Re: Amel 54 Furlers
toggle quoted messageShow quoted text
Arno just gave you a very good answer just as I was about to press SEND. I am sending it anyway.
I will try to give you some understanding based on my limited knowledge.
Bamar and Amel couldn't agree as to causes and solutions and it seemed to me that it got to the point where the finger-pointing resulted in no joint solution between Bamar and Amel. The original MJE 1.02 (Majic Jib Furler) which was installed on both headsails on the majority of the 54s was belt-driven and not as waterproof as it should have been. That, coupled with the fact that as many as half of the 54 buyers had previously owned an Amel with probably the strongest headsail furler ever made for pleasure boats, meant imminent failure. I believe that most of these owners treated the Bamar fuler as they had treated their previous Amel-made furler. The Bamar MEJ 1.02 furler was not up to the task. Part of the evidence that this happened was that Amel installed a larger Bamar MEJ 2.02 on the genoa of the last X number of 54's made, and Amel switched to Reckmann furlers for the 55. Additionally, Bamar reached out directly to the 54 owners that they could contact with an offer to upgrade the MEJ furlers to their new gear-driven EJF furlers at a discounted cost. I believe that at least 30 Amel 54 owners took advantage of this.
Incidentally, I talked to a respected Bamar reseller who said that he sold a number of MJE furlers and never had the problems that Amel 54 owners experienced. This points to possibly the validity of my theory regarding the "previous Amel-made" headsail furler experience, or maybe most of his installations were not ketches with a large genoa. And FYI, Amel now uses ProFurl electric furlers.
And, the older the boat is the more likely it is that the owner will be faced with an expensive decision. For instance, there are almost zero parts available for the Amel-made genoa furler. Owners of these will either have to have parts machined, or will be faced with a decision to install either a Bamar EJF, a Reckmann, or a ProFurl furler. I know the Bamar EJF will work with the existing foil and stay, I think the Reckmann offers a replacement kit that will work, but I am unsure about the ProFurl.
I have read a lot about problems with Bamar furlers on the A54. While looking at Amel 54s for sale the vast majority seem to have the original Bamar furlers. So to my questions; how often are these furlers problematic? How many of you have upgraded? What problems caused you to upgrade.