Within the next 5 years I want to be on a blue water capable boat circumnavigating. In the meantime, I am READING A TON and taking copious notes.
I grew up sailing and racing small dinghies and every once in a while i'll rent a boat in CA for the weekend for some solo sailing just to keep the mind fresh. I would like to eventually spend a season crewing/deliveries to help build my "wants" lists and learn what I do and don't like in particular designs.
For those of you that have bought new boats, I was wondering if you had any thoughts about what you had the builder install vs what you decided to install yourself.
Was this decision a monetary one (cheaper to do it yourself)? An experienced based decision (I want to know my boat better)? Other?
If you could do it over again, what else would you have asked the builder to take care of?
On a side note, I'd like to thank all the contributions made day in and day out by soooo many. You're not just helping other boater owners; you're helping the sport and the lifestyle! Thank you!
Except for the Tayana 42, all of my boats have been new.
There are some things that are really better installed at the factory if you can. The generator (diesel) is one. You might also consider them installing your air conditioner... maybe.
I installed my solar, charging system, battery system, inverter, some of my electronics, heads, and other comfort items.
My suggestion, as a cruiser, is that you do what you can yourself. You will not necessarily save money. In fact, depending on your boat, it may cost you more money. But you can see how it goes in and where you drill your holes, what cabinets you take out, where the runs are, etc. Your factory will not necessarily care if they take out a whole cabinet for a duct run, whereas you will want to maximize your cabinetry as much as possible, or you might want a tank there and don't want that run through that spot. They cannot read your mind (and most of them may not care).
I cannot stress how important it is when cruising to know where your runs are for everything. Otherwise, when something breaks, you are scrambling to find where it is run... not to mention what is broken. Make sense? THis is especially true with the electronics which love to screw up and get outdated.
The generator is just such a bulky and multi-man job, its is something we opted to have done. And the factory at times can put it in cheaper than what you can after-market it for because they already have the boat apart. Do be careful though that when you have factory installed items, THEY CAN STILL COME BACK OUT! Very important. You will eventually replace it all or might want to.