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Old 13-10-2015, 11:24   #16
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

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In my opinion, Key West is not a cruisers destination but rather a tourist trap. The ghost of Hemingway is long gone.

That was my observation as well, but then I don't like crowds
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Old 13-10-2015, 11:28   #17
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

No one mentioned Sails!
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Old 13-10-2015, 11:39   #18
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

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No one mentioned Sails!
Thought sails as I read the posts but also would consider a trolling motor and solar panel battery charger.
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Old 13-10-2015, 13:03   #19
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

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You do not need to register the motorized dink if it is a "tender to" your boat and only used to go back and forth between the boat and shore, but I understand your concern about carrying gas. Do not forget the chain and padlock, or you will be swimming back. Lock dink to the boat also. As for commuting to work by rowing, there will be many days when you can not get there, or at the least be late, due to weather.
If it's in Florida and has a motor, it needs to be registered.
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Old 13-10-2015, 13:17   #20
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

Would like to add sailing ability to my dinghy, that would be ideal.

I have a trolling motor, no solar however. Already burdened by alternator only charging now as well. Even a trolling motor would require dinghy registration in Florida.
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Old 13-10-2015, 13:57   #21
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

You could always buy one of those new propane powered motors- they work with either a large bottle, or with the standard small ones that you buy from Home Depot/Lowes... I do not have any experience with them, but West Marine sells them. Best of luck! Here is a link to the page for a small one:

LEHR 2.5hp Propane Powered Outboard Engine, Short Shaft | West Marine
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Old 13-10-2015, 14:24   #22
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

Lehr propane outboards are getting closer to being a realistic option for me too. I spoke to some reps at the Annapolis boat show - they said they were on version 5 or something like that. Going from essentially a gas outboard with a different carb setup to a propane specific build, and better for it. It is a decent option if an outboard makes sense to you. However, older models are perhaps hit or miss, unless you know the current owner and his satisfaction level.

Great thing about the Torqueedo is the disassembly and weight. Perfect for a dinghy, not so much for anything else...

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Old 13-10-2015, 14:29   #23
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

Are there any other anchorages in the Keys that anyone could suggest? We've only done Marathon on the way to the Bahamas but we're hoping to do the Keys next year.
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Old 13-10-2015, 15:18   #24
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

Was hoping for other anchorage options as well. But they dont seem to be any.

Wish the phrase, "could always buy", was part of my lexicon. Sadly it is not. Have been told more than once that I don't deserve to own a sailboat because I can't instantly purchase whatever I need for the boat. Lucky I believe others opinion of me is their business, and not a concern of mine. (not directed at you, TXD, I think the propane outboards are a cool option)
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Old 13-10-2015, 15:55   #25
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

How about springing for a mooring ball in Key West? It's a lot of dough but you get all the nice services and you could safely row in from there. If you add up all the dinghy dock fees for the free anchorage , maybe the mooring field isn't so bad.
Also there are a few spots (if your draft is shallow), that you can anchor close to land near the coast guard in the regular free anchorage and you would not have any open water to cross on your way to town.
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Old 13-10-2015, 21:54   #26
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

I know the new outboards have been ruled out, but I would point out that the Lehr with camping bottle (1lb) will last one hour at WOT and 2.5 hours at partial throttle, so for regular use I would look at a larger refillable rather than $3 a pop disposables if you would be using it every day.
I think I would opt for a Torqueedo with a solar panel since once you get past the initial very high expense, it's free power after.

Some dinghys can be fitted with old sailboard rigs for a cheap sailing rig and if wind is usually present, I would favor that over a motor that someone would want to steal from you.

If they were charging a lot for a dinghy dock and there was an alternative landing spot, I would consider a folding kayak like an Oru, although it would be another expense, plus you would be carrying it.
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Old 13-10-2015, 22:01   #27
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

When we were in the Bahamas this past spring I heard nothing but groans from the owners of both the Lehr and the Torqpeedo.

Basically, everyone always thought that the propane motors could not get gummed up but just about everyone claimed that they had problems with the engine carbs gumming up.

On the torqpeedo side just about everyone complained about the battery packs going bad which had something to do with the BMS or the controller in the actual torqpeedo.

If you are looking for rock solid reliability you cannot go wrong with an air cooled 2.5 HP Honda with an external fuel filter.
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Old 13-10-2015, 23:22   #28
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

A mooring is a likely option, but would have to wait until I was working regularly. Never had an opportunity to pick up a ball yet, plus I would be single handed. Seems I get to do everything the hard way. I like new challenges.

And I would still have the rowing only issue.

The desirable wind conditions coming in two days has me thinking about getting on down to the Keys. But looking into the logistics of the move is bogging me down.

Maybe I should postpone a change until I can afford a mooring upon arrival. And go ahead and power/register my dinghy with 2 or 3 horse gas outboard or add a sailing rig.

Just needing a good sail and a change of scenery nags at me though.

Sorry to blather on about this, but I knew several people on CF have experience in the area and thought maybe I could benefit from the discussion. Certainly appreciate all the input and ideas.

Feeling a little bummed out about the whole poor sailor thing. But I've never been hungry and I'm on the water full time which means a lot to me.

Thanks for all your support. It's good to have imaginary internet friends.
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Old 14-10-2015, 00:33   #29
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

Z boss who ever told you that a Lehr carb "gummed up" is mistaken. You might have other problems but a Lehr can not gum up. That's why I've bought two of them. I don't get to use my outboards as often as I'd like and I got tired of cleaning carbs on gasoline engines. My Lehr 2.5 can sit for months and start on the second pull. My 15 has electric start and it very reliable as well.

If anyone is thinking of buying a Lehr, I'd love the chance to quote you on it.
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Old 14-10-2015, 04:33   #30
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Re: Key West, Anchor then row in?

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Originally Posted by zboss View Post
When we were in the Bahamas this past spring I heard nothing but groans from the owners of both the Lehr and the Torqpeedo.

Basically, everyone always thought that the propane motors could not get gummed up but just about everyone claimed that they had problems with the engine carbs gumming up.

On the torqpeedo side just about everyone complained about the battery packs going bad which had something to do with the BMS or the controller in the actual torqpeedo.

If you are looking for rock solid reliability you cannot go wrong with an air cooled 2.5 HP Honda with an external fuel filter.
What do you mean by an external fuel filter?
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