Summary of Changes

Hover over any of the red dots for a brief description of what we've changed so far.

Above Decks

Anchor wash
Mounted on the stern
Stacks Image 3700
Stacks Image 3887

Can't have an Auzzie boat without a BBQ and this marine version from Sovereign BBQ's, Australia is ideal. The mounting position on the stern quarter allows easy cooking with the transom both up or down.

BBQ open
Stacks Image 3693
Stacks Image 3884
Cockpit table lights
Davits Installed

At commissioning, we had the factory fitted davits installed. Eventually we found that they sagged by nearly 2 cm on the starboard side - we keep a 2.9M Highfield lightweight aluminium floored dinghy with a Yamaha 6HP outboard always hoisted. The red line shows the cut down ladder (see seperate post)

Very tidy
Stacks Image 3190
Stacks Image 3165
Showing new supports
Stacks Image 3606
Dinghy Cover
Without cover
Stacks Image 3712

When cruising there is no need to cover the dinghy since it just adds extra work every time. it's launched. However, now we have the boat in a marina most of the time and considering that for six months we experience monsoon rains it was better to have a sunbrella full cover made up. The grey hyperlon is also protected by a tailor made green sunbrella cover that velcros around the tubes.

With cover
Stacks Image 3705
Dinghy support system
Starboard support
Stacks Image 3927
Dinghy supported
Stacks Image 3924

When our dignhy is stowed it can stay fixed in position in all conditions. I had a bespoke steel cradle made up to support the starboard side rubber tube. Then on the port side there is a steel pole that clips onto the bow of the dinghy and attaches to the transom of our boat. It's purpose is to keep the dinghy away from the boat, not to hold the dinghy up. The dinghy is in fact held up on the davits via 4 strong straps and ractchet hoists attached to the top bar of the davits. Note that the hoisting pullies are also attached during long distance sailing.

Pole attached
Stacks Image 3917
Dingy supported
Stacks Image 3931
Excel anchor & 100M of 12mm chain
Main EXCEL Anchor
Stacks Image 3148

This is the second boat we've rigged with a Sarca Excel anchor from Anchor Right. It's an incredible anchor and we swear by it's incredible performance. We also changed the 40M of 10mm chian to 100M of 12mm.

Backup Anchor
Stacks Image 3155

We kept the old Delta anchor as our spare (backup) anchor. It is rigged with 20M of 12mm chain and 100M of nylon rode.

Grab bars in cockpit
Next to companionway
Stacks Image 3285
By wheel(s)
Stacks Image 3291

Had a special bracket made up to fit overr the area at the base of the mast where the electrical fittings go through the deck - to stop anyone accidentally stepping on them.
It also serves as a useful tie down point.

Cockpit table
Stacks Image 3278
Well secured
Stacks Image 3288
Line tidiers
Line tidiers
Stacks Image 3448

Cheap and easy to fit line tidiers make stowing lines in the cockpit much more organised.

On the companionway cover I've made sunbrella pouches that are used to stoe halyards not often used - main and jib halyard since furling systems plus the asymmetric spinnaker halyard.

Halyard protectors
Stacks Image 3441
Mast base electrical protector
Stacks Image 3239

Had a special bracket made up to fit overr the area at the base of the mast where the electrical fittings go through the deck - to stop anyone accidentally stepping on them.
It also serves as a useful tie down point.

Stacks Image 3233
Navpod for chart plotter
Bespoke Navpod location
Stacks Image 3997
Stacks Image 4094

Since I wanted a full sized 12 inch chart plotter above the wheel and not mounted under the cockpit table (as offered by Beneteau) I needed to design a bespoke steel frame to locate it above the port side wheel. It needed to allow a full hand to hold the steering wheel without touching it as well as allow the port side locker (mancave) to be opened as well. A design feat but achieved.

As a by product I also had the handheld section built into the side which has proved extremely useful at the stern end of the cockpit. To balance everything up I also had a handrail made for the starboard side as well.

Stacks Image 3990
Handhold starboard side
Stacks Image 4097
Passarelle (gangway)
Bracket on stern
Stacks Image 3665
Passarelle (down)
Stacks Image 4011

When cruising the Med it's essential to have a way to get on and off the boat from the stern. Here is how we solved it.

It stays rigged all the time, either folded up and secured to the pushpit or deployed.

Note that there are bungy cords at the end. This allows the passarelle to be lowered just above the dock. This stops dragging noise and damage. When you step aboard twith weight from your foot he passarelle lowers and sits on the dock.

Passarelle (stowed)
Stacks Image 3344
Passarelle (down)
Stacks Image 4014
Pullpit reinforcement
Stronger pulpit
Stacks Image 3982
Stacks Image 3979

I replaced the pulpit with stronger steel and an extra (length) section. The design was also strengthened by adding a cross section forward. These extra bars can also serve as a point to sit but it's not their main purpose.

Internal detail
Stacks Image 3972
Stacks Image 3985
Pushpit and solar steelworks
Stern 'cage'
Stacks Image 3460

Extended the pushpit by one more section and upgraded the steel thickness. This allowed a supporting structure to be built for the flexible solar panels which also provide excellent shade for the helmsman. Lastly, this enabled the davits to be bought back in line by welding sections to support them from the top. Basically I built a roll cage :)

With Bimini up
Stacks Image 3453
Solar Panels
Flexible panels
Stacks Image 3966

We've installed 4 x Soliban flexible solar panels of 130W each producing a total of 520W. They are controlled via a Victron MPP. The best part is that they also sit on top of purpose a built steel frame. Together with the bimini this also provides great shade at the helm station.

With Bimini up
Stacks Image 3959
Stern locker privacy cover
Canvas cover
Stacks Image 3485

I made a canvas drop down cover for the LifeRaft stern locker so that when moored stern too with the transom down it has a degree of privacy ... not for security, but at least stops anyone seeing in while walking past. And it ;looks better :) It's attached at the top by a strip of velcro and has a weighted bottom with an aluminium bar sewn in to keep it hanging.

Swim ladder modification
Ladder position
Stacks Image 3576

In order for the swim platform to be able to lower when the dinghy is UP in her dasvits, I had to cut down the height of the swim ladder grab bars (the curved parts either side). In order to lower the stern platform I just unclip the steps and lay them down. The ladder then clears the bottom of the dinghy.

Side view
Stacks Image 3569

Rigging & Canvas

Boom tent covers
Rolled on boom
Stacks Image 3902
Stacks Image 3895

Best thing we ever made for our boat! This sunbrella boom tent rolls up in 4 sections (2 each side zipped together). Once we anchor it takes no more than 5 minutes to have full shade in place.
The additional shade forward of the mast was made from the old bimini and has a bolt rope sewn in through the centre line which ties off on the mast and the stays.

From inside
Stacks Image 3912
Great shade
Stacks Image 3907
Braked cheek blocks
Close up
Stacks Image 3630

In order to manage two furling headsils we replaced the single cheek blocks (for just a furling jib) to double bracked cheek blocks. This allows the sheet winches to be used on either jib sheet (or furling lines).

Stacks Image 3623
Bimini redesign
Stacks Image 3197

Having had a stronger pushpit and bespoke steel frame made over it for the solar panels it was a great opportunity to redesign the Bimini. This included a zip out section right through the middle so we can see the sails while still providing shade in the cockpit.

Cabriolette open
Stacks Image 3890
New Bimini
Stacks Image 3208
Companionway sunshade
Stacks Image 3424

A simple but essential improvement to help keep the sun out of the salon. When sailing it rolls up out of the way.

Rolled up
Stacks Image 3417
Inner forestay
Stacks Image 3588

AT commissioning we had a tang fitted to in the correct position on the mast to receive an inner forestay. Thius was attached on deck at the strong point above the foreward bulkhead and a furler was also fitted. Subsequently, we're in the process of changing this to a removable system and modifying everything - so an update on the way.

Stacks Image 3581
Jack lines

Jack lines are rigged whenever we make long passages or overnighters. When we were cruising full time they stayed up the entire season.

I've detailed a lot of photos here showing the method we use for rigging our Whichard jack lines in case this is helpful to others.

Whichard Jack lines
Stacks Image 4052
Cockpit Jack lines
Stacks Image 4067
Bow cleat
Stacks Image 4028
From bow
Stacks Image 4040
Midships cleat
Stacks Image 4021
Cleats strengthed below
Stacks Image 4062
Looking aft
Stacks Image 4037
Aft section
Stacks Image 4043
Method at aft
Stacks Image 4049
Loud hailer system at spreaders
Roller furling line blocks & jammers
Stacks Image 3264

Upgraded the furling blocks to reduce friction by changing to Harken staunchion mount blocks and also fitted new brakes

Harken blocks
Stacks Image 3258
Spotlight - remote controlled
Purpose made bracket
Stacks Image 3657

A remote controlled spotlight is mounted on the starboard side first spreaders. This has a one kilometer range and can be controlled remotely from the helm. It's nearly 360 degrees and pans up and down. It's primary use is as a searchlight for safety and also useful if coming into a crowded anchorage in pitch dark.

The brand used
Stacks Image 3650
Track upgrade (from Harken to Antal)
Tri-Colour on mast head

Down below

AC plugs changed to include USB
Stacks Image 3801

Changed all the 240 volt AC outlets from Aussie plus to multi-adapter plugs that also have a built in USB port. This is extremely useful in today's mobile gadget era.

Basin in head removed
Stacks Image 3325
Stacks Image 3328

I never understood why Beneteau squashed in a small hand basin at the expense of turning the head at an angle and making it uncomfortable to sit on. So I took it out and now everything works MUCH better. There is a hand basin already outside the door.

Stacks Image 3318
Stacks Image 3336
Bed slats
Stacks Image 3864

We opted for slats under the mattresses. This provides better comfort but also assists in ventilation.

Bumwashers in heads
Stacks Image 3397

Fitted for both heads. This solution provides multiple benefits. 1. The most important- this is a very hygienic way to clean one’s derrière:) 2. No need for toilet roll - ecological as well as one less thing to remind the crew NOT to flush. 3. Replaces the toilet brush - well nearly 4. Means we only use fresh water to flush - but ... retain the seawater system as a backup.

Close up
Stacks Image 3390
Cabin Fans
Stacks Image 3853

Caframo make the best fans ... the Sirocco range is powerful but quiet. We have one in each bedroom and two in the salon.

Carpets with sewn in backing
Stacks Image 3778

We have three small carpets on the boat from Turkey. The trick to stop them slipping and becoming a danger is to use a non slip plastic underlay (which is easy to buy on rolls from most hardware stores). The clever part was to have these non slip pads cut exactly to shape and sewn on to the backs permanently. Works a treart.

Cockpit flyscreen
Stacks Image 3402

Up till now we've been hanging an adapted camping mosquito net over the open hatch. Works fine but I made a better one. The top is folded over the main hatch slides (onto Velcro inside) and there’s a pleat at the front that allows the Velcro to be attached to the outside of the front door frame as shown. No doubt a few more changes after ‘sleep trials’ but so far looking good!

Stacks Image 3409
Coffee station
Teak racking
Stacks Image 3215

We use a Nestlé Dulce Gusto coffee machine since the capsules are reradilly available in Supermarkets. It's also super convenient to make while under way (includingh milk capsules for a Latté). Had this rack made up so the machine sits out permanently and capsules are always available.

Capsules slide in
Stacks Image 3186
Cupboard with shelves added
Fresh water filter
Stacks Image 3952

A simple thing, and a personal choice. The master bedromm has a hanging cupboard the size of a small wardrobe. Well, as cruising yachties we found it more useful to store more clothes on shelves, so we converted it.

Drinking water filters
Fresh water filter
Stacks Image 3944

Installed a fresh water drinking system under the sink. It takes water from the ships fesh water syste but that water is only as good as the source (marinas etc). It's a standard system from any hardware store having 5 filters and an RO (reverse osmosis) system.

Reading Lights
Nav seating area
Stacks Image 4123

Replaced the Beneteau lights with off the shelf 12 volt LED lights from the hardware store. They have a more directional light and much better for reading. Flexible (bendy) stand allows positioning and on/off switch at top of light for ease of use.

LED lights
Stacks Image 4007
Shower screen and curtain
Teak racking
Stacks Image 4118

Another simple improvement. The spray curtain for the master shower is fitted by Beneteau sitting out from the cupboards. YOu can see the old screw holes in the photos. I relocated them closrer in to the cupboards so that the shower curtain doesn't rub against you when you have a shower! Nothing more annoying ...

Capsules slide in
Stacks Image 4111
Soap dispensers
Stacks Image 4106

A small, cheap upgrade but extremely practicle and useful. These plastic liquid soap dispensers were sourced from a local hardware store. I've added one above the galley sink and one in above both handbasins in each bathroom area.

Stops having to wory about stowing the soap each time we go sailing and refil liquid soap is available everywhere.

TV and TV cover
TV on bulkhead
Stacks Image 3252

Fitted a 36" TV permanently bolted to the bulkhead in the salon. When it's not in use the TV is covered with an oil painting that has a pine frame made to fit exactly around the ooutside of the TV. This painting has never fallen off right up to 35 knots going to windward in rough seas.

Painting cover
Stacks Image 3246
Toilet brushes
Fixed in place
Stacks Image 3830

Boring I know ... but we wanted a solution for the toilet brushes where they didn't slide all over the cabin every time the boat heeled over. These are great.

Toilet hardware
Stacks Image 3823
Wine store under bilge
Mast step bilge
Stacks Image 3843

What better place to store wine than in the bilges, the coolest place. Better still near the mast step has the least movement from the centre of gravity. Wine is simply stacked sideways with wine box cardboard in between each layer. This allows up to 18 bottles to be stored.

False floor
Stacks Image 3836


Aircon in salon
AC units

Fitted LED ighgt strip to surround the engine compartment. It's a standard hardware store item that comes with a remote control .... so I get to have bothwhite or redf colour options.

Sea water intake
Stacks Image 3681
Alba Combi added
Stacks Image 3881

The AlbaCombi can connect either directly to a sensor OR, it can connect to an existing analog gauge to take it's reading, allowing you to leave the gauge in place. It also has inputs for 2 tachometers along with a couple of alarm outputs (e.g. you could program it to sound a buzzer or light a lamp on an overheat etc). Big benefit of the system is that all the configuration is done via a Web Browser. If you have an existing Ethernet/WiFi network on your boat, the device can be accessed by opening a browser on your device of choice (PC, Mac, Tablet, Phone). Not only can you configure the device via the browser, you can also monitor all the gauges in real time (particularly useful if you wish to create a glass display using Chrome in Kiosk mode).

Auxiliary bilge pump
Bilge pumps
Stacks Image 3758

ON the basis of insurance I fitted an auxilliary bilge pump just above the Rule pump. Its a Whale Supersub Smart Low Profile Automatic Bilge Pump with it's own independent switching. I also made a very old fashoined mechanical float switch from a toilet flush (the grey baloon in the picture - it works:)

Whale bilge pump
Stacks Image 3763
Battery monitors
Stacks Image 3564

With Bluetooth built-in, the BMV Smart monitor is inyternet and bluetooth enabled. Wireless communication between the Victron system enhances performance. A Victron App allows: - monitoring all important data on single screen, - view historical data, - Battery voltage, current, power, ampere-hours consumed and state of charge - Remaining time at the current rate of discharge - Programmable visual and audible alarm - Programmable relay, to turn off non critical loads or to run a generator when needed - 500 Amp quick connect shunt and connection kit - Shunt selection capability up to 10,000 Amps - Stores a wide range of historical events, which can be used to evaluate usage patterns and battery health - Wide input voltage range: 6.5 – 70V - High current measurement resolution: 10 mA (0.01A) - Additional input to measure voltage (of a second battery), temperature or midpoint voltage, and corresponding alarm and relay settings

Engine room lights
Stacks Image 3436

Fitted LED ighgt strip to surround the engine compartment. It's a standard hardware store item that comes with a remote control .... so I get to have bothwhite or redf colour options.

Red for night time
Stacks Image 3429
Gas lockers & solenoids
Stacks Image 3642

Electric solenoids were retro fitted to add an extra layer of security for the on board gas system. A two way splitter also allows one bottle to supply the gas to the BBQ (outside) and the cooker (inside).

Genset auxiliary hours reader
Stacks Image 3273

An auxilliary guage has been mounted in the electronics cabinet so that the Generator hours can be easilly seen. The existing counter is on the main control panekl on the genset and requires lifting the stern seat and getting ito the stern lazerette to see it.

This information is used daily in the LOG to assist in calculating used and available diesel fuel.

Lithium batteries (for house banks)
Stacks Image 4142
More room in locker
Stacks Image 3556

Got fed up with always having to be careful managing the boats power supply - especially overnight. Also dissapointed with ethe short life cycle of the house batteries (only about 3 years). So, bit the bullet and coverted to Lithiums. Best decision ever. Now have two banks of Lithium ion Phosphate 12 volt Battery 2.5Kw 180A/H

Stacks Image 4146
Stacks Image 4139
Lightning surge protector
Stacks Image 3373

Having had a direct lightning strike last October, we’re only just finishing up a complete electronics refit - everything. One thing my contractor recommended is to fit NOVARIS surge protectors. We’re putting in three. One on the VHF coaxial, one at the electronics board before the instruments and one to protect the generator (at the battery). They have a direct wiring to the boats earthing plate and switchover if the voltage load exceeds 36 volts.

Man cave (ships stores)
Stacks Image 4091

Right from the building and commissioning we decided to opt for the two cabin version with the port side double cabin given over to storage. This is accessed from the cockpit (which my wife has named as the Man Cave) and internally via the galley as a pantry and laundry as shown in the diagram.

A bespoke stainless steel ladder was made so that you can easilly climb down into the Man Cave directly from the cockpit.

I also reclaimed some of the lockers origionally made for the guest bedroom by sawing an access hole through from the Man Cave side. The shelves were then stack with plastic boxes and labelled with various boat supplies. So this is my ships store.

I made a series of racks that allow full use of the internal height in the Man Cave to store all the boats canvas.

Last, but certainly not least, my wife decided to throw me out of the galley fridge and ban beer tand wine aking up so much space. So, I now have a Waco beer fridge also in the most appropriate place on the boat - the Man Cave!

Victron colour controller
Stacks Image 3540

The Color Control (CCGX) provides intuitive control and monitoring for all the Victron power systems ionboard ncluding Inverter, MPPT solar chargers, BMV battery monitors, Shunt and more.

Besides monitoring and controlling products locally on the CCGX itself, all readings are also forwarded to a remote monitoring website which enables remote access 24/7 over the internet. Just like standing in front of the device, everything can be managed remotely including automatic genset start/stop.

A highly customizable start/stop system. Use state of charge, voltage, load and other parameters. Allows a defined set of special rules for quiet times, and optionally a monthly test run.

Victron inverter
Stacks Image 3548

The AC input can be supplied from a split phase 120/240V source, or single phase 120V source. When an AC source is available, the MultiPlus will feed through the AC to its output. The output will therefore mirror the AC input. The inverter/charger connects to the neutral and the preferred input line (L1). Power needed to charge the batteries will therefore be drawn from L1. The MultiPlus switches to inverter operation when no AC source is available. The inverter output is 120V single phase. In invert mode, the MultiPlus connects both output lines (L1 and L2) together to provide 120VAC to loads on either line. Any 240V loads will therefore be supplied only when the MultiPlus is supplied by a split phase AC source. This prevents heavy loads such as water heaters or 240V air conditioners from discharging the battery.

Wi-fi router
SIM card Router
Stacks Image 3519

Having wifi onboard is a must have for coastal cruising live aboards. Initially we used a simple portable router from VodaPhone. Later we were tempted into spending a lot of money on a Glomax WebBoat 4G, but frankly this was a complete waste of money since it never worked properly. Now I use an ASUS Modem wifi that allows us to we're back tousing a mobile network modem.

Glomax WebBoat
Stacks Image 3512