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Old 19-04-2012, 08:36   #1
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New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

Howdy!

First off, I would like to say hello since this is my first post! I am 28, born and raised in Atlanta, GA and feel very comfortable on the water since my mother lives on a lake.

I have been reading these forums for awhile and I have learned quite a bit, but now it is time to post! I bought a sailboat off eBay and am planning on turning it into a liveaboard. I used to live in the Caribbean and I miss it too much and want to move back!

So here is the current thoughts on the order of the project list. I am hoping to be done by winter, but it may be a bit longer, since I want to feel 100% confident:

1. Finish my trailer monstrosity to get it transported home and set up ( I will post pictures, you all will get a great laugh).
2. Tear her down and take inventory / learn how a sailboat works!
3. Rebuild as a fairly minimal liveaboard.
4. Learn to sail on the lake in my mom's "front yard".
5. Load her back on the trailer, drive her to the coast and set out!

Here is what I know:
It has an onboard Yanmar diesel that apparently runs like a top.
"All the pieces" are there (after taking delivery yesterday, I can ensure you that is NOT the case).
It should float (again, no idea).

I hopped in it yesterday and looked around. What I noticed. It is moldy and it needs a LOT of cosmetic and functional work. But I got a hell of a deal on it and like I told my mom, "If I am not working, then I am dying".

I am a very quick learner (heck I learned to weld last weekend by myself!) and I am very mechanically inclined (I rebuilt my very first tranny in a Nissan Pathfinder with no reverse that was told by the shop up the street was the hardest one to work on, I had a 4wd suv, found a 2wd tranny from eBay for $1 no reserve, and crowdsourced the best parts from both via visual inspection. Started up shifted first time...)

Things I want on my boat:
Solar Power
Wind Generator
Solar Still / rain catch
Small entertainment system
TONS of books
Maybe a garden of sorts (hanging baskets from the rigging?)

I have attached pictures and I am planning on doing a full pictoral write up, mainly so I can pick you alls brains. I am going to be posting pictures and asking "What the heck is this?!?"

Thanks for reading!
Eliott
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Old 26-04-2012, 22:28   #2
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

wow that sounds like an awesome project! where are you planning on sailing it? If your actually going to be sailing I don't thing the hanging plants from the rigging is the best idea, one they'll get in the way and secondly some plants can't survive in salt water. But I guess thats not really important. The hold doesn't should good. It could be going into the walls. How much is there?
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Old 27-04-2012, 07:11   #3
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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wow that sounds like an awesome project! where are you planning on sailing it? If your actually going to be sailing I don't thing the hanging plants from the rigging is the best idea, one they'll get in the way and secondly some plants can't survive in salt water. But I guess thats not really important. The hold doesn't should good. It could be going into the walls. How much is there?
Hey KeannaBanana,

I was planning on heading to the Caribbean. At first it would be my previous Caribbean home, Saint Kitts. There are a few spots where I would love to live. Also get a lobster trap and a couple of down rigged fishing lines too (passive food). Try and be as self sufficient as possible. St. Kitts has a pretty good IGA, but anything I could catch / make, I would like to. For the garden I was thinking baskets and clips, so I could keep them up while I was anchored, then bring them down if I needed to move. The garden is still a logistical question mark. I am going to finish my trailer and hopefully pick her up early next week. I will post a few pictures over this weekend while I knock out some work.
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Old 27-04-2012, 08:15   #4
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

rxf610, it sounds like you have a plan and it sounds reasonable, there are parts of the plan that might work and others that might not work, I once had a Lancer 30 just like yours, so I know what you have to work with. A couple of area's of concern with that boat are engine access, steering cables, water storage, window leakage, and rigging strength, expecially the chain plates. The boat itself is layed out very well for a live a board for a single person or a close couple. My boat only had a 15 gal water tank and 8 gal waste holding tank, both way to small and I could not find a good place to put larger ones. A water maker on your boat would be the way to go. Since the rigging is down already replace all the chain plates and inspect the standing rigging very closely, replace everything that looks even remotely bad. Replace steering cables, housings, and get to know how it all works, have an extra set on hand, you will need them. Don't gain an weight, as a person over the 180 lb mark will not be able to get into the engine area to do the mantainace on the engine or work on the steering cables. Replace all the windows with new, my boat leaked and I never got the leaks stoped, If you are doing a refit you should be able to correct this, you mentioned it has mold. The head liner will be full of it. You will need to replace it or rip it out all together.
Just a few of the things that I had to deal with on my boat, good luck and have fun.
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Old 27-04-2012, 09:42   #5
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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rxf610, it sounds like you have a plan and it sounds reasonable, there are parts of the plan that might work and others that might not work, I once had a Lancer 30 just like yours, so I know what you have to work with. A couple of area's of concern with that boat are engine access, steering cables, water storage, window leakage, and rigging strength, expecially the chain plates. The boat itself is layed out very well for a live a board for a single person or a close couple. My boat only had a 15 gal water tank and 8 gal waste holding tank, both way to small and I could not find a good place to put larger ones. A water maker on your boat would be the way to go. Since the rigging is down already replace all the chain plates and inspect the standing rigging very closely, replace everything that looks even remotely bad. Replace steering cables, housings, and get to know how it all works, have an extra set on hand, you will need them. Don't gain an weight, as a person over the 180 lb mark will not be able to get into the engine area to do the mantainace on the engine or work on the steering cables. Replace all the windows with new, my boat leaked and I never got the leaks stoped, If you are doing a refit you should be able to correct this, you mentioned it has mold. The head liner will be full of it. You will need to replace it or rip it out all together.
Just a few of the things that I had to deal with on my boat, good luck and have fun.
Rocketman,

You may become my new best friend. My goal this weekend is to finish the trailer and start making a list. I plan on combing over everything and like you mentioned getting to know as much as I can. I have always been a tinkerer and I am excited about diving into my new project. I am tall, but slender, so I should be able to wiggle my way into the engine access. The previous owner rebuilt the engine and painted the bottom, so it is off to a good start. I am going to gut the interior and make it as basic as I can stand. I am going more for function than aesthetics. I will probably try and focus on storage (water and food) as much as I can. I could hang plastic jerry cans around, make food hammocks, etc. I am really interested in any knowledge you would like to send my way!
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Old 27-04-2012, 10:34   #6
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

Rather than "TONS of books"...get a Kindle....I have a Kindle Fire and love it. I've got about 50 books on it now and a bunch of magazines. I don't use the music or video apps on it; I have an iPod and other means for music/videos.

Many, many books out there have Kindle versions and many more are added all the time. Sure, there is something tactile and pleasurable holding an actual book, but it's also really nice to have a whole bookcase in the form of a regular paperback! I now try to buy digital versions of everything.

When you redo your DC electrics, make sure to add a 12v outlet or two so you can recharge your devices. I'm lucky in that my stereo has a USB jack, so in addition to iPod integration, it will charge my iPod, iPhone, PS Vita, Kindle Fire.....
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Old 27-04-2012, 10:47   #7
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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Originally Posted by rxf610 View Post
Rocketman,

You may become my new best friend. My goal this weekend is to finish the trailer and start making a list. I plan on combing over everything and like you mentioned getting to know as much as I can. I have always been a tinkerer and I am excited about diving into my new project. I am tall, but slender, so I should be able to wiggle my way into the engine access. The previous owner rebuilt the engine and painted the bottom, so it is off to a good start. I am going to gut the interior and make it as basic as I can stand. I am going more for function than aesthetics. I will probably try and focus on storage (water and food) as much as I can. I could hang plastic jerry cans around, make food hammocks, etc. I am really interested in any knowledge you would like to send my way!

We owned a 1984 Lancer 30 with my family when I was a kid that we bought new and coastal cruised for 8 years without a single hiccup pretty much- it actually was a decently performing sailboat but I agree that making sure chainplates are well anchored is really important, as is fixing leaks.
our had the aft queen berth under the cockpit and the saildrive Yanmar. We never got around to it, but I recommend cutting an waterproof access panel on the aft bulkhead of the berth so you can access the engine and saildrive more easily without crawling into the cockpit lockers. Can buy a premade deck hatch for example....
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Old 27-04-2012, 11:39   #8
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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Rather than "TONS of books"...get a Kindle....I have a Kindle Fire and love it. I've got about 50 books on it now and a bunch of magazines. I don't use the music or video apps on it; I have an iPod and other means for music/videos.

Many, many books out there have Kindle versions and many more are added all the time. Sure, there is something tactile and pleasurable holding an actual book, but it's also really nice to have a whole bookcase in the form of a regular paperback! I now try to buy digital versions of everything.

When you redo your DC electrics, make sure to add a 12v outlet or two so you can recharge your devices. I'm lucky in that my stereo has a USB jack, so in addition to iPod integration, it will charge my iPod, iPhone, PS Vita, Kindle Fire.....
Great suggestions. How easy is it to add PDF's to? I have a ton of research papers and things I have been meaning to catch up on and if they transfer/read well on a Kindle that may just be the trick! I am thinking about adding a mac mini and a small lcd on a swivel directly below the mast connection in the cabin and turning it into a small entertainment system. I could run a WIFI booster and mount it on top of the mast and pull CAT5 cable through. I also have a mini tv receiver and a usb tuner card from Elgato and could tune in local TV stations I bet. The mini and a small LCD are not very power greedy and I would probably just turn it on to watch a movie at night or a soccer game I had downloaded. I will however bring some actual books though, because like you said, there is something nice about the tactile sensation of flipping pages.
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Old 27-04-2012, 11:48   #9
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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We owned a 1984 Lancer 30 with my family when I was a kid that we bought new and coastal cruised for 8 years without a single hiccup pretty much- it actually was a decently performing sailboat but I agree that making sure chainplates are well anchored is really important, as is fixing leaks.
our had the aft queen berth under the cockpit and the saildrive Yanmar. We never got around to it, but I recommend cutting an waterproof access panel on the aft bulkhead of the berth so you can access the engine and saildrive more easily without crawling into the cockpit lockers. Can buy a premade deck hatch for example....
Malbert,

I have the same set up it sounds like. Queen under the cockpit and a Yanmar diesel in it. I saw a CL ad for someone selling a tempurpedic mattress for uber cheap, so I may pick that up and have a comfy bed (since there is no mattress in it right now at all). I am really hoping to use the diesel engine as LITTLE as possible (focusing my power needs to solar and wind). I would probably just run it like once a week as a generator to do all my weekly power hungry things. (water making, top batteries off, charge all electronics, etc.) I will look into a hatch, which does sound like a great idea since I am tall and would rather use my long arms down a hole rather than cram my body in a small compartment. Maybe it is my hippie purist side trying to come out, but running a motor on a sailboat feels like cheating!
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Old 27-04-2012, 15:21   #10
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

The one thing that you will find on this boat, is it motors very well, mine had the aft berth, and Yanmar sail drive as well and one of the benifits of this set up is its motoring ability. Using about .3 gal an hour it would motor 6-7 knots, mine also had a small cold plate in the refig area that worked great, it would keep everything in the frig as cold as you wanted using less than an amp/per/hour. It sailed fairly well in light winds but you needed to reef the sails in winds above 15kts, as the rudder would round out in heavy winds. I would not concider this boat a great blue water boat, but if you are concervitive with weather it will do the job.
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Old 27-04-2012, 15:44   #11
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Although it was long ago, we found it a very responsive sailing boat given deep keel, and it tracked well upwind. Agree on reefing but I remember less spinouts than on modern beamier boats ive sailed.
The saildrive setup also was quite smooth and quiet....
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Old 27-04-2012, 18:26   #12
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

Super easy! Once you setup your Kindle, register it with Amazon, you'll get an email addy for it. Just email the pdf's to /username@kindle.com/ and the service will automatically convert the PDF for you into Kindle format. Then it will automatically download it to your Fire. I have tons of PDF's on mine...user manuals, tech manuals, all sorts of things.

Check into a 12v TV...places like 12 volt traveler, or truck stops. If you're lucky you can find a normal TV that has a 12v connection with a converter puck and 110/120 plug...alot of electronics are like this....anything you have that has a big puck inline is usually a converter for plugging the 12v device into 110/120. The 12v TV's are surprisingly efficient....not many amp hours at all. Although I don't have one yet, it's certainly on my list. I plan to stream movies to it from my MacBook Pro...mini display out to HDMI on the TV.

I also have 2 matched, group 31 deep cycle marine batteries, for 210 aH in the house bank.




Quote:
Originally Posted by rxf610 View Post
Great suggestions. How easy is it to add PDF's to? I have a ton of research papers and things I have been meaning to catch up on and if they transfer/read well on a Kindle that may just be the trick! I am thinking about adding a mac mini and a small lcd on a swivel directly below the mast connection in the cabin and turning it into a small entertainment system. I could run a WIFI booster and mount it on top of the mast and pull CAT5 cable through. I also have a mini tv receiver and a usb tuner card from Elgato and could tune in local TV stations I bet. The mini and a small LCD are not very power greedy and I would probably just turn it on to watch a movie at night or a soccer game I had downloaded. I will however bring some actual books though, because like you said, there is something nice about the tactile sensation of flipping pages.
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Old 30-04-2012, 09:30   #13
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Re: New sailor, new project Lancer 30-4 to become liveaboard

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Super easy! Once you setup your Kindle, register it with Amazon, you'll get an email addy for it. Just email the pdf's to /username@kindle.com/ and the service will automatically convert the PDF for you into Kindle format. Then it will automatically download it to your Fire. I have tons of PDF's on mine...user manuals, tech manuals, all sorts of things.

Check into a 12v TV...places like 12 volt traveler, or truck stops. If you're lucky you can find a normal TV that has a 12v connection with a converter puck and 110/120 plug...alot of electronics are like this....anything you have that has a big puck inline is usually a converter for plugging the 12v device into 110/120. The 12v TV's are surprisingly efficient....not many amp hours at all. Although I don't have one yet, it's certainly on my list. I plan to stream movies to it from my MacBook Pro...mini display out to HDMI on the TV.

I also have 2 matched, group 31 deep cycle marine batteries, for 210 aH in the house bank.
Wow that is easy. I have a lot of manuals too and books I have been meaning to read. I was worried it would be tough since it could cannibalize sales of their ebooks, but I am glad they made things easy. I might start keeping an eye out, but I still have several months of work ahead of me, so that might be a down the road purchase.

I rebuilt all the bearings over the weekend and need to rewire the trailer tonight. At that point I am pretty much done besides about an hour of welding. I forgot to take pictures of my monstrosity of a trailer, but I should have some up soon. After that it is scheduling a time to pick her up from the marina. I am nervous, since I cobbled this trailer together from pieces, but I only have to go about 7 miles down the road (but it does finish with a steep hill I will have to back up!)
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