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What about Azimut electrics

Discussion in 'Azimut Yacht' started by 01modena, Sep 24, 2013.

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  1. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Good morning all,

    I am considering to purchase a 2004 Azimut Solar (model that existed after the 70 Seajet and before the 75).

    What specifics can anyone with first hand experience direct me towards bad electrics? I have an electrical engineer / electrician as part of my support team.

    I understand the whole "Italian" builder stigma but would like your real life experience. I'm new to boats but have an understanding of required maintenance through experience in aviation.

    Thanks
  2. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    I suggest you go to the SEARCH feature and put in Azimuth. A lot has been written.
  3. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Well, let's see. The electrics on the Azimuts can be ok for the most part without issues. Well the same as any other European builder that uses Eurotrash electrical components. The main problem is when an electrical issue arrises, finding and accessing it becomes very time consuming. However someone with a brain can pretty much deduce which direction things are running. If you buy it, spend an entire day inside the boat and in the engine room knowing where all of your wiring and hoses run, all of your electrical, and also breaker panels. They sub out the electrical and the joinery work, so each boat is different. The wiring is routed differently from boat to boat. Some carpenters made everything so it could be accessed, some did not.....Some things I go through and change, like I heat shrink the bilge pump connections in those sort of waterproof boxes in the bilge that aren't truely waterproof. I managed 2 different 2001 68' plus at the same time once, the electrical was totally different on both boats.
  4. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Thanks so much for your insight. I was told that the hulls for the US were set up for US components. For example the HVAC is Cruisair. Are things like the switches, breakers and relays all still European? I will have my electrician really study as you suggested.
  5. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    I did and found quite a bit. I was looking for specifics with electrical. Thanks.
  6. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    As Capt. J pointed out, each boat is done by a different jober. So each will have individual problems. One common thing I've seen are shorepower cords frying, but where the problem eminates from could be anywhere.
  7. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Components are American such as a/c systems......Other items such as fresh water pumps, sump pumps, float switches, are usually European, but can generally be converted fairly easily to US stuff. Electrical panels, breakers, wiring, etc. is typically Eurotrash and you have to deal with it......It can be sourced in the US if you know where to look. Ward's Marine Electric is a good start.....
  8. Mark Woglom

    Mark Woglom Senior Member

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    I had a shorepower cord fry on my Azimut 55. It was during a significant rain storm, and I suspected the problem was attributable to a poor connection at the dock. My wife made the connection, so I blamed her. Maybe I should have blamed Azimut?

    While I owned my 2005 Azimut 55, aside from the fried cord, I don't recall any major electrical issues. However, it was obvious to me that the wiring installation was not done with a high degree of professionalism.

    Below are some photos: (Note: the resolution isn't high enough to read the labels, but I think you'll get the idea)

    DC Panel.JPG

    DC Panel 2.JPG

    Notice how the panel labels don't align with the breakers below them? Also, while there is a breaker that is labeled "Hydraulic Gangway", I didn't have a hydraulic gangway. I never did figure out if that breaker serviced anything.

    Notice the switch in the lower panel. That's the light switch for the engine room. The panel is IN the engine room, so you need a flashlight to find/open the panel, so you can turn on the engine room light. Honest.

    If you were to look inside these panels, you'd see a rats nest of wires, most of which have cheap looking connectors. It would not surprise me if there were problems that I didn't/couldn't recognize, such as undersized wiring or breakers.

    On my current boat, the wires are all well tied, well connected, and most actually have labels. I'll bet an electrician would rather trouble shoot an electrical problem on my current boat, if for no other reason than he can get to the panels without a flashlight.

    Again, other than the fried shorepower cord, I never had any major electrical issues. I enjoyed the boat as it was wired. However, the lack of attention to detail is apparent, and that may have made a difference to me at some point.
  9. Mark Woglom

    Mark Woglom Senior Member

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    On a 2005, I found that most marine specific systems were of US origin, or at least readily available in the US. Examples included toilets, pumps, air conditioning, navigation equipment, engine controls, etc.

    Items that might be found in non-marine applications were mostly European, and some were difficult to service. Examples include faucets, door hardware, galley appliances, and laundry appliances. One problem I recall is that our shower control valves were very hard to operate, and it would have been a major project to replace them, as all the fittings were metric, and replacement parts were not available.

    Yes, almost exclusively, as best I could tell. That said, I don't recall having any particular problems with them.
  10. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Thank you Mark! This is exactly the information I was looking for: first hand information. I appreciate the detail in which you described the wiring of your boat and the type / make of the components.

    I have some other Italian manufactured vehicles and they are "Unique" only from the perspective that they too are slightly or fairly different from their siblings one or two serial numbers away.

    I am pleased to hear of your good luck with reliability. Thanks for your prompt reply to my post!
  11. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Thanks Capt J! Very insightful. Sounds like I need a plan!
  12. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Thanks NYC!

    I appreciate the hep and the insight with the shore power supply. They say boats and planes are all one offs but this takes it to a higher level.
  13. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    These breakers look like standard off the shelf, European home style breakers. I wonder if they are or if they are marine breakers that just look the same.

    One look behind an electrical panel usually tells the story about the boat quality. If you find a rat nest of unmarked or not numbered wire... RUN!

    A fried shore power cord is rarely caused by the boat, unless the builder cheaped out and used un tinned wire
  14. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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  15. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    The wires were indeed numbered at both ends of where they terminated on the Azimuts I've dealt with and am still dealing with. Here's a perfect example, the horn compressor went bad....had to locate it, not near horn, not in ER, after pulling panels and following the air hose, it was located behind the electrical solenoid panel on the aft deck. Ok compressor is bad (saltwater running out of air hose). Diagnose that it's not getting power as well.....follow wires from lower station switch, then have to pull entire engine gauge cluster to find a ton of AGM fuses and a blown fuse. Whereas they could've put it on a breaker that is easily accessible....... fixed, yes, but the entire process took 4 times longer than on most boats.....everything is like this on Azimuts.....there is no direct access to stuff that should have it, but of course you can usually access it after unscrewing a few panels.....
  16. 01modena

    01modena New Member

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    Thanks again everyone. I'm taking my wife down to see it in Miami tomorrow.
  17. oceaneer

    oceaneer Member

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    Haha
    Good luck you are going to need it!!

    I dont know why its so hard of a lesson for all of the owners out there.
    Buy the best boat you can for the money not the biggest.
    But doing the opposite keeps all of us in the marine trades in business.. So.. go and buy the biggest hunk of c@*$*@@ you can find!

    Oceaneer
  18. ArcanisX

    ArcanisX Senior Member

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    1. You can circumvent the fried cord problem by using an "intermediary connector breaker", sorry for not knowing the proper English technical term, it's basically a global breaker with two-way plugs that goes right between your cord and actual shore power. No idea if it's available readily, but one can be built pretty easily.
    Especially useful in less-then-ideally powered marinas where shore power fluctuates more then your mistress' breasts.
    2. Ask for a full wiring plan "for maintenance and service purposes" when negotiating purchase. Smooth-mouthed, you either get that or a discount.
    if you do get it, check the actual compliance (most of the times this will go back to the "discount" part).
  19. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    The electrical plan usually does not mean anything. The subcontracters never follow it, and the wiring is routed however they see fit. I've even seen them put sub breaker panels in different places on Azimuts. I once managed/maintained 2 different 2001 68' Azimuts at the same time, and electrically nothing was run the same. Even the electrical switch for the engine room lights were in different places, one inside the breaker panel in the engine room like on Mark's, and the other was actually where you came down the ladder to go to the engine room.......A large Azimut dealer that I dealt with around 2008 even told me they have issues on new boats of equipment not getting power and they'd just run new wires rather than try to make sense of where the break was.
  20. ArcanisX

    ArcanisX Senior Member

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    Yeah, I know, hence the last and most important line of mine:
    besides there is a bit of a use even in formal wiring plan because at least it says you the very basic thing of what is supposed to go where in terms of what breakers and switches correspond to what circuits.
    I heard an anecdotal story (which I prefer to consider fictional for own sanity's sake at the very least) of outer aft deck and engine room lights being hooked to one breaker. Wiring plan and a little bit of breaker-flipping and running around allows you to at least check for these kinds of maritime engineering feats.