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Thailand, Phuket: Boatyard and Worker recommendations

By Val Ellis last modified Feb 21, 2017 09:00 PM
If needing work done on your boat in Thailand, here are some suggestions from cruisers who have done just that.

Published: 2017-01-21 00:00:00
Countries: Thailand

Thailand, Phuket: Boatyard and Worker recommendations

Boatyard ;©PhuketPremierBoatyard

January 21st, 2017

First haulout in Thailand for anti-fouling using Premier Boatyard, Phuket.

Posted 27th June 2016
Four Months at Phuket Boat Lagoon:

There are many reasons why people choose Boat Lagoon for a refit.

1. All of the skills you need are on site.

2. The hotel will rent you a nice apartment from as little as BT18,000 a month.

3. There is a wide variety of eateries at every price scale.

4. The chandleries are well stocked.

5. There is a sailing community (admittedly small).

6. The Lagoon Saloon is the natural social meeting place for cruisers; you will be well looked after here.

7. A first class place to leave your boat if travelling in Asia or visiting home.

Having said all of that - Boat Lagoon is not cheap. My 38 foot boat cost BT835 a day, in or out of the water.

On arrival, make sure you are coming in on the last hour or so of flood.  Get a pilot from the marina – no extra charge - and you will be met at the outer marker.  Docking crews are good and a dinghy will give you an expert push if you need it.  The marina has great shelter, which means no through wind.

The haul out is very professional.  You will be assisted by a large team of experienced people.  Security is good with no problems reported while I was there. Unfortunately, the free Wi-Fi is at best weak and the connection frequently breaks.  For good Wi-Fi go the The Diner, next to the Lagoon Saloon.

You have two choices.

1. Do all of the research yourself and project manage yourself.  You will have big language problems with some, but not all of the contractors.  Some of the contractors will let you down with timescales.  This is the cheaper of the two choices.

2. Choice two is to get Precision Shipwright Services to select and manage contractors.  
This does not always work mind you. For example, although they were given written instructions in Thai, my varnishers started putting the wrong varnish on my masts.  I stopped them in time; Precision Shipwright cannot be looking over their shoulders every minute of the day.  But they did resolve any other problems without question.  This side of the business is run by Peter Gregg, a man who knows an awful lot about boats.

In short, going it alone is a bit of a lottery, but if you are not having much done and the people speak good English then this may be the way to go so long as you are on site keeping an eye on things.  This last bit is essential.

Boat Lagoon is legendry for new teak decks and paint jobs.  I had neither done, but boats either side of me had and I saw excellent results.  But you do have to be there, monitoring all the time.

The contractors I used were all really nice people to have aboard and were as follows:-  (ES means English spoken, not by the workers but by the business owners; almost none of the workers speak English).

  • David Samuelson at Precision – Probably the best rigger I have ever met. (ES)
  • Muzza Nordstrand of Canvass Creations – Highly inventive canvas designer and high quality product delivered on time. (ES)
  • Ket at Thai Sails (not on site but will collect and deliver). Brilliant sail repair service.  Quick and a good price. (ES)
  • C&C Yanmar agent.  Nice people doing excellent work but they do find scheduling a “challenge”. (ES)
  • Too Ton – Stainless work done well if not entirely to schedule.
  • Som Pop – Varnishing.  First class job but needs to be supervised.
  • Octopus Electrical – Raymarine dealer with good stock.  They know what they are doing. (ES)
  • Boat Care Service.  Holger will do a reliable boat minding service afloat or ashore while you are away.  He will also provide and watch over cleaners and pick them up on any little thing. (ES)
  • Ta – Visa extensions.  Call her on 089 291 9698 and she will come to Boat Lagoon, take your photograph and passport and do everything for just BT1,000 over and above the BT2,000 extension fee.  The wait at immigration can be up to two hours; if you do it yourself a hire car will be BT600 alone. (ES)
Anthony
sv Wild Fox

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Posted 7th February 2015

Yacht Haven, Phuket, Thailand:

Our boat Pipistrelle spent a total of 4 months in this marina, enabling the most superb work to be carried out by various different contractors.

The marina is only a short distance from the airport, and caters for yachts of all sizes, from superyachts to charter yachts to 30-40 ft yachts.  The marina is well run by Nick and Zara, the managers, and their able team of assistants. Staff are on hand to help with berthing, 24 hour security is in place, there are two small chandlery shops, and a café/bar/restaurant on site.

At the top of the hill there is a swimming pool and apartments operated by the marina, with good showers and changing rooms.  A big improvement is the golf buggies to run marina guests to this building, and the car park close by. Big changes are taking place, with new roads making access to the marina much easier, and an extension to the marina is currently underway.

Sakchai provides car hire and air conditioned apartments to rent, and there are 3 restaurants to cater for the needs of yachties, The Haven, The Coconut, and Mamas and Papas.  The downside to the operation is that there is no haulout facility, because the marina is located at the bottom of a steep hill. We chose to use Krabi Boat Lagoon to provide this facility for us.

In addition Yacht Repair and Stem to Stern are being relocated away from the marina, which will not help these excellent companies. Out of sight, out of mind to a certain extent we think?  But knowing the individual owners, we are sure they will make every effort to be available to their clients!

And it is these services that many yachts come to Yacht Haven for. Yacht Repair specialise in interior and exterior wood work, and Pipistrelle now has an interior that looks like new, and new teak decks.  Marly and his team are outstanding, the skill in cutting and fitting wood is akin to a cabinet maker, and attention to detail is remarkable, it appears that nothing is too much trouble.  Marly can be contacted by email at yachtsrepair@yahoo.com or his mobile number is 081 892 4438.  We left Pipistrelle in his capable hands whilst we travelled overland in Indochina, which is not something one can do with many contractors in this part of the world.  He regularly sent photos and progress reports.

Graeme runs Stem to Stern, and will take on most engineering jobs.  All the work he undertook for us, from outboard engines, separating a deck winch from its gearbox and rebuilding, to fitting a new wind direction and anemometer wand at the top of our mast, was expertly done.  His email address is phuketgraeme@yahoo.com and his mobile number is 081 272 5729.

Finally we can recommend Somsak, who is a brilliant electrician with a very clever mind.  His company is called Andaman Electrical Marine, Andaman Electrical Marine Ltd., aem@andaman-electricalmarine.com , his mobile number is 086 554 1441.

He fitted new solar panels for us as well as many other smaller jobs, speaks good English and appears to be unflappable as well as reliable.

Yacht Haven is an excellent location for refit, or leaving your boat in the water.

On our own web site we have published a detailed report including photos.  The link to it is: https://yachtpipistrelle.wordpress.com/2015/01/30/refit-at-yacht-haven-phuket-phase-2/

Bob Hazell, SV Pipistrelle

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Posted 6th February 2015

Boatyards, Parts, and Services:

There are numerous boatyards, marine stores, and yacht service organizations on Phuket Island. A complete list would take pages and pages. When you get to Phuket grab an EastMarine Phuket Yachting Directory for further details.

We asked for a price quote from about a dozen Phuket boatyards for a haulout, powerwash, splash, etc. We stayed on the hard for 10 days at Phuket Premier Boatyard which is located on the north side of the island at N 08.10.34 and E 098.19.33. Total cost was less than $650 USD. Some boat yards quoted over $2,000 for the same services, so buyer beware. You can contact the manager of Phuket Premier Boatyard, Ditapong, at info@phuketboatyard.com, phone +66 869 419 090, or visit www.phuketboatyard.com

Jason Trautz, SV Solo

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Posted June 6th 2013

This is a yard recommended by a cruiser with a catamaran and a reliable, skilled worker to do the job.

We were hauled out at Premier Boat yard for 6 weeks in Feb - March 2013. There were only 3 other boats as the yard was new, but recently the yard has become much busier, especially with cats. The yard is situated in a large rubber plantation owned by the Chinese family. It is a nice place for walks & runs.

The GOOD

- the manager, named Non, is helpful, honest and speaks English well having done a business degree in Australia.

- the yard is clean

- they use a large hydraulic lifter for boat up to 20 ton capacity

- yard rates are very competitive

- you can live on the  boat for free. There is a small but clean shower / toilet block on site.

Not so good, but not insurmountable

You have to pass under some power lines just before you enter the mangrove channel into the pond for haul out. The manager says that the clearance is 18 metres in midchannel but he is getting it surveyed to find out exactly. Best advice is to keep to the northern  (mainland) shore.

The channel into the pond involves a dog leg, so best to check it out before you arrive. There is plenty of depth in the pond. The entrance to the channel is between a row of cement posts that mark the previous edge of the land which has been severely eroded by passing speed boats. Entry can be quite scary if the tide is running strongly or you are a wide cat, as we are. So time your arrival for the slack at high.

It is a 2 km journey to get to the main Phuket north - south highway, so the yard is isolated from marine suppliers at the Boat Lagoon area which is another 20 kms south.

You can travel along the dirt road of the plantation alongside the channel down to Yacht Haven for meals etc. It is a 15 - 20 minute walk and you have to climb a locked gate. The yard is only a 5 minute dinghy ride from Yacht Haven.

The recommended contractor for the yard is expensive and unreliable. If using your own contactor (as we did) there is a $3 charge per day/per worker.

Mr  Non and his family are planning a marina & condominium development on the land in the future.

I highly recommend the yard.

www.phuketboatyard.com

info@phuketboatyard.com

manager Ditapong Boonsoong (Non) Tel: +66 (81) 9419090

I had extensive work done at the Phuket Premier boatyard by Chai Yacht services while we were there. He removed all the old antifouling, epoxied, faired the hulls and applied new antifouling, painting & fibreglass repairs.

Mr Chai worked for many years for Precision Yacht Services at Boat Lagoon but has now gone out on his own. His costs were very reasonable. I found him to be honest, punctual and the best thing was that he only works on one project at a time and comes EVERY  day until the job is done. He is an expert at fibre glassing and painting.

Chai and Kevin also fixed some leaking hatches on our boat when we were anchored off Yacht Haven. Kevin has a fishing boat and they took 2 days to remove, reseal and repaint the areas of 2 jammers and 1 hatch. Cost was $200 and he guaranteed the work for 2 years. Though most cruisers will not be here that long. So he will come to your boat.
The owner of Precision shipwrights said that Chai is an expert at gel coating & painting. He works as hard, if not harder, than his workers. His wife is also on the team. His business partner, Kevin speaks perfect English.

I have no hesitation in recommending him.

Chai Yacht services  +66 (0) 856912917

email chai.yacht.services@gmail.com

Paul Carne
SV Pelican V

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bbalan
bbalan says:
Feb 21, 2017 05:28 PM

If you are considering work in Thailand you can find more information in my report based on our 2 years there. Here on noonsite: http://www.noonsite.com/Countries/Thailand/visit-thailand-for-fun-avoid-thailand-for-boat-work
and with more detail (including actual costs) at my website: http://brucebalan.com/migrations/BoatworkInThailand.htm

I'll reiterate one point: During our time there we did not hear of a single boat that had engine work done that was of good quality. Many of the boats found the problems after leaving Phuket, so be very careful. It's one thing if your varnish job fails, but much more serious if your engine fails in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

Good luck.
Bruce
s/v Migration

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