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Maintenance costs on 48' MY

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

  1. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    The real education in boating comes from experience and there is just no shortcut to that. The more you know, the more enjoyable it is as well.
    That's a fact. Not the # of accidents, but the severity. 40,000 lbs. just does more damage when it hits something than does a 20 footer and when the S--- hits the fan it's a lot harder to recover from. How many people do you see going back and forth with their gears in a tense situation without giving the props a chance to grab water because they don't know what brings what reaction and are expecting instantaneous results like with a car?
    If they could afford 50' they'd have it, and many do as their other boat. So they're finding out what happens to idiots on the water with something that may kill them, but at least won't cost as much to fix. BTW, I've met more than a few 50 year olds, with businesses and families, who don't have a clue of the danger they put themselves and others in. Of course there are exceptions. If the owner is mechanically inclined, flies planes or drives a bus he'll probably do fine with just a bit of instruction. The average desk jockey should start smaller.
    From your lips to God's ears. Unfortunately, when I grew up they didn't have the mechanics courses so I had to learn looking over people's shoulders. My father got us into the basic boating class as soon as they began, and I went again with my wife when I was getting her into boating. That should be mandatory.
  2. Steve in SoCal

    Steve in SoCal Member

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    This post has peeked my interest on several levels. First my choice of boats is likely a sail boat of say 50-60'. I have not sailed for many years and I would take some boat handling instruction to become proficient. That said; besides bottom work and paint I feel I possess the skills to do most of the other work on the boat myself.

    If you all would be so kind to indulge me and list the kind of work that is nessary on a recuring schedule. The schedule should include regular services and inspection intervels for things like rigging and tankage.

    I am rather well versed with mechanics, electronics, hydraulics, HVAC and power distribution. I may not know the individual parts on a boat but it is very likely I have worked on something with the same technology. I have a pretty extensive shop and have done a fair amount of heavy rigging.

    I am considering boats up and perhaps exceeding 80' of both plastic and metal construction.

    Steve
  3. biminijimini

    biminijimini New Member

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    I learned much from this thread....

    My next yacht is to have engineroom remote starts with full gauges; automatic fire surpression unit with remote pull; and a engineroom camera system...

    thanks,
    biminijimini
  4. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Water pump impellors are recommended to be changed at 2 years or 200 hours, whichever comes first. I change water pump impellors as preventative maintanence, not after they send vanes into the heat exchanger.
  5. leek

    leek New Member

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    I think you make some good points. I am 55 and have been running boats since I was 13. For the first 30 years all runabouts. 10 years ago I bought a 38 Lindell convertible. While it was being built I read Chapmans cover to cover and several other publications. As I was working I only put about 1200 hours on the boat in the last 10 years. The first year I learned a lot about docking, yards, and weather. No real bad experiences but it would have accelerated my learning with a teacher for a couple of days. I took apart all of the manuals and built a maintenence spreadsheet and had quarterly maintenance days build into my schedule. I do have a mechanic come once a year to check things out and I have generally done most of the rest of the maintenance. My total costs for the boat each year including fuel, insurance, dock, maintenance but no mortgage ran about 6.7%. The boat was just surveryed and there was very little deferred maintenance identified. Most of the things were wrong from the factory, but there were a few items that I did not know about from the manufacturer.
    I was impressed with the surveyor and plan to use him every 3 years to make a work list for the new to me 1992 Fleming, that might be a strategy to make sure you are not missing something. Also, in spite of having about 4000 hours behind the wheel I am having a captain check me out. I have driven the boat during the sea trial so I don't think he will help me much with boat handling and docking but will help with system operation and maintenance.
    As I am recently retired I hope to continue to do the maintenance with the Fleming but will occaisionally have a pro come in to help.
    I did moor the Lindell on a buoy for a while. It is hard on the boat, battery management is difficult, the boat does not stay warm, birds make a mess. I think it might be manageable but most of the moored boats in my bay are in pretty bad shape. If you put some solar panels up and have water to wash it and the weather is not too extreme it might work out.
  6. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Leek, I had to read your post twice because it made me so happy where you wrote: "While it was being built I read Chapmans cover to cover and several other publications." and "I took apart all of the manuals and built a maintenence spreadsheet and had quarterly maintenance days build into my schedule." as well as a few other items. I'm happy to share the waterways with people like you.:)
  7. leek

    leek New Member

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    Thank you. I would also like to reinforce your point about a combination of reading, experience and training as being the best way to move from one class of boat to another.
    As mentioned above I have years (43) of running boats single handed. Runabouts up to 24' until 2000 and last 10 years in 740 hp 38' Lindell Convertible (1300 hours plus another 500 on current runabouts).
    I have never damaged another property (boat or dock) or my boat but after spending about 15 hours so far with an instructional captain (on my 18 year old but new to me Fleming 55) I am very impressed with the quality of the instruction. Some of the items that he taught in the first two days that enhanced my knowledge included: proper inverter operation, proper gen set operation, methodical start up check list, pivoting boat without sliding, control of the boat via the stern at the dock, admiral (wife) piloting and docking (40 knt winds :), battery management, use of vectors to determine relative position, use of throttle during pivot to increase rotation or increase breaking, tight quarter handling, systems understanding, safer line handling, etc).
    I would encourage anyone starting boating or moving from runabout to 30' and larger and from 50' and larger to invest in education and prior experience so that you maximize your safety and enjoyment on the water.:)
  8. LandDreamer

    LandDreamer New Member

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    Just a Dreamer

    Currious, I have benn loking around at a variety of boats online. what size boat would be considered safe to traverse the Pacific. Yes, I know that for me ( A Land Lubber) a crew would be nessassary. I have many more questions but I will make this my first. Thankyou for your answers.
  9. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Look toward expidition yachts or most sailboat over 20' (reality: over 40'), but safe is a relative term. You're safe on anything until you're not. BTW, a crew only (hopefully) gets you there. It can take a lot of guts (much of which will leave you through sea sickness, boredom and fear) for a trip like that.
  10. Kafue

    Kafue Senior Member

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  11. sunchaserv

    sunchaserv Member

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    As a newbie on this site I've been trying to catch up on the tenor. On this thread I note the statement that engine oil should be changed every 100 hours. A good read of your user's manual may or may not agree with that, mine doesn't. In fact I can do 400 hours (or annually) provided the sulfur levels in the fuel are "low." My point is best you do your homework on your specific vessels systems and engines before blithely accepting internet chatter.

    The suggestion to hire a Captain for anything over 48' without any real qualifiers is silly. I've seen couples successfully operate an 80' vessel and seen couples who couldn't put their Searay on the trailer. It all depends on the interest, common sense and varied experience. The first vessel a fellow i know owned was a brand new 57' Nordhavn which he and his wife promptly took world cruising. They are now true experts, after less than a decade.

    I've seen rated Captain's put vessels on the rocks and rated Captain's save an entire vessel in distress. It all depends - best the owner put his ever increasing skills to the test early and often to establish where he does and doesn't require help.
  12. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    After world cruising a 57' Nordhavn for 10 years they should be pretty much experts, but how were they the first 6 months? That first time clipping a rock or coming into the dock too hard can more than pay for the captain. That first storm you misread could have your family refusing to ever come on board again. Learning from a captain (yes there are good and bad ones) is simply cheap insurance, and speaking of which your insurance company will most likely require it for a period because they got tired of paying claims to newbees who didn't think they had anything to learn.
  13. sunchaserv

    sunchaserv Member

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    Smart and affluent newbies know how to get a vessel insured. Certainly learning through USPS, Coast Guard, state licenses etc are available and as you suggest hiring a good captain to get them started. There are even more enlightened reads than Chapman out there too. With weather routers available, on board forecasting is much more effective. It is now 2012 and learning tools and aides abound to assist one as they gain practical experience.

    But a full time Captain for any vessel over 48 feet, I don't think owners or manufacturers are into that, especially the smart ones that use their boat for its intended purpose.
  14. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    I too would recommend a Captain for the first 6 months, on a temporary basis. There is a lot to learn with reading the water, navigating, maintanence, repairs, weather and more. Anybody that's halfway intelligent could run a 100' in open ocean or deep water in good conditions. It's the close quarter's handling, and what to do when everything hits the fan so to speak that determines whether or not your family is swimming and many sinkings could be avoided if someone knowledgable was on board to know the instant something wrong is going on, put out the fire, or shut the seacock off to the blown hose etc etc......
  15. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Affluent yes. But a smart person availes himself of expertise and experience before jumping off the deep end. The USPS, Chapman's, etc. are wonderful learning tools, but they do zero for giving real world experience. There is only one way to get experience, and until you do the time it's best to learn from those who have. The forecasting tools you speak of are great aids, but again nothing like looking up at the sky or feeling the wind to determine what's about to come your way. Those forecasting tools are primarily meant for long range cruisers so they can vary their course to go around a system. They don't tell the guy in the 48 whether he should stay on shore. Does that "Smart and affluent newbie" you speak of know how to interpret the data as it will relate to his vessel and his area? I doubt it. Does he understand that when the forecast on the VHF says 4-6' seas he can actually end up in 16' due to the swell it's riding on? Does he understand how the size of waves relate to the number of seconds between and how that effects his ride and safety? Can he look at a boat 2 miles away and know if he's on a collision course without putting an EBL on him and does he even know how to put an EBL on him while he's handling a panicked wife and 3 seasick kids while his high water alarm is blaring? How about docking and close quarter maneuvering? What book teaches you how to become one with your vessel so that you feel the slightest effect of a sudden wind gust when you're 1 1/2' from the boat next to you as you try to slide into a slip with a 3kt. cross current? I could go on, but it would take me 23 years to write it all down.
    What you're referring to is similar to a 16 year old taking a driver's ed course with no road time. He'll pass the test and get his license, but would you want your kids in his car? Even with the on road instruction ask the insurance companies what they think about new drivers. Better yet, look at what happens to your premiums when your kid starts driving your car.
    48' is a lot of boat and it can cause a lot of damage and injury. "Smart and Affluent" have absolutely nothing to do with each other except that some dumb and affluent think they automatically happen together.
    BTW, it's seldom required that the captain be full time. Just that he be on board while the boat is in motion. An owner can learn the maintenance end on his own time. Issues overlooked will only cost him. The real damage occurs when the boat moves.
  16. sunchaserv

    sunchaserv Member

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    Wow NYCap you are really running with this. Please note I never revealed what the background and experience was of the 57 owners. For all you know they may well have had real knowldege and experiencve well beyond yours.

    But this is all brought about your saying a 48 vessel requires a Captain to get things sorted out, balderdash. And I remember reading on this thread where a self admitted top notch Captain was in charge of a vessel that caught fire. I sure don't want this guy arond my vessel!
  17. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    If you run 150-200 different yachts a year for a decade and do around 200 days a year of seatime for a decade and have somewhere approaching 3500 days of seatime in your life, sooner or later a yacht that you are on WILL catch on fire. No matter how well maintained. It's how you handle the fire or situation that is important, seconds are critical. In my career I've seen anything and everything happen due to part malfunctions, acts of God, and LOU (lack of use).

    I had a yacht catch fire within a minute of starting the engines, detected it within a minute, and had the fire out and contained in less than a minute, before we even left the dock. The damage was limited to the wiring harness on the engine that caught fire from the siezed freshwater engine circulating pump and there was not an ounce of gelcoat or damage to the boat otherwise. Had it gone un-attended for another minute or two, the entire boat would have been engulfed in flames.
  18. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    The NZ Govt seems to agree with you.

    Maritime New Zealand's Boating Safety Strategy 2007 says licensing and compulsory education might have prevented 12 per cent of fatalities that happened between 2000 and 2006, while just 3 per cent of fatalities could have been prevented if the boat involved had been registered.

    Overseas experience indicated that compulsory licensing or registration did not necessarily have a significant impact on changing behaviour, Mr Ledson said.


    Extracted from here: Foveaux Strait | Call to license boaties | Stuff.co.nz
  19. Knothead

    Knothead New Member

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    I just purchased a 48 foot Californian for 1/2 it's previous value. The real kicker is in the last year before I purchased it, it recieved 2 new A/C units, new 15kw genset, new bow thruster install and a new 160 gpd watermaker. I had it surveyed, a DD mechanic to go thru the engines, new bottom job and bingo she's sitting pretty in the slip now. :D

    To NYCAP123 What are you baseing your need to hire a Captain or a full time mate on? No need for that on a 48 footer. I moved up from a 32 to the current 48 and never docked anything bigger than a 37 footer and the 48 handles like a dream, and no I have yet to use the bow thruster. As far as maintenence, It's no different than any other boat. Easier I think due to alot more room to move around in the engine room.
  20. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    It's based on the fact that there is no better teacher than experience and it's much cheaper and easier to learn from someone else's experience. I note that the 48 was not your first boat. I agree that the bigger the boat the easier everything is (although more complex) once you get past the intimidation factor. However, the bigger the boat the bigger and more costly the mistakes. There's also a lot more involved in running a boat than just getting it into the slip or working on the motors. We too often learn that after the mistake is made and it's too late. After 50+ years on the water (24 professional), what impresses me most is how much more I have to learn.