❓ We have been lucky to purchase a nearly new 42 cruiser fully equipped apart from a bow thruster which is v. expensive to fit.
Do we need one? Going to keep her at Northney which can be a liitle tight.
Opinions please as to handling with just a saildrive.
Having completed our first season in our Bavaria 41 we have found that the bow will blow off easilly in the lightest of winds. The problem is caused by the high freeboard and our view was that a bow thruster, whilst expensive, would be money well spent in reducing stress levels in tight situations (we have all been there) and potential damage to the boat. The final cost was £4K which we considered to be well spent.
We have had a 42 for two seasons in Croatia with no bow thruster. It can certainly blow hard down there but we seem to have managed OK without one. I have found that as long as one is backing into the wind there is no major issue and the boat responds well to the rudder.
We have been caught out a couple of times when berthing in the bora (30kts) but fortunatey the Croatians are used to this and help you get in OK.
D 8) I have only just woken up to this series on a bowthruster. I got a new B42 on Trafalgar Day 21 Oct 2005 and insisted there was a bowthruster as the bow freeboard is high. As a matter of pride I try to avoid using it but there have been occasions like Yarmouth in a F6 where the bowthruster saved me from causing damge.
It is important to have one which is sufficiently powerful, mine is 7.5. It must also be carefully antifouled.
I find that my bowthruster can bring the bow through the wind at 23 knots or less.
It is also very helpful in getting off a pontoon where the wind is blowing on.
In short I recommend one. It is nice knowing it is there and adds to the confidence of an anxious skipper.