The starboard engine
is very easy for changing out the usual stuff, a bit of a twist for the oil filter
, but not enough where I would call it difficult. (The far more irritating aspect of that is Yanmar's horizontal placement of the filter, such that you're just going to have a bit spill, even with a very well-placed catch rag -- but that is Yanmar's fault and can't be helped.) While I haven't had to pop off the head
, from the looks of things it would be quite easy.
The port engine
can be made much easier by a simple modification to the galley
counter-top, which we did. We cut out an access panel in the Corian, such that when I take that off and slide out the utensil drawer, I've got great access to everything needed.
To give you an example: I helped a friend change out his water
pump impellor on a Lagoon
410 with 40 hp Yanmars. What an exercise in frustration and bruised knuckles. Took us 4.5 hours to do it. I can do the same job in 15 minutes without hurry; probably 5 if I really had to do it fast!
One of the other advantages to having the midships placement is that doing the daily engine checks is quite fast and doesn't involve tearing up the bedding (or disturbing my sleeping-in spouse).
RE: the Atlantic 42; that is one of my lusted after boats. What a fun boat that would be. I'm not sure how practical it would be for a long-distance cruiser with more than 2 people, though. It is pretty spartan and I really wonder how well it would do with the added weight. You still have to watch the weight with a St. Francis, though. They have a designed payload of 5000 lbs and I'd say that's about right. Of course, they also have a number of luxury features and space that you get before you start subtracting for payload.
Regarding the Mantas -- really nice boats, I like them and have spent a fair bit of time sailing on them. Probably the easiest to sail cruising cat out there -- they really did an excellent job in that regard. I don't like having to go thru a head
to get to a berth and the boat is really a 38 footer with transom extensions, in terms of interior
space. The curved surfaces in the bridgedeck and crossbeam result in both strength and nice water
flow. Excellent cockpit
, the galley
layout is excellent, too. What I would call a "decent" performer, but they suffer in light winds. (With a lightly loaded Manta
42, she just wouldn't move much with winds less than 10. For comparison, the other day we went for a sail out of Ensenada and had light winds on the return leg, 6 to 7 knots true and we were still making 4 to 5 through the water, without the spinnaker
. I'd expect the Atlantic to also be very good in light winds.)
One more thing about engine placement: There is no doubt that the separate aft compartments are quieter. But open engine hatches/panels stuck out on the transom? I've had to change my fuel filter
in rough, following seas with 10 minutes before coming up on the harbor entrance. It wasn't fun, even when inside in the St. F. Stuck out there at the end of the boat, moving up and down, with the thought that a random large wave might come in over my head and swamp the engine compartment? No thanks. Love the boat, otherwise.