2010 480 Sundancer w/pods

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by porsche1662, Oct 12, 2019.

  1. porsche1662

    porsche1662 New Member

    Oct 12, 2019
    Tiara 44
    Hi Guys, we are in the market for a 2005-2011 48 dancer. We are going back and forth between a shaft and a pod boat. Pod seems cool but more maintenance issues. We sea trailed a 2010 yesterday and in the bow locker we discovered about 200# of sand bags. Do these boat need ballast ? The boat had auto trim tabs so wondered why the owner though it needed more weight in the front. He did have a large dinghy but that should not have through the weight off that much ? Should we stick with a shaft boat ?

    Thanks !
  2. stephens013

    stephens013 Active Member

    Oct 8, 2009
    Ft Walton Beach, Fl
    2001 510 Sundancer
    1997 400DA Sundancer
    1994 Chalarral 310 Signature
    3196 Cat; 660 PHP
    3116 Cat; 340 PHP
    The boat brokerage system is a strange situation. Your always going to come up with add-ones and modifications the previous owner thought was a good idea. ( I can only imagine the questions the buyer of my last boat must have had ).Botttomline; make the broker ask the questions of the seller. His job is to facilitate the purchase by eliminating dought. And if that don't work then call the owner up yourself.

    Now as for the 200 lbs; betting the boat just was riding bow high when on plane. Just a exceptinlay basic way for fixing the problem with little utility in return. Had a 400DA that planed out that way. Solved the problem with increased trim tabs and adding all chain to anchor system.
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2019
  3. Espos4

    Espos4 Well-Known Member

    Jan 1, 2017
    Long Island NY
    2007 240 Sundeck
    350 MAG Bravo 3 W/DTS
    Search around this sight and do some reading about pods.

    Some here have had less than pleasant experiences with them.
  4. Zach312

    Zach312 Active Member

    Jan 23, 2011
    St. Paul, MN
    2008 Sea Ray 48 Sundancer
    Cummins QSC 540's
    We where in your situation a year ago. For us we did research and found the closest zeus certified tech was 6 hours from us. If you are on the coast this most likely isn't a issue but it was for us. Many poor reviews on the zeus pods, especially the early versions. I am sure some people love them but if I ever consider a pod boat it would be IPS. I am not the smartest person on the topic but there must be a reason why a vast majority of manufactures that choose pod's elect to use volvo ips system. I have no first hand knowledge of this but it makes me wonder how long mercury will support Zeus drives now that sea ray isn't building larger boats with this system.

    As for a 48 sundancer with shaft drives, after one season we are extremely happy the boat is very well mannered around the dock and it runs on plan nicer than any boat we have had before. I don't feel it rides bow high at all.

    Good luck
    Henry Boyd likes this.
  5. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods
    From what I learned while researching pods is that the issues with the Zeus design seem to be based on production vintage with more problems associated with the earlier versions. That said I have a friend with a 09 Sabre like mine but with the Cummins Zeus package who has had no problems and another friend with a new Cabo who has nothing but problems. The latest being one of the integral trim tabs fell off. So I think it’s just luck of the draw.

    I have driven the other Sabre and in comparison to our Volvo IPS drives it is subtly different. Our Volvos seem more precise when doing joystick maneuvers like moving sideways, but the Zeus drives seem to be more powerful and move more water. Where we are the Zeus drives seem to be more effective. Keep in mind our Marina is at the mouth of a major river, so we have both strong tidal current as well as one from the river. This causes some strong cross currents making docking a challenge.

    The Zeus set up is similar to a stern drive with props facing aft, the Volvo’s have the props pointed forward. The Zeus drives hang vertically in tunnels and the Volvo’s are mounted perpendicular to the dead rise.

    For me while I would prefer the Volvo’s only because I’ve taken the time to learn them, I wouldn’t refuse to buy a boat with Zeus drives. And in any event can’t see buying a boat with shafts.

  6. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods

    One thing we’ve learned is that Volvo requires Volvo trained/certified mechanics to crack open one of their engines or pods. They do however make it possible for certified technicians to do maintenance tasks that involve lubrication and filter service and replacing things that are bolted to the engine/pod like filters, pumps and alternators. It does make m&r records a little disjointed.

    One thing that does peeve me is that Volvo thinks everything is top secret. All communication has to be through a dealer. If the dealer does not want to talk to you about upgrading Volvo’s version of Smartcraft you are out of luck. I always found that Mercury was open and willing to talk to end users.

    As it turns out there is only one source of Volvo certified mechanics in eastern Mass about 20 minutes drive from our marina and we have established a service relationship with them. However, given split nature of m&r responsibilities, we are also using the service department of the closest Sabre dealer from Portland. They have local people so the road charges are about equal.

  7. rwvw415

    rwvw415 Active Member

    Jul 16, 2007
    2007 48 Sundancer
    QSC 8.3 V Drives
    With an all chain rode there is no need for ballast in this boat as the running attitude is level on plane
  8. bahamabreisus

    bahamabreisus Well-Known Member

    Oct 25, 2007
    Hampstead NC
    500 dancer, previous 420,390,300 dancers
    detriot 8v92
    If we put 200 lbs in the anchor locker, I doubt I would even notice it. I have had 10 people on the bow and did not notice it.
  9. mobocracy

    mobocracy Active Member

    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    pod meme.jpg

    I think on boats direct-driven by engines, pods are just stern drives, version 2.0.

    I would like them more if they were like the big ships, azimuth thrusters containing sealed electric motors without mechanical drive linkages. But I don't see recreational boats gaining diesel-electric propulsion anytime soon.

    Pods have some advantages in fuel consumption, maneuverability and some additional cabin space but I'm thinking their maintenance demands and repair complexity makes them less appealing unless you live in some of the coastal areas without enough boat density to support a good repair network. I suspect you can get a problem with shaft setups fixed in nearly any decent marine repair facility, with pods, less likely unless you're near a pod-certified dealer.
  10. Henry Boyd

    Henry Boyd Well-Known Member GOLD Sponsor

    Apr 24, 2007
    Newburyport, on the peaceful and serene Merrimack
    ‘09 Sabre 38 Hardtop Express “Serenity”
    Volvo D6 w/IPS450 Pods
    Sterndrive 2.0 maybe, but here’s the thing, our boat came out of the water after its tenth season. The only thing “wrong” with the pods was an outbreak of barnacles. Corrosion, not a spec. That’s largely because the housing and props are made from nibril.

    Just drive a pod boat. Back into a slip with a measurable cross current and wind and you will change your mind. No crabbing the boat, juggling throttles, just tap the joystick gently. As for fuel economy we get twenty knots at a total consumption less than 20 gph. You also get superb maneuverability under full power. There is no comparison with a sterndrive, even a counter rotating set up like the BIII.

    Something to recognize is that the Zeus and Volvo IPS are different products both from a maintenance and how they create the same functions.
  11. mobocracy

    mobocracy Active Member

    Jun 29, 2014
    United States
    310 Sundancer
    350 Mag & Bravo III
    Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying they're not a total improvement over stern drives in multiples ways -- handling, corrosion resistance, and so on.

    But you still have a gear driven propulsion unit in the water that has multiple significant changes in power angle off the engine shaft, much like a stern drive. Lots of gearing, oil and seals.

    I guess one thing I wonder is why they're not making stern drives out of NiBrAl so they don't melt in salt water?

Share This Page

Show Sidebar