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Old 23-07-2011, 23:33   #1
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Sail or Motor for Liveaboard ?

Okay...here's your chance to convince me one way or the other.

I'll be a first time buyer and new sailor. Looking to live aboard.

I'm 29 and single.
Living in Destin, FL.
Price range: 60K (less would be nice though).
Monthly budget: $1500 +/- $150

Sailboat owners...what's great about sailboats?
Motorboat owners...same to you.

I know there's so much personal preference out there but I want to hear why you love your boat!

GO!
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Old 23-07-2011, 23:38   #2
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

You need to try some sailing for yourself, and then decide. Would you really decide based on what a bunch of forum members tell you?

If so :

Can you give me all your money please?
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Old 23-07-2011, 23:41   #3
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

Well of course not! But getting information from experienced people is all part of the decision process, right?
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Old 23-07-2011, 23:57   #4
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

You described yourself but didn't say whether you had any sense of style, skill, or common sense. So how can we tell if you are suited to a sailboat?
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Old 24-07-2011, 00:00   #5
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

Quote:
Originally Posted by daddle View Post
You described yourself but didn't say whether you had any sense of style, skill, or common sense. So how can we tell if you are suited to a sailboat?
Whoa! Vicious!
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Old 24-07-2011, 00:27   #6
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

It takes a pretty big power boat to hold enough fuel to cross an ocean if you want to cross an ocean. Smaller, cheaper sailboats can do it if they hold enough water.

We had a BBQ at the boatyard today and it was nice. It's funny, but I was planning to post on this subject tonight, power boaters VS sailors. The sailors were widely varied, educated and interesting. In fact I was the least educated of the sailors. All were interested in geography, food, history, environmental issues, books, etc. The power boaters weren't. They liked Bud Light in the morning, loud rock & roll and sports.

How far do you want to travel and who do you want to hang out with?
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Old 24-07-2011, 00:31   #7
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

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It takes a pretty bog power boat to hold enough fuel to cross an ocean if you want to cross an ocean. Smaller, cheaper sailboats can do it if they hold enough water.

We had a BBQ at the boatyard today and it was nice. It's funny, but I was planning to post on this subject tonight, power boaters VS sailors. The sailors were widely varied, educated and interesting. In fact I was the least educated of the sailors. All were interested in geography, food, history, environmental issues, books, etc. The power boaters weren't. They liked Bud Light in the morning, loud rock & roll and sports.

How far do you want to travel and who do you want to hang out with?
Haha, interesting observation about the sailors vs p-boaters.

The farthest I'd be looking to go would be from Destin to the Keys with lots of stops along the way. 450NM or so? and this trip MIGHT be once a year. Other than that, goofing around the local coast. Pensacola might be a regular trip.
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Old 24-07-2011, 00:32   #8
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Re: I may start WWIII/Sail or Motor?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaAir View Post
Okay...here's your chance to convince me one way or the other.

I'll be a first time buyer and new sailor. Looking to live aboard.

I'm 29 and single.
Living in Destin, FL.
Price range: 60K (less would be nice though).
Monthly budget: $1500 +/- $150

Sailboat owners...what's great about sailboats?
Motorboat owners...same to you.

I know there's so much personal preference out there but I want to hear why you love your boat!

GO!
Sailboat advantage: fuel economy. Under sail the boat will get 5,000-10,000 mpg (it evaporates from the tank), motoring the boat should get in the 7 -15mpg range depending on boat size and how fast you insist on going. A similar sized motor boat will get 2-3mpg at a similar speed. Propulsion redundancy. Ability to deal with really heavy weather underway, you can keep going long after motor boats start worrying about survival. In really bad weather, there is a lot less worry about capsize.

Motorboat advantages: Speed depending on the particular boat. More cabin volume/living space for a given length of boat, the flip side is more cabin space for the amount of money you pay for moorage.
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Old 24-07-2011, 07:03   #9
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

SeaAir, I'm new to this forum and new to sailing. I jumped right into it and began living on a 26' sailboat about two years ago. Here's my 2 cents:

Power boats use a lot of gas! I mean a lot. And as you know, gasoline is not exactly cheap these days. That's why a lot of the guys in my marina who have power boats seldom take them out. They come down to the marina and hang out on their boats but that's about it. When they do go out fishing it is usually in a group of guys who either chip in on the gas or take turns going out on each others boats to conserve on fuel costs.

Sailors on the other hand typically require only a small outboard or a diesel inboard to get them in and out of the harbor. Then it's all wind-power, baby. If the wind dies you have your auxiliary engine to get you back home. But fuel is not a major concern for sailors. Not unless you plan on motoring a lot and not using the craft as it was intended.

Sailboats are far more stable in rough weather. That's a major advantage. If you're caught out in a storm and the wind and waves start really tossing the boat around, a heavy keel will keep you from capsizing. If you get knocked down, you have a very good chance of popping right back up. Where as with a power boat, it's not so likely. Once you get knocked down, you're pretty much screwed. Also, motion comfort is far better on a sailboat.

Then there is the esthetic. That's part of the appeal of a sailboat. It's just beautiful. Poetry in motion.

As someone else hit on, there seems to be two very definite personality types in boating. The sailors and the power boaters. And most people instinctively know which brand of boating appeals to them. If you don't have a preference now, you definitely will acquire one.

It's nice to know that if the whole world goes to hell in a handbasket and fuel becomes prohibitively expensive, I can get on my sailboat and cruise anywhere I want. Really don't even have to have an engine at all. It's not an absolute necessity. I like knowing I can be self-sufficient to some degree, not having to be at the mercy of the oil companies and economic unpredictability.

I've never lived on a power boat. So I can't really compare that aspect of boat ownership. But I personally enjoy living on a sailboat. It's my own little cocoon. I feel really cozy in my cabin. There are challenges to living aboard a sailboat, as I'm sure there are with living aboard a power boat. As to which is better, I suppose it's just a matter of personal preference.

Good luck SeaAir, and I hope I've convinced you not to go over to the dark side....
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Old 24-07-2011, 07:27   #10
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

To be fair I should add that even though sailboats don't require as much fuel (if at all) there are still other expenses. Sails do eventually wear out and have to be replaced. Equipment has to be maintained. Nothing is free. Except the wind! Still the price of new sails every 5-10 years is a pittance compared to all the fuel you would use in that time on a power boat.
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Old 24-07-2011, 08:16   #11
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

Read the thread "Power Boat Circumnavigation" currently running.

Asking this kind of question on a forum is useless. You get answers from people who will use all kinds of rationalization to justify their own decisions and rarely a balanced discussion. It really all comes down to you. Do you really need this in order to make a decision for yourself? If you do, you might want to take a close look at yourself and your motivations. Get out there and try all types of boating. That is the only way you will be able to make an informed decision.

The reply above about educated, interesting people is just dead wrong in my opinion (and that is all it is). I have read blogs from all kinds of boaters and have seen interesting, curious and talented people in everything from probably row boats to very high end expensive trawlers. And power boats don't hold the lock on drunks, bigots or closed minded ignorant people.
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Old 24-07-2011, 08:17   #12
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

If the issue is Sail or Motor for Liveaboard, the answer is Motor..if the issue is strictly whether which is better suited to live-on & make your home. This from a rag man who has lived aboard 17 of the last 25 years.

A powerboat will have more room, be better suited for lots of creature comforts like A/C, Entertainment Center, Appliances (yes, I've seen Washer/Dryers aboard power boats).

So, decide whether you just want a liveaboard or if you actually want to use it. And, oh yeah, you might want to go sailing to see if you like it.
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Old 24-07-2011, 08:32   #13
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

With your income it will be a question of if you leave the boat tied up or want to take it out at times. Economy of motion. No motion, no economy needed. It will be hard to convince yourself to take a trip, of some distance, in a power boat with fuel prices being what they are.

Then again many sailboats never untie from the pier. The line to the dock cleat seems to be tied off very well. JMO
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Old 24-07-2011, 08:42   #14
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

ANY one can own ANY thing-- if is solely a choice for comfort, make sure the engines in the power boat run. i have owned both power and sail boats over the yrs since 1990. both are good. power has more room and comfort inside, but they dont sail well. they do go to weather better than a sailboat and worse than a 747. did ye got to the military personnel marina??? what is resale potential there for next owner?? something to keep in mind....
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Old 24-07-2011, 08:59   #15
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Re: Sail or Motor for Liveaboard?

So, you have $60k in cash to spend on the boat, plus $1500 a month for your monthly expenses?

You can get some pretty nice sailboats for $60k....once you get into the "comfortable" size for a full time live aboard, you're going to spend some time and $$$ refitting and refurbing, but in this economy right now is a GREAT time to buy a boat....so you're going to get alot more for your money.

The bigger the boat, the more comfortable it's going to be to live on full time (usually)....and also more expensive to keep at a marina, with a slip, power and water hookups. This can cost you $400+ a month, depends on where you are, what is available, and most importantly how much slip you need. Some marinas for full timers can be pretty expensive, but have great amenities like a clubhouse, laundry, chandlery, boatyard, etc...this can easily eat up 1/3 to 1/2 of your $1500 a month

So after all that you have to also consider all the expenses of life...and if you're down to $750 a month you're starting to get into pretty frugal territory....less than $200 a week.

And that doesn't include a car, insurance, saving, investing, cost to refurb boat, going out with friends, dating...etc....etc.....
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