Re: [Amel Yacht Owners] Re: Intermittent bow thruster - Maramu

Jean-Pierre Germain <jgermain@...>

Hi Graham,

😀😀 Buon Anno etc. 

On 3 Jan 2016, at 12:13, Graham Cresswell grahamjcresswell@... [amelyachtowners] <amelyachtowners@...> wrote:


Jean Pierre,

It's definitely hull number 240 - it's a Maramu and not a Super Maramu but I agree with you that it behaves more like a long-keeler than a fin and skeg. 

Amitié et bonne année


On 02/01/2016 17:11, Germain Jean-Pierre jgermain@... [amelyachtowners] wrote:Amitie

Hello Graham,

We are birds of a feather in various ways (pun intended).  Retired Airline pilot/gynaecologist(amateur)!!  :-)

Eleuthera is hull number 007 built in 1989 … doubtful yours is number 240… perhaps more like 024.

As far as steering while going astern, the bugger is almost as bad as a full keel; however, fully manageable if one counts in wind/tide effects and has a brain capable of doing 1,000,000 calculations a second.  Not capable of so many tasks instantly, I have decided to use the Amel formula and to spend some handling time with (non judgemental) friends.

GL and enjoy your boat.

Jean-Pierre Germain,
SY Eleuthera, Amel Super Maramu 007

On 2 Jan 2016, at 17:02, Graham Cresswell grahamjcresswell@... [amelyachtowners] <amelyachtowners@...> wrote:


Dear Joel,

Many thanks for your thoughts.  As a retired airline pilot and aviation medicine specialist physician, I'm acutely aware that I may have had brain failure so I certainly don't feel scolded!  In particular, owing to my current inexperience with the boat, the limited space in the marina where I'm berthed and the unnerving proximity of various million dollar yachts, my mental capacity was dramatically reduced by this event and I cannot now be absolutely sure that the bow thruster motor was turning when I diagnosed the failure.  Plainly, if the motor was not turning, then there is a completely different set of possibilities, including the possibility that I'd inadvertently switched it off.  The marina where I'm berthed has virtually no current and is very sheltered so that there is almost no wind so I doubt that they are factors. 

I did have some manoeuvring practice with the previous owner although it was not extensive and all the sternward manoeuvring was accomplished with the aid of the bow thruster.  I agree with you that it makes sense to try to use the standard handling techniques employing prop kick and prop wash rather than resorting to the bow thruster in the first instance and I'm trying to acquire the necessary skills.  However, I've been warned by a friend, who is a very experienced SM owner, to expect it to be very difficult to manage when it is making sternway so I'm currently developing a plan for managing my berthing in the event of another bow thruster failure.  I'm also planning to take the boat out tomorrow and to dive to observe the bow thruster functioning. 

Finally, I wonder if there exists an exploded diagram of the bow thruster that would help me to understand its mechanisms and how technical problems might be addressed.  My Maramu is the 1989 model launched in 1988 and is hull number 240.  Maude has been unable to supply more than a very rudimentary owners manual. 

With many thanks and kind regards


On 31/12/2015 18:58, 'Joel Potter' jfpottercys@... [amelyachtowners] wrote:

Graham, as odd as it might sound, Trevor’s suggestion of ‘heat of the moment brain fade’ could be the likely culprit. I have sold hundreds of used Amel’s and offer clients a training period of several days to get them up to speed. On more occasions than you would believe, when things get tense the first few times with the new owner on the helm ( after I demonstrate that “THIS IS EASY”), they lower the thruster and then turn off the power switch the first time they reach for the toggle/joy stick. Especially with short timers, panic ensues and the helmsperson goes into save the boat mode and neglects to turn the power on. Just to make an indelible impression, I wait until the helmsperson gulps, loudly , before restoring power.

If this is the case, don’t feel bad. I’ve had many folks much brighter than I, which is just about everybody, do this. Some have even turned the power back on in their panic without realizing they had turned it off! Go easy on yourself.

Were you fortunate to have the seller/other knowledgeable person spend time with you familiarizing you with your-new-to-you Amel? I sure hope so, If not, find an Amel owner close to you and buy them dinner with many adult beverages if they will get you on the path. Lots of little secrets, all of which add to the greatness and enjoyment of these very cleverly conceived and mostly well engineered cruisers.

Some misconceptions that have been inadvertently offered here…

Your bow thruster is an early Amel BISSON/BUFFLE type, more than likely. Lots of evolution since. It is a 12 volt unit, not 24 volts as on the Super Maramu and subsequent Amel models. It is better than nothing certainly but not a game changer/life saver like the much more powerful 24 volt units that followed. The bow thruster on the Amel 54 is a completely different animal, dual props, counter-rotating, very powerful. Your installed bow thruster won’t allow you to dock your Amel Maramu with impunity in 20 plus knots of wind until you practice and really learn the capabilities and limitations and even then... Practice makes perfect and I try to use the bow thruster as little as possible to keep my boat handling skills alive but do not hesitate to employ it before it is needed.

There is no fuse/thermal limiter on the electric motor on any Amel installed bow thruster on a Sharki, Maramu, Mango, Santorin, Super Maramu, or Amel 54 so don’t go looking for that as there is none

Anybody close to Graham in Barbados? I think you will be getting a dinner invite.

I waited to chime in as I make my living selling experienced Amels and I wanted someone else to make the suggestion that Trevor did. I can’t afford to have anyone feel I have scolded them and I sure hope you don’t. You will love and appreciate this owners group.

Have Fun With Your Amel, Joel

Joel F. Potter/Cruising Yacht Specialist LLC


954 462 5869 office

954 812 2485 cell

From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: Thursday, December 31, 2015 12:24 PM
To: amelyachtowners@...
Subject: Re: [Amel Yacht Owners] Re: Intermittent bow thruster - Maramu


The motor (15hp) has so much torque it will either throw off weed or light plastic immediately, or break the nylon shear bolts.

This is a really lame suggestion, but as it is all a bit new to you, is it possible you turned off the switch beside the toggle switch in the heat of the moment?

The good news is the more that you practice the easier it will become, you will quickly be able to wander through a marina in 25kts+ of winds stern too, without a thought.

Happy new year.


Seafever of Cuan

SM 425 Redline 2004

For Sale



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Posted by: Graham Cresswell <grahamjcresswell@...>
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