Complete list of options

We have been working on the design and setup of Wildling since we started the purchase process in July 2014. We finalized the details of all the additional features and options we are adding during our visit to the Outremer factory in January 2015.

Most of the features that are needed for basic coastal cruising are already included in the base 5X inventory and you can find them here. Below is the list of all the additional systems and options we have chosen in order to configure Wildling for high performance ocean sailing and long distance passage-making.

In a few cases an option is included in the base boat price, but there is a choice of how it is configured. I have noted where that is the case in the description for that option. For each of the features listed, I have tried to explain what it is for and why we chose it.

FEATURE DESCRIPTION
OUTREMER 5X – Owner version The Owner version has the entire port hull configured as a master suite with a king size bed in the aft cabin and separate bathroom, toilet and full height shower. The starboard hull has two cabins – a king size bed aft and a double bed forward, with a separate toilet and bathroom with full height shower in the companionway
STRUCTURE
2 main bulkheads in Carbon/Epoxy Reduces weight by 185kg
Roof constructed in Carbon/vinylesther Reduces weight by 77kg
LAYOUT
Office desk in owner’s suite Added a desk, drawers and fold out seat in the port companionway. Desk surface in same wood as shelving. Hull lining behind the desk in standard white color
Interior cabinetry wood Standard color scheme – same as 5X Hull #1 Addiction – no additional cost for this
Longitudinal beds in aft cabins The king size beds in the two aft cabins can be either transverse or longitudinal orientation. We selected longitudinal beds as they are easier to climb in an out of when there are two people in the bed, and provide extra lateral support when sleeping in rough conditions
Steps in Aft cabins and shelving changes in Port Hull Converted the hanging locker aft of the freezer to shelving with 400mm distance between shelves. There is a second hanging locker in the port companionway which we will use for wet weather gear, and we don’t need two. Added a step at the outboard foot of each aft cabin bunk to make it easier to climb into the bunk. Outremer did not charge us extra for this change
Salon table on telescopic feet + cushions Added modified, adjustable height table legs and additional custom seat cushions with covers so the settee table can be converted into a double bed
COMFORT
Integrated microwave oven 220V 50Hz – Inverter and shore powered – Installed above sink in starboard aft salon bulkhead
24V Fridge & 90 L freezer The fridge is included in the base inventory. We are adding a freezer in the port companionway. The fridge is a multi-drawer type on the port side of the salon under the TV cabinet. Both are 24VDC powered
LED TV 32″ retractable in furniture TV slides out sideways from behind the cabinet on port side of salon. The TV is connected to the HiFi system and uses the salon and cockpit speakers for sound
Air Conditioning : Salon (2×12 kBTU) + cabins (3x6kBTU) + 2 condenser water pumps (1 per hull) Air conditioning can be operated independently in each of the 5 zones as needed to minimize power consumption. There is no generator on Wildling, so the A/C is designed to be operate in the following modes:
– At sea via 24V Lithium batteries and Inverter
– At dock (220/240V 50Hz) via dedicated shorepower inlet
– At dock (120V 60Hz) via Lithium batteries and Inverter using 120V shore charger
*Air conditioning is an extravagant luxury item that is expensive, takes up storage space, and adds weight, but we found it to be almost a necessity on our last boat when staying in marinas and cruising in the tropics. We had a central chilled water air conditioning system in our last boat which was an all or nothing type system and used a huge amount of power. The system on Wildling will be much more flexible and allow us to adjust the amount of AC we run based on the amount of power we have available
Blinds & mosquito screen on 11 hatches When cruising in the tropics there are a lot of mosquitoes, some of which carry tropical viruses. Good quality, well fitted mosquito screens are a necessity
5 Caframo Sirocco fans 2 in salon and one in each cabin (5 total)
2 Electric toilets 24VDC electric flush, with the ability to switch between sea water and fresh water. The standard manual toilets are a bit complicated when guests are aboard, so we selected the optional electric toilets. The ability to switch over to use sea water to flush when on passage saves a large amount of fresh water. We didn’t have this on our last boat and had to run the watermaker a lot more to compensate
Courtesy LEDS in transoms (2×3 leds, Blue) Colored LEDs may seem a bit silly,  but some type of distinctive lighting makes it much easier to locate the boat when returning in the dinghy at night in a crowded anchorage (especially after a few drinks!)
WATER
Pressurised sea water (sink + deck washer) The deck washdown hose is needed to clean off the anchor, chain and deck when anchoring on muddy bottoms. Having pressurized sea water at the sink saves a lot of fresh water when doing the dishes. You can wash in sea water and save fresh water for a final rinse
Hot/cold water shower in scooped stern We used our transom shower all the time on our last boat to wash our feet when returning from shore and to shower after swimming and snorkeling
Quay water pressure inlet It’s a real benefit to be able to use the pressurized fresh water supply when available at the dock. We made up a water filter on our last boat and connected it between the dock hose outlet and the boat water inlet to remove any sediment and chlorine
80 liter hot water tank (instead of 40L) 40 liters is too small for a family of 4
24V – 100 l/hr DESSALATOR automatic reverse osmosis watermaker Installed in the port engine room with controls in a watertight access panel at the top of the port transom steps. 24VDC powered allows us to run the system from the lithium batteries without requiring a diesel generator
DESSALATOR maintenance kit
ELECTRICAL
Lithium Batteries – 2 x Mastervolt 24-5000, total capacity 360 Ah, with Chargemaster 100A battery charger that can accept either 110V or 240V shore power input 24V Lithium battery system including shore charger, system status display and battery monitoring. Replaces Lead Acid (Gel) batteries in standard inventory and saves ~100 lbs of weight). Lithium batteries charge faster, weigh less, take up less space and last longer than lead acid batteries
700 Watts of solar panels mounted on davits Includes Victron 24V 30Amp MPPT charge controller – I would ideally like to have 1,000 Watts of solar capacity, but Outremer has found the flexible panels used on the bimini roof in earlier models have proved to be unreliable and there isn’t enough room on the davits to add more panels
600 Watt hydro generator Watt & Sea – Racing version to handle high speeds
24V engine alternators – Mastervolt Alpha 24V/110Amps For battery charging – total output is 220Amps at 24V which will charge the lithium battery bank in less than 2 hours.*Note: these are dedicated house battery charging alternators and are in addition to the 12V alternators that are included with the Volvo engines to charge the engine starting batteries
220V Inverter – Mastervolt Mass Sine 24/5000 220V 50Hz inverter + 6 outlets 220V Inverter to operate AC, Microwave, Power outlets and water heating – Sized to be able to run air conditioning without a generator and also big enough to run essential appliances such as a hair dryer and coffee maker!
5V USB & 12V outlets (USB in each cabin, 12V at helm station) 12V outlets powered by 24V-12V DC/DC converter – 12V at both helms
ENGINES
Volvo engines 75HP (instead of 55HP provided as standard) The 75HP Volvo engine is the same physical as the 55HP with the addition of a turbocharger and higher load pulleys and belts to drive the lithium battery charging alternators. There is only a small difference in weight between the 55 and the 75
Four bladed folding propellers Larger propellers, pitched to match the torque curve of the 75HP engines
2 Electrical engines control stations 1 x electronic engine control station at each helm – the 5X is a big boat, so being able to maneuver and dock from either side is important
SAILS & RIGGING
Mainsail halyard led to cockpit Turning block and two rope clutches, one on the mast, the 2nd next to the winch to allow the mainsail to be raised, lowered and reefed using the electric winch at the starboard helm station.
*The rotating mast requires a clutch for the halyard on the mast base which needs to be closed before the mast is rotated
Boom white painting Paint to match white carbon mast
Boom spreader This is a metal frame on top of the boom which holds the mainsail when it is lowered or reefed
Rotating Carbon mast (High module 390 Gpa) – kevlar shrouds Increased performance under sail and 615 lbs lighter than the standard aluminum mast
Hydranet square head mainsail Mainsail in hydranet fabric in place of the standard dacron which gives better performance but is still durable enough to use as a cruising sail – fitted with leech telltails + two rows of draft telltails at 1/3 & 2/3 height
Hydranet jib (instead of Dacron) Self tacking jib in dacron is included as standard. Hydranet sailcloth is an option
Gennaker rigging and bowsprit Allows us to rig a Gennaker or spinnaker on the bowsprit
Code D with furler Delta Voiles, Code D Gennaker for increased downwind performance in light winds
Kevlar Code 0 (105m²) + block and sheet Increased upwind performance in light winds
Mainsail halyard rigging 2:1 with large ball bearing pulley block attached to sail head Earlier model 5X boats used a 3:1 halyard as standard, but this has now been changed to 2:1 with the addition of a low friction ball bearing pulley block at the halyard attachment point. There is no charge for this change
Mainsail cover with Outremer & 5X logo Includes lazy jacks
Logitudinal structural GRP/Carbon beam The standard longitudinal beam (the deck section between the two trampolines) is non-structural. Because we want to be able to rig staysails, we have to change it to a high strength, carbon reinforced longitudinal beam. We are adding the attachment points for the staysails to the beam and also the rigging points and halyards inside the mast. We haven’t ordered staysails as yet because we want to see how the boat handles in different conditions first
Preparation for Additional staysail and jib (halyards, inserts in the roof, carbon mast modification) Preparation for adding staysails in the future as needed
cruising spinnaker rigging Our initial sailplan is using a CodeD gennaker instead of a spinnaker, but we want the ability to add a spinnaker in the future. This options adds the mast rigging and spinnaker halyard so we are ready for a spinnaker if needed
DECK LAYOUT
Mechanical steering + 2 carbon tillers with seats The standard steering system is hydraulic, which I don’t like (has a disconnected helm feel and too many parts that can fail). The tiller steering option converts the linkage to cable quadrant, and adds the outboard seats, which are very nice. The tillers can be fitted when needed and double as an emergency steering system if the linkage were to fail
2nd helm wheel on portside (if mechanical steering) The standard inventory has a single wheel helm on the starboard side. We are adding a 2nd wheel helm position on the port side
Carbon Rigid cockpit bimini with LED lights, speakers and water catchment system I was a bit surprised that this in not included in the standard inventory. The rationale is that some owners will want to build a racing version which is super light, so they wouldn’t want the extra weight of the bimini. The compromise is to build the bimini in carbon to save weight compared to an all fiberglass structure
Aluminum Davits The davits are also not included in the standard inventory. There is a carbon option for these, but I didn’t feel the minimal weight reduction was worth the extra cost. We are installing aluminum davits, painted white to match the mast and boom
2 x Seat (2 person) at wheel helm stations Adding 2 seats, one at each wheel helm position. Seat cushions in silvertex fabric to match the cockpit lounge cushions. I really enjoy hand steering when I sail, so I want to have comfortable seats at the helms
2 x Wheel helm weather protection dodgers Adding a dodger over each wheel helm seat to protect from sun and spray. The are removable when not needed
Standard stainless steel steering wheels with leather covers There is an option to install carbon steering wheels, which look great, but I don’t like them as much as the standard wheels. The carbon wheels feel too light and plastic to me. I prefer the more solid feel of a more traditional heavier wheel when helming
2 x Electric ST 70 Winches in cockpit 1 Port, 1 starboard in cockpit used for gennaker sheets, mainsheet traveller, daggerboard and headsail furling lines
Upgrade port cockpit winch to 3 speed Adding an extra speed to the port winch to make it faster and easier to furl the big gennakers
2 x Electric ST 60 Winch at wheel helm stations 1 Port, 1 starboard at helm stations used for jib sheets, mainsail sheet, main halyard
Mainsail Reefing Lines – leave at mast base The 5X was designed to reef the mainsail at the mast base as standard. This is my preference also as it is much quicker and easier to reef at the mast. This is a safe and stable location on a catamaran, and it also avoids the huge spaghetti of lines that end up in the cockpit when they are led aft.
Windlass control at port steering post – without chain counter The standard configuration has windlass controls on the deck next to the windlass motor. We are adding an additional control at the port helm so the anchor can be raised and lowered when short-handed. I have had a lot of trouble with electronic chain counters in the past, so we aren’t installing one. Instead, we use a color coding system for marking the chain.
35kg Spade Anchor We had a Rocna anchor on our last boat and it was excellent. The Spade gets even better reviews than the Rocna, and it’s holding power to weigh ratio is better, so I’m going to give it a try. We are selecting the Spade in place of the Delta anchor which is the standard inventory
2.6m GRP fold-able gangway (with boat name) We never needed one of these in Australia or Asia, but in the Mediterranean, the standard mooring is aft to the pier, so a boarding gangway is required
Teak floor throughout cockpit and transom steps This is our big, completely impractical option! Teak flooring is expensive, adds weight and requires more work to maintain. We don’t care! We love the look of teak flooring on a boat, and it adds such a warm, luxurious feel, we’re installing it anyway!
Flush thruhulls Reduces (a tiny bit of) drag on the hulls. Seems a bit frivolous, but it wasn’t expensive, so what the heck!
2 x Pulpit seats This is a must have feature for us. We used these small seats at the bows all the time on our last boat. They are especially good for hanging out with the dolphins when they come to ride the bow waves. We think no catamaran should be without them!
Trampoline netting to be Ribola 13mm diameter net, WHITE color This is a special order, smaller net diameter than standard. The standard net has very large mesh and is not comfortable to lounge on or walk on with bare feet. The trampoline is another favorite location for us, so we want it to be comfortable
ELECTRONICS
B&G Instrumentation The standard configuration of the 5X doesn’t include any instrumentation, because it varies so much depending on the buyers needs. Instead, Outremer offers two different packages (Raymarine or Furuno) as a starting point. Since we have a rotating mast we can’t use Raymarine as they don’t support that capability. Furuno and B&G do support it, and since I have no experience with Furuno and have had very positive experience with B&G, I decided to install a fully B&G system
Chart table
1 x H5000 5″ graphic display
B&G WiFi GO FREE network gateway Allows iPad Interface to B&G information
1 x 12″ Zeus2 MFD The autopilot can also be controlled from the chart table via the MFD or H5000 display
Stbd Helm
1 x H5000 Autopilot controller
1 x 5″ H5000 graphic display
1 x 4.1″ Triton display (wind) I like to have a small graphical indicator dedicated to wind direction
Port Helm
1 x H5000 Autopilot controller
1 x 5″ H5000 graphic display
1 x 4.1″ Triton display (wind)
1 x 9″ Zeus2 MFD This display is in a rotating housing installed under the bimini roof so it can be made visible from the cockpit lounge or the starboard helm. I located it on the port side because most people use their right hand to operate the display interface
Port Aft Cabin
1 x H5000 display This is to keep an eye on conditions from inside the cabin when off watch
Aft Pole
B&G 4G Radar dome We are adding a carbon fiber pole at the transom which will hold the radar dome. We can’t mount the dome on the mast spreaders because it will not read correctly when the mast is in a rotated position
Main Mast
Wind speed and angle sensor The B&G software will correct the displayed wind angle when the mast is rotated
Mast rotation angle transducer – B&G
Other
Autopilot (B&G)
WiFi antenna Bitstorm BAD BOY Xtreme + Unleashed high power WiFi system – allows us to access land based WiFi hotspots form a greater distance
Worldwide satellite tracking device AT-SAT 2   Advanced Tracking system – This system automatically sends our GPS position to an internet hosted tracking server so our family and friends can see where we are at all times
HIFI FUSION MS750i + 3 ways LS + Bluetooth receiver MS-BT200 + USB + Antenna The HiFi system has speakers in the cockpit and the salon configured in two zones with the ability to control volume independently in each each zone. The TV audio is also connected to the HiFi, so TV sound can be heard over the speakers in the salon or cockpit
Prewire CANbus network cable – CAT5 network cable We are running a cable from the chart table to each engine room in case we want to add NMEA2000 or CANbus devices in the future
Carbon pole installation by Outremer Yachting Installed at starboard transom to mount the B&G radar dome. Will also have a mounting for an Iridium antenna and a support bracket for the Icom SSB Radio whip antenna
COMMUNICATIONS
AIS (B&G) with antenna splitter to share VHF antenna
VHF radio ICOM M506 (N2K Front) with mast top antenna Installed in instrument panel at chart table
ICOM COMMAND MIC IV at Port helm station Install at Port helm station – Additional remote microphone and speaker for operating the VHF radio from the helm station. We chose the port helm station because it’s where we have the Windlass controls and I want to be able to use the VHF when I’m occupied with anchoring
HF(SSB) Radio pre-wiring
– Run antenna tuner control cable (Icom OPC-1106) from Nav station to attenna tuner location
– Run RG218 coaxial cable between Nav station and antenna tuner location in engine room
I will install our ICOM M802 HF SSB radio after I take delivery of the boat. The wiring is being installed during construction so it is ready for me to hook up the transceiver. I am not installing through hull ground plates for the SSB because they collect a lot of algae and barnacles and other sea life which slows the boat down, and reduces radio range. Instead we are installing a KISS-SSB counterpoise RF ground in the starboard engine room below the antenna tuner
8M SSB Whip antenna & support bracket Installed on transom with support bracket on side of aft carbon fiber pole
Iridium Fixed Mast Antenna Installed on aft carbon fiber pole and run cable back to Nav Station. We will use this to connect to a portable Iridium satphone located at the chart table
UPHOLSTERY
Cockpit cushions In Silvertex fabric
Complete awning protection In Sunbrella fabric, detachable with window panels. Provides a full enclosure of the cockpit
External blinds on salon windows Reduces the amount of direct sun entering the salon when sailing in the tropics
Set of Ropes Bag : Halyard bag + 2 helm station bags + 1 cockpit bag (port side) + 1 rear beam bag
PREPARATION & MOORING
Antifouling (2 coatings)
6 mooring lines 22mm x 12m + 6 straight fenders + 1 ball fender
Specific hull stickers The 5X and Outremer graphic logos are standard. We are also having our boat name on the forward hull sides
Dinghy and Outboard Highfield Classic 380 aluminum rigid inflatable dinghy with Honda BF20 4-stroke outboard motor. We chose aluminum because it is lighter than fiberglass. Normally I would use a 2-stoke outboard motor to save weight, but they are no longer available in Europe due to the EU emissions laws

 

18 Comments on “Complete list of options

  1. Wow!! Your blog and web site is truly fantastic!! Thanks for all the really informative pictures and comments. My wife and I are just now selling our house, and planning to follow your footsteps! We’re trying to decide between a 51 or a 5X….
    Good luck!.. and please keep up the great postings!

    Like

    • Hi Peter, Thanks for the feedback, I’m glad you are finding the site useful. Good luck with your new boat purchase!

      Like

  2. Love your videos and your blog which is full of good information. Was a clothes washer an option. It seems that being able to wash clothes on extended crossing would be a benefit?

    Like

    • Hi Kurt, Yes there is an optional clothes washer and also a dishwasher, but we chose neither of these. The reasons we decided against them were weight, power and water consumption and loss of storage space. We had a clothes washer on our last boat, and it really needed a generator to run it. We also found that on passage, the quantity of water needed to get a decent amount of clothes washed was very high, so we hardly ever used it. Instead we did our washing when we were nearby a town either at port or anchorage.

      Like

  3. Thx for your collection of thoughts and comments on the boat-type and its equipment! Great to read you raised (and answered for your own needs) a lot of questions I´m thinking about currently myself.

    Really very interesting to read, how and why you took certain decisions on design and equipment.

    For example, you 100% convinced me on Lithium battery. Maybe I also will give the idea to run the aircon without generator a try (leaving space on the boat to install one later on if it does not work out).

    Personally I don´t like the carbon rotating mast as its too complex in my opinion. Also I´d want to be able to easily climb up to the top in case some repairs or checks are needed. So mast steps are helpful – and that’s not do-able on carbon. But those are the things why I´m going to order a newly built boat: You get exactly what you want (and have to deal with yourselves if later on you find out, maybe this or that was not a good decision….)

    After years of chartering, I´m currently in the phase to buy my first-ever boat. It will be used to enable us to keep on living our dreams (instead of dreaming our life…): Going on a loooong trip around this planet, crossing the Atlantic ocean and later on exploring the South Pacific islands.

    I´m not as far yet as you, but I already know it´s defiantly going to be a catamaran. And after test-sailing an Outremer 4x for a few days in France – this manufacturer has moved on the top of my list. Thinking if ordering a 45 or a 51. It likely will have to be the 51 as the Outremer design requires our boat will have to be bigger (and therefore more complicated to handle in the European marinas) than originally intended: In order to fit everything in and avoid becoming too heavy, as it offers much less space and displacement than others. But the sea worthiness, safety and performance of an Outremer has convinced me.

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  4. Doug,
    Your blog is highly detailed and immensely helpful for me, the prospective Outremer 5x purchaser. However, I cannot find specifics on the very important subject of cost. I understand that this a somewhat personal subject, but it is nonetheless a critical part of the decision-making process. As an owner, you can provide insight that even my local Outremer dealer may not be able (or willing) to provide. I realize that cost can fluctuate, based on a number of independent variables. However, because you have outfitted Wildling exactly as I would outfit my own 5X, I am very interested in your particular experience. Would you consider sending me cost data on Wildling, either by separate email, or as part of your future narratives? Best wishes, Mark J, Austin, Texas USA

    Like

    • Hi Mark,

      Thanks for your kind feedback on the blog! I’m not sure where you are at in the purchase process, but I found that Outremer was very transparent on price. They have a standard price spreadheet, where every option is detailed along with the price and the weight penalty for each. If you are having trouble getting this from your dealer, I recommend you contact Francois at the Outremer factory directly, you should have no trouble getting the latest price list for a new boat.

      Please feel free to let me know if you run into any problems and I’ll see what I can do to help.

      Like

  5. Hi Doug, just sailed a Leopard 38 last weekend in Los Angeles. I was a little disappointed with its upwind pointing which is limited to 60 degrees. That’s a lot of tacking and/or motoring if your destination is into the wind. Just curious what the Outremers do … what angle can you sail your Outremer into the wind? Do you need to use your daggerboard(s) for upwind sailing?

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  6. Hi Swanie, it’s a sad truth that catamarans can not point as high as monohulls, but the performance cats get pretty close. I find that 40-45 degrees apparent wind angle is a good close hauled point of sail for Wildling. We have good speed and it’s easy to trim for this angle. As we approach 30 degrees AWA our speed tapers off, and 30 degrees is about the limit that I would sail at. If we’re doing say 8 or 9 knots at 45 AWA, we would be doing about 6 or 7 knots at 35 and probably close to 5 knots at 30 degrees. We are fortunate in that our sail controls allow us to pull both the mainsail traveler and the self tacking jib traveler up to windward which gives us that extra 5 degrees, but our VMG drops off, so I typically sail at 40-45 degrees upwind, and pinch up to 30 for a short time if I need to get around an obstacle. We use the daggerboards upwind and it’s amazing how much they help the boat point. If you watch your projected course over ground line on the chart plotter as you lower the boards, it changes quite noticeably to point higher as the boards go down.

    Like

    • Ah, good to know. Thanks for the reply. That’s certainly much better than what I could get out of the Leopard with no dagger board. Not only that, but it was actually challenging to tack into the wind once winds exceeded 15 knots. If you can point your Outremer 40-45 degrees into the wind, you’re doing pretty well. That’s impressive. Nice thing about the cat was having two engines when we were pulling up to our mooring ball. Winds were more than 20 knots. I had no problem getting to the ball in a crowded mooring on Catalina Island. The 46-foot monohull next to me had a very hard time with that long bow … took them at least 20 attempts before they finally grabbed the ball.

      Like

  7. Hello Doug,

    I have been following your blog on the equipment with great interest since we have an Outremer 49 ourselves. The available power on our boat is insufficient for our cruising life style unless we run the engines every few days and we have been discussing a number of options. The by far preferred option for now is replacing the stern solar panels with three 285 W panels and adding semi-flexible, walk-on Solara panels on the cabin roof top, adding three MPPT controllers each for each side and the stern, providing some 1,400+W overall.

    It seems that Outremer is hesitant to suggest flexible panels, however we met a few cruisers very happy with their Solbian panels. The price difference is significant but I think it is worthwhile for peace of mind …. plus quiet and maintenance free.

    Any input ?

    Cheers, Tom

    Like

    • Hi Tom,

      I’m not sure which brand Outremer was having trouble with, but I recently talked to the people at SunWare in Germany, and they are making some very nice flexible panels. This is what I would buy if I were to add any to Wildling. Here’s a link to their website:
      https://en.sunware.solar/produkte/index

      Cheers,
      Doug

      Like

  8. Hello Doug,

    I didn’t expect such a fast reply. My comments were in regard to your input on wanting to add more solar panels in the electrical section ( “but Outremer has found the flexible panels used on the bimini roof in earlier models have proved to be unreliable” ).

    Like

  9. Yes, I understand. I agree with your solar output spec. I think 1200-1500 is what is required also. I couldn’t get this when I ordered the boat because Outremer stopped offering flexible panels (not sure which manufacturer they were using). So after I purchased the boat I did some research into companies making reliable flexible solar panels. This led me to the German company Sunware. I met with them at Boot Dusseldorf and we had a long talk about their manufacturing methods, the materials they use and the reliability of their panels. Although Outremer had troubles in the past with other manufacturers, I believe these new Sunware panels should be a good choice. I’m planning on adding another 300 watts to our solar bank before we leave the Med.

    Like

  10. Hello Doug,

    Im very happy I found your blog because I was able to lear a lot about my dream boat and I would like to ask you a question if you dont mind, I would like to know how much weight the dinghy davits can support.

    Like

    • Hi Lucas, I’m pretty sure it’s 250kg on the 5X davits, but check with Outremer when you order because they have changed the design a little bit since my boat. In any case, they will build to your spec if you have special needs, just let them know.

      Like

  11. Hello Doug,

    we just finished our solar panel upgrade, very differently as initially planned. The marine service (NEO Marine) here in Martinique was very much opposed to use any thin solar panels mounted on cabin roofs or any other surface not providing airflow below the panels. Within a few days I heard similar experiences from the some of the charter companies here and two cruisers who were unhappy with their installations.

    The lesser weight and increased power make thin solar panels desirable, however in a hot climate such as the Caribbean, the performance appears to be unreliable.

    NEO Marine suggested to replace the existing solar panels on the davits with three LG Neon 2 Black New Generation Solar Panels 300W-24V and a Victron MPPT 150/70 charge controller, check the available power and then decide if one or two more panels would be required for our power consumption. Also, instead of a Victron Color Control GX, they suggested the BVM 700 Monitor with two BlueTooth dongles to make the charge information available on an iOS, Android, Mac or Windows system, anywhere on the boat instead having to walk to the nav station.

    We followed NEO Marine’s advice and the new panels have been installed now for 2 weeks. Our output of the previous 4 * 130W panels went from some 19Ah at peak to 63+Ah. Most of the times the batteries are charged by 2:00p or earlier. The four 130W panels did weigh some 52kg, the three 300W panels are 48kg.

    Overall, no additional weight, replacing only the existing panels, quiet and maintenance free, and still with the option to expand on the cabin roof an additional 600W. The 300W panel were about five times less expensive (about $500 per LG 300W panel vs $1,200-$1,500 for a 125W thin solar panel [dependent on the supplier]).

    I had checked the power consumption of every electric device on the boat in detail. Our MasterVolt Inverter/Charger needs almost 4Ah just in idle mode, almost 100Ah per day. I installed the external remote control to turn it off/on on the instrument panel (instead of crawling under the table) and added a (second) small 350W inverter, only 3W idle. Enough to charge our various laptops, tablets, phones and camera batteries.

    Next week we will head up to the Bahamas. It’ll be good to see how three panels hold up while cruising and if we may decide to add one or more 300W LG panels later this year.

    Like

    • Hi Tom, I’m really glad to hear you found a good solar solution for your boat. Thanks for posting all the details here. I have heard from a few other people recently about failures of their flexible, deck mounted panels, and on boats less than 1 year old too! It seems like they just can’t handle the heat in the tropics, because there is no way to cool the back of the panel, they don’t last very long. Your approach of an array of high output panels on the davit frame looks like the beast solution for reliable solar for world cruising boats.

      Like

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