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Old 09-10-2007, 10:46   #31
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Originally Posted by Charlie View Post
HI John M:

We just sold/donated our yellow J105 to Cal Maritime and some of my friends graduated from CMA.
Charlie,
That is excellent! I was doing race committee work on the start boat for the Big Boat Series series. I waved hello and yelled "Go CMA!"...like I wasn't supposed to as a race committee member. But I could not help myself being a CMA alumni myself. I could barely make out one of the crew members asking "Whose that?" ...well that was me! ...the guy with the start gun on the City Front course ruining everyones hearing.

Congrats to the CMA team who did an excellent job up against all these very experienced and extremely competitive sailors in the J-105 fleet.
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Old 09-10-2007, 12:15   #32
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Charlie and Phillip and everyone else who have been so helpful.... thanks for all your practical advice from experience. I really do appreciate it.

I think I need to do some explaining to some very nice people who are trying to help me in this forum. How do I say this... My very first experience in the tropics was aboard the Training Ship Golden Bear back in early 80's. The ships port was Tahiti and my brother (Engineering 1985) and I decided to take the ferry across to Moorea. We brought or snorkel gear and spent the day snorkeling getting burned to a crisp. Anyone who has ever been there knows how amazing it is. Getting to the point, I eventually knew from there that after I retired, that I wanted to retire in the tropics and what could be better than owning a boat in the tropics where I could take MY boat and go where I wanted to go on MY schedule to see the world if I chose to do so....not somebody else's boat to their destination on their schedule to some ugly industrial port.

So now, over 20 years later, between saving my pennies, my wife saving her pennies, some smart investing and a land inheritance, my wife and I can retire real soon although we cannot sail off over the horizon just yet until my son is in college in 4 years. I can't leave the Bay Area just yet because of my visitation schedule with my son....which is fine. I wish I could spend MORE time with him. I married my wife three years ago so you got the picture as to why I am land locked for the next few years.

So for now, the best thing I can do to kill time by working until that day arrives. So lately, I have been getting online to see what kind of boats are available and how much they cost...which is how I ran across this forum. It's time to explore exactly what I want to do with retirement. I am the type who likes to research the hell out of something before buying...even the simplest of things. It's fun if not anything else.

I hate it when others talk about their money, they are braggarts, and it's not something I like to talk about to anyone. But I need to paint a clear picture of my situation for those that are helping. I can afford a boat that is clearly larger than any two people can handle plus live off my investments. I feel blessed. Enough said.

My dilemma is that I am finding out I need to scale back more than what I have been picturing in my head for many years...at least according to what I am hearing in this forum. I trust you guys...especially the ones who are out there doing it! What I am hearing is that going much above a boat in the low 40's LOA is asking for more work and more headaches than it is worth. I was visualizing higher....the Lagoon 57 is a gorgeous and very sensible and seaworthy looking boat for example. I don't think I would feel like I would be in a floating cage in a boat that size for weeks at a time. I don't want to be in something the same size as a ships lifeboat. I do understand that buying something as complex and as large as the Space Shuttle would require a commensurate amount of maintenance/expense and have the subsequent breakdowns. There has to be a happy medium.

So I have two questions swirling around my head regarding size which is keeping me from thinking "practical" by the definitions of practical in here. I have been looking for boats to charter in the BVI's and have come across websites with couples who are doing charters on 50 to 70 ft cats taking on as many as ten people for a week as passengers. As far as I am concerned, passengers are dead weight as far as getting work done and in fact ADD to the workload. How do two people take care of a 60 something foot catamaran AND take care of passengers that are creating messes, making themselves dangerous to themselves, eating more food than a dog sled team and drinking like fish?

My other question is, how are my friends who have a 70 foot monohull, cruising as far south as New Zealand doing so well? They say they are doing fine and the size is not a problem. I believe them. I believe you guys as well...but I am hearing two different things.

I do plan on chartering a number of times over the next few years to see how big is too big for my wife and I.

Thanks
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Old 09-10-2007, 13:05   #33
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david
there is no contradiction the charter boat has two young people working 16-18hour days and a base to go back to when the charter is over and then cleen and prep for the next lot (a bit diferent from what we all do and you intend)
the other thing is here in the uk cats are charged 1 1/2 times there length for morings this has it's own set of isues but it meen's for my 37ft i am considered the equivelent to a 55ft mono and i have to agree thats the sort of volume we have so your frends in NZ are on a 46ft equivelent cat so not far of what we are advising and the large cats dont always give you more space were you may want, what will two of you want with 4-6 heads 4-6 beds and a crew cabin this is what you will get if you go over 50ft
also i understand you have the money to pay for moring but the bigger the boat the less chance of a space for you and in some of those little out of the way places will be off limits to you. as will the shallow shelterd waters if the draft gets on a par with some of the mid size mono;s and as mentioned were are you going to find a lift out on your travels i have to go 80 miles to the nearest lift for us and its 600 each way.
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Old 09-10-2007, 13:19   #34
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John M:

There is a definite prejudice against bigger boats on this particuilar forum. It is possible to sail a 70' boat and not have any problems. In some situations it may be even better to have a bigger boat because you can use it to run away from storms. Besides the expense there is also the problem that if some of your hydrualic or electric systems go south you have a problem that may be too big to overcome. My rule of thumb is the biggest sail test that I described earlier. The one time I raced on Sorcery (Mull 82) I remeber it took three of us to move a sail efficiently while racing. On an Express 37 it took one person to move the heavy #1 but two was better. When I did the double handed Farallones race on an Express 37 changing from the #1 to th #3 in the Potatoe patch was hard. Given my choice I would have a sail layout like the J105 with a fractional rigged boat that had enough power with a 100% jib. In that case I would get a bigger boat. B/c in my mind it is easier to reef a main than to change a headsail. The maintenance is another question? Two engines and a genset a watermaker the electrical system the rigging there is a hell of alot of maintenance to keep these boats working. Chartering will give you a good idea of how things work but its the two people in adverse situations on a big boat that can be a problem. And a tragedy if one gets hurt. On the other hand Ellen McCarthur jury rigged a mast on a 60' (?) boat to make it all the way around the world. My wife says no more fire drills. That is the reason that 41' is fine with me. Set it up so that a reef is easy to put in and a cutter rig is easy to go up and everything is fine. I guess you can do that on a seventy foot boat too. But moving the heavy #1 by myself. I could do it but it would take some timeand I'd be exhausted afterwards. On the other hand if I had 15 knots of breeze from the starboard quarter and an easy upwind berth to dock in there wouldn't be a problem.

BTW I was in Tahiti around 1987 what a great spot. Bora Bora was lots of fun too. I've been working on my plan for 20 years too.
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 09-10-2007, 13:22   #35
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John M:

There is a definite prejudice against bigger boats on this particuilar forum. It is possible to sail a 70' boat and not have any problems. In some situations it may be even better to have a bigger boat because you can use it to run away from storms. Besides the expense there is also the problem that if some of your hydrualic or electric systems go south you have a problem that may be too big to overcome. My rule of thumb is the biggest sail test that I described earlier. The one time I raced on Sorcery (Mull 82) I remeber it took three of us to move a sail efficiently while racing. On an Express 37 it took one person to move the heavy #1 but two was better. When I did the double handed Farallones race on an Express 37 changing from the #1 to th #3 in the Potatoe patch was hard. Given my choice I would have a sail layout like the J105 with a fractional rigged boat that had enough power with a 100% jib. In that case I would get a bigger boat. B/c in my mind it is easier to reef a main than to change a headsail. The maintenance is another question? Two engines and a genset a watermaker the electrical system the rigging there is a hell of alot of maintenance to keep these boats working. Chartering will give you a good idea of how things work but its the two people in adverse situations on a big boat that can be a problem. And a tragedy if one gets hurt. On the other hand Ellen McCarthur jury rigged a mast on a 60' (?) boat to make it all the way around the world. My wife says no more fire drills. That is the reason that 41' is fine with me. Set it up so that a reef is easy to put in and a cutter rig is easy to go up and everything is fine. I guess you can do that on a seventy foot boat too. But moving the heavy #1 by myself. I could do it but it would take some timeand I'd be exhausted afterwards. On the other hand if I had 15 knots of breeze from the starboard quarter and an easy upwind berth to dock in there wouldn't be a problem.

BTW I was in Tahiti around 1987 what a great spot. Bora Bora was lots of fun too. I've been working on my plan for 20 years too.
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Between us there was, as I have already said somewhere, the bond of the sea. Besides holding our hearts together through long periods of separation, it had the effect of making us tolerant of each other's yarns -- and even convictions. Heart of Darkness
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Old 09-10-2007, 13:39   #36
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polar with different weigths and immersion rate

The immersion rate for our 52.5 ft cat is 350 kilo per cm , for the 435 it is 225 on its mid weight line and a bit more when loaded heavy The Fastcat 435 is 5500 kilo empty while her minimum operating mass sailing is 7785 , assuming that tanks are filled , extra gear and equipment is carried a dingy and outboard is present and a minumum of 2 crew plus gear and food are on the boat the 7785 is the light displacement number. when the weight of the boat exceeds 10000 kilo she is still a bit faster than a normal cruising cat.I have attached a pdf of what weight does to the FastCat 435 and these speeds are tested not calculated
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Old 09-10-2007, 20:02   #37
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I don’t think there is so much a prejudice against large cruising boats as there is a lack of experience with them. Few people on this forum or anywhere for that matter sail 60'-70' boats with just a 2 man crew. No one said that a boat of that size cannot be single handed. In fact several people have said that they can be; the concerns were more about docking, anchoring, and the ability of just 2 people on a boat that size to deal with broken equipment, bad weather, and other emergencies when far from shore. A couple of quick points:

1. Not everyone even in your own age group is like you. There is an amazing variety of cruising life-styles. Your live-aboard needs/wants/expectations are personal to you, and they are of paramount importance to a successful cruise. If you do not enjoy living on the boat, no amount of great sailing days or beautiful islands will keep you cruising. If it takes a 57' boat to meet those needs/wants/expectations, then that is the boat you want.

2. Large crewed charter cats in the BVIs can be easily managed by a two man crew because they aren’t sailed the same way you plan to:

a. As has been pointed out, these boats are based in areas where marine services are available. They are commercial vessels and the owners can contract/plan/budget for professional maintenance and repair with people they know and trust.

b. BVI charter boats do not cross oceans and no watches are necessary. They usually coastal hop around Tortola or do short island hops. Either way they do daysails and are rarely ‘at sea’ for more than 8 hours a day.

c. The weather is almost always good or at least acceptable. If the weather is bad, they don’t go. If they go anyway and the weather turns really bad, they are probably no more than a couple of hours from safe harbor.

d. The boats are sailed far more frequently than the typical cruiser and the crew is intimately familiar with them. As a result the crew quickly develops an effective preventive maintenance plan which keeps them in service. They know exactly what needs to be serviced/repaired/replaced and how often in order to keep the boat available for its intended use.

e. The crew is intimately familiar with the route; they know where the hidden hazards are; and they know exactly where and how to moor or anchor the boat.
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