Originally Posted by Lysander
Could you elaborate on the cruising vs. liveaboard
? We intend to live on this boat for a long time. How does that differ from cruising? Is a liveaboard
some who is always docked?
No we are not having plans to have children
until our late 20's.
Cruising would be regularly making passages involving several nights or more underway. From what a lot of cruisers have written figure on that being about 10% of your nights. In addition to the sailing you will be anchored most of the time, figure 80%, and the final 10% in a marina or on the hard
. When underway or at anchor
in brisk conditions, let's say 20-25% of the time, the V-berth will be untenable for sleeping, it will be just too bouncy to sleep. That means anyone trying to sleep will be in main cabin
of a smaller boat. Pilot berths being near the center of the boat will have the least motion and do not need to be converted nightly. Quarter berths would be the second best: a little more motion, a little better privacy, more exposure to spray coming in the companionway
, less than half the main cabin
space used. Settees, longitudinal seats for a table have motion as good as a pilot berth but require a bit of effort to convert nightly and back each morning.
The following links have interior
layouts showing the various options:
- 2 quarterberts and a U-dinette
- 2 pilot berths, 2 settees and 2 quarterberths
- 2 quarterberths and a dinette
Even though needing to sleep in the main cabin happens only a modest amount of the time, awkward sleeping arrangements can contribute to loss of sleep sufficient to impair judgement and create safety issues. For that reason interior
arrangements more conducive to underway living are generally preferred over marina living arrangements until the boat is large enough to accommodate both.
you can expect to spend very few nights underway or in bouncy anchorages
. Dinettes require a fair amount of effort to convert to a berth: the table needs to be removed or dropped, cushions
rearranged and lee cloths installed to create a single
out of the double. Given the limited number of times this will be needed for a liveaboard, a dinette is more reasonable. In the case of a U-shaped dinette, if you are handy you could create a table attachement that allows you to pull a couple of pins, slide the table top towards the center of the boat, and sleep on the base of the 'U' without expending significant effort twice every cycle.
Here's the timeline I could reasonably see happening:
Move to east coast
, buy a boat by June '13.
Outfit the boat and build sailing skills until Nov'14 (after hurricane
building cruising skills until May'15 (just before hurricane
Start the round the world
portion of your cruise
, either NE to Europe
or SW to the Panama Canal
. A cruise where you don't dawdle will take 3yr. If you push hard you can do it in 2yr, but you won't see much on the way. I would count on 5 or more years.
This would push you into your early 30's for kids
. As someone who started having kids
at 40 and had quite a number of acquaintances have difficulty having kids in their early to mid 30's, I can recommend from experience that late 20's really is the best time.
Consequently I would suggest making 1 kid a consideration in boat choice, and if a second one came along while still cruising you would have a year or two where they would be small enough to share a bunk. In the meantime this would give you extra storage
space or room for a guest while underway, not just at anchor
Alternatively move to the Pacific Northwest
which would probably shave a year of the build up but would require a bigger mental shift when you do actually setoff as the geography of the west coast
is not as conducive to gradual accumulation of skills.
A short list of the boats I would consider follows:
CENTAUR 26 (WESTERLY)
WANDERER 30 (PEARSON)
VANGUARD 33 (PEARSON)
COLUMBIA 34 Mk II
If you wanted to stretch your budget a little, there is a CAL 36 for sale
for about $16K.
The rest of these boats are available for $5-14k though some of them might be in awkward locations like Wisconsin.
Keep in mind that a larger boat in just as good a condition at a price
you can afford may still overwhelm your budget with secondary costs. A larger boat requires larger anchors, anchor line, anchor chain, sails
, winches, fitting, rigging
wire, running rigging
and autopilots. Larger in this case is a synonym for more expensive. At about 30' you are going to start needing a windlass
($1200 for a new manual, $2k new electric) for anchor retrieval, and 34' would be the absolute limit.