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Old 12-03-2012, 11:56   #1
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A List of General Questions

Over the past six months or so, I have done a pretty exhaustive search to find the right boat for me. And thanks to some great advice and shared experience from members here, I believe I found, at least, the type of boat I intend to buy. Not to mention, I read about 30 books and countless articles.
But, that is only step one. Being new to all this - cruising, liveaboard, sailing, etc- I naturally have a long list of questions.
First, should I get a hard dinghy or RIB? I read that RIBs do not last long and require periodic patching, repairs, etc. I cannot see that problem with a hard dinghy, such as a Walker Bay.
The cost is not a consideration as they are about the same. Storage and weight is an issue since I will have to haul it aboard and store it. (I am looking to buy a catamaran so space is not as big a factor as if I was considering a monohull)
Second, should I go with oars or get an outboard? While the outboard has its advantages, it does come with many disadvantages such as hauling it up on the davits, maintenance, cost of the motor, the necessity of needing a gas can. With a catamaran, I can anchor close to shore so rowing may not be as big a factor and frankly, the exercise may be a good thing.
Third, is it a good idea to Start off with a year's provisioning - food, etc? How difficult is it to replace simple things factoring in both cost and availability) when outside of the US? My plan is to cruise around the Bahamas and Caribbean before embarking on a transatlantic cruise and possibly continuing on from there.
Fourth, since a catamaran can anchor close to shore, should I still use a safe 7-1 scope? Wouldn't the proximity of the shore be a factor to consider along with tide changes? 3 feet of depth along with 3 feet of freeboard will mean an approximate 42-45 scope, I guess that is not very much and shore should not even play a part, but that close, depth might.
Lastly, at the least, these are probably very remedial but advice from the experienced is always welcomed.
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:19   #2
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Re: A list of general questions

I'll just weigh in on the dinghy question. It truly depends on what you'll be using your dinghy for. If you want to do a lot of fishing from the the dinghy or carry spear guns just remember about the inflatable's susceptibility to puncture. Inflatables do not row well so if you decide on an inflatable, some type of outboard is pretty much desired. There are more stable dinghies than the Walker Bay but it is a pretty easy maintenance dinghy and looks good and rows pretty well. If you'll be doing a lot of hauling or want to take more than two passengers then you might want to check dinghies with a flatter bottom and longer length and pram design. Weight is always an issue with a dinghy especially once you get a bit older like me.
If you want speed then a large outboard and planing capabilities could be reached with an inflatable RIB.
This is just my opinion so wait for other replies to see what they might say too. I've tried a lot of them and in my opinion a 10' Livingston is a great hauler, rows and motors well. It is a little on the heavy side. It would be harder to make it sail but I don't think that's what you are looking for. A Sabot or El Toro sails well in addition to rowing and carrying things but is a bit small at 8'. I used to carry one (at a younger age) overhead without too much of a problem. Making an inflatable sail well is pretty hard unless you get a Tinker.
kind regards,
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Old 12-03-2012, 12:23   #3
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Re: A list of general questions

I've always wondered why the aluminium jon boats aren't more popular with those who have davits to store them. Long life, fairly light, faster with lower hp. Downside is you need to be inventive with some sort of a rubrail to protect the mothership.
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Old 12-03-2012, 16:51   #4
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Re: A list of general questions

Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
Over the past six months or so, I have done a pretty exhaustive search to find the right boat for me. And thanks to some great advice and shared experience from members here, I believe I found, at least, the type of boat I intend to buy. Not to mention, I read about 30 books and countless articles.
.
topped reading after this. I worry you now are listening too much to your head and other people' sopinions and disregarding your heart.

In the end you never really know what you wha in a boat till you have had one. And disregarding your heart is a way to have a "good" boat that you hate!

But there, done that!
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Old 12-03-2012, 17:34   #5
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Re: A list of general questions

You'll get a lot of opinions... here's mine:
First, should I get a hard dinghy or RIB? RIB, it wont bang on the side of your boat. It is super stable compared with any hard dingy. I've only had to put a patch on one inflatable in my life.. most due to repeatedly dragging it over sharp barnacles in the Pac NW. That boat was 8 years old and came used with a boat I bought! There's a reason probably 80-90% of cruisers have RIBs. Soft sides to sit on, lean over and getting in when swimming/snorkeling. There's really no comparison.
Second, should I go with oars or get an outboard? Get an outboard. Your dingy is your car. You may want to go a mile to do some exploring or snorkeling... maybe even 5 miles. You will get caught in a rain squall in your dingy and even with a motor it is wet, tough going. Often the best anchorages are a long ways from town and provisioning. Doesnt have to be a big out board. With a Catamaran, the davits between hulls are perfect. Leave the motor mounted. It's more secure from theft at night. You can weigh anchor and be gone or launch after arriving within 5 mins of wanting to do so.

Third, is it a good idea to Start off with a year's provisioning - food, etc? Food is readily available in those areas. Do stock up on some things for when you just dont want to go on a grocery run. (Corned beef, macaroni and cheese etc... whatever you like)
Fourth, since a catamaran can anchor close to shore, should I still use a safe 7-1 scope? 5:1 minimum and 7:1 most of the time is what I did. Depends more on the crowd around you than shore proximity.
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Old 12-03-2012, 18:13   #6
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Re: A list of general questions

My responses embedded in your original message below.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
...
First, should I get a hard dinghy or RIB? I read that RIBs do not last long and require periodic patching, repairs, etc. I cannot see that problem with a hard dinghy, such as a Walker Bay.
The cost is not a consideration as they are about the same. Storage and weight is an issue since I will have to haul it aboard and store it. (I am looking to buy a catamaran so space is not as big a factor as if I was considering a monohull)
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelizeSailor

RIBs are certainly the most popular and a good hypalon RIB can last for many years, but once they start to go it time to just replace them. An upside to ones line the Walker Bay Genesis is that the tubes are attached via bolt-rope tracks and can be replaced in the field easily -- most other brands cannot.

Mono or Cat I suggest installing davits -- a much better, and easier, way to handle ding and motor than haul up on the deck. For security reasons it is best to get the dink aboard every night -- a real pain if you have to haul up on deck -- easy with davits.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
Second, should I go with oars or get an outboard? .....
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelizeSailor

YES.

For cruising use you really want both available. When using the outboard -- never leave home without the oars -- you may need them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
With a catamaran, I can anchor close to shore so rowing may not be as big a factor and frankly, the exercise may be a good thing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelizeSailor
Errr...maybe not. Anchoring too close to shore can be a problem regardless of type of boat because in many venues the wind shifts at night and you may wind up not only close to short, but on shore. You have to anchor off far enough to allow for your swinging scope so you don't go bump in the night.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
Third, is it a good idea to Start off with a year's provisioning - food, etc?
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelizeSailor

IMHO, NO. See more extended response here on CF at Provisioning for a Long Distance Voyage. Several pages of discussion on this thread too.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Notpopeye View Post
Fourth, since a catamaran can anchor close to shore, should I still use a safe 7-1 scope? Wouldn't the proximity of the shore be a factor to consider along with tide changes? 3 feet of depth along with 3 feet of freeboard will mean an approximate 42-45 scope, I guess that is not very much and shore should not even play a part, but that close, depth might.
Lastly, at the least, these are probably very remedial but advice from the experienced is always welcomed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelizeSailor
Proximity to shore has no relationship to scope -- it is purely a function of depth. Ideally, always use at least 7:1.
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Old 12-03-2012, 18:17   #7
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Dinghy - a hard dinghy will arguably last as long as your will. If routinely handling 2 people the hard dinghy is stable enough. I know many people that have picked up hard dinghys for a song or free (+engine). If hauling more people routinely I would get a bigger, beamier RIB. When cruising I would definitely go with the engine option, 9hp min. My personal opinion...

Provisioning - I would never move aboard and launch out tomorrow. Get aboard and live in the local area or near shore for at least 3 months. You will learn the boat, be able readily fix what breaks and learn your own personal provisining needs and habits.

Anchoring - lots and lots of factors here. First you need adequate scope for wind and sea conditions. Wind and sea conditions will help you decide how close to shore to be. More scope requires bigger swing room and more "safety" margin to shore in case of dragging. In benign conditions I could see 4:1 but I would have to be pretty sure about the overnight forecast.
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Old 12-03-2012, 18:22   #8
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Re: A list of general questions

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Fourth, since a catamaran can anchor close to shore, should I still use a safe 7-1 scope? Wouldn't the proximity of the shore be a factor to consider along with tide changes? 3 feet of depth along with 3 feet of freeboard will mean an approximate 42-45 scope, I guess that is not very much and shore should not even play a part, but that close, depth might.
Please remember that wave behaviour changes with depth - surge and surf will have more effect the shallower the water - mitigate by reach if the wind is off shore and stays that way. At the risk of acused of being negative - cats can be beached, but also can be damaged by rocks ...
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Old 12-03-2012, 19:45   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justwaiting

Please remember that wave behaviour changes with depth - surge and surf will have more effect the shallower the water - mitigate by reach if the wind is off shore and stays that way. At the risk of acused of being negative - cats can be beached, but also can be damaged by rocks ...
Eric hinz probably wrote the definitive book on anchoring. He recommends at least 10:1 scope in shallow water to ensure you maintain the catenary under load. This coincides with my experience. Lots of chain in shallow water


As to provisioning do not over provision, there are shops all over the world, half the fun
un is eating the local foods.

Dave
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