Re: [Amel Yacht Owners] Best trade wind rig for an Amel 55

gavin <gavingilmorelodge@...>

Thanks John, very helpful, please see comments in your text.




From: amelyachtowners@... [mailto:amelyachtowners@...]
Sent: 22 August 2017 13:40
To: amelyachtowners@...
Subject: Re: [Amel Yacht Owners] Best trade wind rig for an Amel 55



Hi Gavin,

    Congratulations on the purchase. I spent almost a year looking at Amels and traveling near and far to visit.   At one point I had planned on buying a Super Maramu in Europe which was in sail off condition.  I actually had lined up crew for a transatlantic but the deal fell through.   I finally purchased a Super Maramu in Martinique, and I am now glad I purchased her close to an Amel service center(Le Marin) and also closer to my home in the US.


I have sailed her about 2700 nm so far and feel like I am still learning her sail plan characteristics.   I look back now and am grateful that I did not purchase a boat in Europe and then almost immediately embark on a crossing.   Playing around the islands and walking the boat (and crew) up to longer passages was definitely the way to go.  I would be cautious about doing a crossing straight off after purchase.  We’ll give her an intensive shake down in the Med, including whatever heavy weather comes our way, and see how we feel after a month. Maybe some other 55 owners would be able to help you with the crossing?


There is an Amel service center in Hyeres, about 100 or so nm from where you are now. Great idea we’ll make it our first port of call on our way down to Gibraltar I would suggest contacting them and sailing to Hyeres to allow them to take a look at the boat. Their technicians may have better insight into the refrigeration issues.   I had the Amel technicians in Le Marin walk through my boat and inspect my spare parts and pretty much gave me a "free survey."  They recommended several items be serviced and provided me with a list of common wearable parts I should keep in inventory.  Another reason for you to meet them is that they should be able to provide you with an Amel recommended/intended sail plan for the 55.  The SM has a detailed guide for how to and when to run with the different sails and configurations, I am sure there exists a similar guide for the 55.


On refrigeration, I have not yet met a refrigeration/air conditioning technician that is worth a darn.  At purchase time all the AC units on my SM were non-functioning.  The previous owner had gotten repair quotes from several shops in Martinique, all of which recommended complete replacement of all units at a cost of over 12,000 eur.  I spent a bit of time on the Amel Forum  and tinkering with the units and found  a bad capacitor (big surprise), sea water supply run in parallel rather than series(sw flow was unregulated between the units causing unpredictable behavior), a clogged sea water hose(caused one unit to trip on high pressure after 10 seconds, which was confusing since we had water flowing out the explained by the parallel sw routing which masked the no flow situation), and finally a broken refrigerant line(vibration fatigue failure.)  I replaced the capacitors, sea water hoses and one complete unit with a new self contained model.  Less than $1500 USD, and now I type this email in a 68F (20C) salon while it is 92F(33C) outside.  Refrigeration technicians in my experience tend to very quickly throw their hands up and report the whole unit need to be replaced if they cannot find an obvious fault.  If you don't have the inclination to tinker, then try the Amel service center, at least there, there will be technicians with some experience on your system to help. Thank you very much


                                Regards,   John



John Clark

SV Annie  SM 37

cruising Pamlico Sound



On Tue, Aug 22, 2017 at 5:24 AM, Gavin Shaw gavingilmorelodge@... [amelyachtowners] <amelyachtowners@...> wrote:


We hope to cross this year with the ARC on an Amel 55 from 2012.


We are completely new to the boat and have not sailed an Amel before. We would therefore really appreciate advice from Amel 55 owners with ocean experience, particularly on these topics.

1.       The ideal trade wind rig with the apparent wind below 15 knots and the best reduced sail plan with a stronger wind. In addition to the standard cutter rig we have a cruising chute and a Code 0 on board.

2.       Any tips on setting up the pole for long term running to minimise chafe and wear on the pole and fittings?

3.       How best to rig a preventer on the mizzen boom when running?

4.       Should we consider a mizzen staysail, if so how best to rig it on the 55 which doesn’t seem to be set up for one?

5.       When should we use the forward staysail and whether it is safe to rig the running backstays with a tackle and integral jamming cleat like a sailing dinghy mainsheet? (To avoid blocking the secondary winch on the windward side)

6.       I don’t think we have a storm jib or trysail but imagine we should use the forward staysail and deeply reefed main in heavy weather. Do we need additional heavy weather sails?

7.       Our fridge and freezer are not working properly. The freezer struggles to reach -5C and the fridge achieves no cooling at all.They are Frigoboat units with keel coolers, made by Veco. The boat is currently in Golfe Juan where the local service company seem unable to fix them. Any suggestions would be welcome.

Many thanks for experienced input on any of these topics.




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