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Old 07-06-2015, 03:20 PM   #1
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1987 Mainship 34

In looking for a trawler I keep noticing 34' Mainships from the 80s. I can do a lot for the difference in price between them and say a 05' 34T.

Is anyone familiar with the type of fuel tanks on an 1987 Mainship 34 and any opinions on Detroit Diesels, I hear they are good but can be a little smokey and noisy.

Thanks for your input, Bill R.
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Old 07-06-2015, 04:13 PM   #2
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An 80's vintage Mainship is an entirely different boat than an '05.

Most 80's vintage Mainships will have aluminum saddle tanks. I hear reports on the Yahoo Mainship site of them starting to fail after 30+ years or so. Also most of them were Perkins powered, although I have heard of a few with DD's.

Many have been repowered with Cummins, a few with Yanmar and some with JD's.

These boats have a lot to offer for the buck, some time spent at the Yahoo site will be time well spent reading old posts about issues. None really serious, but more to be on the look out for.

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Old 07-06-2015, 04:36 PM   #3
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Thanks Keysdesease, I'll go to Yahoo !
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Old 07-06-2015, 09:43 PM   #4
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Hi Bill,
I have an 83. Keysdisease is right, aluminum saddle tanks, mine are fine. As for the DD in these boats, it's a V8 that were used extensively in buses and medium duty trucks. Parts are plentiful and cheap. The J&T marinized engine uses oil but for the most parts runs well. Sabreliners used two in their fast trawler. Like any diesel engine, it's only as good as the way it was cared for. I looked at the one in MD before I bought mine. Everyone is afraid of the DD. All 80's vintage diesels are smoky IMO. Message me with any questions.
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Old 07-07-2015, 07:00 AM   #5
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There are 3 types of Mainships of the "vintage" style. My olde Mainship is the MK I, the original. Production started in 77-78.

A few years later the MK II was added. Larger cockpit, smaller cabin, 200HP Perkins, no extended flybridge over the cockpit.

Around 83 the MKIII replaced both. Thats what slowandsteady has. Smaller cockpit, larger cabin.

Original Power started with Perkins, but also included Mitsibushi, Volvo, and as mentioned DD.

I have seen the production run totals range from 900 to 1700 for these models.

The 05 you reference is a completely different model with a second cabin tucked under the dinette, engine room access through stairs to the flybridge, lots more $$$ than the vintage boats.

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Old 07-07-2015, 08:50 AM   #6
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In looking for a trawler I keep noticing 34' Mainships from the 80s. I can do a lot for the difference in price between them and say a 05' 34T.

Is anyone familiar with the type of fuel tanks on an 1987 Mainship 34 and any opinions on Detroit Diesels, I hear they are good but can be a little smokey and noisy.

Thanks for your input, Bill R.
We had an '87 Mk III, with a single Johnson and Towers-marinized 8.2T Detroit Diesel.

Great boat!

And we never had any issues with the 8.2T.

That said... and as others have said... the more recent 34s are not too similar.

In a retrospective analysis I once did, I thought about things I would have preferred on the Mk III: a centerline master berth, a wider beam, a door from the lower helm to the starboard side deck (needs the wider beam), and stairs to the bridge (not a ladder).

As it happens, when Mainship introduced the 350 (later, 390) in the late '90s (I think) that new model addressed almost all (maybe all) of those points. Then Mainship introduced some other models -- the 430, the 400, the newer 34 -- and I think they kept many of the "improvements" I had in mind.

But the only mandatory change I'd probably make to an older 34 today -- to solve one of our real showstoppers -- is to replace the ladder to the bridge with a circular staircase.

-Chris
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Old 07-07-2015, 09:34 AM   #7
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Chris,

Thanks for your comments and I agree 100% and one of the reasons I may go for a newer 34 is the staircase instead of the ladder !

Bill R.
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Old 07-07-2015, 10:29 AM   #8
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As Chris said, the 350/390 addressed many items some would like to have like a stairway instead of a ladder. Second cabin, door to side deck, etc.

There are lots of these boats out there for a lot less than the "new" 34, you may want to look at some of them too.



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Chris,
Thanks for your comments and I agree 100% and one of the reasons I may go for a newer 34 is the staircase instead of the ladder !
Bill R.
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Old 07-07-2015, 12:09 PM   #9
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The J&T Detroit 8.2, being a 4 cycle engine, is a different beast than the Detroit Diesel xx-53, xx71, xx92 2-cycle line of engines. The noise and smoke of the 8.2 would be more in line with modern Cummins, Cat, Yanmar etc.. The efficiency would be a little better also. However the reliability of MOST of the 2-cycle Detroits are outstanding and parts availability great. I would not shy away from a boat with either DD line...except the TA 6V71...not a good experience with them.
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Old 07-07-2015, 12:58 PM   #10
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Thanks Rardoin,

Always good to get knowledgeable opinions.

Last question on 80s Mainship 34s.

I was on a friends boat at the dock and it really seemed to roll side to side even more than my previous boat a 28' Bayliner. I know they have rounded bilges but is there any cure. His either a Mark I or 2 and I am looking at Mark 3

Thanks again,
Bill R
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Old 07-07-2015, 01:17 PM   #11
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The MK I, II and III were all built on the same hull. They do not have rounded bilges but are hard chined with strakes and have very little deadrise at the transom. These are not trawler hulls but more "Downeast" type hulls, see below.

Can't compare rolling at the dock between a MS34 and a 28 Bayliner, never been on a 28 Bayliner.




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I was on a friends boat at the dock and it really seemed to roll side to side even more than my previous boat a 28' Bayliner. I know they have rounded bilges but is there any cure. His either a Mark I or 2 and I am looking at Mark 3
Thanks again,
Bill R
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Old 07-07-2015, 01:54 PM   #12
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Thanks again keysdesease,

Sometimes it is hard to see from the pictures. I'm looking at the one in Grasonville MD.

Thanks,
Bill R.
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Old 07-07-2015, 02:31 PM   #13
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Keys speaks to the hull design. The other part of the equation is the 28' Balyiner comparison. Was that a bridge boat, and are you comparing roll on the Mainship bridge to roll on the Bayliner bridge? Or is it Mainship bridge compared to Bayliner deck on more of an express boat design?

I ask because roll on almost any flybridge boat will seem way more pronounced than roll from the main deck of almost any boat of similar size. I've had guys abandon our current bridge, due to roll, in sea states where they were quite comfortable in the cockpit.


In any case, we never noticed our rolling any more than any other boat of similar size and design. Possibly even less so at the dock than other boats without a full keel.

I note the the Grasonville boat says "proudly built by the Mainship Corporation;" our was proudly built by Silverton in Marlboro, N.J., before Mainship was spun off as a separate entity.

-Chris
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Old 07-07-2015, 03:56 PM   #14
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Chris,

The Bayliner was a 2859 with no Flybridge and a 10' beam so it never rolled it just pounded in the chop.
And when I noticed the Mainship rolling we were in the cabin at the dock.
Anyway, we'll look at the MD Mainship most likely this weekend.

Thanks,
Bill
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Old 07-07-2015, 05:33 PM   #15
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Anyway, we'll look at the MD Mainship most likely this weekend.

Thanks,
Bill
That looks like a very nice boat Bill...Good luck!
BTW the Chocowinity navy was in Washington over the 4th...I helped Knot so fast (34' Marine Trader) get running again when he couldn't start...Assume he made it home OK..Said he (Wayne) knew you...
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Old 07-07-2015, 08:35 PM   #16
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Thanks Steve,

Yes, Knot so fast and we are friends. We'll see how the Mainship looks !

Bill
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