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Old 09-08-2008, 13:49   #1
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How Much Should These Upgrades Cost?

I will not be doing the work myself. I will be paying a boatyard in the Northeast U.S. to do it. Please assume, for purposes of answering the question, that I will be using someone someone reputable and fair, but not "bargain basement." Please also assume that I want good, reliable equipment, although not necessarily top of the line.

The boat is a 30 footer with good interior volume, so assume there is enough space. Please also assume that I plan to do some extended cruising away from land, although not necessarily an ocean crossing.

1. New diesel engine in the 25-30 hp range. I was told $15,000 for this, about half for the engine, half for the labor. Is that accurate? A drivesaver and a self-feathering prop were also recommended to me (does 2-blade vs 3 blade matter?). How much cost will those items add?

2. Hot water system. Assume that the present fresh water tankage is adequate. I know that some systems run off the engine with a heat exchanger and a separate hot water tank. There are also "tankless" heaters, usually propane. The boat has a locker for propane, since the current stove is propane. Is there a tankless heater that also doubles as a cabin heater? With a tankless heater, how do you get pressure hot water? Which approach is the best?

3. Refrigeration. There is a small icebox but no refrigeration. There is room for a deeper icebox. I don't care about a freezer, but refrigeration would be nice. Ice blocks are a PITA.

4. Upgrade electical system. The current system is functional but old. Behind the breaker panel looks like "spaghetti"

5. Solar panels (2).

6. Extra batteries. The boat has two batteries. I want to add 2 more. Should I want this?

7. New lavatory with hot shower in the V-berth area. I plan to leave a single V-berth on one side, with the lav on the other(separated by a swinging door). I'm told that the best toilet is the Lavac. I will want a holding tank that can be pumped out at a marina and a macerator (to discharge the tank at sea where legally permitted). Would anyone recommend a self-composting toilet? For the shower I will want a sump, but I don not think a separate "gray water" tank will be necessary.

8. Watermaker.

9. Pressure hot/cold water in the cockpit for an additional shower.

10. Good quality GPS/Chartplotter. Any recommendations?

11. Windvane. The boat currently has wheel steering and an autopilot, but a windvane would be nice, as it doesn't use electricity. How do you add a windvane with a wheel? There is access to the tiller post and an emergency tiller.

12. I would also add a wind generator, to charge the batteries when the boat is moored. When sailing the noise would drive me crazy.

13. Windlass for the anchors. I'm told that electric are unreliable.

My thanks in advance for your advice.
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Old 09-08-2008, 19:26   #2
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1) Repower costs, 7) Lavac and 13) Windlass

As I have repowered Boracay, fitted a Lavac with holding tank and overhauled and powered the electric windlass my comments...

General:- Boracay had virtually no internal fittings or furniture when I acquired her. More comments and photos can be found in my blog.

1) The rule of thumb for repowering is double the engine cost. I found this to be true but I did all the work myself, including upgrading the fuel system and a new 4" exhaust. This took more than 350 hours, but an experienced professional starting from a proper existing installation would be much faster. Figure on 100 - 150 hours.
I still need to repitch the propeller.

7) I fitted a Lavac with a custom polyethyelne holding tank (about $500) using the KISS system. Probably about 300 hours by me. The holding tank possibly only needs one breather. Having the top of the holding tank not too far above the waterline will make pumping easier and reduce backflow. Including a hot shower in this could dramatically increase the time required - I have put this into the "nice, but not now" basket.
I was unable to find out exactly how to arrange the holding tank for pump out - time will tell.

13) I took the windlass that came with the boat out to the manufacturer (Arco) for overhaul. For a modest amount they checked it out, regreased it and said it was fine. They also commented that the motor was 2000 watts (not the 1500 commonly used).
I used the heaviest starter motor cables (terminals swagged by my friendly battery shop) that I could get with a relay (not really necessary).
I needed to put in some time to get the anchor chain to fall properly to the right position.
About 200 hours by me.
I had to go to all chain to get it to work smoothly.
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Old 09-08-2008, 19:47   #3
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I paid 800 for windgen air x 400 watt. I used salvage material for mast and made my own rubber mounts and support rods using scrap rubber and bimini frame materials. You grow to love the sound of the wind gen. It sure isnt annoying when you live the battery game. I have 400 watts of solar and they give more reliable power more often than the wind gen. But they work great together. when its stormy the windgen takes over when its clear and calm its all solar. More battery is better if youre not concerned with added weight. Ps the wind gen works best whand labor it could easily en sailing. I think back to some overnight sails with running lights, refrigerator running, navpilot, chartplotter and the main directing the air right at the wind gen that put out 15 amps all night. In the morning still looking at good voltage from batteries. By the time you do mast and cabling , $1400 would be my approximation for air x 400 I use a diversion regulator also to couple solar and wind gen so another 200 or so for that installed.
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Old 10-08-2008, 16:09   #4
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Thanks for the responses up to now.

So far I have:
1. New diesel engine in the 25-30 hp range. $15,000 Drivesaver? Self-feathering prop?

2. Hot water system. ??? Which approach is the best?

3. Refrigeration. ???

4. Upgrade electical system ?? (New breaker box & wiring)

5. Solar panels (2) ??

6. Extra batteries ??

7. New lavatory with hot shower in the V-berth area. $600 plus labor? How much labor? 300 hours at 50/hr is $15,000. Seems high. Macerator?

8. Watermaker ??

9. Pressure hot/cold water in the cockpit for an additional shower?? (Plumbing job, I guess)

10. Good quality GPS/Chartplotter. I'vd priced these, estimate $3,000 including the relevant charts

11. Windvane ??

12. Wind generator $1,400

13. Windlass for the anchors. I've priced these: approximately $2,000 plus installation.

14. Let me add one more thing: Boom vang with boom brake.

Please keep those guestimates coming.
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Old 10-08-2008, 16:17   #5
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I don't like Drivesavers. I think they break too easy...and then you are dead in the water. I tried them for a year and went through 4 of them on a twin screw boat. Twice they destroyed themselves for no apparent reason, leaving that engine out of commission till I got back to the dock to fix it. It became such a hassle and embarrassing to keep having to change these things out that I went back to a straight shaft coupling to tranny connection.

It's also really bad news when your shaft coupler pulls aft because it is no longer connected to the transmission and threatens to mash your dripless shaft seals together, potentially causing some serious flooding if it breaks.

A beefy drive system will stop the engine before it destroys itself in my own experience of having wrapped all kinds of odd stuff around the props and shafts doing oceanography over the years.

If you do choose to go with Drivesavers it is probably a good idea to buy two or three spares. Figure on at least thousand bucks for labor and spares.
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Old 10-08-2008, 16:42   #6
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Well the theory of the drivesaver is that it's supposed to break before anything else breaks-- right? Do they break even with a properly aligned shaft?

But maybe this is a widget I can do without LOL.
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Old 10-08-2008, 16:53   #7
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Yes, that is the theory that they are supposed to break before anything else breaks...and they do. Way, way, way before anything else breaks. Drive savers do flex a little, so an engine that is slightly out of alignment with the shaft would be less of a problem with these than without these...but then, its better to have your engine aligned anyways.

I'm sure some people have had good luck with Drivesavers. Maybe try it, but be aware they do self-destruct like they are supposed to or can self-destruct much sooner than they should.
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Old 10-08-2008, 17:03   #8
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As far as refrigeration, why not go with an Engel ? It will cost you under 700 depending on the model.
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Old 10-08-2008, 17:33   #9
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Quote:
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As far as refrigeration, why not go with an Engel ? It will cost you under 700 depending on the model.
Thanks! How much labor would you guess for the installation?
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Old 10-08-2008, 17:36   #10
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2 ,80 watt panels installed $1200-$1500 depending on deal you can swing on panels and mounting method. Ive seen a range of $4-$20 a watt.
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Old 10-08-2008, 17:47   #11
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2 ,80 watt panels installed $1200-$1500 depending on deal you can swing on panels and mounting method. Ive seen a range of $4-$20 a watt.
Thanks! How much additional for upgrading the wiring, and making provision for a wind generator and/or solar panels?
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Old 10-08-2008, 18:02   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curmudgeon View Post
Thanks! How much labor would you guess for the installation?

Simple Dc or Ac plug, comes with it, no labor at all.
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Old 10-08-2008, 18:17   #13
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And for rewiring the boat? Noone seems to be able to find a wiring diagram, and I'm wondering if having the boat professionally rewired might be a good idea as part of this "refit."
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Old 10-08-2008, 18:22   #14
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I have only seen wiring diagrams for brand new production boats. I had to create my own wiring diagram for my boat and I am glad I did it. Creating my own wiring diagram was quite an education in how things are laid out. I saw things I would have never noticed had I not done one. Be sure to include wire gauges and estimates on wire run lengths.
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Old 10-08-2008, 21:10   #15
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I paid ~$200 for a new hot water heater this season (Kuuma, 6 gallons). Installed a heat-exchange on the diesel, also has electric for 'on demand' when on shore power, but I haven't connected that yet. Total install time once I had all the parts, ~4hours.

Also replaced the freshwater pump (old one was too weak for the new HW heater). That was ~$200, and took about 1 hour to install (straight replacement).
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