The delivery process of your new yacht from factory to hand over

We are often asked about what is involved when importing a yacht into Australia. Lets’ just say it can be complicated and best left to the experts like us. But below here is a brief outline of how we do it.

With the shipping locked in and European trucking company confirmed for the date of collection the factory prepares your yacht for transport. The yacht is checked to ensure all optional and standard equipment is aboard. The boat is fully detailed, all the cushions and bedding are wrapped in plastic, all loose items stowed. Then the whole yacht is shrink wrapped.

The mast and boom are loaded and the yacht is sitting on a cradle with the keel underneath. It is then trucked to the shipping port of departure, which can include Le Havre in France, Zeebrugge in Belgium or Bremerhaven in Germany.

We can deliver yachts to all major ports in Australia and transit time at sea can vary from 37 to 47 days subject to the route. The yacht is placed on a flat rack and loaded inside a Roll On Roll Off Cargo ship. We do not ship on deck, nor do we transship your new yacht. Once the yacht is loaded into the hold of the cargo ship that is where she remains until the port of discharge in Australia.

Your new yacht is insured under a cargo marine insurance policy from the time it leaves the factory until the time it leaves the port of arrival. After which, our local insurance kicks in until the date of handover. As we service the whole of Australia we can deliver yachts from the largest local port to a yard near you for the commissioning. We have commissioned and delivered hundreds of yachts to many places such as Darwin, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, Gippsland, Fiji, Auckland, East Coast Florida and the French Mediterranean.

After the customs entry and quarantine inspections are completed the yacht is loaded and trucked to a local yard. Often the yachts are transported overnight when the roads are less busy. A PCY staff member checks the yacht on arrival for any signs of damage and the yard lift the yacht and cradle off the truck. A closer inspection of the yacht is then made and a thorough check of all the standard and optional equipment is on board.
We like to take between two to three weeks after the yacht arrives to complete the commissioning process.

Great care is taken to prevent any damage to your new yacht. Extra layers of protection are applied to the main walkway areas that will be used by contractors that we employ to install, the rudders, keel, and mast. We do not leave things to chance and take extra time to prepare and protect the inside of the yacht ready for the keel fitting. The saloon is stripped of all cushions, floorboards taken up and removed and the salon table commonly removed to provide full access to the keel bolts.

The aft cabin/s are also prepared ready for the rudder installation with panels removed, cushions removed and extra layer of protection provided. The plastic wrap is removed and we install the safety lines and stanchions. The shipwright company responsible for installing the keel and rudder then go to work. Following the factory installation specification then prepare the keel, keel studs, hull and keel sump.

At the correct time the yacht is lifted over the keel and the keeling process begins – ensuring the keel is installed correctly requires skill and technique. Once complete the keel bolts are tightened and then the rudder is installed. Whilst this is taking place the professional rigger goes to work on unpacking the well packed mast and boom and begins the process of first installing the spreaders, dressing the rig with the fixed rigging, installing the mast lights, and running rigging along with any other items such as VHF Antenna, TV Antennas or Wind Transducer.

The rigger then assembles the jib furler foil and prepares the mast for stepping. Care is taken at this point to ensure that all loose parts are secured to the mast and the mast section is clean and free from marks. A few days later after the keel has had time to settle the keel bolts are tightened again to a higher torque setting as per the factory specification. The hull keel join is cleaned up and then antifouled.

The yard performs any touch ups and applies the Propspeed paint to the propeller. The mast is stepped towards the end of the time at the yard and prior to launch, for which we use a large crane to suspend the mast above the yacht and then lower into position, either hull stepped or deck stepped subject to the brand of yacht. Care is taken to prevent scratches to the deck and plexi windows by adding extra layer of protection prior to stepping. Once the mast has been stepped the fixed rigging is tighten to enable the rig to stand unsupported and running rigging led back to the cockpit as per the factory layout. The topsides are cleaned, saloon table, cushions and floorboard put back in place and the yacht made ready for launch. Fuel, power and engine are checked.

After we launch the yacht we complete the rest of the commissioning. First up your yacht is given a long soapy bath. The next phase begins, starting with the rig, running all the control lines, installing blocks and tunning the rig to ensure the mast is straight in the yacht and correct tension is applied to the fixed rigging. Once the rig has been dockside tuned, we begin the process of installed the sails and optional equipment. At this point the Volvo Engineer attends the boat to conduct the Pre-Delivery Inspection making sure the installation is correct and the engine operates as per factory specification. The licensed gas fitter attends the yacht to check and approve the installation as per Australian Standards and then every functioning item on board is checked for the correct operation. The yacht is now ready for sea trials in different conditions. After being sailed a few times the rig is re-tuned and any adjustments to the running rigging made. The engine specs under load are reported back to the Volvo Engineer. Now begins the detailing of the yacht, both inside and outside, cleaned and polished ready for your inspection.

The big day finally arrives, and you take ownership of your brand new luxury Elan or Dufour yacht. At PCY we know how overwhelming it can be to learn all the workings of your new yacht so take out time with the hand over. This is usually done over 2 days, as we like to ease you into the role and ensure you have a full understanding of the layout and operation of the equipment so you can really enjoy spending time aboard. During the hand over we move from bow to stern revealing the often concealed thru hull fittings, pumps, breaker switches, fuses, batteries, tanks, relays and valves and demonstrate their purpose. We provide tips and advice on best practice operation of the equipment and suggested maintenance requirements. Moving on deck we identify with you all the running rigging and the layout of the deck gear. Prior to hand over we calibrate the electronic instruments, and part of this includes a degree of customisationl. Many owners are already familiar with the brands of equipment installed and may simply need a refresher on the key strokes, but for some the array of screens can prove daunting. So we provide extra time for on board training on how to use the instruments, autopilot and chartplotter this can be on going subject to your experience. The next step, and the moment we have all been waiting for, is to take your new yacht for the first sail. During this time we provide tips and advice to make life aboard easy and help you set the sails correctly and begin to really enjoy the performance and handling aspects of the yacht. Often there is less technical talk and more discussions on how to make this puppy roar! With the yacht away from the dock also enables us to discuss the best operation of the engine. Lastly there is docking practice, a very important and often forgotten required skill. Whatever your previous experience or ability we can provide you with on going training to ensure you get the maximum enjoyment from your new yacht. From here, your on board warranty is activated and your yacht registered.
Taking delivery of your new yacht is just the beginning of a long term relationship. We don’t just wave you off into the sunset and move onto the next deal, we remain in contact with you. From day 1 of ownership we are your main point of contact for all technical questions, warranty handling, replacement parts, spare parts, contacts for local service agents, maintenance scheduling and advice. Our office provides the conduit back to the factory which is of course a huge resource for technical information. Our after sales department has won many awards for Customer Service, so rest assured you are in safe hands.
At PCY we don’t just talk the talk – we walk the walk. Over the past 14 years our business has received numerous Awards for Customer Service and for Sales Worldwide.
The Customer Service Awards are determined by feedback the factory received from our new boat owners combined with an internal ranking by the factory customer service team on our efficiency in handling enquiries.
Some of the Awards to date include:

  • World Best New Dufour Yachts Dealer for 2017
  • Number 1 Worldwide Dealer Award for Customer Care Elan Yachts 2015
  • Number 1 Worldwide Dealer Customer Service Award 2012, 2013 Hunter Yachts
  • Top 5 Dealer Customer Service Award 2005 to 2011 Hunter Yachts
  • Number 1 International Dealer volume sales 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013 Hunter Yachts