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Old 04-06-2021, 12:43   #1
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boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

I recently spent 10 days helping a friend with the electrical on his boat.
Access to the engines and the wiring required a combination of circus level acrobatic skills and joints in places where most humanoids don't have joints.


To that end, are there any multihulls that are designed to allow easy access to the motors and other systems (electrical, plumbing, A/C etc.)?


I suspect the answer is no but I am curious.
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Old 04-06-2021, 13:31   #2
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

A wise thing to include in any boat search. One of many reasons I sold a 40í twin diesel powerboat was huge frustrations over horrendous maintenance/repair access issues. It was high on my new boat evaluation checklist. I was pretty impressed with Leopard at least giving it some design consideration whilst assembling. Seawind was fair. FP was mixed. There definitely are others, so keep looking. These are pretty generalized impressions. In my mind, the simpler the better. I know Iím old school, but Iím seriously not liking these digital switching electrical panels. Personally I hate motors in the cabin under the beds as theyíre a pain to work on. Sail drive haters will disagree, but having the motors in the stern compartment in most Cats makes pretty decent access. Of course, it will vary in roominess back there in the hull depending on whether itís a voluptuous cruising/charter boat, or a slim, sleek performance cat. JMHO - but kudos for thinking ahead about those issues.

Best of luck on your search.
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Old 04-06-2021, 15:15   #3
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seapig View Post
I recently spent 10 days helping a friend with the electrical on his boat.
Access to the engines and the wiring required a combination of circus level acrobatic skills and joints in places where most humanoids don't have joints.


To that end, are there any multihulls that are designed to allow easy access to the motors and other systems (electrical, plumbing, A/C etc.)?


I suspect the answer is no but I am curious.
SP

Generally the bigger cats are going to have better access. I think the Neel trimarans are particularly nice in terms of systems access.
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Old 04-06-2021, 15:43   #4
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Iíve only been on a handful of boats that were excellent. None of them were sailboats.

Although I will admit the voyage/Norseman 42 or 44 (something around that size) had pretty good access.
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Old 05-06-2021, 00:59   #5
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

It is not just access but also the engine layout. Engines under berths are best suited to Beta Marine "layout" with virtually all auxiliaries, pumps, filters, drains etc at the front of the engine. Cats with dedicated stern engine rooms benefit from Lombardini "layout" where with the exception of the alternator belt everything is located at the rear of the engine.


Very few people consider this when buying a boat or an engine.
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Old 05-06-2021, 05:45   #6
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

oddly enough the boat I was working on was a Voyage 42. It has a nice big engine room but the engine is crammed forward and sits astride a bulkhead such that the front of the engine is essentially cut off from the rear of the engine. This means to access all the relays and wiring (which is where it all started) one has to lie across the top of the engine. This is less fun than one would think after the engine has been running for awhile and the ambient temperature is in the high 90's ( 38C).


The design of the electrical panel is such that access requires x-ray vision, and octopus tentacles. Tracing a wire is nearly impossible.



Do any of the custom designs deal with these issues any better than the production boats?
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Old 05-06-2021, 06:26   #7
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

My Columbia 50 has excellent engine access all the way around. It is an earlier stick built, the later ones (late '68 and newer) have hull liners which have less, but still somewhat good access.

A video of a sistership of mine, with the hull liner, as you can see it has less, but good access.

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Old 05-06-2021, 08:20   #8
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Sounds like your average yacht to me where engine room access is an after thought.
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Old 05-06-2021, 08:59   #9
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

I can fully relate to this issue having spent hours crammed up under a Volvo engine in a 30' boat for hours replacing the water pump">raw water pump with one hand because I couldn't get the other one in there. To me the king of engine access is Hallberg Rassey as most of them have a dedicated walk in engine room. No they're not multi hulls and they certainly aren't cheap but it's obvious they put a lot of thought into the maintenance aspect of their designs. Amel also seems to have good access though you enter through the cockpit which, to me, seems less handy than the HR set up.
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:06   #10
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Very few boats have realistic engine rooms and some are beyond pitiful.

My Island Packet, Packet Cat 35 has 2 real engine rooms in the stern. Easy access to all 4 sides and nearly standing headroom for me at 6'1". As a bonus, if you empty the lazarettes the bottoms are hinged and you can raise them for more headroom, light and fresh air.

The engine rooms are one of the many outstanding features of these boats. Standing headroom throughout is another.
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:32   #11
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Multihulls? Dont most have great access? I guess not or you wouldn't b e asking. My TPI Lagoon 42 was wide open access under each aft deck/step. You could sit in there with the lid up and nothing but daylight any time you wanted.

The mono in my Avatar is a Yves Marie-Tanton 44. The engine was under the Galley Sink mid ships. It had immediate access to all 4 sides. For top access you removed the sink/counter.
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:34   #12
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Chris White's Atlantic 47 catamaran.

Reference 3:00 minute mark for engine / generator access.

https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...8&&FORM=VDRVRV
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:36   #13
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seapig View Post
I recently spent 10 days helping a friend with the electrical on his boat.
Access to the engines and the wiring required a combination of circus level acrobatic skills and joints in places where most humanoids don't have joints.


To that end, are there any multihulls that are designed to allow easy access to the motors and other systems (electrical, plumbing, A/C etc.)?


I suspect the answer is no but I am curious.
SP
What, your against boat yoga?🤣


Check out Ruby Rose on YouTube, a while back they did a comparison on various multi's, before they settled on the one they are having built. One of them had engine access like the linered Columbia, in a previous post.
Best wishes.
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Old 05-06-2021, 09:50   #14
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Only boats Ive ever been on with excellent access to everything were boats over 60' or small ships with full walk around engine/machine rooms. Anything smaller is going have some compromises. My Wildcat 35 is pretty good, but I still get in my fair share if boat yoga.

Some center cockpit monos are quite good.

My Hobie 33 is best as it intentionally has zero systems: no engine, no electronics, no plumbing = no boat yoga! But of course this is not very practical for a cruising boat.
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Old 05-06-2021, 11:07   #15
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Re: boats with easy access to motors and elctrical

Two boats I have owned had very good and excellent engine access. The Beneteau First 405 had the engine under the centerline sink with good access panels all around. My current boat, a Swallow Craft Swift 33 has unbelievable engine access.
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