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Karen
Karen

Posted: Sat May 17, 2008 5:02pm

Post Subject: What size engine?

We are having a 58' narrowboat built. The builder has suggested a Beta 38 engine. We will be based on the River Wey/Thames and are having a bowthruster - will this be powerful enough or would a Beta 42 be advisable?

Tony-B
Tony-B

Posted: Sat May 17, 2008 5:47pm

Post Subject: What size engine?

As I cruise a 54 ft narrowboat on the Thames with about a 30 hp engine and no bowthruster so I suppose the 38 should be fine for you. However I worked on the Thames for years and handled all sorts of widebeam boats in all but full flood conditions so I can read the water and use the flows to my advantage. You should only have problems in periods of high flow so where you are to keep your boat has some bearing on engine size. If its to be in a marina you should never have to face the river in flood, but if you are on a garden mooring you might have to move the boat to safety during flood flows. To a degree the bowthruster should help if the current starts to spin the front or back round, but I would never rely on it because it may not turn out to be as reliable as you think, especially if its electric. I think you should ignore it for this purpose. Although the 38 will be fine for normal summer cruising (remember last year!) I feel novices may find the extra power helpful in controlling the boat in adverse conditions. The problem with the larger engines is that diesels like to work as hard as possible and for much of the time the 38 will not be working even remotely hard. Beta say their engines, once run in, are not prone to bore glazing so the 42 is not likely to suffer as much as some under lots of light running. Tony Brooks

Karen
Karen

Posted: Tue May 20, 2008 7:25pm

Post Subject: What size engine?

Many thanks, that was very helpful. Althugh this is our first boat as owners, we have spent many happy weeks on the rivrs and canals in a variety of lengths of hired boats. We therefore think a 38 should suffice.

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