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Discussion Starter #1
I believe there was an old thread like this, but I thought we would run a new one.

So, of all the things you have done to your boat, what has been the single best thing? Provide pics if you can.

I will tell you mine: The solar array.



It is out of sight expensive. I think I dropped about $7,000 or better on the thing. But it has made my boat completely off the grid. I do not have to worry about power too much. I have and can install things like household fans, run a hair dryer, coffee makers, etc without worry and without the expense of buying marine units. We are even looking at a small 110v deep freeze and know we have the power to run it and without it being a major drain. It has given us LOTS of freedom.

Of course, with the solar panels we also increased our battery bank and installed a large Prosine 2k inverter... but still would say of all the things so far, I like the array the best - especially when coupled to my other items.

What's your best investment so far?

- CD
 

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old guy :)
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1,061 Posts
1 autohelm
2 dodger
3 FUGAWI
4 radar

I cannot see being without these.

We bought a new to us boat and the first two things I went out and bought were autohelm and radar.

 

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433 Posts
Up until this Year

Autohelm was No.1
Single best mod I ever added, absolutely loved it.
This year I got a new Mainsail and now it is starting to compete for first place.
I put a stereo in this year and love it but it doesn't do what the autohelm or new main does.
I still have the stern rail seats to put in, they are still in the garage and will have to wait for winter haul out to install on the hard.
I have added many mods over the years and like them all but that autohelm is something else and tough to beat. :D I'll have to wait and see how my new fathead mainsail works out since I have only had it a couple weeks now.:cool:

The most expensive and least liked mod was my rollerfurler, I bought the Scheafer CF700 Snapfurler, a very nice well made unit but it and any other furler only add complications to the setup, I was better off with the hank-ons in hindsight. Rollerfurlers are a nice to have and make for easy convenient sail douse but the installation and complication they add remove them from my recommendation list. Too much money and complication for the return on investment.:confused:
 

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Electronic charting at the nav station next to the radar. With the instantaneous plotting of position and the radar as confirmation of what the electronics is indicating, you can thread a needle on a dark foggy night and find your way to a safe anchorage and a rum toddy vs spending the night off shore.

After that.... Aries self-steering (thank you, Nick Franklin) and the autopilot!!
 

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Re-Cycled Salt
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16 Posts
In order:
1) Chart Plotter (now a laptop with Fugawi)
2) Auto Pilot
3) Radar

And following that:
Quaketack and 3M Command Strips

Quaketack is a non-marking/marring putty that you can stick down things with and they WILL NOT kick loose until you want them to. It is best on horizontal surfaces. For vertical ones, 3M command strips have a number of products for sticking things on. And they come off again with out leaving marks or residue.

I sound like a shill, but my wife & I really use those two product all the time and it simplifies the various mods you have to do when you live-aboard.

Unfortunately, neither product is suitable for anywhere other than the cabin.
 

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5,680 Posts
There were many nice goodies already on the boat when we bought it. The best thing we added was the Dickinson Newport Propane Cabin Heater. Or maybe the custom cockpit cushions. The AGM batteries have been nice too. Or the new set of sails (genoa, staysail, mainsail).

Hmmm, tough call.
 

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7,296 Posts
I'm with the Count on this one, you men need to adjust your priorities, no wonder they can not get the spouse to clean the boat!


Marty
 

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201 Posts
A real (electric) perc coffee pot that runs off the inverter (no more stove perc!).

Followed very closely by the Garmin plotter.
 

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12,373 Posts
After my wife of course

1-C80 Chartplotter
2- Gerhauer Davit System
3-6-6volt Lifeline AGM Batteries
4-Remote I pod stereo hookup from helm
 

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Tartan 37
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5,283 Posts
Wife says the roller furler, Harken MKIV Unit 2
I say the tack tick wireless or Garhauer Davits are a tie
 

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Courtney the Dancer
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3,971 Posts
1. New headsail and staysail.
2. Furling for staysail.
3. Wallas diesel forced air heat.
4. Fiberglass decks instead of teak.
5. AGM batteries
 
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