Port Credit Marine Survey
& Yacht Delivery
4. Preferred Equipment
Some pretty basic boats make this run and every one has their individual list of “must haves” from TV’s to air conditioning and water makers. You will meet couples on the way south without water heaters or refrigeration. When you meet this boat a few months down the line chances are good she will be without a first mate.
We have met several cruisers whose entire suite of electronics and amenities consisted of a Sony walkman and a Styrofoam cooler.

For our first trip south we already had the basic amenities aboard (water heater, TV, refrigeration) and Laura made only one demand prior to leaving….a heavy duty electric windlass. She was tired of being the “anchor wench”. Many cruisers use manual windlasses and many boats up to 32’ and some up to

You don’t need much. This Albin 25 made it to Dry Tortugas
36' have none at all. If you have read the two logs on our web site you will know that there have been a couple of times we had to get our anchors up in a hurry.Fast anchor retrieval simply can’t be done with a manual windlass and chances are that if you absolutely have to get it up now ! conditions on deck probably require both hands just to hold on let alone crank a manual windlass.
After being anchored in the Gulf of Mexico for three days of 0°C and for about two weeks of temperatures not much above that, Laura told me she would never do this trip again unless we installed some sort of heating system. 

Among the options for heat are Espar type diesel furnaces which can be mounted in out of the way places and ducted to where you need the heat. These come in several different sizes and a rebuilt unit can be had from a dealer in
Toronto for about $900.00. They work very well but the injector nozzle does carbon up and cleaning it is very messy. Carbon soot is awful stuff to clean up. Bulkhead mount diesel heaters are another option and they too work well but I have seen a number with fuel leaks which can be pretty stinky.

Propane heaters are available and while we have a propane stove but I wouldn’t feel comfortable with a propane heater due to the vast volumes of oxygen they can consume in a cabin. Besides lugging propane tanks around to get filled would be a pain.
Lots of cool boats on this trip like this one in the C&D

If you have generator of course you have electric heat on demand but running a big diesel generator
for hours at a time can be annoying (why we have a propane stove). We chose to buy a 2000watt gasoline generator which we mounted in a box on the flying bridge.
These quiet little units are now very common on cruising boats but it should be remembered that all fossil fueled systems will generate carbon monoxide and that CO poisoning symptoms mimic seasickness and the effects are cumulative. It takes a couple of weeks for your blood to dissipate CO so it can build to dangerous levels if you are exposed to it every day. Install a CO detector in your accommodation space and take the time to learn about this issue.

On the wish list of many cruisers are water makers and while these are an undeniable convenience they are maintenance intensive with very expensive filters. I can buy a lot of water for the $10k it would cost to put in a water maker.

There are a number of other items to be considered as preferred equipment and some of these are important enough to warrant their own chapter (dinghies, ground tackle) while others have been included in other chapters where I thought appropriate.

Do not block your boat name with your dinghy. It’s a pain in the butt and confusing to be hailed with “ hey you in the white boat ! “

For further consideration ......

HeaterCraft - Free heat from your engine while its running and can be ducted anywhere onboard.


Chapter 5. Power & Management

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