Boat Gear

We like to adopt the "KISS" = 'Keep It Simple Stupid' approach to the gear that we have on board. The more systems you have the more you have to maintain. With that said, Sim does like to have a back up for most systems onboard incase one fails.  And obviously our budget is a big factor in this, but we are not afraid to spend money on worthwhile equipment like anchors and ground tackle, sails etc where you get what you pay for.

Below is an inventory of what we believe are the essential pieces of gear on our boat.
Any thoughts or comments welcome.


33hp Westerbeke Engine.
We have a 33hp Westerbeke engine. It is old, as it is the original engine. It is a bit small for our size boat, but its is economical and we can still get the spare parts.  And as we like to sing as we are pushing her "westy is besty" as she is a good old girl!

Simpson Lawrance Sea Tiger SL555 Manual Windlass

We have often considered up-grading to an electric windlass but a Sea Tiger is such an indestructable piece of kit that in the end we opt to stay with the reliability of our old windlass.  Plus Sim likes to watch me pull it up! My other name is Winch Wench!

Our ground tackle is pretty robust too.  Our primary anchor is a 60lb Manson Supreme with 50m/175ft of 3/8" bbb chain and 40m/150ft 3/4" rode.  Our seconary anchor is a 44lb Delta with the same chain and rode .

This is 'Lilo-Lil' our 10ft AB dinghy.  We like to have a decent sized dinghy and out board not just for the fun and convenience but also as a safety matter too.  Our old yahama 15hp has heeled the mast so that we could get off a mudbank on two occasions.  The yahama 2.5 is economical and easy to put on but primarily it is a spare.

Solar Panels and Wind Generator.
We have 430 amp hour house batteries as well as an 80 amp hour emergency engine starting battery.  These batteries are charged either from our main engine, 3 (we have added another) Kyocera solar panels and a Marine Air-X wind generator. We also have a small 900 watt portable Yamaha generator.

Chart Table and Nav area.

We have two GPS; a Garmin 172C chartplotter and a Furuno GP32. The Furuno feeds into a laptop that is also connected up to an AIS unit.  We also have an old handheld GPS in the grab bag. We have Navman wind, speed and depth instruments mounted in the cockpit with a repeater in the pilothouse. 

Aries Wind Vane,
We have 3 independant methods of moving the rudder.  The cockpit wheel (cable system), hydraulic steering from the pilot house and an autohelm ST 5000 (older unit).   In addition we also have an Aries wind vane (that doesn't get used much these days).

Icom VHF radio equipped with DSC
We have two VHF radios, one Icom and one Standard Horizon, plus a handheld.  We have an old Icom M600 SSB radio. We also have a Iridium satellite phone.

Our pretty cruising chute.
We have a good inventory of sails. Brand new loose footed main with new stack pack and new 115 %  furling genoa  A spare working jib. A 150% light weather headsail.  An inner staysail and a storm jib.  We also have a cruising chute.  We use the inner staysail occasionally and the cruising chute has been out a handful of times.  But we rarely ever change the jib.

EPIRB, Flares and Fire Extinguisher.
We carry an EPIRB, a selection of handheld and rocket flares. We have an old Avon life raft. Two handheld fire extinguishers, plus two automatic extinguishers in the engine room.  Automatic electric and manual bilge pumps.  And of course life jackets and harnesses, a danbuoy and a life ring.