Click for Glendinning Click for Lurssen Click for Nordhavn Click for Ocean Alexander Click for Llebroc

Maintenance costs on 48' MY

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by bamyacht, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    11,218
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Spoken like a person who's spent time on the Long Island Distressway.:D If only we could find a way to get them to mail their money and stay upisland.:rolleyes:
  2. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2007
    Messages:
    3,314
    Location:
    9114 S. Central Ave
    I just hate to see it being promoted as the best way to handle a 48 footer.

    What I read as advice was pretty much unequivocal, it was an infommercial for hiring a captain and keeping a "manager" on retainer. Maybe that flies with the denizens of that area but it is a non-starter in every place I have lived and played with boats, except the northeast.

    The place up there where I keep my owner operated and maintained 48 footer caters to valet boaters who show up to find the engine warm and the wine cool. At the end of the season they hand the "yard" the keys and pick them up again in the Spring after paying the ransom. It seems to be a time honored technique in that region to keep boating a mysterious act surrounded by a fence of cash tributes to those who have assigned themselves the role of gatekeeper. Those who don't participate are often referred to as "idiot owners" or "cheapskates."
  3. Steve in SoCal

    Steve in SoCal Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2007
    Messages:
    70
    Location:
    Land locked in woodland Hills
    Interesting comments here; as a prospective owner who is also concerned with the "real" cost to keep a boat. I am more than hands on; other than things like paint, what areas of normal upkeep require "specialized" labor? I can't see paying somebody to do work I could perform easily and, pay dearly for it. Someone mentioned a 1000.00 oil change?


    Steve
  4. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    11,218
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Once again you've read selectively. So once again the quote was: "suggest you hire a qualified deckhand or" Do I promote the use of captains? Of course I do. I wouldn't do what I do if I didn't believe in the services we provide. I firmly believe that, unless the owner is very mechanically inclined and a fast learner, his 50'+ first boat should never leave the dock without a captain on board for his first 5 years of boating. I'd love to hear channel 16 quiet just one weekend for at least 5 minutes. Even the insurance companies recognize the wisdom in that and are requiring new boaters getting big boats to at least take instruction. I know that you don't think of small boat captains as real captains, but without us there'd be a lot more bodies washing up on the beaches each year.
    As for those who use our services they're simply people who own boats to have fun on. Why spend your time working as a boat washer, mechanic or bilge rat when you could spend it making $400 an hour and hire someone to do the less enjoyable parts of boating? It's not like being as skilled as a professional mariner will enhance their lives one bit. This lifestyle is definitely NOT for the "cheapskate", and the "idiot owner" is not the one who takes care of his own boat; it's the one who doesn't do it himself nor hire someone to do it.
    So I again I recommend (not require) that a 54 year old man not take out a 48' motor yacht without a qualified 2nd hand on board, and I don't care if it's his mother-in-law if she able to help keep him safe. If his time is best spent taking care of the details of caring for a 48' boat more power to him. I'd love to meet more people on the water who have a clue instead of the parade of fools who are out most Sundays.
  5. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    11,218
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    You've got 2 motors and a gen. Each motor could hold up to 30qts. Think about changing that and the filters out and then disposing of it, not to metion bringing the new in (especially with you being on a mooring). Can't attest to the $1,000 but it'd be worth a lot to me to have someone else do it. Hate to put that in my Mercedes:rolleyes: or risk a spill.
  6. Steve in SoCal

    Steve in SoCal Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2007
    Messages:
    70
    Location:
    Land locked in woodland Hills
    I have a 25 gallon vacuum oil extractor that can drain a many Cat C15's with out spilling a drop:D

    Actually many of the boats I have looked at have waste oil tanks

    Steve
  7. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,885
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale

    The days of $1000 oil changes are over on most yachts. When the oil is changed so should the oil filter, as well as the racor, and secondary fuel filters.

    They're more expensive then that. For example if you're going to change 2-12v71's and 2 -20kw gens.
    Your talking 30 gallons of oil at $15 gallon= $450
    4- 12v71 oil filters @ $30 each= $120
    2 generator oil filters @ $12.50 each= $25
    4- Racor 1000's @ $12.50= $50
    2 DD secondaries @ $25 each= $50
    2 gen racors= $20
    2 gen secondaries = $40
    Plus any engine zincs that should be changed (could be another $200+ in parts)

    $755 in parts (guestimate) without including a days labor for 1 person if a sportfish or 2 people if a motoryacht.

    Miss 1 important detail while doing an oil change AND it'll cost you tens of thousands. Also this is the time a good mechanic will inspect everything else on the motor.


    Needless to say, someone buying a 48' MY should have someone professional to maintain and show them how to run the vessel for a season (part time/as needed basis) if they're trading up from anything smaller then 35'. They should also at the minimum take the US coast guard auxiliary safe boaters course. After a season when they understand the maintanence needs or their yacht, the maintanence schedule, and have an idea of how to properly navigate and run the vessel. They can then pick and choose what they want to do in terms of maintanence and what they'd rather hire out for. Some people are very mechanical and will get it right after showing them once or twice. Many of the buyers I see, don't get it right away, sometimes not ever.

    ALSO, it is not prudent to run any size vessel without a second person. On a 48' MY you should always have a second person on board to get lines, check the engine room as needed, in case of an emergency.

    Accidents Happen. I loaded a newish 55' Marquis yesterday on Yachtpath. I checked the fluids, then I started the generator, started the Volvo diesels. Went down in the engine room 1 minute later to check the breaker panel and saw a good amount of smoke in the engine room, I see flames 8"high and a foot wide on the STBD engine outbound side. I yelled to the mate to get a fire extinguisher as I ran to the bridge to shut down the mains, mate met me at Engine room hatch with fire extinguisher, I shut off the battery switch to the motor and put the fire out with extremely minimal damage. The connector on the p. cooling pump and the 2 or 3 wire harness going to it was all burned and thats it. If another minute went by, it would have been a LOT more damage. So things happen, and you have to be ready for them.
  8. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,502
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    intersting thread with a lot of good stuff...

    i'm curious to know how having a mate helped in this fire incident... ideally that boat should have had remote panels in teh ER from which you'd usually start the mains and genset. obviously we all start from other locations once in a while but it's good practice to start from the ER and this way you can shut down right there if you see a problem instead of having to go back up to the FB

    cheap insurance for early detection of problems is a camera in the ER with a monitor near the helm.

    i wonder why you think it would take more time/labor to do an oil change on a MY... If the boat has an onboard oil changer, it's easy to rig it so that you dont' even have to bring the pails in the ER. Depends on teh boat obviously but you can often run the hose out thru a nearby porthole or thur the ER vent on to the dock. I rigged a remote switch at the end of the hose to turn the pump on/off so that i can do the whole thing remotely. works really well, i've done oil changes on a mooring with the pails in the tender alongside and those 3412s take a little over 20gallons each!

    I'm not sure i agree on replacing the secondaries at every oil change. The racor, yes, and not both on boats with dual racors, jsut one. If the tanks are in good shape, you shoudl get more time out of the secondaries. although it's obvioulsy cheap insurance too.
  9. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2007
    Messages:
    3,314
    Location:
    9114 S. Central Ave
    No, the gist of your message was very clear, keep a captain on retainer and don't leave the dock without one. The backpedaling toned that down quite a bit to a more reasonable suggestion but not until the first message was scoffed at.

    Maybe a lot of boaters are like a lot of small plane owners, hanging around washing and waxing, wrenching and bilge crawling or just chatting with other owners and taking the boat out for a run afterwards is the whole point of ownership. Most of the small boat owners who were my dockmates when I lived aboard would come home from their office jobs and delight in working on their boats. Who says learning new skills and using them will not enhance an owner's life? I don't know what kind of "citiots" you deal with but thank heavens it's not a contagious condition.
  10. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    11,218
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    How many 48' yachts do you know with portholes in the engine room and who in their right mind is going to take off the engine room vents, that are screwed onto fiberglass, to do an oil change. I'm sure also that he's going to install engine room cameras which, to my budget, aren't "cheap".
    And let's hear it for all those boat owners we see in the marinas every Sunday covered in grease from working in their bilges. You know, the same guys we see starting their engines from the controls in the engine room. When you're pumping 40 gals of oil plus the gens overboard into a dinghy which end do you watch for a spill since you do it alone, and please tell me what they say about that in Nantauket Harbor where they'll almost lock you away for life if you put your soda can in the wrong recepticle. This is macho bunk from people trying to impress others that they have mechanical skills along with more than a bit of dillusion.
    bamyacht, enjoy your boat. Do as much work yourself as you feel comfortable with and hire the rest. Just make sure your very expensive asset is taken care of because your life could depend on it. Learn every day and again, most of all, ENJOY.
    I'm out of here.:cool:
  11. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2007
    Messages:
    3,314
    Location:
    9114 S. Central Ave
    Dillusion? Is that like a sour attitude or just getting all in a pickle?

    Chill out cap ... boating for most people is fun. It doesn't require a pro at the helm or in the engine room. An owner and a couple of friends can go out and have a lot of fun without benefit of having a Son of Magellan or I.K. Brunel onboard.
  12. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,885
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    The mate saved about a minute of time by locating and getting a fire extinguisher and got it ready while I ran to the bridge to shut the engines down and ran back down to the Engine room entrance, the mate arrived at the same time with fire extinguisher. So I had extinguisher in hand as I was going down the engine room ladder, shut off the battery switch and proceeded to put out the fire. The fire was less then a foot away from the side of the fuel tank (diesel), and had another minute gone by all of the wiring on the engine (starter wires, computer harness, and more) would have been engulfed in flames and destroyed. Very Very few under 70' yachts have a means to start the engines in the engine room. This 55' Marquis did not.

    I neutralized the situation, made sure the fire was completely out, turned on the bilge blowers and watched from outside of the engine room hatch, let the smoke clear. Once the engine room was clear, I went in and diagnosed exactly what caught fire, knew it was localized to the starboard engine and had shut off the battery power to the starboard engine, started the port engine, ran the boat to the freighter to load and ship it to Mexico so the owner did not lose his $45,000 that he paid to have it shipped by missing the ship.

    Secondary fuel filters are always supposed to be changed at every oil change interval or 100 hours (sometimes 200 depending on the manufacturer). It is cheap insurance, and when I do an oil change, I also do all of the maintanence the manufacturer requires at the oil change in the maintanence book. An engine isn't properly maintained unless all of the maintanence protocals are followed.

    A sportfish is much easier to change the oil because you are not carrying a bunch of 5 gallon buckets with oil on them through carpeting, the interior of the vessel, up and down a bunch of stairs (such as a larger Hatteras MY). You basically put plastic down in the cockpit and it's easy to get the buckets on and off of the boat and you don't have to worry about protecting the interior and the extra time it takes to go through the boat with multiple trips to and from the engine room plus with the tools needed and such. Also the generators are in a totally different room on Hatteras MY's and others, requiring more protective plastic and up and down with buckets and such. Not to mention all of the dirty filters and carrying them.

    I wouldn't dare change oil from outside of the boat. Plus it's A LOT of head pressure to pump oil that far with an oil change pump and would take forever to pump it. I'm lucky if the built in oil change pumps actually work on half of the boats I've ever changed oil on. Most boats get the oil changed every 2 years because they're not seeing a lot of use and when the last guy burned the pump out and never said anything, or the owner didn't want to buy a new one. Otherwise I've got to connect my pump to the pump out hoses or dipstick it which takes time. Of course when the oil change pump works, it goes quicker.
  13. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,502
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    lol... as i said it depends on the boat layout... on my 53, i could run the hose thru the ER vent, I have access outside of the engine.. i don't do it for oil change since my 8V71 only take one pail of oil each. it's easy to just carry the 2 pails downstairs. nothing to unscrew though... When i refuel, i actually run a vent bypass out the vent and up on deck to the fillers, this way i never have anything spitting out...

    on teh 70 footer i run, I either run the hose up the stairs which are next to the aft deck door or in the masterand out a porthole...

    FYIm I wasnt' trying to "impress" anyone, jsut to pass on a tip that some may find useful. the tip is to run a pair of wire along the hose and put a remote switch to control the oil change pump from the end of the hose (on the dock or in the tender). It makes it so easy to do an oil change that there is really no reason to pay $100/hr labor! when a pail is nearly full of used oil, I turn off teh pump, let the hose drip, wrap it and move it to the next pail...

    I usually do the oil change in Newport, not Nantucket... being familiar with the northeast, i would think that you are aware that a $55 pail of rotella probably goes for well over $100 in nantucket... that said, as long as you dont' spill anything overboard, nobody can object to someone having oil pails in a tender...


    about head and time to pump, pumping out the warm used oil is easy and i have done it both way (from inside and outside), it makes no difference. The only issue I have up north is that it's cold and the oil doens't flow very well.. it helps to pick a sunny day and let the pail warm up in the sun :)

    good save on the fire! did you find out what started it?

    I hear you about carrying stuff in and out... it's a PITA... that's why i try to find a better way, which obviously will not work on every boat. I also always keep a few spare pails, not just for the used oil but also to seal the old filter in so that they dont' drip on the way out.
  14. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,885
    Location:
    Fort Lauderdale
    The Volvo's in that 55' Marquis I think are D12's. They have a power coolant pump instead of mechanical. It started on the wiring plug on this pump (the pump I believe is either locked up or shorted out) and blew the screw on connector off and the wiring going to this connecter was on fire with flames about 8" high and 12" across the wire. It totally melted the 2 or 3 wires in this loom completely. I was extremely lucky it didn't happen ten minutes later, underway with the engine room door closed (it's the aft deck floor). I saw a lot of smoke swirling around the engine room looking down from the aft deck and when I went down the ladder a serious plastic burning smell and luckily, I saw the flames in the reflection on the side of the aluminum fuel tank considering the outbound side of the engine is a little tight.

    I usually drain the filters in the engine room in one of those larger drain buckets they sell at the auto parts store and then pour it in a 5 gallon with a funnel. Then I use a 5 gallon bucket, triple bagged with garbage bags and put the filters inside of it, then when I get to a recepticle just take the garbage bag out of the bucket and throw away. It seems though no matter how careful you are with an oil change, you always end up spilling something somewhere. Especially with the sideways mounted DD filters, or the MAN canisters. LOLOLOL I prefer to use a helper, because a lot of times it's easier to have someone catch the old filters and hand you the new ones while staying in the same spot........and mostly for carrying all of the heavy stuff LOL
  15. dsharp

    dsharp Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2009
    Messages:
    240
    Location:
    lake jackson, tx
    maintenance cost

    I'm a little afraid to enter this pissi88g contest but these are my experiences with your engines. The maintenance items that I have noticed for the 3208 cats are
    1) sheetmetal oil pan- watch for rust
    2) sheetmetal heat exchanger - keep an eye on zinc pencils and maybe use a water conditioner depending on water quality
    3) hoses from oil filter to cooler are a b$%^h to change so tend to go too long: fitting to cooler is straight pipe thread, can crack the cooler if too tight
    4) engines are marginally cooled - won't take much extra heat, ck impellers
    5) injector pump won't take much trash in the fuel
    6) check exhaust elbow
    other than that they are similar to a large gas engine
    Boat maintenance is like anything else- pay attention to where you buy your parts example don't buy from the cat store if you don't have to. If you run the boat much by yourself just lay your lines out ahead of time and expect something to go wrong. Always nice to have an extra set of hands and eyes though.
  16. hat4349

    hat4349 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2005
    Messages:
    219
    Location:
    Tampa, Florida
    I'd add one more for the 3208s.
    Keep your eye on the water pump impellers, I have replace the starboard twice in the last 4 years and the port once.

    Cap I agree with you on the captain for a novice and for a check out on a new boat. i have always gotten someone qualified on the boat I bought to go on a shake down cruise to learn the quirks of the model. I always have the admiral along on my 48 but can dock it myself with no problems.

    Pascal agree on the cameras in the ER, I put them in 2 years ago and am glad I did. Gives me piece of mind at start up and underway.
  17. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    1,156
    Location:
    Gold Coast Australia
    Maintenance and Single handed

    Some good posts and great advice. Especially Pascal's earlier posts re: the Maintenace schedule. As for using a skipper on a 48 foot boat and FIVE YEARS experience before leaving the marina (NYCAP):eek: :eek: :eek:
    You are saying that a person needs as much training to run a 48 foot boat as it does to train a Boeing Pilot or a GP Doctor!!??
    For starters, IMHO the more challenges an OWNER faces the more he learns and enjoys boating. Everytime I have gone on a cruise, there has been some issue, sometimes even the odd emergency or situation that I had to face and sort out. It has made me a far better boater (maybe even person) than if I had been able to rely on a deckhand or captian to solve. This goes for my family members, i.e wife and sons too. With respect, you are making out that boating (Plus 40foot) is in the realms that only the prfessionally trained are to be trusted or capable. NONESENSE!
    I have run my 58 footer singlehanded when I had too, no, not reclklessly or without forward planning (lines, fenders, dockhands ready at destination). It is not rocket science if the person is serious about what he is doing.

    I have previously said a lot of good things about this site however, FAR TOO much on this site is negative towards the new person to boating feeling comfortable. Some examples are (and please put yourselves in the shoes of a reader new to this site wanting info on boats and boating):
    The thread on Ethical builders
    The Bertram thread
    The Tragic accident and how the CG are thought of
    Many more
    I truly enjoy reading the new posts each day, but lately it has occured to me just how much bad news is also on this site. Sorry but its true
  18. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    Messages:
    11,218
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    Glad you are self-confident. The facts are that the average 50' boat cruises less than 100 hours a year. I hope my pilot or doctor has a bit more experience than that. Too often people buy too much boat because they can afford it and, being successful type people they don't recognize their limitations. You can often bluster your way through a business situation since you're only risking money, but on the water the consequences can be dire. On a 50' boat you need to know a lot of complicated electronics, diesel motors, residential and marine electrical systems, a/c systems, sanitation systems, anchoring methods, docking maneuvers in all sorts of adverse conditions not to mention navigation, navigation rules and the list just goes on. During the first 500 hours of boating (5 years, maybe 6 actual trips with the rest spent on lunch runs) the average boater may need his radar twice and won't have a clue about what he's looking at. They watch their boat crossing their chartplotter rarely plotting a course and not having a clue how to navigate if their electronics fail. They don't know how to read the weather or sea condition reports. Eventually they scare themselves into becoming dock queens or x-boaters. The dangers run from thousands of dollars damage for one bad docking job to damaging other's property with your wake to loss of life (which is not nearly uncommon enough). I have such fond memories such as the time I came out of Block Island in pea soup fog and watched a 60' yacht running full speed down my radar on a collision course, not responding to the VHF. When (I guess) my horn caught his attention he turned his boat to port (never slowing down). After I threw our 51 into reverse he popped out of the fog crossing my bow 15' ahead. To this day I'm certain this guy doesn't have a clue how close he came to killing at least one family. Over 50 years on the water and I'm still learning. I'll stick with my advice to learn on something small and don't get big until you know how serious your responsibilities really are or keep someone who does close at hand.
    As for the negativity here, there may be some but mostly it's realism. You'll get puff in the magazines and "you can drive a car, then you can drive a boat" followed by "thank you for the check. Bye." from a salesman. Here you're talking with a lot of people who have seen the bodies and don't want to see more. A 50' yacht is a complicated animal with serious responsibilities. Granted, 'God saves fools and drunks', but that shouldn't be counted on.
  19. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2006
    Messages:
    1,156
    Location:
    Gold Coast Australia
    Size does not count?

    Hi NYCAP,
    If it was "puff" that interested me I would not bother with this site. I understand your points, however, overstating the negatives is what I feel is happening now. I am not saying paint over the problems, but the "reality" as you put it also has a lot of enjoyment on the water!
    Your arguement that a person should grow into a 50 footer over the years as though the bigger the boat the bigger the danger does not hold water. Over the 15 plus years I have been boating on many sized boats in a lot of different situations including deep sea, terrible conditions etc. some of the most dangerous moments have been close to shore dodging idiots on jetskis and small power boats at full throttle filled with bikinis, testosterone and alcohol. 18 feet of high speed fibreglasss quite capable of taking out the bow of a 50 plus boat. Then there is the houseboat, full of drunks who have been given 5 minutes of safety at the dock before being handed the keys to a 30 foot "brick".
    In my limited experience (in comparison to the people on this site) the guy who can afford the 50 footer is more responsible and fearful and will at least take the time to learn more about water safety than the 20 yo with his birthday present! Still this is a generalisation and yes you will find the odd idiot as you encountered on a 60 footer.
    My .02
  20. dennismc

    dennismc Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2009
    Messages:
    1,164
    Location:
    Vancouver BC
    For those who are not mechanically inclined, who do not really have a true love of the water and it's dangers and who are coming into the boating world in their late teens or later I would suggest that the boating safety course be an absolute minimum and a basic mechanics course also (unless always hiring crew). It takes years to be really knowledgeable on the water. If you can't dock a 40 ft boat without crew or thrusters, stay away, and , if you can't dock a 70 ft MY without crew or thrusters, stay away.

    It's a bit like driving a fast car, those of us who love to drive seem to have better control, better reflexes and care more about the wheels than those who have to be taught to drive and don.t know how a car works. statistics prove these things out.