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Old 30-09-2013, 14:05   #1
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Family with toddler

I'm sure this thread is bound to drift, but I'll take the chance.

Family of 5. Two adults, one toddler, one black lab, one cat.

Pros and cons for a center cockpit V walk through transom. And yes I know this is a common debate. Looking to breathe new life into this.

Estimate 80% of our time on the hook, not marina life. 40'+ in the under $120k range.

For us (ultimately the wife)

Pros for center cockpit:
* Completely enclosed cockpit. Great space for a kid and if per chance makes it out of the cockpit, still a bit of distance to lifelines and netting.
* Good space below. A must for a toddler still figuring out this whole balance thing.
* Large owners berth. Privacy. Enough said.

Cons for center cockpit:
* Deep companionway stairs. Not great for a little one and perhaps too much for an 80lb dog to go down (especially)
* Forward kids berth. On a bumpy ride, we'd prefer taking the beatings at the bow over our daughter.


Pros for walk through transom:
* Much easier boarding and unboarding of toddler and dog to the dingy.
* Depending on boat, generally a rather large cockpit area
* Easy swim platform for both dog and kid. Also much easier in the event of a MoB or DoB

Cons for walk through transom:
* In the less than 47' range, aft staterooms seem to be a bit small
* Can also be quite cramped below when considering how many feet and paws are onboard. A play area just for the kid below is a necessity for us.

So, experts, have at it. What pros/cons do you see for a toddler on each of these? What have you experienced?
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Old 30-09-2013, 14:16   #2
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Re: Family with toddler

Just buy the boat you like. The toddler will get used to it. Boat kids are the most resourceful kids I've ever met. Before you know it your daughter will be swinging from the rigging. I would get a good swim platform, makes getting on and off and into the dink so much easier.

Maybe a Brewer 44?
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Old 30-09-2013, 14:22   #3
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Re: Family with toddler

couple of thoughts in what ever random order they pop into my mind....
1. when under sail you will be more likely to take your sleeping turns in the main salon, and the V berth will be storage until on the hook again.. no matter who is supposed to be saying up there.. So I would not fret that part much.

2. The steeper steps would worry me more for the pup than the kiddo. In fact I would not worry about the kiddo so much in the equation they tend to do alright as long as they have caring parents.

3. another pro of the center is the aft deck makes a nice lounge and you can put a puppy pad there for the lab to do his/her business.
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Old 30-09-2013, 14:23   #4
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Re: Family with toddler

ohh and I still have a soft spot for the Catalina builds of the Morgan OI 41's.
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Old 30-09-2013, 14:51   #5
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Re: Family with toddler

We are in our third year on board with our (just turned) 3 year old. Don't worry about a steep companion way (kids LOVE climbing up and down) just make sure the steps are wide and deep and hopefully even curve up a bit at each side.

We found that some center cockpit monos were actually set very high to accommodate the walkthrough. This put the comings very high (and steep) and could result in a wicked fall from a wandering toddler compared to a lower cockpit.

Can't comment on the pets.

Kids are incredibly adaptive and yours will hardly know the difference. Buy the boat that makes you feel great and then go sailing!

Good luck

P.S. We ended up with a small cat which gave us more than ample room compared to a 40' mono and gave the little fella some more stability - and for the same price. Just my two pesos.
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:39   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vasco View Post
Just buy the boat you like. The toddler will get used to it. Boat kids are the most resourceful kids I've ever met. Before you know it your daughter will be swinging from the rigging. I would get a good swim platform, makes getting on and off and into the dink so much easier. Maybe a Brewer 44?
Brewer 44 looks nice. We like the separate companionway to the aft stateroom. Only a couple on YW at the moment and neither look that hot.

A nice walk through transom would be even easier on and off. Kid I'm not so worried about as I am about my back and an 80lb dog
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:42   #7
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Originally Posted by xeon_tsd View Post
couple of thoughts in what ever random order they pop into my mind.... 1. when under sail you will be more likely to take your sleeping turns in the main salon, and the V berth will be storage until on the hook again.. no matter who is supposed to be saying up there.. So I would not fret that part much. 2. The steeper steps would worry me more for the pup than the kiddo. In fact I would not worry about the kiddo so much in the equation they tend to do alright as long as they have caring parents. 3. another pro of the center is the aft deck makes a nice lounge and you can put a puppy pad there for the lab to do his/her business.
1) That's true. Growing up on motor boats, I never remember sleeping in my cabin much.

2) The dog I think is the main concern for deep stairs. She recently broke her tibia on a rear leg. A plate and 9 screws later she's perfectly healthy and fine, but our fear is still there.

3) Deck space is always a plus and the location of a dog area will be hotly debated in our family until we find the perfect compromise. Although I still say the shower. Wife isn't thrilled about that...
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:42   #8
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Re: Family with toddler

You can always hoist the pup in a sling.

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Old 30-09-2013, 15:45   #9
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We are in our third year on board with our (just turned) 3 year old. Don't worry about a steep companion way (kids LOVE climbing up and down) just make sure the steps are wide and deep and hopefully even curve up a bit at each side. We found that some center cockpit monos were actually set very high to accommodate the walkthrough. This put the comings very high (and steep) and could result in a wicked fall from a wandering toddler compared to a lower cockpit. Can't comment on the pets. Kids are incredibly adaptive and yours will hardly know the difference. Buy the boat that makes you feel great and then go sailing! Good luck P.S. We ended up with a small cat which gave us more than ample room compared to a 40' mono and gave the little fella some more stability - and for the same price. Just my two pesos.
A catamaran is still an option for us. Although being separate hulls it seems like less actual floor space for the kid (for one in our price range at least. Wouldn't turn down a free lagoon 500).
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:46   #10
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For me, I know I'll be the one lowering and hauling a black lab on and off the boat, so a walk through transom is mighty pretty in my eyes...
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:49   #11
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You can always hoist the pup in a sling.
My favorite part are their smiles.

We all know what they are really thinking!
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Old 30-09-2013, 15:59   #12
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Re: Family with toddler

Don't have any intention of starting a cat debate here in a monu forum but...

We looked at monos for over a year. I grew up sailing monos and we'll get another one when my son is older. For us it ended up being a no-brainer. I've got more floor space in my 34' than any 40' mono I've ever been on and that floor is level ground. That's why we bought it. For our toddler. To be honest I really didn't like sailing it for the first year... but I am so glad that we did. Whenever we went off sailing with friends in their monos my son could hardly crawl around on a heel. I know that plenty do! But we thought it was a good purchase in the end. Now he's bigger... perhaps we'll get a nice Ovni?
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Old 30-09-2013, 17:46   #13
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Don't have any intention of starting a cat debate here in a monu forum but...
Utoh
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Old 30-09-2013, 17:52   #14
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Re: Family with toddler

Quote:
Originally Posted by Aussie_Sequoia View Post
Don't have any intention of starting a cat debate here in a monu forum but...
Ovni?
Put out some carpet for the cat to climb back up onto. It is the dog you have to worry about...


OHHHH you mean the OTHER cat!!! hahahahahahaha
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Old 30-09-2013, 19:39   #15
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Re: Family with toddler

We bought our first boat when my first child was 18 months old. We got a Tartan 33 and it was fantastic. Baby in the v-berth which when the filler was put in was ALL v-berth (no floor at all so basically a giant play pen). The next summer we had child #2 and she joined her sister in the v-berth. Worked out great. They got big and eventually child #3 came along and the boat was snug. Put the baby in the quarter berth and it was a pain to get in there to nurse him but it worked out OK. Then #4 was on her way. Uh-oh!! We needed a bigger boat. So comes along Catalina 42 MkII. Best boat ever for our family. Two good sized aft staterooms for 2 kids each, real doors to our room and a queen sized bed for us with our own head! Big galley, big cockpit, sails great. We never put netting up and instead just used harnesses. It worked great!! Not sure how well a dog would do but this boat is fantastic, in your range and meets all your specs - plus there are a lot of them out there!

ETA: The first child is now 23, second 21, third going on 13 and the last is almost 11!!!! They all grew up on boats and love it!
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