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Old 08-08-2022, 03:52 PM   #1
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Stabilizers: A Must for Passage-Making?

Hello, we're new to the group, sorry for a greenhorn question.

We are considering purchase of a 1985 DeFever 44 Offshore, but is has no stabilizers. It's our first large (to us) boat. We will be living aboard full-time, cruising open ocean a lot of the time, and several people have shared they would NEVER buy an ocean-going boat without stabilizers. While this boat can withstand WAY worse weather than we can, we (and especially the Admiral) don't want an overly roly-poly ride in even mild weather. We've heard from other DeFever owners that without stabilizers this boat will roll 40+ degrees in 5-8ft seas, still perfectly safe but no one will be keeping their lunch down. Adding stabilizers would be roughly $70K extra cost.

Are we just putting too much emphasis on the rough ride, or do others feel it's important to have stabilizers?

Thanks in advance for sharing!
Kevin & Kellie
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Old 08-08-2022, 04:12 PM   #2
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I am on my second boat with stabilizers. No way would I ever own another boat without them. They are amazing especially when crossing. I have crossed from Florida to Isla Mujeres several times In some pretty bad seas. I never secure anything everything is where it was when we get there. Your not all beat up when you get there.
I remember the old days without them the whole boat would be trashed inside.
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Old 08-08-2022, 04:24 PM   #3
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$70k? I added a passive paravane system for about $5k. Works well and reduces roll to about 10 degrees in beam seas.

Granted I designed and installed the system myself, which must have saved mucho dineros but it can be done by anyone.
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Old 08-08-2022, 05:39 PM   #4
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Bad seas are nothing new to me. I can handle it when few others can. However, there is a world of difference between a stabilized boat and one that is not. No stabilizers is just hard uncomfortable work. A stabilized boat is much more enjoyable and much less exhausting.

I wouldn’t buy an ocean going yacht without stabilizers. In fact, Even in our protected PNW, I cruise with the stabilizers on. With stabilizers I can leave a can of coke sitting on the dinette table, with out stabilizers that can will be tossed to the floor by the first large boat that passes me.
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Old 08-08-2022, 06:08 PM   #5
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I'm a fan of bilge keels, and suggest you look into installing them. They may not reduce roll as effectively as stabilizers, but their cost is minimal and I think would be very effective.
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Old 08-08-2022, 06:59 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by 2savage View Post
$70k? I added a passive paravane system for about $5k. Works well and reduces roll to about 10 degrees in beam seas.

Granted I designed and installed the system myself, which must have saved mucho dineros but it can be done by anyone.
Details and pictures please
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Old 08-08-2022, 07:04 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by lkevinadkins View Post
. We will be living aboard full-time, cruising open ocean a lot of the time, and several people have shared they would NEVER buy an ocean-going boat without stabilizers.
We live aboard full time and when doing real miles it's offshore.
We have no stabilisers
Would I like stabilisers? Yes
Do I need them? No

If you are retired and living aboard you have time to pick suitable passage windows
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Old 08-08-2022, 07:05 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by lkevinadkins View Post
Hello, we're new to the group, sorry for a greenhorn question.



We are considering purchase of a 1985 DeFever 44 Offshore, but is has no stabilizers. It's our first large (to us) boat. We will be living aboard full-time, cruising open ocean a lot of the time, and several people have shared they would NEVER buy an ocean-going boat without stabilizers. While this boat can withstand WAY worse weather than we can, we (and especially the Admiral) don't want an overly roly-poly ride in even mild weather. We've heard from other DeFever owners that without stabilizers this boat will roll 40+ degrees in 5-8ft seas, still perfectly safe but no one will be keeping their lunch down. Adding stabilizers would be roughly $70K extra cost.



Are we just putting too much emphasis on the rough ride, or do others feel it's important to have stabilizers?



Thanks in advance for sharing!

Kevin & Kellie
All passagemaking boats benefit from stabilizers. In my opinion, the Defever 44 needs them more than most. I would not cruise this boat without stabilizers. Not even the Loop. $70k sounds about right. Make sure you go up a size - the DF44 is really a large 44 footer.

Other than that, I really, really like the DF44.

Peter

PS - according to David Kasten, stabilizers for not make a vessel more seaworthy, just more comfortable.
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Old 08-08-2022, 07:26 PM   #9
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Or if one is to believe the Canadian government fish make it more dangerous. Think list is fins, gyros, Magnus or sails and a bulb fin keel or more than one hull.
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Old 08-08-2022, 07:29 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Simi 60 View Post
We live aboard full time and when doing real miles it's offshore.
We have no stabilisers
Would I like stabilisers? Yes
Do I need them? No

If you are retired and living aboard you have time to pick suitable passage windows
did you ever consider bilge keels or rolling chocks on your timber vessel?

did you see any passive type stabilizers on a timber vessel.
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Old 08-08-2022, 07:52 PM   #11
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If they could be installed on this boat Id rather have paravanes than active fins. Simple and much cheaper. But harder to deploy obviously.

If cruising lots of open ocean Id definitely stabilize the boat. My boat is semi-stabilized with the sail plan and it makes a huge difference in comfort.
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Old 08-08-2022, 08:00 PM   #12
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did you ever consider bilge keels or rolling chocks on your timber vessel?
.
At $30,000 plus, no
Plus continual drag - extra fuel burn even when not needed. No
Quote:
did you see any passive type stabilizers on a timber vessel
Sure, but all cost $30k upwards to do right if paying for somone to do it
Finding someone to do it is a whole other drama.

Instead we burn extra fuel when and if needed.
Increasing speed helps
Changing course helps
$30,000 buys a lot of extra miles and or RPM.
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Old 08-08-2022, 09:09 PM   #13
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I have a DeFever 44 that I bought a year and a half ago, I added stabilizers from Gyro Gale last spring and that ran around 50k.

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Old 08-08-2022, 09:42 PM   #14
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All passagemaking boats benefit from stabilizers. In my opinion, the Defever 44 needs them more than most. I would not cruise this boat without stabilizers. Not even the Loop. $70k sounds about right. Make sure you go up a size - the DF44 is really a large 44 footer.

Other than that, I really, really like the DF44.

Peter

PS - according to David Kasten, stabilizers for not make a vessel more seaworthy, just more comfortable.
Stabilizers have improved over time too. Now of course zero speed. But before that 2 axis to 3 axis etc.

At what age stabilizers would it make a difference to upgrade too?
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Old 08-08-2022, 10:20 PM   #15
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At what age stabilizers would it make a difference to upgrade too?
I dont think the lines cross in order to make sense to buy a non-stabilized boat and have new installed. But I'm about to speak out of both sides of my mouth

First, I just replaced the stabilizers on my 1970 Willard 36. No way I'll get much return on the $35k-ish it cost, but I wouldn't have a boat that wasn't stabilized, even though the W36 has decent form stability due to very low center of gravity.

Now the double speak: if I were looking at a used boat, I would not even consider one that wasn't stabilized. I just cannot imagine the effort and expense would pencil out. The DF44 is probably a decent example. Many (most?) are stabilized. I doubt there's more than $20k-$25k difference in pricing between similar used stabilized vs non-stabilized. Some boats including the KK42 have such a predominance of stabilized examples that you can be picky and just rule-out any that aren't stabilized, which is what I'd do.

Apologies un advance to any DF44 owners who's boat is not stabilized. The OP asked an opinion. I've run a couple DF44s and love them, but only if they are stabilized. Great liveaboards. But they do roll.

Peter
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Old 08-08-2022, 10:56 PM   #16
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Weve had 4 boats, crossed an ocean once, this is our first with stabilizers, we will never own a round hull trawler without them. They are sweet. ..
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Old 08-08-2022, 11:58 PM   #17
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My question is different. For an older boat that has two axis stabilizers does it make sense to upgrade to three axis or zero speed. Are the improvements that good?
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Old 08-09-2022, 12:22 AM   #18
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We went across the strait of georia with 25 knots and 3ft water. Boat we were following was taking water over the flybridge forcing them inside. the boat stayed nice and steady and ran even smoother once we got into beam seas. I ask my wife if i could take a stabilizer on and off video and she shot me down saying she didnt want to have to pick everything up on the boat. Not saying we wouldn't have made it or had to turn around without the stabs and the boat traveling with us made it just fine they just didn't enjoy the three hour trip in the heavy water.
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Old 08-09-2022, 06:39 AM   #19
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this is our first with stabilizers, we will never own a round hull trawler without them. They are sweet. ..
Our Krogen was full displacement (round hull). We never would have done the trip from Alaska to Florida without stabilizers. Going south we had beam seas all the way to Panama and again from Trinidad to Florida. Without them, we would have turned around.
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Old 08-09-2022, 06:51 AM   #20
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$70k? I added a passive paravane system for about $5k. Works well and reduces roll to about 10 degrees in beam seas.

Granted I designed and installed the system myself, which must have saved mucho dineros but it can be done by anyone.
Passive stabilizers are for very few and are practical in only open ocean cruising.
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