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bow thruster install
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patrick and linda



Joined: 28 Mar 2006
Posts: 953
City/Region: somerset
State or Province: KY
C-Dory Year: 1986
C-Dory Model: 27 Cruiser
Vessel Name: "Fan-A-Sea"
Photos: Misty Seas
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 9:14 am    Post subject: bow thruster install Reply with quote

ok, before you guys lecture me on how to operate a vessel, and why there is no need for a bow thruster on a small boat, i know that and with a little luck, i also have the ability to operate a boat., having said that, under the right conditions, i also have the ability to crash a boat. so, now we have that out of the way and can get down to business.
we all have our wish list. mine has all the electronics one would need, radar, chart plotter, sonar/fishfinder, although i do not fish, still like to see them or any other item submerged, tv/dvd/am/fm/cd, vhf, windlass, remote spot light, and why not bow thruster?
so, here's the question, has anyone installed a bow thruster, and if so, what was the experience, cost, problems, and pleasure of operation?
thanks
pat

ps: doesn't have to be a c-dory, any boat, any experience
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matt_unique



Joined: 27 Feb 2007
Posts: 1883
City/Region: Boston
State or Province: MA
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Vessel Name: Napoleon
Photos: Napoleon
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 11:18 am    Post subject: Thruster Reply with quote

I've never used a bow thruster but I think it would be fun!

All I know is the custom work is expensive - I know it involves a 'bit' more than a large circular drill bit, pvc pipe, and some 4200 Laughing

Seriously - it will be expensive - perhaps prohibitively so for a small vessel.

Good luck with the research.

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Former owner of Napoleon (Tomcat) Hull #65 w/Counter Rotating Suzuki 150's.
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Matt Gurnsey
Dealer


Joined: 11 Nov 2008
Posts: 1531
City/Region: Port Orchard
State or Province: WA
Photos: Kitsap Marina
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think the bow of a C-Dory is deep enough in the water for a bow thruster to operate.
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Matt Gurnsey
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Captains Cat



Joined: 03 Nov 2003
Posts: 7312
City/Region: Cod Creek>Potomac River>Chesapeake Bay
State or Province: VA
C-Dory Year: 2005
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Captain's Choice II
Photos: Captain's Cat
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 12:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

He sold his C-Dory Matt. He bought a 38394w87528754 brand.. Rolling Eyes

But we still like him. Laughing

Charlie

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CHARLIE and SALLY, CBRAT #100
Captain's Cat II 2005 22 Cruiser
Thataway (2006 TC255 - Sold Aug 2013)
Captain's Cat (2006 TC255 - Sold January 2012)
Captain's Kitten (1995 CD 16 Angler- Sold June 2010)
Captain's Choice (1994 CD 22 Cruiser- Sold Jun 2007)
Potomac River/Chesapeake Bay
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 16858
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 12:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt is correct, the C Dory is too shoal a draft for a traditional bow thruster. There are which are like a bow trolling motor, which would work--but also take up a lot of valuable deck space. There is also the jet type.

I did install a Vetus bow thruster on a 32 foot carver, single screw diesel, with a lot of windage (aft cabin and flying bridge). It cost about $3,000 installation and another $3,000 for the thruster. It worked well. I could walk the boat sidways off a pier with a 25 to 30 knot beam wind--but I went two sizes "over".

I have also operated a number of larger boats with bow thrusters. Some better than others. One had the jets (the only type you could put on a C Dory) This has a bottom pickup, and then jets either above or below the water line. The only experience I have with this type was on a 62 foot Morgan sailboat, I did a delivary on--it was not effective in any wind over about 7 knots or current more than a few tenths of a knot.

One of the disadvantages of electric thrusters is that they have a thermal relay. They will "time out" in about 5 minutes of full time use, because of heat build up. Again, I don't see this as a problem in a C Dory.

I have owned single screw inboard sail boats and a few inboard power boats up to 62 feet, and although I would have liked to have a thruster in a few situations--I managed without. I suspect that most of us would say that a thruster in a 22 C Dory would take up more space and complexity, than it is worth. I doubt that it would increase the value of the boat significantly.

I have enjoyed running the Ranger tugs, with bow and stern thrusters (although they handle very well without)--and with these thrusters, it makes docking and maneuvering a piece of cake.

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Bob Austin
Thataway
Thataway (Ex Seaweed) 2007 25 C Dory May 2018
Thisaway 2006 22' CDory November 2011 to May 2018
Caracal 18 140 Suzuki 2007 to present
Thataway TomCat 255 150 Suzukis June 2006 thru August 2011
C Pelican; 1992, 22 Cruiser, 2002 thru 2006
Frequent Sea; 2003 C D 25, 2007 thru 2009
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Home port: Pensacola FL
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patrick and linda



Joined: 28 Mar 2006
Posts: 953
City/Region: somerset
State or Province: KY
C-Dory Year: 1986
C-Dory Model: 27 Cruiser
Vessel Name: "Fan-A-Sea"
Photos: Misty Seas
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

over this past weekend i had the pleasure of operating a bow thruster on a 30' mainship pilot 11. ok, we're all good at backing a boat into a slip, but let me tell you, using a bow thruster was fantastic.
capt. dr. bob, brings up a good point regarding time out, i was not aware of this but it makes perfect sense. thus my asking for help.
capt. charlie was correct and the boat i have in mind would accept a thruster. capt. mattie was correct about the cost, but as a do-it myself type guy, i would only purchase parts, and i'm thinking they would be south of $2000.
florida bow thruster inc., has a video showing the installation of a thruster. looks straight forward once you have made a decision as to placement.
this probably goes down as "having more money than brains" not that i have either, just a strong need to continue outfitting a boat beyond need syndrome. my son, the doc, has diagnosed me as "just not being right, type guy". i think many of my c-brat friends are infected with the same affliction, including everyone who has responded to my post!
but, having said that, love you guys anyways.
pat
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Larry H



Joined: 01 Nov 2003
Posts: 2039
City/Region: Tulalip,
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 1991
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Photos: Nancy H
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some down sides;

There is the maintainance required of a bow thruster, including a zinc to be replaced and the barnacles and growth to be removed.

I was at my dock and a diver was trying to replace my neighbors bow thruster zinc for over 20 minutes till he discovered that the zinc was the wrong part. This wrong part was sold to the owner by the shop that sold and installed the thruster! I would be sure to have several spare zincs and test them prior to installing the bow thruster. Then buy replacements before using the last one.

Another consideration is that a thruster can suck in a loose dock line.

Thrusters also cause extra drag which uses extra fuel.

All that said, I too would like on on my single screw trawler, but don't have the bucks.

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Larry H

A C-Brat since Nov 1, 2003
Ranger Tug 27 'Jacari Maru'
Puget Trawler 37 ex 'Jacari Maru' 2006-2017
1991 22' Cruiser, 'Nancy H'--1991-2006
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Adeline



Joined: 03 Nov 2003
Posts: 985
City/Region: Vancouver
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 1989
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Adeline
Photos: Adeline
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Scroll down to Ship Shape Bow Thruster Video - Part 2 and watch an installation.
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starcrafttom



Joined: 07 Nov 2003
Posts: 7335
City/Region: marysville
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 1984
C-Dory Model: 27 Cruiser
Vessel Name: to be decided later
Photos: Susan E
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

that pilot drill is longer then my boat is wide. Looks so easy when you have the right tools.
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tomherrick



Joined: 13 Apr 2009
Posts: 367
City/Region: Versailles, KY
State or Province: KY
C-Dory Year: 1984
C-Dory Model: 22 Classic
Vessel Name: Prairieboy (working name)
Photos: Prairieboy
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I couldn't help bursting out laughing when I saw the 18V DeWalt drill next to that hole saw. I've use it with a 6" hole saw and been mighty glad for the clutch...

I do wish they would have showed how they aligned the pilot drill. I kinda doubt they did it by eye...

T
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thataway



Joined: 02 Nov 2003
Posts: 16858
City/Region: Pensacola
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: thataway
Photos: Thataway
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 6:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Because of the geometry of the bow, the installation is not as easy as it looks. I would suggest buying a piece of PVC pipe and doing mock ups with it first (find one the same size as the pipe. You can start inside of the boat, and cut the pipe to find the geometry. Yes, a large hole saw sure helps, but these big ones don't come cheap! The hole in the hull is not round, but an oval, because of the geometry. (but cut with a hole saw).

Buy a tube longer than what you have to install and then cut it off once installed. It is not all that easy to get the glassing all around the tube. Generally a lip is put on the outside of the tube to inprove effeciency.

I didn't notice much difference in the fuel consumption before and after thruster installation.

An easier option is a stern thruster. They are cheaper and easier to install. Hydraulic can run off Westerbeke gensets easily--and they can be set up as get home power for a single screw--no cost in fuel economy--but they don't move the bow.

if you are putting it into a bigger boat, consider putting batteries up foreward for the thruster and battery. Also 24 volts is better for a boat over 30 feet. Go up at least one size over what is recommended.

Put in controls at both upper and lower stations.

I have seen some very awkward situations where a thruster timed out on large Nordhavn and Kadey Krogens. The best units have a separate diesel engine dedicated to the thruster, or run the hyraulics off the gen set. I looked at one 55 footer which had a 50 hp bow thruster (it had been a research vessel), and the main was only 300 hp.
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POSSUMGAS



Joined: 23 Jan 2010
Posts: 14
City/Region: virginia beach
State or Province: VA
C-Dory Year: 2006
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: HUNKEY DORY
Photos: HUNKEY DORY
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 7:31 pm    Post subject: BowThruster Reply with quote

I had a 28ft Bayliner 2855 Cierra. I sat 10ft above the waterline. I had trouble puting the boat in the slip. I t was a VolvoPenta 7.4ltr(454ci). with a sigle O.M.C. Cobra SternDrive. I had the thruster installed. Ihad to have the V-berth removed. I had a boat yard do it. The fiberglass work was imence get the hole right. Then the glasss along with the hull flair. I wanted a pro to do it. i DID THE ACUAL THRUSTER install. That was the easy part. Be very caefull of the included tine delay. It did really help in manuvering. I did have a gell cell battery close with a battery charger tied into shore power. Be very carefull where you put the controls. I would use the joystick instead of the touch pad. I Love the Dory. It handles a hole lot better than the Bayliner. MY 2$ Hunkey Dory.
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turtleblues



Joined: 17 Nov 2009
Posts: 67
City/Region: Friday Harbor
State or Province: WA
C-Dory Year: 2007
C-Dory Model: 16 Angler
Vessel Name: DVant
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is a fellow in Anacortes that just began reping a line of bolt on bow and stern thrusters. I have not seen it in action, but he swears it works as well as one cut into the boat. Benefits, it does not require a lot of glasswork and is easily mounted. I do not remember his name, but he goes to the same health club as I do and I see him occassionally there. If you are interested I can get his contact info next time I see him.
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Sea Wolf



Joined: 01 Nov 2003
Posts: 8602
City/Region: Redding
State or Province: CA
C-Dory Year: 1987
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Sea Wolf
Photos: Sea Wolf
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2010 10:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

To me, it seems plain crazy to put a bow thruster on a boat the size of a CD-22, especially considering the hull size and the modifications involved.

Just read over the thread about water leaking into the CC/Venture boats for that kind of thrill, if a vicarious one will satisfy you. How about a cold shower, too?

If you really want such a thruster, get a powerful pump that can be place elsewhere, like in the cockpit with a through-hull supply, and direct the water forward in a tube to the bow above the waterline where the jets can be controlled by an electric servo mechanism (port/starboard valves) and a joystick at the helm. Add full directional jet control and go to work as a fireboat (!)

I think it would be better to use a DC motor and an aerodynamic propeller in a cage or duct above the water on the foredeck to push air instead of water around to get your side thrust.

It would be super simple, switching the polarity to the motor to reverse direction, and could be controlled in force by a big variable resistor. These two controls would be integrated into one for easier maneuvering.

The props could be on both ends of the motor for balance, and housed in a raised duct housing behind the windlass and in front of or over the cabin trunk that would direct the jet stream downward away from folks on the dock.

The biggest question would be whether you could get enough thrust from whatever motors were available to adapt to the task.

All the electrics would have to be sealed off from water, etc.

Designing the housing and ductwork could be fun, especially in light of the need to retain the basic design integrity of the boat. Try yhour darndest to not look like another Navy Experimental Assault Craft.....

Joe. Laughing Thumbs Up

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"Most of my money I spent on boats and women. The rest I squandered'. " -Annonymous
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Captains Cat



Joined: 03 Nov 2003
Posts: 7312
City/Region: Cod Creek>Potomac River>Chesapeake Bay
State or Province: VA
C-Dory Year: 2005
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Captain's Choice II
Photos: Captain's Cat
PostPosted: Tue May 25, 2010 8:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Captains Cat wrote:
He sold his C-Dory Matt. He bought a 38394w87528754 brand.. Rolling Eyes

But we still like him. Laughing

Charlie


Enough speculation. Pat bought a 2006 260 Sea Ray. That's what he's considering putting a bow thruster in. Disgust

Sorry Pat.

Charlie
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