What One Thing Would You Change …

What one thing would you change on your boat if you were given the opportunity to wiggle your nose like a genie?  Every boat is a compromise, so I’m sure there are others, but what ONE thing would make the biggest difference?

Without a doubt, aboard Winterlude, the one thing that we’d change would be our diesel.

Our trusty vintage 1985 Nanni Kubota diesel keeps on purrrrring….

We love our Nanni Kubota diesel.  It just purrrrrrrrrs along and like the Energizer Bunny, just keeps on going.  It’s taken us for five days when the forecast 10-15 winds went to literally zip 20 miles outside Isla Mujeres all the way back to Florida and it sips sips sips the diesel, which is a very good thing.

BUT, it’s also only 30 hp … and 30 hp to maneurver a 24,000 lb boat in any current or crosswind makes it much more difficult than it might be with maybe a 50 hp diesel.   In the Little Shark River this winter with the current running against us we could barely make 2 knots against it.  And when we were sailing to Isla and had the current against us the last few hours literally a “few miles” turned into hours as we struggled along at 2 knots.

Slack tide at sunrise on the Little Shark River, but anchoring the night before in several knots of current was interesting.

Plus it’s always difficult to be left behind when cruiser friends are headed out the cut in the reef in Belize to motorsail to Lighthouse Reef Atoll with the wind blowing 15 on the nose.  Although it’s a mere 25 miles, we can’t make any headway in any kinds of seas.  So they all turn on their big diesels and 5 hours later they’re anchor down and in the water spearfishing and we’re still back behind the barrier reef.

SO, that’s what we’d change.  What about YOU?   What one thing would you change about your boat?   Please leave a comment and share.   Cheers!   Jan



  1. Wow, yeah 30 hp for 24K lbs does sound rough. We have 26 hp for 12K lbs.

    The one thing I would change about our C310 is the head. I would LOVE to have 8 inches more width in the head and an actual house hold, oval bowl.

    That would make Smitty perfect in my mind.

    Fair winds,


  2. Martin Henry says:

    Electric winches!

  3. Mary Mishler says:

    I love just about everything on our Passport 37, s/v Someday Isle. But if I could wiggle my nose and change one thing there would be no debating! I would have a walk around queen bed!!

    Love reading your posts. Thanks.


  4. Same here – we’d go from our Westerbeke to a Kubota 50hp. 28,000# here.

    S/V Kintala

  5. And my 22,000 lb 37′ has an old Yanmar 30, and it too had poor compression and wouldn’t get out of it’s own way. After having read all that I have, I know it’s the right decision for us to replace ours, so I’m looking at a new 3JH5E, which will be 38hp, and more importantly, have the same footprint, so there won’t be any re-engineering. With a new motor, of course comes with new instrument panel, transmission, and of course I’m throwing in a new prop strut, shaft, and new flex-o-fold prop. It’s going to set me back 15 grand, but I’m going to do it right, do it once, then enjoy it. I wish all of this were as easy as a car, were the top things it has to do is go forward, stop, and steer. I think a good motor is essential to cruising like charts and a good bilge pump.
    But, what would I change about my Hunter 37 cutter, another 10 feet, a sugar scoop transom, hard mini-dodger like a Gozzard, and add a bulb onto the bottom of the keel from Marrs metal so I could compensate for having only 4’10” of draft.
    Cheers, s/v Renasci

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