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Old 12-26-2020, 12:12 PM   #1
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How did your first shakedown/commissioning run go?

Except for the delivery motor home I'm in the middle of our first few days on the water with my family getting to know our new to us trawler. So far I've got a sea sick wife, two bored kids ("this is just like a really long flight") and a 2 page list of to-do's. I'd call that a success. 😁

On the positive side, aside from a rapidly dying house bank (a previously known fault) the vessel has behaved very well. The delivery was at 85% wot and LOUD. Loud enough that I've been considering a major remodel to add insulation and mass loaded vinyl. Slowing down to 65% has made the world of difference and has me doubting I'll go ahead with the deadener. A side benefit is after 2 days I haven't used enough fuel to be able to take a meaningful fuel level reading.

How did your first shake down cruise go?

Merry Christmas to all.
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Old 12-26-2020, 12:29 PM   #2
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Greetings,
Mr. GD. Same to you and yours. I can remember the maiden voyages of all 3 of our "big" boats. A few butt clenching moments but we survived. It's ALL good!


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Old 12-26-2020, 12:33 PM   #3
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My delivery home took a couple of days (took our time). Aside from a couple of "not great" dockings because the boat handled sooooo differently than our same length sailboat that we had sold (and no damage was done so not that bad), we had a very uneventful trip.
However, the trip was a bit "painful" monetarily as we were "importing" the boat from the US into Canada. We had some fun with a very nice Customs agent who had a good laugh when I offered to pay the taxes on the value on the official "bill of sale", as it stated that I paid "$1 US and other considerations" for the boat. However, my wallet was alot lighter after leaving that dock having paid over $40,000 in taxes to our various Governments. Pretty steep tax rate based on the $1 "selling price".
To be fair, you can't avoid taxes, I only paid tax in Canada, so it really wasn't a surprise.
The boat ran great, we had a good time, and had no issues so a very successful trip all in all.
Merry Christmas back at you.
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Old 12-26-2020, 12:44 PM   #4
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We ran ours at WOT only for testing purposes, and have run it since at what the PO recommended, which is a bit after the turbo kicks in and has the boat running at about 7 knots.

Our first anchoring was interesting, in that with all the new to me back of napkin depths/lengths/scope figuring while keeping in mind rocks, sand bars etc, I dropped the anchor in the best spot possible.

As we were backing down to set the anchor, with me on the bow, hand on rode to see when it got tight and I was sure the anchor was set, my wife started calling from the pilothouse, "Murray...depth sounder says 10 feet, 9 feet, 8 feet..."

We/I had dropped the anchor where we wanted the boat to be sitting with all the rode out instead of where the anchor should have been. D'Oh!

Our daughter soon found that when we got a short distance out of our small town her cell phone couldn't pick up a signal anymore. "No more drama" she'd say with a smile

Welcome aboard
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Old 12-26-2020, 01:50 PM   #5
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I bought our boat off Lake St. Clair in Michigan, had it torn down and shipped to Portland, OR, then recommissioned. We were actively involved with waxing, cleaning, repositioning furniture, etc. We drove 200+ miles each way every weekend to work on the boat, but it was truly a labor of love so we didn't mind at all.

When the boat yard owner and I set out to do a sea trial we were leaving his dock on the Multnomah Slough. I backed it out away from the dock then turned it upstream, all by using the shifters. When we got to the Willammette River I was going to turn to port to head downriver to the Columbia. (To say I was scared sh*tless would be an understatement!).

When I turned the wheel nothing happened. I told Joe "there's no helm" and he said "keep turning, there may be an air bubble in the hydraulic steering." I did and got no response.

So here we were on a river with a fair current, heading out toward the Columbia that has a strong current and I couldn't steer the boat from the helm. He suggested I use the shifters to hold position while he went down below to add fluid to the hydraulic system. OK, I got this. No problemo, I'll just keep us in the middle of the Willammette and keep our position so we didn't end up going downstream.

After a few minutes he came back up and said to turn the wheel lock to lock several times to get the fluid pumped up. I did, it did and we were OK. After a short (3/4 mile) trip down river we ventured out into the Columbia. We cruised there for a few minutes then he said "OK, let's head back to the slip."

He was supposed to give me a check ride to satisfy my insurance company that I knew how to drive a boat this big. When I asked him about the check ride he just said "You did it. You passed when you didn't panic when the helm wouldn't work." Little did he know.

We left his slip and headed a few miles up the Columbia to a yacht club that was having a big Sea Ray Aquapalooza party. When I pulled into their docking area, adjacent to the Columbia. There were a bazillion people walking the dock so I shouted down to them to see where they wanted it. Holy CRAP, they wanted me to dock it stern to and alongside a brand new Sea Ray about the size of mine. Long story short, I nailed the docking, my wife nailed the line handling and we looked like we did this every day. Some times things work the way they are supposed to.

During the first day of 3 we were spending there the word got out that this was a new to us boat. Several people stopped us on the dock to ask about the boat and congratulate us on the docking.
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Old 12-26-2020, 01:51 PM   #6
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With our builder's encouragement, our shakedown cruise (not counting running a couple sea trials to make sure autopilot and everything else that could not be adequately tested at the dock was working, or the delivery run from San Diego to Ensenada), was an 8-day fishing trip down baja, around cabo and up to La Paz. The only issues were a stabilizer (Wesmar) shaft seal that was leaking and a crane malfunction. Our manufacturer took care of both, but only after telling me to talk to Wesmar (nope), and then that it was my fault for not following their captain's briefing instructions (nothing in writing) to tighten the bolts securing the actuators every 50 hours of use, which was BS as I was never given that instruction and Wesmar denied that was a requirement of their system. Before I took delivery, I had noted various gelcoat stress cracks and other imperfections, as well as some interior woodwork imperfections, but the manufacturer, said, knowing it was my plan to keep the boat our of California for a year (tax reasons), "you are going to get some more stress cracks during the year, jus bring it back after your year is up and we will take care of everything". Sounded very generous, but it was too good to be true. They ultimately fixed some of the stuff, but used wood putty with a red tint on the wood work. Looks like hell. Still does.

But, otherwise, the boat ran well.
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Old 12-26-2020, 03:24 PM   #7
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My first experience driving a big twin engine boat. I rode with the owner to have the boat pulled out for the survey. He was 84 years old. He drove the boat down a long fairway with yachts side tied on both sides and very little room on either side. He then had to turn the boat 45 degrees to the left and 50 feet later turn 45 degrees to the right and into the Travelift. After the survey he turned to me and said he wasn't backing the boat out and it was all mine. He then got a beer from the fridge and went to sit on the bow. I had read all the theory on handling a twin, but had never driven one. I told the guys on the dock what was going on and they got on the boats on either side with boat hooks. Very slowly I backed it out, and with a little gentle pushing from both sides they had me out in the fairway. Luckily there was no wind and I got it down the fairway and into the lake. It was a beautiful August day in Seattle and the owner sat on the bow the whole way home. I think he had a tear in his eye when he left the boat for the last time.
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Old 12-26-2020, 03:36 PM   #8
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Our first romp after the keys were handed over and the PO's son stepped off the boat for the last time, saw us punching into a stiff breeze with spray flying over the pilothouse.

Had to bail trying to come into our slip, so headed out and tried again. Thankfully, I never felt any pressure from those watching to nail coming into the slip on the first try. Hasn't happened in years, but had to peel off and try again more than a few times early on.
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Old 12-26-2020, 05:44 PM   #9
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My boat was delivered by road from the interstate buyer. The marina I had organized didn’t have facilities to offload it so this was done at another about a 2hour cruise away. There were a few delays rigging the mast and getting set up so the my good weather window expired and my helping hand had to be back at work.

So it was just me singlehanding the new boat with a 30 knot breeze. I breathed a sigh of relief when I made it to the inlet to my new marina unscathed then through the lock with no issues. Now just into the slip.

First attempt was good, but I wasn’t quick enough to get a line on a cleat before getting blown off the dock towards my dock mate’s boat. Quick shot of reverse and try again. Oh no. I’m getting blown sideways down the fairway missing other boats by inches and trying various panic maneuvers to avoid a clash with my new neighbors. Finally made it on the third attempt with a big sigh of relief. Learned a lot that day.
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Old 12-26-2020, 11:28 PM   #10
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Our first attempt was to be our relocation from Gulfport Municipal to Tarpon Springs. We made it about 5 miles before an engine stall. Dropped anchor and got it restarted and limped back to Gulfport. Built something to polish the fuel and did so at least long enough to get a few quarts of water out of the port tank as well as discover and air leak in the fuel system. Fixed those issues and on the next good weather day made the trip very uneventful. A bit of traffic going under the Johns Pass bridge with all the jet skis that made for a tense moment or two. But other than that it was great. My wife managed to get some video. The trip starts at around 11 minutes.

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Old 12-27-2020, 01:32 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneDiving View Post
.....On the positive side, aside from a rapidly dying house bank (a previously known fault) the vessel has behaved very well. The delivery was at 85% wot and LOUD. Loud enough that I've been considering a major remodel to add insulation and mass loaded vinyl. Slowing down to 65% has made the world of difference and has me doubting I'll go ahead with the deadener. A side benefit is after 2 days I haven't used enough fuel to be able to take a meaningful fuel level reading.
Without knowing boat or engines or tankage, 2 days @ 85% WOT should have dented the fuel stores enough to get a reading. Maybe it`s super efficient on fuel. But be sure whatever is showing on gauage or glass or whatever, is accurate.
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Old 12-27-2020, 01:44 AM   #12
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I lived in the Caribbean, but had come to FL to find a boat. Our shakedown was a 2-week 1500 mile trip from the west coast (Naples) back to Rosy Roads NAS in Puerto Rico. My wife and me, and our 2 girls, with 5 GPSs, a LORAN, life boats and Satphone. We lost an engine 100 miles out of Naples due to a solenoid. I zip tied it the rest of the trip. I learned what "green water over the bow" meant crossing from the Turks/Caicos to the DomRep. Lost the searchlight on the only overnight leg. Lost my cookies trying to fix the autopilot between the DomRep and PR. It's the only time I've ever been seasick. Took me 2 days to recover, cuz we didn't touch land for those days. Stopped to refuel from a 55 Gal drum in the lee of an island. Got done, told the wife "ok" which she thot meant "go", but I thot meant "I filled her up", so she put it in gear and I went overboard. Fortunately I had time to yell. She came back for me. I always wondered... 🙂. We finally arrived in RRNAS on the 19th day. It was the trip of a lifetime. I'll never forget it. Learned so much. It's what turned me into a lifelong boater and planted the seed for our hoped for circumnavigation in 2022.
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Old 12-27-2020, 02:38 AM   #13
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Without knowing boat or engines or tankage, 2 days @ 85% WOT should have dented the fuel stores enough to get a reading. Maybe it`s super efficient on fuel. But be sure whatever is showing on gauage or glass or whatever, is accurate.
All of the above

The delivery was 300 ltrs used for 160nm at 1500 rpm/8kn over two days.

The last two days have been about 10 hours at 1200rpm/6kn. On 8500 ltr tanks that's a rounding error but I'd expect it to be ~half of the burn per nm above.

Not too bad for 50t of BHP steel. 😁

Cheers
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Old 12-27-2020, 05:25 PM   #14
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Sweated some bridge clearances because actual was unknown to me. Besides that it was no problem. Ask before you leave the closing.
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Old 12-27-2020, 05:48 PM   #15
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I’m not sure or the first one counts.....

I was on Cuttyhunk admiring a Wheeler, can’t remember the length, but I think is was 38 or 40 feet.

The owner mentioned it was for sale, so I said I was definitely interested and would have it inspected next week (this was a Friday.)

I called the old Fairhaven Marine about a haul-out on Monday and they asked for some info about the boat. I told them what I knew and mentioned it was moored in New Bedford Harbor, so it had to be known to them.

“Oh,” they said, “you mean the one that blew up.”

“No, no,” I replied, “I was on the boat Friday.”

‘Yeah, it blew up yesterday”

I wish that had happened to my next boat.
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Old 12-28-2020, 12:59 AM   #16
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I’m not sure or the first one counts.....

I was on Cuttyhunk admiring a Wheeler, can’t remember the length, but I think is was 38 or 40 feet.

The owner mentioned it was for sale, so I said I was definitely interested and would have it inspected next week (this was a Friday.)

I called the old Fairhaven Marine about a haul-out on Monday and they asked for some info about the boat. I told them what I knew and mentioned it was moored in New Bedford Harbor, so it had to be known to them.

“Oh,” they said, “you mean the one that blew up.”

“No, no,” I replied, “I was on the boat Friday.”

‘Yeah, it blew up yesterday”

I wish that had happened to my next boat.
Wow Did they ever say why? Gas boat?
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Old 12-28-2020, 09:46 AM   #17
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Gas. So to give some context...

I was in the engine room on my hands and knees crawling around, checking things out, on the day I first saw the boat. The owner was chatting up my young bride and she asked him how the engines ran, if they were easy starters.

So without letting me know, or running the blower, he starts the engines.

Two days later the soles of his shoes were melted to the bottom of his feet.
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Old 12-28-2020, 05:21 PM   #18
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My shakedown cruise/delivery was from Albany NY, down the Hudson, around Manhattan, through the east river, up Long Island Sound and into Narragansett Bay, RI. We took 5 days to do it and visited friends along the way. Because the 2001 boat only had 410 hours on it, I was concerned about old fuel in the tanks, but was assured it would be OK without polishing as the PO used treatment and high quality fuel from only one location. Additionally, he ran with a 2 micron racor filter in-line and a double racor filter setup that I could switch underway. I was somewhat nervous and pretty paranoid, but reviewed the process for switching fuel filters and changing them out while underway and felt somewhat confident I could do it easily.

Bottom line, is that the delivery was great! Except for a few minor electronics issues with some older Raymarine equipment (and the navigation chip coverage running out just before crossing under the Tappanzee Bridge entering NYC), there were absolutely no other issues. I checked the fuel filter a few times every day and even after 100 hours, there was no pressure buildup on the 2 micron filter and it looked brand new when I did finally take it out.

I learned a lot about the boat, it's creature comforts, battery capacity, little quirks and maneuverability. That 5 days confirmed I made the right choice and I am happier with it now than I was the day I bought it!
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Old 01-04-2021, 03:48 PM   #19
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The delivery of my boat a couple years ago, started on Lake Champlain in VT and ended in Long Island Sound in CT. Took our time of about 5 days. Included locks in the canals, Hudson river past West Point and other sights, New York City with the Statue of Liberty and Hell's Gate and into the sound to our home port. Not without issue of course, but nothing major that held us up. The grand finale was when we pulled into our slip for the first time, with me at the helm and wife with a boat hook to grab lines. Still getting used to the boat and dealing with river currents, I was a little too aggressive with the throttle which tossed my wife over the side! Could have been dangerous, but luckily she just got a cold dunk in the Spring.
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Old 01-04-2021, 06:58 PM   #20
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I had a new to me diesel cruiser arrive by truck from Maine to Long Island NY this past October. The driver dropped it in and said adios! I did not sea trial the boat due to Covid and work issues. Previously only an outboard guy- I had never even started a diesel and was left at the dock with this boat. No instructions or salesman. People gathered to complement me not knowing I had no clue.

Well I checked everything out- and turned the key- she started right up and water was flowing. No alarms went off. I pulled away and cruised the bay for a while. The bilge pumps were vigorously going off ! Is my new boat sinking? OMG what a bad feeling on the first cruise of my dream boat!!

By the time I docked the bilge was dry again. I noticed water around the sea strainer so I checked the T handle which was snug. Went out again and pumps go off again. Back to dock. Checked hoses, engine, exhaust- all good.

Relooked at sea strainer- wet again. No cracks. Nothing obvious. Started motor this time with hatch open~ water spraying from strainer top all over engine compartment.

Last person to service strainer in Maine dropped the plastic washer in bilge so the strainer cap was wobbly and loose despite the handle being tight! I fished out the washer from beneath the engine and fixed it. I then had to rinse the engine and compartment from all the saltwater spray.

I am hoping this was an honest mistake as opposed to laziness/ incompetence from the boat yard!

Anyway- all GREAT since! Counting the days until spring launch! We all have our stories!!
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