Though Valiant No7 is a beautiful boat, she did need some extras adding to her. The fit out is very modern with a really large cruiser stern so we decided that that was not quite enough.
The boat had a bow truster tube, so we had a lovely Craftsman Bow Thruster added and the electrics added. We had two great chaps who dealt with the project,
Carlos Wilkinson (the welder and fitter) and Russle Hodginson the electrician. We now have a brilliant system that with a Victron combiner allows us to have an emergency 30 sec start from the bow thruster battery if we need it.
The combiner also allows the priority charge to the starter battery, when it is full the bow thruster battery to then be charged. If you want to see more about this then go here. I will be doing a full article on the fitting of our bow thruster later.
My wife needed extra storage space so we have employed a real crafts man who specialises in boat furniture manufacture and alterations.
He has added some drawers in the kitchen area, and is extending our entertainment and book storage area. He is also adding shelving, a floor cabinet and a drinks cabinet (most important!!).
We intend to live on the boat so we have also had a rear cover made. It has made a real difference.
I looked around and found an excellent company called marineandindustrialcovers based near Lincoln. I saw and example of one of the companies covers in Castle Marina where we were docked for fitting out.
Graham the fitter (see photo) is a real cool character. He really knows his stuff, and has produced a really top quality design. His boss Chris Potts runs a cover fabrication team which produce a high quality product. They will also add special features like collapsible frames and pin fittings, and special frames that we need to fit our very unusual, and long cruiser stern.
So in my opinion well worth a quote.
On another note, when the canopy was fitted we noticed that the boat inside was a lot warmer. The canopy acts like a greenhouse, (no i will not be growing tomatoes); this is a great benifit as it also stop drafts, and keeps the cruiser stern nice and dry. With things stored out there in lockers it is nice to know your wood and coal are dry. It also offers a bit of psychological security too. The on board cat also likes to sit out there as it is warm.