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Old 13-07-2010, 11:20   #1
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West Coast to East Coast

I am thinking buying a boat in Seattle. I haven't contacted the owner yet. He or she doesn't know that I am already in love with the boat.
Since I live in Maryland there are two options. Either pay 7-8 K to a truck company and get it shipped or sail it through Panama Canal.
I had a 37 footer before (Pearson 365) but lack offshore sailing experience.. Even if I had, probably I will need some help.
I am dreaming about getting a month off from my work (close to retirement ) fly to Seattle, purchase the boat, find a professional sailor and sail back home.
Any idea how long the journey might last and cost?
Your suggestions will be greatly appreciated..


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Old 13-07-2010, 11:51   #2
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That's rather a long way in an unfamiliar yacht. Why can't you ship it half way to the Great Lakes and sail it the rest of the way?


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Old 20-07-2010, 16:37   #3
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Been there done that. I sailed my boat from San Francisco to Maine via the Panama Canal when I moved. Thought I would take the money and have a cruise with the money I would pay a trucker. Some learnings:
1. PriceCheck your price with a boat hauler. Maybe the recession has lowered the price, but several years ago it would have cost 10-15 K to have my Tartan 37 hauled that distance.
2. Time: Pretty sure you can't do it in a month. I waited 2 weeks to get through the Panama Canal--check with the wait now going East to West (which is less than the other way). They make yachts wait. Also, it is about 6000 miles of travel and I doubt if you have a boat that can make 200 mile days every day for 30 days. You will see nothing of the countries. You have to wait for weather windows because there are places like the Gulf of Tejuantepec where you will need a window (I waited 10 days there) or face 70 winds and unimaginable seas.
3. Delivery and Cruising are two different things: I used to deliver boats from Mexico back to San Francisco and we just put the hammer down and toughed it out for 8 days--and swore we would never do it again, but did--I was young. Brutal godawful boring obnoxious work. Days of motoring. Not fun. Cruising is about taking your time and seeing the sights and enjoying yourself in anchorages sampling the cutures of other countries. The two are completely different things--I tried to combine them by making my trip over two winters (you can't be sailling during summer hurricane season) and basically I was rushing through every nice place and I spent 8 months in transit.
4. Costs: By the time you ready your boat (you will need to replace stuff and make repairs, make the trips back to the US for parts and for the summer to avoid hurricanes you will have spent far more than 10K on air fare, canal fees, beer, fuel, port fees, and wear and tear on your boat.
5. Skill: Make a trip with a delivery crew to get experience and see what deliveries are all about.

Suggestion-- ship the boat if you want it on the East Coast or take multiple years to make the trip if you wish to cruise.

Ray Durkee
S/V Velera
Tartan 37
Castine, Maine
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Old 20-07-2010, 18:29   #4
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Let's see 6 months thru WA, OR and CA. Two years in Mexico. Another year thru Central America and the canal. A year in the Caribbean. A season meandering up the Maryland. Add it up

Better idea: Move to the PNW.

Sounds like you're going to truck her.
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Old 20-07-2010, 18:47   #5
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Idea -- Sail boat to so Cal and truck boat to Texas. Down hill run and short overland trip. From Texas - work your way around the gulf. If you are in a real hurry, you could then truck the boat across Fla.
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Old 20-07-2010, 19:03   #6
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With only a month off - there is only one answer - ship it by truck.
- - Wear and tear; outfitting for open ocean sailing; insurance for various countries and outside US waters; Transit fees for the P.Canal; Island check-in/out fees; marinas, repairs parts and repairs along the way - all of this will end up costing multiples of the trucking fee.
- - In other words, trucking is quick, cheap, and the boat will arrive at your home in the same condition it left Seattle.
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Old 20-07-2010, 20:06   #7
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There are lots of boats on the east coast, and I would purchase one that did not require moving from west coast to the east.

I cannot imagine that I could find a yacht that was so awesome and affordable that it would be worth shipping from coast to coast.

I can think of lots of yachts that would work for me for coastal sailing or offshore passagemaking. What is it about this yacht that makes it worth the expense and hassle of moving from coast to coast?

Dave -Sailing Vessel Exit Only
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east coast

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