Re: enginless/outboards

I did in fact keep my BCC engineless for two years in San Francisco Bay and on a two year cruise from there to New Orleans through the canal. I did install a diesel (Sabb 10 hp) in '83 and found it to make life a bit easier if less exciting. There are a lot of days with no wind at all along the american coasts. We did have a sculling oar which was fine for getting around for a few hundred yards in a dead calm but at an estimated 18,000 pounds displacement, you don't want to try water skiiing behind it.

We never had a problem being engineless while cruising since time is of no consequence and in SF Bay we were familiar enough with local conditions and currents to avoid problems.

In all honesty I do like having an engine but also miss the adventures and challenges of having to sail everywhere, all the time.

As for mounting an outboard, we did install a temporary one and borrowed a 9.9 Johnson/Mercury (?) when going through the Panama Canal. It pushed us along at 5 knots and only caused a problem when one of the canal workboats would pass us close by and drown the engine with its wake. (It was a short shaft).

I would have no problem seeing one mounted on my transom so long as you could life it to a higher position when not in use. I wouldn't bother taking it off except to put it on the dink for in-port use. This way it would serve two purposes. Fuel is no problem as the lazerette is easily sealed off from the rest of the hull (we have our propane locker in there) and vented. Still you could not carry a lot of gasoline, but then the whole purpose is to sail the boat, not motor for long passages.

By the way, until very recently we had a 12-foot hard dinghy we towed everywhere (Chesepeake to Trinidad, Aruba)and carried a 15hp Yamaha on a board mounted on the lower shrouds. It lived there quite well, but I wouldn't have wanted to be lugging it down a tossing deck to mount on the transom.

As for resale value being affected I wouldn't worry about it. Anyone buying a BCC is of a particular breed (What kind of person will spend $180,000 for a 28-foot boat) and can easily enough install an engine of their choice. It's not likely that any engine you choose would necessarily be the choice of a new owner. And, in any case, if you're buying a boat like a BCC with the thought of selling it later, forget it. We have hull number 22, layed up  in '77 that we finished ourselves and my wife couldn't be pried out of it. Not for a bigger boat. Not for a house.

So I say to the way you heart leads you. If you simply can stand the thought of hanging an outboard on that beautiful stern, figure a different way of doing it. I'm a firm believer in where there is a will, there is a way and all wife tells me I sometimes find solutions where there was no problem.

For myself, I look at my diesel and think, 'Crap', I gotta run that thing soon or its gonna weither away to nothing. (Bu tit won't because it's a Sabb).

And please don't worry about an outboard deteriorating because its out in the weather. My Yamaha never saw the inside of even a cloth cover and was never flushed in fresh water for 11 years. I never changed the zinc on the lower unit either. I'm a lousy and lazy guy and don't like maintenance (My God what am I saying...there is all that varnish out there). Anyway, outboards require a lot less attention than a diesel.

But whatever way you go....GO!

Warm seas and dry decks ,

Stan Roeder (Waxwing)


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