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Old 21-09-2013, 17:21   #1
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Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

It appears that we may have Kewalo sold.....sea trial tomorrow, then a purchaser's survey......all should be good.

Today, we decided to go to the boat and start unloading our personal items. Two full cartloads later....we still aren't done. Still have tools, cleaning materials....dishes.....stuff, stuff and more stuff!

How do you control what you carry on the boat? How much weight do you think you have added to your vessel?

When we called it a day today, she was bobbing about at the dock like a frisky colt in a new pasture.......ready to "race all comers"..lol....and she's a Bayfield 29....she just doesn't win races!

It seems with time....the adding of "stuff" just keeps getting deeper and deeper......can you control that?

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Old 21-09-2013, 17:37   #2
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

ask yourself how much you will use it before you put it on. can you keep things going without it. Is there an alternative? You can bake cupcakes in a square baking pan rather than having a cupcake pan also! How many pans will fit on your stove at once? etc etc. But no, you cant control it no matter how logical this sounds!
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Old 21-09-2013, 17:38   #3
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

It can be hard to tell what you'll need and what you won't. I think folks want to make sure they have emergency stuff, creature comfort stuff, and the such.
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Old 21-09-2013, 17:56   #4
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

We have never been able to control accumulated stuff. We make valiant efforts and get slimmer at times, but we mostly fail. Definitely, we fail in the long run.

We have friends who just sold their catamaran after 5 years of cruising. They were pretty brutal on weight and not acquiring it - threw out stuff all the time and didn't succumb to things we did. Their boat popped up 3" on the waterline when they took all of their stuff off it.

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Old 21-09-2013, 18:21   #5
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

I am constantly hauling stuff on and off. Anything we don't need for the season we are in I remove and store at home. The boat is always lightest in winter! and heaviest in summer!
It really is hard to minimize before a trip because of the "always be prepared" I picked up in scouts with the kids!
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Old 21-09-2013, 20:12   #6
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gunkylump View Post
It appears that we may have Kewalo sold.....sea trial tomorrow, then a purchaser's survey......all should be good.

Today, we decided to go to the boat and start unloading our personal items. Two full cartloads later....we still aren't done. Still have tools, cleaning materials....dishes.....stuff, stuff and more stuff!

How do you control what you carry on the boat? How much weight do you think you have added to your vessel?

When we called it a day today, she was bobbing about at the dock like a frisky colt in a new pasture.......ready to "race all comers"..lol....and she's a Bayfield 29....she just doesn't win races!

It seems with time....the adding of "stuff" just keeps getting deeper and deeper......can you control that?

gunk

I have some rules.

No new clothes come on unless old ones go off, either to my storage unit if I think I may need them, or some place like Goodwill, or in the trash iv I've done something really clever with them like spray engine oil on them.

Nothing goes into the galley unless it can do three things. That includes pots and pans -- no "specialty" pans. I have an induction cooktop, which I LOVE, so all pans have to be magnetic. Then they can be used anywhere.

I have a Kindle, and I buy darned few books in paperback format. Heavily illustrated books do much better in paper format. I have ONE smallish plastic box. All books must fit in that box.

I just set limits and boundaries for myself.

While you're at it, look at your lines. If you have old, worn lines that are in bad shape, ditch 'em and replace them with good line. If you need a line in a storm you want to be sure it can take whatever strain is going to go on it -- deploying a drogue, for instance. It won't do you any good if the line breaks.

Go through your tools and get rid of duplicates. You need English and metric allen wrenches, but you don't need two sets. You don't need to keep the stray odd ones that show up. Same for screwdrivers. We need a depressing assortment of them, but you don't need duplicates. Every little bit of paring down helps.

When you can, store things in plastic bags rather than plastic boxes. They take up a lot less space that way. When I bring home rice from the store, it goes into a fresh zip-locked (with the little plastic thing that pushes across the seam) bag and I pitch the box. You don't want cardboard on a boat anyway; roaches love cardboard -- so food in a cardboard box is a bad idea. I saw a roach on the dock today looking for a new home. Don't have the welcome mat out for them.

I keep everything in plastic boxes that I can -- iike my dremel, for instance. If water gets in the boat I don't want to have my dremel ruined as well.

I do try to keep everything necessary to sail safely ON the boat, not in the dock box or storage unit. That way I can't pull away from the slip while forgetting something important.

I label the boxes and bags, and I label the shelf or wherever they go.

I have a "skipper's cockpit box." Everything that goes in it is labeled SCB so if someone sees something out they know to put it in that box. Examples are the caps to the lenses on my binoculars. They can end up in strange places. The things I need go in there -- reading glasses, sunglasses, suntan lotion, horn, etc.


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Old 21-09-2013, 20:24   #7
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Oh there's one other thing from Bruce Bingham's and his partner Katy's book, THE LIVE-ABOARD BOOK. They actually lived for a couple of years on a 20' Flicka, so storage was a challenge. They each had one section of shelf that was theirs and invoilate. Katy did not see the need for three harmonicas. Bruce, however did, as they were each a different size and played in a different musical range. He kept his harmonicas on "his" shelf, so they were not up for debate. Ditto for anything Katy kept on "her" shelf. I don't have a partner but if I did I think this would be a good idea.
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Old 21-09-2013, 20:53   #8
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

you can never have too many lines==they are most handy in many situations when you do n0t want a new rope--and they stow easily. having what you call too many ropes or lines can save you and your boat. i use my old lines for preventers, dinghy painters, kayak ties, sail ties, tropical storm tarp lashings--cris- crossed across coach house over my water proof tarping... so many uses for old lines. even for kedging off shoal when grounded in a rising tide.
i used to have rules about clothing---yeah like you will follow them when cruising--lol--i am still ditching many items not just clothing---stuff--that i wont use, havent in 3 yrs--out it goes. trade things i dont use that take up too much space for less bulky items--so far--so good---isnt difficult to down size while cruising--it is when ye stay in one place for more than a year that it gets out of hand.
as for tools--you do not want to have to replace a specific tool in a foreign place with poor accessibility. i keep as many tools as possible on my boat---heck--if i have 4 wrenches, 10 mm, is good--2 will fall into ocean and one will find somewhere else to live, leaving me with only one--uh-oh i better buy a spare....
it is one thing to be located in a marina in one place--it is totally another to be out sailing in bfe with no harbor freight or home depot within 5 miles of home...
seems now i need replacement spare lines--there are few and far between decent rope providers to be found.
i also seem to need another 17 mm combo wrench--i only had 4 when i left sd 3 yrs ago--funny how they just up and disappear...
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Old 21-09-2013, 21:04   #9
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

For multihulls in particular, weight means slow. A corollary is that if your boat includes any coring or carbon or high mod fiber, weight is important to you. What would you pay for a boat that is 1000 pounds lighter (at a constant stiffness)? In my case I figure that is about $20/pound.

I clean every locker 2x per year. Always find stuff I'd lost! But I also consider when I last used the item, and in the case of spares, the probable consequence. I do carry tools and parts, just not everything.

  • Have the kids outgrown a certain toy or PFD?
  • Have we brought extras of something (table ware seems to multiply on my boat) because we lost track?
  • Was the "good idea gadget" not?
Curiously, every year my boat gets lighter, as I learn what I need and use.


Think "$/pound" cost of storage. Suddenly things seem like they should go home.
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Old 21-09-2013, 21:52   #10
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Every six months organize the boat. Anything you have not used during the previous six months is gone. Obviously this does not apply to spares.
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Old 21-09-2013, 22:36   #11
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Yeah... Stuff aboard. So when I retired we left Thailand, flew to the Puget Sound area, and bought a sailboat. Between my wife and I there were three suitcases and two computers that moved aboard: our entire worldly goods.

During a haul out some years later I simply sighed and had them raise the waterline approx 2 inches or so. That, my friends, on a flamin' 48 footer with only two people aboard!

Stuff on a boat? It breeds, I tell ya', it breeds....
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Old 21-09-2013, 22:55   #12
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

The only way to control how much "stuff" you have on your boat is to get a smaller boat. Boats are notoriously like ladies' handbags - the available space is always filled to capacity .
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Old 21-09-2013, 22:58   #13
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

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The only way to control how much "stuff" you have on your boat is to get a smaller boat. Boats are notoriously like ladies' handbags - the available space is always filled to capacity .
NOW she tells me this bit of natical lore.....
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Old 22-09-2013, 04:45   #14
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Having a full canvas business aboard its been tough. Its hard to draw a limit on what tools of the trade i will carry. Ditch the $1000 bimini frame bender that gets about 2 calls of duty a year? Every compartment is full. 1000s of snaps zippers bindings threads etc...The weight seems to be an asset in rough weather. I pack keeping in mind where the heavy items are going. When I stay in one place for a while it gets even heavier as I stock up on things that get used a lot, white vinyl, blue sunbrella compressed foam slabs, clear vinyl. This stuff all turns to ready cash while cruising as i meet people in need. My factory waterline has been submarine since i moved aboard. All possessions have a job though, theres no fluff.
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Old 22-09-2013, 05:44   #15
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Re: Can you control how much "stuff" you have on your boat?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seaworthy Lass View Post
... the available space is always filled to capacity .
Corollary #43 to “Parkinson’s Law*”:
Stuff accumulates to fill (or exceed) the space allotted.

* work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion
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