The step-by-step process to retrofit superyacht stabilisers

22 September 2021

For owners who are considering refitting their superyacht’s stabilisers, there are plenty of opinions and more importantly, incorrect assumptions made about the systems; and so, here are a few pointers to set the course straight on the way to making guests happier, crew more committed and the owner more content:

The first point in any new stabiliser or refit project, the following questions need to be answered by the superyacht’s owner:

1. Do you currently have a stabiliser system?

If so, you may save time and money as the space has already been allocated in the engine room for the hull unit and the hydraulic power unit. Upon review, there are often many elements with the old system that can be updated and upgraded with a new system.

2. Is the boat classed now or do you want it to be classed upon completion of the refit?

3. Do you plan on chartering the boat? Stabilisers are an extremely important requirement for charter guests.

Secondly, the owner will need to do some research to choose the following:

The naval architect

A naval architect is a critical component to the process as they will undertake a feasibility assessment, develop the requirements/specifications and perform calculations to determine the best options to maximise the yacht’s stability. Ultimately, they will create a suitable design including the proper integration into the existing hull.

The stabiliser company

The company chosen to supply the stabilisers will be able to work with the naval architect in helping to define the requirements. Of course, doing your own research is critical, but generally seeking a company with experience will ensure the utmost comfort and resale value. Quantum, for example, has been in the stabiliser business for 36 years and have built, installed and serviced thousands of systems. The company will be able to offer advice based on the hull design, roll period, speed requirements, metacentric height (GM), displacement, beam and desired roll reduction and sea state requirements. Other points of influence will be the hydrodynamic characteristics and the operating profile of the boat.

The yard

To help select the best shipyard to handle the work, the naval architect, stabiliser company, yacht broker and other owners and crew members can all work together as resources for information on a shipyard’s capabilities and experience.