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Old 13-11-2008, 12:21   #1
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Buying abroad and getting it home

Assume one were to purchase a boat in Tortola or Martinique. If one were trying to sail that boat (i.e., deliver the boat, not cruise) to say the Space Coast of Florida, about how long would that take? I know it varies by boat, crew, route, and weather. Alternatively, how much would it cost to hire a delivery crew for such a trip?

Im just looking for a ballpark. Im still considering ex-charters in both markets and researching the logistics.

Thanks!
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Old 13-11-2008, 13:28   #2
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Offshore to Florida without stops would probably be about 5 days...but taking a new to you boat offshore without taking the time for a real shakedown cruise to insure all systems are in good order is not advised...so build in some time for that!
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Old 13-11-2008, 14:32   #3
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Agreed. I'm also concerned that an ex-charter boat may not be up to the task in terms of condition or equipment. I assume the purchase survey would tell me whether the boat is capable, with out without work, before the trip. As far as the equipment goes, I suppose big suitcases filled with tools and parts might be in order.
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Old 13-11-2008, 14:52   #4
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I suppose big suitcases filled with tools and parts might be in order

When I went to pick up Imagine in St. Maarten. I had a couple of hundred pounds of tools in 4 different suitcases packed in with clothes.

I would take the time to know the boat. You are already is an extremely beautiful & bountiful place to sail. If you are in a rush to get home to a job. It very seldom works out that easy. It does happen, but very seldom..........BEST WISHES..........i2f
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Old 13-11-2008, 14:54   #5
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P.S.,

& it would be a crime to pass the southern Bahamas without stopping. A very bad crime lololololol.............you better take 6 months IMHO.......i2f
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Old 13-11-2008, 15:35   #6
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I have 4-5 weeks I could take off work. I wouldn't have to be completely rushed. It wouldn't be cruising either, for sure. I could start sailing and take things a little slower, getting to know the boat while enjoying the islands while making my way back to Florida. I'll have plenty of time to return to the Bahamas and the islands later.

Of course, I work from "home" where ever that is - on land or offshore. I only need to be near an airport twice a month - once to leave home and once to come back. Airfare to some islands isn't much more than what I pay now from Florida to Virginia, especially between San Juan and Virginia. Hmmmmm....

(Can you see the wheels turning in my head?)
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Old 14-11-2008, 07:59   #7
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I actually did what you are proposing. We left St. Maarten, and sailed for Daytona. Unfortunately we had a breakdown in the
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Old 14-11-2008, 08:11   #8
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Unfortunately we had a breakdown in the BVI. It took us 10 days to get our parts for the windlass. From there we went to Culebra to check in. Once you enter American soil you will be asked for taxes. Be sure you have already documented the boat if that is your plan.

From Culebra we went to El Fajardo, and it took us several days to find more parts. This time a hard drive. With our hard drive working we went to San Salvador, Abacos, and on to Daytona. We spent a total of 6 weeks, and we saw really nothing, because there is so much.

If I were to do it again I would do things differently. I would spend more time south of Georgetown. Getting back to Georgetown doesn't take that much time from Fl. Between GT, and Florida is all a quick return to Florida.

Georgetown is a good hub for doing other islands, and being close to supplies. Lots of boats, and things going on there in GT. Going north GT is a 48 hr shot away from Florida for most boats, or less.......i2f
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Old 14-11-2008, 10:58   #9
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I currently own a charter boat in Tortola and have often asked myself what I would need to do to have it ready to sail back to the US or Bahamas when it comes out of contract should I choose to do that. My answer is probalby not much. While these boats do get used hard, they have to be constantly maintained to be ready for charter. Of course, what issues, and equipment will vary depending on the charter company and boat.

In my situation, the dinghy is not a part fo the boat inventory, so I'd need a new dingy if I'm stopping to enjoy the islands. I'd need jacklines, but that's easy to bring and install. I'm not sure if the liferaft stays with the boat or not. You may or not see a need for that. I'd personally be happy with the autopilot on board, runnning the engine a few times per day to top off the batteries, especially if I had more than just one other person with me. (I frequently use less than 1/3 tank fuel in two weeks) I'd want to load the proper charts into the chart plotter and have a spare gps and appropriate maps. Other than that, I'd be happy to take off.

I feel that going with the prevailing wind, currents and following the islands back up, creates less pressure than passagemaking would and would make for a great trip with many possible stops to choose from.

That's my thought for my boat as it is now, but again, circumstances can change and you need to carefully look at the boat you end up with and your priorites.
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Old 14-11-2008, 19:18   #10
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I've just finished taking an ex charter boat from Barbados (where the previous crew had "bailed out" due to perceived difficulties) to Uruguay. As Nautical 62 says, there aint too much you need to do really.

You will have to talk to the insurance company and they will require a liferaft, EPIRB and normal coastguard safety appliances (flares and fire extinguishers in date). For smaller boats they may require you to route within 150 miles of shore, which makes a "straight shot" to anywhere other than Florida pretty difficult. I also question their judgement in this instance: I'd prefer to be 300 miles off Hateras than 50 in any sort of weather! They may also require a minimum crew of 3 but I'm normally allowed to do it with just one other crew: it sometimes depends on what level of certification and experience you have. Depending on where you are going I find that BVI to Florida is 7 days with bail out options in TCI or the Bahamas, Chesapeake straight shot is 9 days (catamaran) 10-12 days (mono). NY or Conn is 14 days sailing with a bail out port of Bermuda.

I run ex charter boats up to the States with regularity and find that a solid checkout of the boat takes 24 hours normally. You should carry adequate spares, oil and filters. Most problems I have ever had have been fuel related as charter fleets do not clean their tanks as a matter of course and a lot of crud can accumulate.
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Old 14-11-2008, 19:45   #11
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I think someone might want to point out that to the FL space coast from Tortola is about 1200 miles or 1600 from Martinique. A 5 day cruise seems just a tad optimistic for that distance, even non stop offshore, at least for the average cruising monohull.

I would allow 7-10 days from Tortola and 10-14 from Martinique. Of course with the right winds and weather and the right boat 5 days could happen.
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