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Old 14-10-2016, 14:19   #16
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

From personal experience I would never buy a boat with a Volvo. Yanmar would win hands down.c an you get a test drive with the standard Yanmar? I think you will find two 30hp units to do just fine.
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Old 15-10-2016, 01:29   #17
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

On the question of size, go larger. Firstly because it will get you out of trouble (lee shore, tricky entrance in a cross sea, wind etc, running for shelter) and secondly you can motor on one engine saving a lot of engine hours. It also gives you a decent backup if one engine fails. I went with Volvo's, but I can't remember why!

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Old 15-10-2016, 05:48   #18
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

My question would be, is that 200 lbs per engine or 200 lbs for both when you switch between the 30 hp and 40 hp engines?

Honestly - I would go for the lighter version even if it is 200 lbs total. That is 200 lbs of cruising gear you can put on board and not effect your performance. Twin 30 hp engines in a light cat are going to be plenty of power and the sailing performance benefits from the boat being lighter are going to be worth the lower power.

As for the sail drives, they are a fact of life on modern cruising catamarans. Make sure to take good care of them and they will be just fine on both the Volvo and the Yanmar.

I would personally prefer Yanmars but would be curious about the Beta Marine engine. The Betas have some interesting features. I would also want to compare weight between all three.

Enjoy your new boat and let me know if you make it down to Grenada!
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Old 15-10-2016, 06:32   #19
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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Can you tell us who you're getting this from? I've heard that prices have come down due to the more favorable exchange rate with the pound but the local dealer is not passing that on.
I am going to have AR do mine in Deale next Spring, they are in Herrington Harbor North. They helped me last Spring with the VP oil change issue I had, great folks.

There is a Beta dealer much closer to me on my creek but they have a bad reputation with some of our slipmates. Most recently a few bad bottom paint jobs.

Here is a list of the dealers - I see a lot of them in Florida.

Dealer Network | Betamarine US Ltd.
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Old 15-10-2016, 08:53   #20
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

Save the weight
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Old 15-10-2016, 09:07   #21
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

Might be a dumb question but here goes:

You have the option if either sail-drives or shaft/inboard?

I always assumed that a boat was laid out for one or the other, but not either. Is this something that can be done by Balance when ordering a boat? You can't change boats with an existing set-up (either inboard or sail drive) to the other, can you? (Efficiently anyway, I realize a major rebuild would give you the ability to move motors and lengthen hulls, but I would think that's usually not practical or efficient).

On sail-drives, are there specific problems with one brand of sail drive? Or is the entire engineering theory behind them faulty?
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Old 15-10-2016, 11:09   #22
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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Might be a dumb question but here goes:


On sail-drives, are there specific problems with one brand of sail drive? Or is the entire engineering theory behind them faulty?

When learning about sail boats, there are no dumb questions.

Sail drives have been around for a while and are generally pretty reliable. The big thing is staying on top of maintenance and inspecting regularly and fixing any problems as soon as they start to appear. Of course, that applies for almost everything on a boat.

For the most part, catamarans, with a few exceptions have sail drives. There is a segment of sailors who are vehemently opposed to sail drives and are not afraid of expressing their opinions. With the nature of most catamarans set up for maximizing space, sail drives are the option most manufactures choose.
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Old 15-10-2016, 11:42   #23
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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When learning about sail boats, there are no dumb questions.

Sail drives have been around for a while and are generally pretty reliable. The big thing is staying on top of maintenance and inspecting regularly and fixing any problems as soon as they start to appear. Of course, that applies for almost everything on a boat.

For the most part, catamarans, with a few exceptions have sail drives. There is a segment of sailors who are vehemently opposed to sail drives and are not afraid of expressing their opinions. With the nature of most catamarans set up for maximizing space, sail drives are the option most manufactures choose.
Truth is virtually all new high production boats, multis and monos use sail drives. They are much cheaper to install and don't need the same skillset to install as a shaft drive. I personally prefer a shaft drive but I don't think our buyer has any choice in the matter. There are also lots of pluses for sail drives as well but maintenance is not one of them....the price of change.
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Old 15-10-2016, 12:45   #24
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

Having owned and operated both, and today with Yanmar with their SD60 saildrives,
i would not return back to Volvos for use in tropical environment conditions.
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Old 15-10-2016, 17:47   #25
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

Go with electric oceanvolt ac 14kw drives use oasis firefly carbon foam battery bank and solar pannels to help keep bats charged and motors will regenerate under sail. Your genset will keep the bats charged. With an inverter the the ac motors will last thousands of hours with less moving parts cheaper to operate(no transmission) than diesels.Firefly batts. can be discharged 100% without hurting them and recharge faster than lead acid batts. safer also because they require no maintanence.While motoring when batts charge get low the genset can kick on automatically and extend the range as long as you have fuel. ac motors are brushless and live a long long time.
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Old 15-10-2016, 18:07   #26
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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Go with electric oceanvolt ac 14kw drives use oasis firefly carbon foam battery bank and solar pannels to help keep bats charged and motors will regenerate under sail. Your genset will keep the bats charged. With an inverter the the ac motors will last thousands of hours with less moving parts cheaper to operate(no transmission) than diesels.Firefly batts. can be discharged 100% without hurting them and recharge faster than lead acid batts. safer also because they require no maintanence.While motoring when batts charge get low the genset can kick on automatically and extend the range as long as you have fuel. ac motors are brushless and live a long long time.
Not saying it doesn't sound interesting. But if the OP was interested in unconventional (and unproven in this application) pretty sure he would have mentioned it.
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Old 15-10-2016, 20:08   #27
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

My 2 yanmars engines are great but the sail drives are pieces of crap that are sending me broke.
Yanmar parts are also a massive ripoff and they love to sting you for them.
They have a very restrictive dealer parts network where unless you are in that dealers geographic area they will refuse to supply you.
That way there is no competition for parts and prices stay shy high.


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Old 16-10-2016, 17:30   #28
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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Not saying it doesn't sound interesting. But if the OP was interested in unconventional (and unproven in this application) pretty sure he would have mentioned it.
The OP may not have known about such options or not really considered them. There's nothing wrong with navy davy mentioning it.
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Old 16-10-2016, 17:54   #29
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

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My 2 yanmars engines are great but the sail drives are pieces of crap that are sending me broke.
Yanmar parts are also a massive ripoff and they love to sting you for them.
They have a very restrictive dealer parts network where unless you are in that dealers geographic area they will refuse to supply you.
That way there is no competition for parts and prices stay shy high.


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I wonder what the Federal Trade Commission would think about that.
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Old 22-10-2016, 06:25   #30
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Re: Balance 451 - Yanmar vs Volvo

Well in Australia our feds could not care less


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