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Moody 425 - Fuel Tank & In Mast Furling

Kevin Hyde

Kevin Hyde
Registered Guest
#1
Hello, a great website you guys have here for the Moody owners! I'm in NZ and looking at the Moody 425 as a design that I might like to buy in the Med and use to sail the Med and then back to NZ. Seems quite a few of these have been offshore and would do the trick.

I've got a couple of main queries in regards to the rig and fuel tanks.

With a Moody 425 circa 1985 would you expect that the fuel tank is most likely to need replacing? If so, is this a huge job and how much roughly would it cost? Who supplies the tanks? I understand that the tank is under the rear master berth is it?

The other query I have is to do with the Kemp in mast furling. With a 425 from the mid 80's are the Kemp in mast systems still working reliably and satisfactorily serviceable? Do they have any inherent design flaws in how they operate?

Are there any other common problems or things that usually need fixing when these yachts mature to the age of 30 or so?

Thanks very much, Kevin
 

Peter Wright

Peter Wright
Boat name
WILD THYME
Berth
Suffolk Yacht Harbour
Boat type
Moody 425
Cruising area
North Sea, English Channel, Biscay
#2
Hi Kevin,

The Moody 425 was built from 1988 -1991 so all are now between 27 and 30 years old. At that age, difference in age makes very little difference compared to difference in how well they have been cared for over the years. Our Wild Thyme was built in 1989 andbher original mild steel fuel tank is still serving us well, although I would not in general say she was been well looked after all her life-one owner went bust and she spent more than a year festering in a Dutch yard with her bilge full of water - ut she's now in good shape.

As I guess you've found out, the fuel tank is under the starboard half of the aft cabin bunk. What you may not know is that when water in the bilge of the lazarette gets above a certain level, it drains through a limber hole into the bilge under the aft cabin bunk and then is free to run forward into the engine bilge. Keeping the lazarette lids watertight needs regular attention to the seals and requires you to dog down the lids witha hex key each time you open them to put gear in or out. That explains a source of water to corrode the tank from outside, although the water only trickles past the tank in the bilge, to get a standing level there, the shaft coupling would be at least partially submerged. Of course, the tank is at risk of corrosion from the inside if you take on a load of wet diesel, fail to keep the fuel filler cap watertight or suffer from condensation in the tank (unlikely in the Med).

I have heard of M425's needing a replacement fuel tank and I understand that the easy route is to cut the old one up in situ and install slightly smaller as you cannot get it out through the doorways. An alternative route I have heatd of is to lift the cockpit sole, remove the engine then pass the tank through the engine space in one piece - only really practical if you are replacing the engine anyway. You can re engine withou lifting the cockpit sole by lowering the engine down the main hatch - that's how we did it. A new stainless tank will cost you around £1000 to have welded up, no specific supplier, just find a welder you trust somewhere near the boat. The Rolls Royce solution would be a plastic tank from Tek Tanks, but I dread to think what it might cost - Google them and check their prices.

We were very cagey about the concept of in-mast mast furling when we bought Wild Thyme, but have come to like the system. See the thread:

http://www.moodyowners.info/threads/main-as-in-mast-furler-or-as-reefin-sail.15845/#post-96007

for more detail on this.

The teak decking on the cockpit sole and seats and around the aft cabin hatch was originally teak faced ply which didn't wear well particularly in the Med. Most have now been replaced with solid teak.

The chainplates of most Moodys of this era pass through the side decks where they are sealed by dinky little stainless plates, each held down by 4 screws. The sealant under these plates dries out and starts leaking so the plates need lifting and 'e sealing from time to time. If this is not done, both the deck core and the part bulkhead below the deck, to which the chain plate is secured, get soggy and start to rot. If this is left unattended, the bolts securing the chainplate to the bulkhead can pull through the rotten marine ply. This is extreme neglect, but I have heard of it happening on at least one Moody, not a 425. The problem is exacerbated by the chainplates below deck being hidden behind beautiful Moody cabinetry, if a previous owner has taken the trouble to fit inspection hatches in the cabinets and bookshelves, he's probably on top of this issue. You can check for serious trouble by putting a steel rule on the deck next to the chainplates, if there is a bulge in the deck, further investigation is warranted.

The state of the engine at 30 years will depend on how well it has been cared for. There were 2 different engines fitted: a Thornycroft T98 or a Thornycroft T110 based on the Ford XLD416 (1600 cc)and XLD418 (1800 cc) engines respectively. We found the T98, fitted with the original 2 blade prop, was not man enough to drive her into a heavy head sea.

Of course, sails, rigging and electronics should have been replaced a few times by now, so if they are past their best, the boat should be accordingly priced. If you can, it's worth a look behind the 12V switch panel to see how well electrical upgrades have been done.

Despite all I have written here, 30 years on, as passage making boats, the Moody 425 takes some beating. Ours is not for sale!

Peter.
 

Kevin Hyde

Kevin Hyde
Registered Guest
#3
Hi Peter, thanks very much for the reply. Really appreciate it and it's most helpful.

Thanks, Kevin
 
Boat name
MOODY MISTRESS
Berth
Vancouver
Boat type
Moody 425
Cruising area
Mediterranean
#4
Well written Peter and I agree with your comments. When you are buying an older Moody you are buying the previous owners. If they were knowledgeable and maintained and upgraded the boat with high quality gear then your going to be buying a wonderful cruising boat with probably one of the best interior layouts available for this size of boat.The boats sail very well and are very stout and solid at sea. In good conditions we had little problems in making over 170 mile days crossing the Atlantic and amongst our cruising friends we are usually the boat to beat. We really like our boat and can't find another in the 42 foot range that we would rather have. Like Peters ours is not for sale either but whoever buys it sometime in the future is going to be getting a wonderful example of a 425.