard to find anyone to do anything
on an island.. lol. much less knowing how to do it right. If you have to hire everything fixed.. I'll make it simple.. don't go.
I can understand someone saying it's expensive even if you do it yourself too because parts
prices are high. Certain parts
you fly in from the US are subject to an almost 40% import
duty in the Bahamas
. A buddy in Georgetown
priced a Honda
locally and found it cheaper to fly it in from the US even after paying the hefty import
In short, we didn't find it expensive to repair stuff "out there" primarily because we didn't have to, much of it was new. Before I go back out I'll replace a few things like the autopilot
and masthead wind instrument. I replaced both with used parts my buddy gave me, but they will be new when I leave next time. I think the trick may be to leave with good fresh gear
. A NEW boat isn't always best either... You gotta get the bugs out of a new boat, and I didn't see any big Hunter
or Island Packet
dealerships where I went..lol
I have a lot of systems that purists may scoff at.. but I like comfort and can fix it if it breaks, or do without it if I need to. I have an ice maker that was supernice in the Exumas
. I have met people that say to be a "real sailor" stay simple.. it's about the purity of the wind without modern gadgets that can break....... To which I reply: If your a "real sailor" take that motor
out of your boat and go be Columbus.... I'll motor
away, fire up my generator
.. turn on the AC and make ICE when I want to thank you. Yeah.. I hate the noise
too, but I put a neat little gadget on everything I installed...... it's called an "off switch"..... and I'm not afraid to use it.... lol.
The curisers that were having the most fun had small houses back home they rented out and left their stuff locked up in one bedroom.. they had 1. roots for the little woman, 2. a place to keep their stuff for free and 3. A self healing cruise
OH, and when my wife said it was much cheaper to cruise
than to be on land.... I totally agree. Out cruising there is no FedEx to deliver the $4K a month worth of crap we tended to buy every month that we didn't buy while we were cruising... lol. So saying it was "cheaper" you need to know the baseline... lol.
Have you heard the old joke about the gal that had her credit card stolen and the husband wouldn't report it... because the theif was spending less than she did a month... lol. "cheap" is a relative term...