PBO reader Nitzan Sneh shows PBO around his Contest 43 on video – and find out how to share your own DIY on video content with us as well

At PBO there’s nothing we love more than hearing about readers’ projects. Have you been busy in the workshop? Or maybe you’ve a boat project you never had time to write up? Why not put pen to paper, or share a ‘DIY on video’ clip with us via Facebook?

To inspire you, take a look at these boat upgrades by PBO reader Nitzan Sneh. PBO met Nitzan back in December when he was working on his Contest 43, GDY Kids. No stranger to DIY, Nitzan has been buying and renovating boats since he was 14. This is his eighth boat.

Upgrades to a Contest 43, Part 1

In this video, Nitzan explains how he’s upgrading his NMEA 2000 system, how he got a local artist to make him some slingbags, improved his electronics and extended the bathing platform to ease the dinghy up.

“Down below, everything is messy. You should see my home and my other boats – they’re meticulous – but this is work in progress.”

We know the feeling! Nitzan plans to upgrade everything to B&G and Raymarine instruments.

“On deck, I will only have 13in screens on iPad Pro, which communicate wirelessly with the Raymarine Axiom multifunction display (MFD) inside.”

Make your own bimini, awning and sprayhood

The original bimini was the same height of the sprayhood, which Nitzan found far too low: “You couldn’t comfortably walk around the cockpit.” So he rebuilt the stainless steel frame and hired a sailmaker to do the rest. If you fancy making your own bimini and sprayhood at home we’ve got a great article here by Ann Berry. Or you could try your hand at a cockpit awning. You can find more sewing skills (without an industrial sewing machine) in this sail-repair article.

Take a look at Nitzan’s fender step, too. An easy project if you happen to have a couple of spare fenders.

Upgrades to a Contest 43, Part 2

In this clip, Nitzan explains how he’s upgrading his electronics, has replaced the seacocks, swapped out the boat taps for household ones, and rewired the lights so they work on a single switch.

“Thirteen lights and I have to go round switching them on one-by-one-by-one. For lazy people like me that’s no good!” says Nitzan. “They were 20W halogen bulbs before, but now they’re 3W LEDs. They’re much nicer and are connected by a single on/off switch. It works really well. It’s the small things like this that really change your life!”

Finding teak in St Lucia

Normally teak is expensive, but not if you go up into the mountains of St Lucia and meet the mill owner herself! Nitzan has especially enjoyed living in St Lucia and using the local trades to help him with his projects.

How to get rid of cockroaches

Nobody likes cockroaches – especially if you’re at sea in a 43ft yacht.
“When I bought GDY Kids, a lot of food had been left onboard and it was infested with cockroaches. I hate them, so I had to do something serious!”

Essential power tools for your boat


“In my former life I worked in medical technology for orthopaedic surgery. They used tools exactly like my multitool to cut bones!”

Well, we hope you won’t be resorting to amputations on your next long passage (or if you’re self-isolating for that matter), but if you want a tool for polishing and cutting all different shapes and sizes, take a look at this one.

The power drill you can use on a winch

If you find it hard to hoist heavy sails or get someone up a mast, you could try Nitzan’s solution of adpating a drill into an electric winch handle!

“Believe it or not, it works like a dream, and altogether the drill cost $170 compared to the cost of thousands for an electric winch!”

This video is causing some interest on YouTube. Nitzan texted PBO recently to say the drill has been a real success and even saved him a sail during his recent trip home to the US.

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Do you have any videos to share?

Post your videos on Youtube, Facebook, Instagram or anywhere you can share a link with others (WeTransfer is good as you don’t need an account. You can also try Dropbox, Google Drive or Microsoft OneDrive). Send the link to us via Facebook or to pbo@ti-media.com and we will share it on our channels (if that’s what you want us to do). If you have a write-up to go with it, even better! The best new material will be edited and featured in the magazine and on our own channels in the future.