What's the most useful modification you've made....

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
As a relatively new owner of a 1984 Ericson 30+ sailboat, I am wondering what you would consider the most useful modification you've made to your boat. As Ericsons have many common characteristics, we can all probably learn from this. So far, I've been busy just ensuring everything is in working order, but I hope to begin upgrades next year.
Hope to hear from you.
Frank.
 

Ray Rhode

Member III
This is my wife's choice for the most useful modification. I took an old cockpit table and mounted it with two hinges and a hatch support. It gives her additional galley space and folds out of the way when not in use.

Ray Rhode
S/V Journey
E35-III, #189
 

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Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
Ray, that seems like a great idea, because counter space is always in short supply, especially when there's others aboard and a supper in the making. Do you have a way to lock it down when underway, so it doesn't bounce in the waves?
Thanks for your idea.
Frank.
 

Ray Rhode

Member III
Frank,

Yes, the hatch support I used has a knob/friction lock that locks it up and down. That was the hardest part of the project; locating the mounts for the support. It had been a long time since I used any of my mechanical design skills and I drilled a lot of hole before I got it right.

Ray
 

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
Ray, that was a great way to start responses on this thread--a really good idea that many of us can add to our boats to please the ladies. :Kissy: Anyone else?
Frank.
 

treilley

Sustaining Partner
Cutting board/drink holder

This was from my previous boat. I made a cutting board that fit in the top of the sink. I cut two holes in it to hold drink cups while pouring drinks under way and it also provides a nice way to scrape garbage off the cutting board into a bag underneath when prepping food.
 

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Bob in Va

Member III
Sorta the same, not as pretty...

We needed one more place to put a foot when pulling strings at the base of the mast on my E23, so I made a drop-in cover for the sink, but this one has a strip of stair tread non-skid for good traction.
 

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therapidone

Member III
no pics, 4 suggestions

Greetings Frank,

I think your question in the original posting of this thread was fantastic! I'm already thinking about including some of the mods aboard Spirit.

None of these mods were made by us...our E/30+ came to us with them, but a friend who sails a '71 C&C Mark I 35-footer w/ hank-on headsails & no auto pilot asked me what I liked best about Spirit.

I mentioned the auto pilot first & he asked if that would be the first thing he should upgrade on the C&C.

I thought about it a second, and then told him that I would install roller-furling for the headsails first.

This final mod may not apply to the circumstances where you sail, but the Chesapeake Bay is not the deepest of bodies of water (as the saying goes, if you haven't run aground sailing in the Chesapeake, you haven't been sailing--fortunately, it's a soft, mucky bottom almost everywhere & while it might require some effort to release the keel from the suction of the muck, the softness of it all is less likely to cause any damage to the nether structures), and our fin had nearly a foot shaved off it to reduce the overall draft from 5' 10" to 4' 9"...a Mars Metal bulb was then added to add back some, if not all, of the lost ballast.

Finally, I have a suggested modification:thinker: ...there is only one internal grab rail in the salon on the starboard side...I'd suggest that one should be installed on the port side, too.

Regards,

Ed:egrin:
 

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
Thanks, guys. Great posts so far--keep them coming! Good ideas for all of us!:D
Ed, or anyone, how do you add a handrail on the inside port side--I think many of the ericsons have the soft vinyl headliner with the zippers; can only access all the necessary areas through these zippers? Can one line up the inside handrail with the outside one, and screw or bolt the two together for strength/reinforcement?
Frank.
 

u079721

Contributing Partner
For sailing modification the best of our lot would probably the Harken Battcar system for the main, which made mainsail handling of our fully battened main a breeze.

For cruising modificaiton, it may sound silly but our washdown pump made a huge difference in our anchoring routine.
 

CaptnNero

Accelerant
traveler

For handling the main we added a Harken windward sheeting car with a lot of purchase. It simplifies trimming and tacking the mainsail. If you have dodger it wouldn't be practical though.
 

Ray Rhode

Member III
Frank,

In reviewing your question about securing the table I realized that the pictures were of an earlier attempt. It failed because of the problem you mentioned. The second attempt used a hatch support by Sealift. It is in the West catalog on page 470

Ray
 

Graham Cole

The Zoomer
On my '84 30+ I'd list them in order as follows:
1) Autopilot (ST 4000+)
2) Furling (profurl)
3) Refrigeration (Nova Kool)
4) Dodger/raised boom 8"/ Solid vang.

When I'm motoring and not about to dock or maneuver, I'm on the pilot. Just did a 300 nm. trip Vancouver-Desolation Sound and return. Was on the pilot at all times. I have 2 6v batts and a separate grp. 31 start batt and found I was able to stay on the hook 3 days and still start on the house bank. I run the fridge all the time and listen to the cd, run water etc. Cheers.
 

HGSail

Member III
On my 29 I have the hard headliner so I am able to bolt the inside rails to the outside ones. This has made the outside rails much more secure.

Pat
E29
'73
#224
Holy Guacamole
 

treilley

Sustaining Partner
Here are mine

Here are the major improvements I have made on my newly acquired '85 E35 in the order of benefit.

1. Jabsco VSD water pump - Constant pressure with no accumulator tank. Shower has very consistent hot water and you rarely ever hear the pump.
2. Xantrex link 20 battery monitor with new batteries - 2 6v house bank and a group 27 dual purpose. Always know how much time I have left on my batteries and how long they will take to charge.
3. Wall sconce lighting - I added two bronze lamps from Lowes($8.00 ea) for better/softer lighting. 1 on the foreward bulhead and 1 just in front of the NAV table.
4. Washdown pump and 50' hose - I located the pump in the engine compartment and installed a hose fitting in the stbd propane locaker with a coiled hose. Already has an overboard drain and I don't have propane.

Here is a partial list of winter improvements: Some of these are maintenance items instead of improvements.
1. Repaint spars
2. Replace standing rigging
3. Buff out entire topsides and deck
4. Replace cabin sole
5. Replace sink with larger model
6. Replace sink faucet with sprayer type
7. Replace acrylic in Lewmar hatches
8. Repair gelcoat chips on deck
9. Install stereo systems with DVD audio
10. Connect chartplotter to radio for DSC and to the autopilot
11. Refinish all exterior and interior teak
12. Install dripless packing gland
13. Install folding prop
14. Replace sails

That's all I can think of for now.
 

Frank Langer

1984 Ericson 30+, Nanaimo, BC
Thanks, folks, for the great posts so far! Great information! Tim, that's a long list of improvements :egrin: I'm interested in the water pump--you seem pleased with it even without an accumulator, but I thought an accumulator makes for more even water pressure, and less on/off cycles--no? Also, do you use your boat shower regularly, and does it work well for you? Reason I ask is that many boat owners feel that a shower adds too much moisture to the boat, and also is too hard to manage in the small confines of the head--everything in there gets soaked, and possibly contributes to mould in hidden areas, etc. Any comment?
Thanks,
Frank.
 

treilley

Sustaining Partner
The pump works great. The old pump would vary in pressure and also water temp. The new pump runs very consistently and we never have any temp fluctuation. We have a seperate shower stall and will use it when there is no shoreside facility. It has a shower curtain so it keeps the rest of the head dry. Also, we only use it to get wet and then rinse off. No continuous running for more than a minute or so. I attached a link to the pump that I bought. Many give it very favorable reviews.

http://www.jabsco.com/prodInfoApp/s...atalogId=Marine&categoryId=JMWPS&typeId=JMSMV
 

rwthomas1

Sustaining Partner
I haven't done much "modifying" just replacement/renovation of existing systems, even so here what I liked the best:

I replaced the aged original blocks in the mainsheet setup with new Garhauer. I opted not to increase purchase I just kept the 4-to-1 setup but the Garhauer ballbearing blocks GREATLY decrease the effort required to trim the main.

I installed a positive displacement shower drain pump from Par/jabsco. The old "bilge" type pump didn't work worth a damn and would just allow the shower drain well to overflow into the rest of the bilge. The positive displacement pump is a diaphram type pump like a fresh water system pump. There is a screen installed pre-pump to keep hair, etc. out. I blocked off the limber hole from the shower sump to the rest of the bilge. The pickup has a "baitwell" screen on it and I used an electronic switch to trigger the pump. It works extremely well, runs in very brief bursts to easily keep up the draining shower water. The pump is installed inline in the drain hose and mounted under the port dinette seat on the bulkhead directly infront of the nav station. I like it! Works very well.

RT
 

Seth

Sustaining Partner
I second the driver and furler!!

Those are at the top of the list for sure (assuming you already have some type of electronic navigation).

With respect to the Battcar mainsail system-they are great, but for boats under about 40-45' I would strongly consider the Strong system from Tides Marine.. about 1/2 the cost, less weight aloft, much easier to install.

I have used them without trouble on boats up to about 55', but that may be pushing the limits of this system. For a 40 footer, it is ideal, and in my view better, since the slides are simpler and lighter weight than the Harken or Bainbridge roller cars. Hard as it may be to believe, these simple slides when used with the Strong track, are just as easy to raise and lower as the roller cars..You save money, weight, and complexity. You can also carry a spare down below for extended voyaging-something you cannot do with a metal track!

Cheers,
S
 

u079721

Contributing Partner
Those are at the top of the list for sure (assuming you already have some type of electronic navigation).

With respect to the Battcar mainsail system-they are great, but for boats under about 40-45' I would strongly consider the Strong system from Tides Marine.. about 1/2 the cost, less weight aloft, much easier to install.

I have used them without trouble on boats up to about 55', but that may be pushing the limits of this system. For a 40 footer, it is ideal, and in my view better, since the slides are simpler and lighter weight than the Harken or Bainbridge roller cars. Hard as it may be to believe, these simple slides when used with the Strong track, are just as easy to raise and lower as the roller cars..You save money, weight, and complexity. You can also carry a spare down below for extended voyaging-something you cannot do with a metal track!

Cheers,
S

I've heard good things about the Strong system too. In our case, back in '94 when we bought the Battcar system, we couldn't find anything else on the market - which has sure changed today. The Harken system is probably overkill on just a 38 foot boat. Other than cost and weight aloft the two big drawbacks to the Harken system are stacking height and those pesky track screws.

A friend with an Ericson 46 had the Harken system installed and the stacking height became so great that he had a hell of a time reaching the headboard. In our case the stacking height was pretty high, but managable with mast steps. A bigger concern is the mounting screws on the track. If one of those works loose it can keep you from raising the main past that screw. Happened on spring and I had to go aloft just to tighten one screw.
 
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