Royal Passagemaker 52
DOWN A LADDER
The transparent engine room entry door swung open
easily on gas struts, and we headed below. I took my first
trip down the ladder’s six steps cautiously, but subsequent
visits should be easier.
With a single engine positioned in the center of the
compartment, the space is so large that two could work
there without getting in each other’s way. There’s more
than 6 feet of headroom and clear space on three sides of
the engine. The front of the engine sits near the bulkhead,
but there is still good clearance for servicing and reaching
gear mounted in that spot.
All machinery and related gear is in the open and
readily available for maintenance and repair, but there’s
no sense of clutter because of thoughtful design. Air
conditioning equipment and a 16k W Northern Lights
generator are perched on a shelf on the port side. Lead-acid batteries for the 24-volt house system, pumps, and
other gear are stored beneath.
Battery switches are mounted flush on the shelf above
the port battery storage area. This is convenient
for routine maintenance, but we at PMM believe
disconnecting switches should be located outside the
engine room, where they can be reached easily and
safely in the event of an engine room fire.
Parkinson said Shamal was designed prior to current
discussions about placement of battery disconnect
switches outside engine rooms, adding, however, that he
can’t argue with that theory. Because American Boat &
Yacht Council voluntary standards are met—fusing within
7 inches of the battery bank and a main breaker on a
panel about 7 feet from the battery and breakers for each
circuit—Parkinson said he believes “all bases are covered.”
“The entire electrical system in the 52-footer was
designed and installed by an ABYC-certified electrician,”
Fuel polishing and handling gear is on the forward
bulkhead. A 20-gallon water heater, more batteries
(with disconnect switches on a panel above), an 8gph
watermaker, and a workbench space are on the
The 330hp John Deere Power Tech 8. 1 diesel is keel
cooled; the keel-cooling system’s seacock is in sight and
is easily reached.
Mounted on a stringer forward of the engine is
a stainless steel box that serves as a manifold for
distribution of sea water to the watermaker and for
cooling the main engine and generator exhausts and the
air conditioning compressors. The obvious advantage:
only one through-hull valve is needed to meet multiple
needs. The disadvantage is that stainless steel that’s
immersed in sea water (and denied oxygen) may
suffer from crevice corrosion, which can lead to
leaks—not now, but perhaps in several years.
The ABYC recommends that all materials used in
through-hull systems resist degradation by salt water.
The manifold is manufactured of 3/8-inch 316
stainless steel and is connected to the boat’s bonding
system; the material was specified by the owner.
Parkinson said he does not believe corrosion is a serious
issue with the manifold, although he said that if it had
been his boat, he would have built it of glass and vinyl
Shamal carries about 1, 200 gallons of diesel fuel in her
main tanks and 150 gallons in a day tank. Fuel is filtered
as it flows from the main tank to the day tank, and again
as it moves to the engine.
Two hydraulic pumps are mounted on the John
Deere. One powers the anchor windlass, the Wesmar
stabilizers, the dinghy crane, and the mast. The second
serves the boat’s hydraulic steering system.