G-day all need some help on setting up boat for bow mount,battery,livewell,etc. what I need to now is how to get the weight distribution and balance right. The boat is a 429 stacer with a 30hp mariner.
David this is a much bigger question than you might think.
Most people try and get their weight distribution correct when the boat is at rest ( because it's easier that way) but in fact this is not a good idea at all. It's a much better idea initially (and a lot more messing around) to do it when underway at speed. Very much a trial and error thing on a small boat but i have seen boats very badly loaded on the plane (and inherently unstable due to uneven moments around the boats centre of buoyancy) and yet seem perfectly ok at the jetty. A boats stability on the plane is far different to when at rest.
Start off by having very little on board and get on the plane and trim the boat out until you are happy, making a note of how much trim angle you are using and how many engine revs. Then start adding the extra weight at different places and see how it affects you. On a big ship, very detailed calculations are performed to make sure the ship is loaded correctly. On a small boat it is very much trial and error.
I have a Stacer 469 with a 60hp Yamaha on the back. In order to get it running best i ended up having to change the prop to a higher revving prop as i had a lot of trouble getting on the plane when fully loaded. I have fitted the boat out now to be just about perfect when 2 people and gear are onboard. If i take a 3rd person onboard i am still just under the max weight limit but that person must sit up the pointy end so i can get on the plane. All up i reckon i messed around for at least 3 months until i was happy - and i am supposedly an expert on this sort of stuff having been an Deck Officer in the Merchant Navy and i also have a degree in Nautical Science. I was also a Coastguard Skipper for many years in Brisbane and unfortunely attended many rescues due to poorly loaded boats turning upside down.
Also you need to read the fine print about the maximum recommeded weight to be carried. I was recently a passenger on a Skeeter and all seemed ok when we first went out but on the way back to the ramp we were poirpoising very badly to the point that i insisted that the skipper slow down to 6 knots as i was totally convinced we were about to flip over.
As it turns out this model Skeeter has a 400lbs max weight limit. Put 2 big blokes in it and all the gear and then a FULL live well on the way back to the ramp and you have a recipe for disaster.
Hope this has not confused you too much mate but i would hate to see you end up in trouble