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An objective opinion on Azimuts...

Discussion in 'Azimut Yacht' started by lwrandall, Apr 22, 2009.

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  1. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Call me hard to please, but I expect a boat over 50' to be able to handle 6' seas in relative comfort. This is the problem I found with the 60' Sinseeker, the 51 Bertram and a few others. Meanwhile, I handled the 50 Viking SC in way more than that. Even when I wasn't exactly enjoying myself the boat handled it fine.
    Another problem on the 68 I've heard about and seen is that electrical system.
  2. goplay

    goplay Senior Member

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    I've owned a couple of Azimuts, have also visited a number of different manufacturer's factories, and have sea trialed many different boats. I believe I am fairly picky wanting both functionality/sea worthiness AND style, but it is just one person's opinion.

    Within the last 3-4 years, Azimut quality has improved remarkably. While they do certain things in a way that is "different" and sometimes in contradiction to the North American market, they make a decent production boat for coastal cruising. If you focus the discussion around short duration (away from a marina for less than a week), coastal cruising, then there is a lot to like about their boats. I had an Azimut 62S in 35kn+ winds and 12'+ seas and it handled it well.

    Now if you have requirements to be away from a marina for more than a week (without necessarily needing to cross an ocean), most production cruisers fall pretty short. They usually lack sufficient storage space, fuel capacity, water capacity, etc. Even garbage storage quickly becomes a problem.

    If I could only get that new Palmer Johnson 267' World in something in the 90' range... that's stylin' with functionality!
  3. CapLady

    CapLady Senior Member

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    Back in Ft. Lauderdale!
    I'm sure PJ would be happy to work with you in building one!

    and if you need a Capt for it shoot me a pm! :)
  4. Opcn

    Opcn Senior Member

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    I was thinking specifically of materials like MDF for its ability to handle fluctuations in temperature and relative humidity with little expansion and contraction, and its milling characteristics. Also Plywood for its stability and high degree of rigidity to weight. With non-wood materials you can often make choices that can handle a good deal of direct exposure to moisture with little to no lasting damage, thanks to modern advances in adhesives.

    Fire retardation is something that hadn't even occured to me.
  5. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    Are these items something a good surveyor should find? Are lugs, steering gear materials, wiring etc. part of the survey process? Or would hiring a marine electrician, metallurgist, etc. or other specialist be prudent.

    All of these items seem very important to the safety and proper operation of a boat, but I have not heard of such details being looked at. My guess is that it is either a matter of time it takes to do a survey of these items or the surveyor doesn't have the appropriate training.

    At one time I think Yachtforums had a couple of active Azimut owners who seem to be very quiet. Also, IIRC did Nilo have an Azimut?
  6. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    IMO- The answer to this is yes.

    If as CaptJ Suggests that this problem is well known I would expect a surveyor with current knowledge of the brand to be especially vigilant in looking this area.

    It can also be very much of getting what you pay for with surveys as with any other marine business.

    Try to choose one that someone you know has used and didn't have any major issues with.

    Also remember a thorough inspection takes time and this adds to the cost for you as the one who requests the survey.

    If this is a new boat you are looking at things like steel hydraulic fittings might be what they call Yard Standard and you wont get them changed or any discount. Do what the commercial world and fishermen do and wrap them in Densotape, they will last just fine like that.
  7. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    So, if a yard is using steel for a steering component, which is essential to the safe operation. Furthermore, this part is be exposed to a salt water environment and this is considered yard standard wouldn't you question builders thinking?:confused: Steel vs. saltwater, the salt water will always win.
  8. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    I would tend to think this would be overlooked by a surveyor unless there was evidence of burn. Otherwise, he should notice lugs being off and hopefully if they were lose, but he can't know the specs of every nut on every boat. A lot of manufacturers cheap out where it can't be seen and most of the time it never comes to light ("industry standard"). Even with a situation like this Ferretti lug, although it's apparently known, how many fires have actually been started by it. If everything on a boat was brought up to top notch spec it would have cost a lot more and probably been built by.......
  9. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    Sorry, I wasn't clear. I was referring to the salt water environment in general. I have found that salt air will always find a way to get into places and cause some deterioration when that part isn't treated with the appropriate coatings.

    If I have salt water around my steering arm, I think I will have much more serious problems besides rusting.:)
  10. elsupremo

    elsupremo Senior Member

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    To get this thread a little bit back on track... ;)

    Yes, one very well-respected YF member (not stating his name because I'm not sure of proper etiquette on this one...) at one time had an Azimut and has been around them since then. He is very familiar with them and he was very kind to share some of his experiences with me regarding this brand. On his Azimut, he said he had problems with the gel coat, sea water leaking through the windshield, water leaking into the exhausts due to improper installation, and trim problems causing the boat to list 5 degrees. Additionally, in several internal areas of the boat (ie under the stairs to the cabins) he saw a lot of wood chips and dust from the yard that they left in the boat. He believes that the massive increase in production numbers has led to more emphasis on looks and marketability and less importance on build quality and functional design (a trap which Ferretti may also be falling into).

    After moving on to his 68 Ferretti, he had more experiences with Azimut - one time, while making a longer passage in choppy water, he passed a 70 Azimut Seajet. An hour after he arrived at his destination, the Azimut arrived and the owners commented to him their surprise at being passed by a smaller boat in the rough water. One of his friends owns a 70 Seajet and complains of its poor handling in rough water (particularly due to its height) and numerous build quality issues. Another friend of his purchased a 40 footer and had to have additional layers of fiberglass applied to fix numerous cracks in the hull...

    Lastly, he spoke with an engineer who had worked on a 85 Azimut for 2 years. The engineer said the boat constantly had problems and the quality was very poor.

    Not to be entirely negatively, he complimented the looks of the Azimut designs since after all, they are beautiful boats. :)

    I thought these experiences should be shared, I know they were significant for me to read.
  11. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    That sounds like poor quality control and/or their putting out boats at such a fast pace no looks after themselves.
  12. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Yeah, but they're pretty. Isn't that all that counts?:rolleyes:
  13. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Yeah, and whats the big deal, don't most Motoryachts sit at the dock 99.5% of the time anyways!!!!!!
  14. Schminsky

    Schminsky New Member

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    I have sea trialed and surveyed both the Azimut 80 and Ferretti 810 back in '04. The Azimut seemed to be the better assembled boat at the time, but after reading the survey reports the decision was made to purchase neither.

    It didn't help that the surveyor suggested (off the record and payroll, after passing on both) that for the money I ought to buy "a real boat".
  15. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    Could you share some of the surveyors comments and findings?
  16. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Don't you just hate shelling out millions only to face embarrassment.:( Used to get that when I captained a Carver.
  17. PropBet

    PropBet Senior Member

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    And you ended buying a __________ ?
    Nice that you shoot both boats down however to make the donkey and the carrot trick work, you gotta show the donkey the carrot.
  18. Loren Schweizer

    Loren Schweizer YF Associate Writer

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    Sounds like Butch was the surveyor.
  19. Hiper

    Hiper New Member

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    I currently own an 06 Azimut 68 Evolution, which I had bought new about 3 years ago. Fortunately, I have not experienced any major problems whatsoever. The boat runs quite dry (we rarely get over 6 foot seas), is comfortable, and trouble free.

    One area where I think the 68 could've benefited was with zero speed stabilizers, or anti-roll gyros. At anchor, there tends to be significant body roll, even in calm seas. I understand that Azimut have now come out with a zero-speed stabilizer option on the new 70 and larger yachts, which'll help with this issue.

    Some of the fit and finish issues that I did experience were minor, and involved such things as the refigerator door latches coming loose during body roll, poor workmanship and quality of drapes and curtains in saloon and staterooms, as well as some issues with carpeting, especially in the corners and around door stoppers.

    Other than that, the boat has been great, and I would definitely recommend one of the newer Azimuts.
  20. lwrandall

    lwrandall senior member

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    Hiper thank you for your reply.

    I was looking at the Seakeeper Anti-roll Gyro, which by the way is now available on Azimut models from 47' and higher, save the 55'. Then I looked at the price of $120,000.00 US for one and for boats 62' and higher require 2 gyros at $240,000.00 US. I understand if your boat has a list price of $3.5mil or higher $240,000.00 additional might not seem unreasonable. I really like the 58' and these following remarks are in no way negative and not a deal breaker in any way, but is just a fact. Buying an Azimut is almost like buying a Porsche, everything's an option. $2.0 mil plus boats that don't include double Racors ($4,500) or a Cable Master ($10,550 per reel) seems like a builder padding the bottom line. I would think these are standard equipment on most boats in this price range and a no brainer for inclusion on the standard equipment list.

    If you don't mind Hiper, if I get more serious may I PM you in the future?