Accepted offer...getting excited for my Mainship 400!

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mml2112

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 17, 2023
Messages
43
Vessel Make
2008 Mainship 400
Hi All!

Still have to do survey and sea trial but the 400 is going to be a super Great Lakes cruiser!:socool:

Upgrades needed/wanted:
-RIB
-U-Dek
-full size fridge (previous owner downsized)
-transom artwork
-gyro stabilizer (if i find more money somewhere, anybody got one installed?)

Good problems to have!
 
Welcome aboard and congrats on the new boat, hopefully.
 
I don't think you need a gyro stabilizer on a 40 footer intended for Great lakes use.
Lake Michigan can throw out some awsome storms, Lake Superior can be worse but the storms are generally well predicted and often in late fall accompanied by some terrible temperatures.

Put the boat away in October and avoid the risk.

pete
 
Greetings,
Welcome aboard and congrats on the, maybe, new boat! Just a word....IF there are any significant problems found in the survey that you are not prepared to accept or deal with, WALK AWAY, please. I can fully appreciate the excitement BUT now is the best time to be pragmatic.
 
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Thanks Pete, I will know on my run from Chicago to Port if a gyro is necessary. Less for me, more for my mate!
 
Thanks Pete, I will know on my run from Chicago to Port if a gyro is necessary. Less for me, more for my mate!
I bet after the trip you will agree it is for both of you, we had a 390 on the North East end of Lake Ontario, and had a friend bring his 400 up from the Chesapeake and across Lake Ontario, it cost him a TV and a bunch of dishes, plus having to ditch into the lee of Main Duck to avoid the swells and wait until the next morning to cross. He is retired Navy and said it was one of the worst crossings he had ever had, and it was not that bad of a day. We sold ours, and now understand why Bungalows are more expensive than two stories. Just sharing my 2 Cents on the great lakes
 
Hi Mike,


I got your PM about the survey and sea trial, but also saw your thread here, so I figured I would answer your question here so others can chime in.


In general, after 10 years of ownership, I like my 400, it's a solid boat with both good and bad qualities. It's a very good value but not made to cross oceans (more on that later). I think I am pretty pragmatic about my boat, but probably have a few blind spots in regard to it, as do most of us on here.


As far as specifics to look for in the survey, my list is below. It is by no means comprehensive, just the main things I can think of off the top of my head.


1. Check the flybridge deck in general for core rot. Specifically, look around the base of the rail that surrounds the access cut out to the top of the steps leading down to the cockpit. Especially the furthest forward base. Also check the bases of the FB table legs. Those are areas where Mainship screwed directly to the deck with no backing plates on earlier models. My 2005 has backing plates under the table but not under the rail bases. Those spots need to be addressed with proper bedding.


2. Check the transom where the below waterline bolts for the swim platform come through. I have heard that some boats see rot there, again from improper bedding.


3. Check the core of the swim platform for rot. Also check the boarding ladder, it's surprisingly expensive to replace.


4. The ER vent on the stb cabin side is likely rotted out. It's an expensive ($900) item to replace. I had one fabricated from stainless for less.


5. The head hoses, if original, will likely need replacement. The hose leading from the toilet to the vacuum generator is tough to remove.


6. Exhaust hose is likely ready for replacement. Not sure how hard this is on a single, but this is a tough job on a twin.


7. If the genset is in a sound shield, look closely inside at the genset for rust issues. If you buy the boat take the sound shield off and throw it away.


8. Look closely at the caulk around the FB steps. It can fail and cause deck rot.


9. The huge FB seats are super comfy, but the cushions are expensive to recover. Have they been stored on the FB or below?


10. The vinyl on the walls in the FWD cabin is prone to flaking. It's a big job to replace it. Same for the headliner, but not as hard to replace.


11. Mainship's wiring practices were overly complex and not very neat.


As far as ride goes, it is about the same as any other 40' unstabalized trawler. When the 400 came out there was a line of thought among 390 owners that it was more prone to roll than the 390. I do not think this has much, if any, merit.



I have a close friend who we cruise with often who has a Grand Banks 42. I don't notice much, if any difference in the ride of our boat verses his. We had a Gulfstar 36 before our 400 and the Mainship rides much, much better than our old boat did.



We have crossed the gulf stream to the Bahamas (and back) 28 times. We have also crossed the tongue of the ocean, plus multiple other open water Bahamas runs and have crossed the upper Gulf of Mexico from Carrabelle to Tarpon Springs 6 times. So plenty of open water trips.


We pick our days, but sometimes you still get caught out in it.



In May of 2021 a cold front sagged down lower and much faster than any of the four models forecasted it would and caught us in the middle of the stream. In about 3/4 of a mile conditions went from 5 knots SE with 1-2' seas to 35 knots from the NE and 6 to 8 with very little direction and a tiny period. It was the worst conditions I have seen, despite a background as a fishing guide, commercial grouper fisherman and commercial shrimping. The oven came open and a glass tray fell out. The TV didn't come off and we didn't break any dishes other than the tray. It was not comfortable and I was happy to see the inside of the St. Lucie Inlet, but the boat handled it OK.


I will say this though, in my opinion it is a much better boat when equipped with twin engines. When it gets rough we bump up the speed to 12 to 15 knots. The boat rides smoother at that speed, a lot smoother. Also, the extra power helps in following seas because you can work the throttles to control the ride.


It's not a sportfish or a Nordhaven and shouldn't be mistaken for one, but it's not some unsafe inland only boat either. It's a great Bahamas and ICW boat, but I wouldn't choose it for a trip deep into the Caribbean.



I'm not sure where or how you could mount a gyro in a 400. Maybe in the LAZ? It would take up a lot of space, be expensive and would likely require some reinforcement. If you are facing lots of rough water and are set on a 400, I would advise you to consider a twin over adding a gyro.



I hope this hasn't deterred you, as I said on the whole I really like my boat.


Happy to answer any other questions you may have. Good luck with the survey.


Doug
 
The new Boating magazine has an article on gyros and the amount of forces exerted on the structure of the boat. It would take an extraordinary amount of reworking to handle those forces. And then the room for the gyro…
 
Thanks so much Doug for your valuable thoughts. I will have more questions in the near future. My wife and I charted a 400 for a week on Pine Island sound and I knew it was the boat for us! We also chartered a 390 in the North Channel for a week before that and I knew then that it needed both thrusters if it has a single.

My main concern on the sea trial/survey is finding out if it has the faulty module for the transmission that is in the Yanmar tech bulletin. It can be replaced if needed easily. The surveyor can handle the rest mostly. They guy at Mack Boring is very helpful.

Only weird thing is that the engine can't be connected to a laptop, but I was told that error codes are visible on the Yanmar helm display. I guess they could have been cleared already anyway.

I consider these all good problems to have!

Mike
 
Comodave-

Fortunately, I work for a naval architect, and he said the 400 could take a gyro.

Mike
 
Great Lakes cruiser

1st & foremost, after our trip down Lake Michigan (as part of our 8yr Great Loop trip) Beaver Island 8/10 to Chicago in 9/10 I would not and I will repeat NOT in any way consider Lake Washing Machine as a great cruising lake.

Also, you will find that the most used boats on Lake Washing Machine are either a sailboat or a fast boat, not a trawler.

2nd, I'm not real familiar with a Mainship 400 but I'd be surprised if there is room in the galley for a full-sized refrigerator. Our galley is maxed out at an 8cu/ft model. Keep in mind that any refrigerator will need space around it for air circulation and a good size inverter & battery bank to carry it when not attached to a dock. An AC/DC unit would be a good model.

With a RIB unless you plan to tow it and I wouldn't recommend that on Lake Washing Machine, you will need davits. We got ours from a company in Canada called Atkins & Hoyle. Great product.

Today there are a number of companies that make a gyro for a 40' boat, and it might be a strong recommendation since you are staying on Lake WM that you procure one. It certainly wouldn't hurt.

I had a friend that did the artwork for our stern, but Boat US also has a department that will do the work. The hard part is coming up with the name. Remember, any name should be easy to use & understand on a VHF radio.

While you listed a few items, you will find that there are plenty more, see below;
Stabilized binoculars
inflatable PFDs
fixed & handheld VHF radios
navigation suite (chartplotter, autopilot, AIS, radar, inReach), I like Garmin.
It never ends,
Fenders, boat hooks, dock lines,
and the list goes on...........

Good luck with the new boat.
 
Comodave-

Fortunately, I work for a naval architect, and he said the 400 could take a gyro.

Mike
Have you costed the gyro purchase and install?
 
Have you costed the gyro purchase and install?

Probably $50K or more with the installation since there will be a lot of work required to strengthen the stringers for the huge stresses involved.
 
You will not need the gyro on your trip from Chicago to points north. The worst waves you will probably run into will be around five feet. In a 40 footer that will be uncomfortable but not really too bad. If you leave port facing waves higher than five feet, your Admiral will probably just say "Lets stay here". Safe ports along Lake Michigan's south shore are usually about every 25 miles.

pete
 
The new Boating magazine has an article on gyros and the amount of forces exerted on the structure of the boat. It would take an extraordinary amount of reworking to handle those forces. And then the room for the gyro…
And then there is the requirement for running the generator while under way at a cost of 3/4-1 gph of fuel.
 
I had installed a Seakeeper gyro in my 42 Chris craft sport fish several years back . major $$ . I had put in a seakeeper 5 . Todays cost for the unit $55,800 + tax. The base for mounting and pumps and install will be 30-40K . Look for a boat with one installed or a boat with fins if that's a real need for you. Its a wonderful product. I could troll in a 8' sea in the ditch and you beer would not spill. I miss it. I have fins now witch are good but do nothing at anchor.
 
I have nothing against gyro’s . They certainly do a good job but what happens to a boat sale when they start to age?
 
I had installed a Seakeeper gyro in my 42 Chris craft sport fish several years back . major $$ . I had put in a seakeeper 5 . Todays cost for the unit $55,800 + tax. The base for mounting and pumps and install will be 30-40K . Look for a boat with one installed or a boat with fins if that's a real need for you. Its a wonderful product. I could troll in a 8' sea in the ditch and you beer would not spill. I miss it. I have fins now witch are good but do nothing at anchor.

I guess that my estimate of $50K was a bit low…
 
They are stupid money. Looked a a Quick gyro for the new boat, but in the end we did not install. We have fins so it was just for sitting at anchor.
The unit would only fit in one spot and the ER is too hot for the unit. The seakeeper would not fit and was considerable more $$ Quicks are air cooled and Seakeepers are water cooled
 
Great discussion on the gyros. Since we spec a couple of diff manufacturers on our motoryacht drawings, maybe I can get a discount on the hardware down the road. I modelled a SK in 3D, it was fun spinning it around on the screen before placing it on the custom mounting bracket. Real easy install if the "stringers" can handle the forces. Refit installation is another matter, but my local marina does it. I don't wanna ask!

I am a newbie. Can I start a new topic in this string or should I start a whole new topic about my Inside Passage cruise this summer on a GB46?!

Anyone gonna be at Trawlerfest next week?
 
Congrats. Just had an accepted offer and contract signed for 34 Mainship in Lake Champlain area. Have the out of water survey scheduled. Boat needs cosmetic fixes for sure. Carpeting, flybridge chair arms are worn out, refrigerator, new mattress, new sofa. Who does the re-carpeting????? How in the world do we find someone to do that and is there marine grade carpet specifically made ?
 
Congrats. Just had an accepted offer and contract signed for 34 Mainship in Lake Champlain area. Have the out of water survey scheduled. Boat needs cosmetic fixes for sure. Carpeting, flybridge chair arms are worn out, refrigerator, new mattress, new sofa. Who does the re-carpeting????? How in the world do we find someone to do that and is there marine grade carpet specifically made ?

Congrats, hope it works out. Is the carpeting inside or outside? If it is inside then regular household carpeting will work fine. We recarpeted out current boat when we bought it. I found a local carpet shop that did boats. We asked for the best carpeting as far as wear. They did an outstanding job. So good that when we remodeled our primary bathroom we had them do the tile work and also recarpet the bedrooms. What year is the boat?
 
New Boat

Lots of time carpet may mean that the parquet floor has taken a beating, hopefully not yours.

We have a pretty nice deck inside and just have an area rug in the saloon. We removed the up/down saloon table because we open the hatches there to do engine checks and work so we got a nice teak table with open grate that works well.

Keep plugging away, it never stops.
 
Indoor carpet it fine. Look into special basement carpet My last boat I used commercial carpeting boded neoprene padding and had it bound on the edges. . I also played around with the commercial carpet tiles. Great to use for areas with a lot of hatches. Also good for DYI or areas you just cannot get the roll of carpet into. They use a pressure sensitive glue that you can re lift and re set the tiles. It used in casinos, hotels etc A bit pricy but cool and you don't need that much. If you can do it yourself , it will be less than having someone install.

I settled on the one piece commercial carpet. I did not want to see all the hatches. I broke it up into hallways, cabins , and main salon with 1 main hatch cut through to the ER.
 
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Often a thread will end up being "hijacked", what started out as a discussion about anchors ends up being a discussion about "singles vs. twins". Not that it's a bad thing, but personally, when a thread gets beyond about three pages I tend to lose interest. After 40 or 50 posts pretty much everything has been said.

Probably best to start a new thread.

pete
 
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