Category Archives: Refiting

Simple Safety Upgrade

The path out of the cockpit to the deck on our Passport 47 is narrow and we always found ourselves grabbing the wire life lines for support.  This can be dangerous if you miss and hard on the hands is you are in a rough seaway.   Finally I decided to replace that section of wire with 1 inch stainless tube.  All I did was have a split fitting welded to one end and the other was welded to the first stanchion.  If I need to remove the section it is still possible.  Wow what a difference, easy to grab, secure, and best of all Sue loves it!!

Passport 47 lifeline

Sue holding on tight!

Forward Head Reno

As with most renovations it all started in a rather innocuous way, our Raritan manual head was leaking and in need of a rebuild.  The story goes something like this; now that the head is out I should refinish the head base, now that the head base is out I should refinish the bulkhead behind the head, oh right the wash down pump needs replacing and the plumbing  should be moved, now that I have access, maybe I should put a waste Y valve in and a shut off valve on the holding tank  and all of this is connected to the forward gear locker that has a leak somewhere, I might as well tear that out – while I was at it .

Passport 47 head

After all the work !

Because there was not room in the head the vented loop was put in the forward locker all old holes in the bulkhead were sealed and the wash down pump was moved to the celling of the locker.    Paint and a new LED light will finish off this zone.

Passport 47

Moved wash down sumo

Passport 47

Vented Loop









This  was not the day or two job  it was weeks, but well worth the time spent.  Leaks gone and the forpeak will never be so organized again.  Also the shower was painted (Interlux Brightside ) a little varnish touch up  – WOW big improvement.  I’ll post a picture when all done.


Our Kiss installed on Adesso

Our Kiss installed on Adesso

Adesso came with a KISS high output wind generator with lots of spares.  My research on the product indicated that it was a durable and respected name in wind  generators of the past.  Kiss is no longer in business but parts were available so with that in mind I rewired it when recommissioning Adesso after the trip across the US.  During the summer trip around Vancouver Island an unexpected compatibility issue arose, the KISS does not have a regulator  relying on a simple heat sink and diode to produce DC and assums that a battery can be overcharged to up to 10% of its capacity negating the need for stage regulation.  Well that may be true BUT when you mix that with a Morningstar MPPT regulator for the solar, things are not so happy, the “smart” regulator sensing the high voltages that the Kiss would output would shut down charging and not recover until it was reset.  The Mastervolt charger/inverter didn’t like it either, should I mention the Balmar regulator as well, Sigh@><!

Air Breeze on a sunny day!

Air Breeze on a sunny day!

The choice was to buy another regulator and larger heat sink for the KISS or look for something else if it was affordable.  In the end I did not want to spend hundreds to support an older piece of technology on our boat so the KISS was sold to someone with a simpler alternative energy environment.   Looking for bang for the buck and taking into account that Captain Sue wanted less sound we opted for the Air Breeze Marine and installed the carbon fibre Blue Blades made in Portugal.   Wow – no more problems and very QUIET  not mention the blaze of blue in the sunlight!   Another project off the list.

New furniture!

Becky working on the install

Becky working on the install

One of Sue’s first projects was redo the upholstery.  Adesso’s was dark and worn out in a number of places so fabric hunting was high on the list.  It all started with fabric rub counts and swatches laying about the boat for weeks while the best colour choice was made.  In the end a lighter blue/grey with no pattern was the winner, as it lighten up the interior of the boat and is very easy to clean, a major concern!  Becky of Anchors Away was contracted to do the job.  The result was nothing short of spectacular, thank you Becky!!!



View of  looking toward the Nav station.

View of looking toward the Nav station.

New settee looking great.

New settee looking great.


Sure Marine

Installed behind the propane tanks.

Adesso arrived from Rhode Island with a new air conditioner which would pump out a little heat but in the Pacific Northwest real heat is needed to survive snowy days.  The best heat for a larger boat are forced air or hydronic diesel furnaces that will put heat in a number of cabins.  In our case Sure Marine in Seattle has a great reputation, supplying Webasto heater kits for the marine industry and is close by.   We went with hydronic because of the installation, 1” hose was possible to run from the boiler where a 3” air vent line path could not be found.  The other big challenge was where to put the boiler itself.  All the room underneath the cockpit was already full of , generator, holding tank, water maker, spare anchor, auto pilot, leaving a small area behind the propane tanks the only choice. This was a tight fit, not to mention the contortions required to get into the area to install the unit as well.

Expansion tank mounted in locker

Expansion tank mounted in locker

Heat exchanger

Exchanger mounted in cabinet

The other challenge was the expansion tank had to be above the boiler which meant I had to be creative to find a place that would work.  In the end the tank in one of our master cabin lockers keeps its contents dry and radiates nicely in to the cabin.  The small radiators were installed in the bottom of lockers and storage areas, cutting a little into the space but this was a small price to pay for heat.  The water loop ran from the stern of the boat where the boiler was, underneath the aft cabin bunk, along the removable floor boards to the forward locker, 150 feet of hose in all.  The install is not for the faint of heart as there are many components all of which have to squeezed in to the boat somewhere.

With three zones all on their own thermostats we are cosy aboard even when the snow falls! The other bonus is the efficiency of this type of heat compared to the drip feed stove.  Using a fraction of the diesel and a little 12V current has made Adesso our winter cruising home very comfortable.  A special thanks to Sure Marine for the great service and support getting this all running!   The air conditioner was sacrificed for room and power savings though we may regret that if we ever get to hot countries!


More Power!

Passport 47 solar

Morning star mounted on electronics wall.

Adesso came to us geared around a new Master Volt Whisper generator but we are of the alternative energy mindset so solar and reconnecting the wind generator was at the top of our list.  After much research I decided on the Morningstar MPPT 45 regulator and a single 250 watt/30 volt solar panel.  These panels are the standard in larger solar installations so are the cheapest per watt and the most durable.  I calculated that it would produce under 15 amps so I put a 15 amp breaker inline to safeguard all the parts. Much to my surprise these panels turned out to more efficient than advertised and during peak sun the breaker would blow  – it was charging at 20+ amps!!!!  A larger breaker is in order.   Our local solar expert Terratek supplied the panel and regulator and were very helpful. I’m now wondering about adding another to the bridge by changing the orientation.

To mount all this Nuno at Ocean Metals came up with a great idea that he had done on other boats.  Because Passports pushpit  is so well built and strong we just made two vertical 2″ poles mounted to the deck, supported to the corners of the pushpit and the solar bridge at the top.   With the wind on one side and electronics moved to the other everything was neat and tidy.

Nuno's handy work!

Nuno’s handy work!

Hydraulic Mania

Navtec series 7

Repaired Series 7 backstay adjuster

Oil leaks are messy especially if they are on deck.  Adesso had a Navtec Series 7 hydraulic backstay adjuster, a little dated but still worked well except for the oil drips that eventually mixed with all sorts of deck flotsum and jetsum resulting in a sticky mess.  A little research showed that the rebuild kits were still available and Blackline Rigging in Victoria were the authorized local warranty/service dealer.  Brent at Blackline said the kit and labour was a not cheap but much less than a replacement so I took the series 7 in to be done.  A week later it returned with a clean bill of health, at least that is what I thought.  Alas a couple within a couple of weeks the dips started again from the pump handle, yuk!   After talking to Brent we decided that it was not worth putting more time into the old adjuster and he found us a new year old “last model” replacement that he sold us for cost to compensate for the money already spent!


Navtec backstay adjuster

New Navtec leaking from the top seal

Just before leaving on this summers trip I installed the new unit thinking this was the end of the oily mess.  Well “Murphy” is alive and well – two days after leaving the top seal started leaking.  Akkkk.  I sent a picture and info to Brent who was at a loss as to why and would contact Navtech.  As we were on our way around Vancouver Island  it was decided that we would stop in Canoe Cove where Blackline is.  Navtech said that the seals were most likely hard because the unit head was not rotated every few months when in storage.  Brent not only fixed the leaks by replacing all the seals but found us a mooring bouy to stay at while the works was done.  I give 5 stars for perseverance and customer service to Brent at Blackline Rigging!


Anchor choices!

Adesso came with 2 stainless 60 LB CQR anchors.  The CQR is an example of good anchor technology of the past and decided to give it a try before considering a replacement.  The main point here is an anchor is a small investment compared to the boat and more importantly we have to trust it.  During our first months cruising in the Pacific Northwest it was decided to replace the CQR.  Slow to set, awkward to bring into the bow roller were the main reasons.   My first sail boat had a “Bruce” which was a great anchor with the exception of not setting well min kelp or ell grass and occasionally would pick up a bolder resulting in its inability to set at all until it was removed.  “Indigo” our last boat had an early generation Rocna that we were very happy with, excellent holding, positive setter and excellent at resetting in a wind shift.  It so happened that Practical Sailor was reviewing anchors from a number of different points of view this spring which helped us greatly in making a choice for Adesso.  One of the first factors was that roll bar anchors were a questionable fit because of the Passport bulwarks and stainless roller configuration.  To top this off the “Spade” anchor was getting top ratings  with Practical Sailor, and I was told its geometry was very similar to the CQR.   So the “Spade” it was!   This was a fantastic choice not only does it fit and look great on the Passport it is surpassing our experience with the Rocna. The curved anchor shaft makes for smooth release and return, it sets every bit as well an the Rocna did even in grassy bottom and though we have not experienced a big wind shift yet Practical Sailor test had this anchor at the top of that list.  We love our new Spade!

Passport 47 anchor

Spade on the bow of Adesso


Thoughts on Audio

Adesso came with speakers everywhere!!  These were all car audio speakers and very tired!  I prefer a higher quality sound and this does not have to cost more!  In fact if you have a little DIY streak you can create amazing sound for very little.  Renown for its sound quality the Lepai’s amplifiers are 12volt and are amazingly cheap.  These work well with todays digital player world with both RCA and 3.5mm inputs.   I used the 168AH ( approximately 50.00 ) which has  subwoofer  capabilities in the main salon.  This coupled with a pair of DIY Fonken speakers and a built in sub under the navigation table.  Check out for plans and drivers for these amazing speakers !  I then put a separate Lepai 2 channel  ( less than 30.00 ) connected to a couple of marine Jensen speakers in the cockpit.   This allows sound volume to be separately adjusted between the cockpit and the salon.

Passport 47 aufio

Lepai Stereo amp with outboard key for scale.

Passport 47 audio

Fonken book shelf speaker

Passport 47 audio

Sub woofer under navigation table

Max Prop Correction

Since splashing Adesso in the Pacific Ocean, Adesso would motor about 6.4 knots at 2700 rpm on her Yanmar 4J2E-HTE.  Not only did this seem too slow but the engine rpm’s seemed high.  After researching with the manufacturers of the Max Prop and doing load testing I decided to change the pitch from 16° to 22°. We had to do a half lift to do the job which would require taking the Max Prop apart to reset the angle.  For reference our Max Prop is a Classic 17 inch 3 blade.  We took a quick weekend trip to Lund and back to do the change.  Now I am happy to report that under full throttle the Yanmar loads up to about 3400 rpm max which is close to 80% of the governed max rpm of 3600 rpm.  I can now cruise at a 2400 rpm and make over 7.3 knots in calm water!  The other benefit was the engine and gear ran smoother with less noise and vibration.   To top off the weekend we had a light NW breeze to take us home. Thanks to Roy on his Contest 38 who took the video as we sailed by!