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Gulfstar 44 Motor Cruiser, We want to be sure if a boat is in our future.

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Do It In A Dinghy!

DeFever 53 POC- Performance Offshore Cruiser

Training new owners of a DeFever - the boat of their dreams
Captain Chris Yacht Services
DeFever 53 POC- Performance Offshore Cruiser
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How do you go from owning a center console trailer boat to owning the 53 foot DeFever of your dreams? Ask Captain Chris and he'll guide you all the way!

Shannon and Shae have the perfect boat for their family of five- the 53 foot DeFever POC, Performance Offshore Cruiser. The layout and design was exactly what they could imagine when they started out looking over 4 years ago. Now that they found this terrific trawler how were they ever going to maintain and maneuver her in the tight quarters of a marina? That's where we come in...

Captains Chris & Alyse spent three days with these new owners beginning with the basics. But before we start let's go a bit further back in time, back to how we met. Shannon discovered us on line and chatted regularly with Captain Chris about different boats of interest over a few months time. Then they saw the 53 DeFever POC and knew she was the one. Chris assured Shannon that we could get he and his family comfortable running such a large boat and now it was time to prove it!

Both Shae and Shannon reviewed the engine room maintenance requirements on our first morning together. This was extra fun because it's a walk-in stand up engine room with plenty of space for all of us (see the photos below)!! Then we followed with a navigation review to stir up some memories from classes taken years ago. We even gave them homework to plan their trip north. This task brought reality to the forefront and let them see that 100 mile days were not going to happen at trawler speed. It's about the journey, right?

Their new dinghy motor arrived on our first day of training so we took that opportunity to review the dinghy launch and retrieval steps. There is so much more to learn than just going in and out of the slip. But then again, we spent one entire morning practicing docking maneuvers and plan for at least one more day to fine tune that skill before they start their trip north.

Anchoring was another new skill to acquire, including arm signals and operating the capstan. We lowered the hook for lunch out near the inlet so we could see the effects of current and tide up against that of the wind. Smaller boats are less effected by the wind with their low profile. This 53 foot DeFever is like a giant sail and we must consider that it is greatly influenced by the wind.

Watching the clouds building on our last day aboard we decided to head back to the marina before the skies opened up on us. You can easily become an amateur weather forecaster when you spend so much time on your boat. Reading the front lines is another skill that will serve you well as you cruise. We managed to squeak by without a drop but the winds did pick up making docking interesting but successful none the less.

We'll see this couple a few more times before they bring this roomy trawler to her new home port. They'll be bringing three new crew members with them next time!

 

Let's get started in this spacious engine room. Plenty of room for five more people on both sides of each engine!
Captain Chris goes through the cooling system- just follow the trail.
Looking at the sight tubes for the fuel tanks.
I guess we have to read the manual to see how the shaft releases. A fellow trawler owner and boat neighbor drops by to join the discussion.
I'll wait here while they find some small line to attach to the bow of the dinghy. Comfy!
Important for you to read the USCG requirements for weight limits on your dinghy.
Shannon uses that small line to keep the dinghy facing forward and parallel to the mother boat while Shae uses the electric davit to hoist the dinghy up.
Now we see where the new dinghy and motor will be best positioned. Might have to relocate the supports to allow access to the aft hatch.
Practice lowering and raising the anchor using the capstan before you leave the dock.
Starting up the engines in preparation for taking her off the dock for the first time. How exciting!
Shae takes the helm while Shannon does an engine room check.
Don't forget to wear ear protection when the engines are running.
Anchoring can be dirty work, especially if the previous owner never used it and the chain is in a clump of rust. Uh-oh. Add this to the list of maintenance items.
Taking on fuel. Nice wide side decks are great for this task as well as handling lines when docking.
Cruising from the flybridge.
Back at the dock it's Lime Time!

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