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Old 26-04-2016, 10:27   #1
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Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Sorry if this has already been discussed elsewhere, but I didn't find what I was looking for when I looked around the sight.

I'm hoping to be packing up the family and sailing off into the Pacific in the next 5-10 years or so. I'm trying to decide what boat I should be looking for. I obviously need something that can safely cross oceans, so blue-water capable is a must. My family consists of 5 souls--myself, my wife, and 3 daughters that will range from 5-10 y/o at the time of departure. As such, I expect I would need a vessel that would have accomodations where each child could have their "space" (read "own berth"). Would prefer not to have to take down the salon table each night for sleeping arrangements for the girls though. I would like a vessel that sails well, and can make good speed. Occasional 200NM days would be nice, but not a deal breaker. I do want it to be able to point reasonably well, and have a fairly comfortable ride. It does need to be of quality construction, and to me this rules out any of the Beneteaus, Hunters, or other cheap plastic boats. Budget has not been set yet, but I doubt I'll have over $100,000 US (probably less than half that) to spend on the boat.

I've looked around at a few offerings, and have been particularly drawn to the Alberg 37. However, I don't think it has enough berths (unless you rearrange the settee every night). The Cheoy Lee Rhodes Reliant 41 (or 3-cabin version of the Cheoy Lee Offshore 40). But these still require one person to have the salon as "their space".

Are there any other options I should be looking at? I'm willing to get a "project boat", depending on how much, and what needs to be done to get her sea-worthy. If money wasn't an obstacle, I'd get a new model Hallberg-Rassy 53 or 54, but I don't have an extra million laying around.
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Old 26-04-2016, 10:29   #2
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

what boat should I buy

Hi and welcome.

The "what boat should I buy?" question comes up so frequently, I think the mods oughta write a good generic answer and make it a sticky. [IMG]file:///C:/Users/Stu/AppData/Local/Temp/msoclip1/01/clip_image001.gif[/IMG]

Since they haven't, yet, here's a good example, a little tongue in cheek perhaps:

Does it really matter which damn sailboat you pick to go down the west coast?

Good luck.
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Old 26-04-2016, 10:37   #3
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

I think you are on the right track as far a boats and those to avoid. I would add the Cheoy Lee to the ones to avoid myself. The Alberg is a great boat but like you say, not huge accommodation as it's an older design. For $100k... there ought to be something out there. Passport 37 or 40 comes to mind. Baba, Panda, Tashiba in longer keel designs maybe. There are also some Hans Christians, but be aware there are also some that claim to be HC related (Union 36 comes to mind) but aren't that good. (Rebel Heart can attest to that, search his boat loss experience with family aboard) Wauquiez are good, maybe you could find an Amphitrite 43.
A Cape Dory may be harder to find on the West Coast but could be good. You are probably not going to find a 4 berth boat in your $ range/size, so compromises may have to be made. JMHO
As with all things , WHAT BOAT you buy matters, any of the well constructed boats can have issues, so the particular one matters.
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Old 26-04-2016, 10:43   #4
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Do you have any sailing experience. Perhaps that is where this discussion should start. It's a big undertaking when crossing oceans with families. When would you be doing this. If it's years in the future, it would be better to get sailing experience, then approach which boat.
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Old 26-04-2016, 11:00   #5
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Quote:
Originally Posted by Celestialsailor View Post
If it's years in the future, it would be better to get sailing experience, then approach which boat.
This is the recurring answer from knowledgeable skippers to almost every single question like yours.

Most new-to-sailing folks think that the # of berths is what counts. It rarely is. Most glossy magazines tout the "sleeps 403!!!" as if it's some kinda magic. It's not.

Instead, you should be reading about sea-kindliness and seasickness. Really.

If you buy a starter boat, a popular one that can be easily resold, like a Catalina 30 for example, and learn how to sail, you can then begin to determine what is important for YOU and your family.

You will learn about boat layouts and how they affect things. Nigel Calder's Cruisers Handbook is an exceptional book about just this subject. That's why they write books He explains, with great photos and illustrations, all the different factors that make successful and unsuccessful boats.

Good luck.
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Old 26-04-2016, 11:23   #6
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Perhaps ferro-cement boats would be an option? Have a look at this one for example, it has one double bunk aft and three singles forward:
1984 Endurance 40 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

If you go for a larger boat, remember that the cost of maintenance goes up a lot too.

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Old 26-04-2016, 11:42   #7
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Thanks for the suggestions so far. Yes, I have sailing experienc, although not much. I have sailed friend boats on San Francisco Bay. I have ASA certification 101, 103, and 104 (for what that matters). I also am part owner of a Catalina Capri 25, that I sail about 10-15 times a year (read "summer") on Flathead Lake in NW MT. However, I don't have any significant ocean sailing experience. I realize that the smaller the boat, the easier it is to handle short-handed, and the lower the overall maintenance cost is, in general. My "issue", is that I want to do this trip with my family, and want them to enjoy it too and not feel like they don't have their own "space".

With regard to avoiding the Cheoy Lees: I've read (and freely admit my ignorance here) that the Hong Kong produced early boats were of better build quality than the later Taiwan boats. The ones I mentioned in my OP are from the Hong Kong yard, as I understand it, and generally have over-built hulls that are bonded to the decks. I have read that some have deck coring issues, but a lot of these older boats already have had this issue addressed. Any other reasons I should avoid them? The 3-cabin interior layout appeals to me, but I have no experience with them.
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Old 26-04-2016, 11:43   #8
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

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Originally Posted by SoundOfSilence View Post
Perhaps ferro-cement boats would be an option? Have a look at this one for example, it has one double bunk aft and three singles forward:
1984 Endurance 40 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

If you go for a larger boat, remember that the cost of maintenance goes up a lot too.

In general, I'd prefer to avoid ferro-cement boats for many reasons.
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Old 26-04-2016, 11:52   #9
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

200 nm a day puts you at an average of almost 10 knot boat going 24 hours. not going to happen in a monohull. figure on 100.
stay away from canoe stern....lack of space
morgan out island's 41 or 51, strong and a lot of room
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:00   #10
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Quote:
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My "issue", is that I want to do this trip with my family, and want them to enjoy it too and not feel like they don't have their own "space".
Does this mean your wife gets her own cabin, too? I really think you're overthinking this at this stage in your development. Two kids can easily share a cabin. Do all kids get their own bedroom all the time in homes? C'mon.

The reality is that in good weather down below is the LAST place people want to be.
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:00   #11
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Quote:
Originally Posted by johngfoster View Post

I'm hoping to be packing up the family and sailing off into the Pacific in the next 5-10 years or so. ............., so blue-water capable is a must. My family consists of 5 souls--................, I expect I would need a vessel that would have accomodations where each child could have their "space" .......... I would like a vessel that sails well, and can make good speed. Occasional 200NM days would be nice, ............ and have a fairly comfortable ride. It does need to be of quality construction, and to me this rules out any of the Beneteaus, Hunters, or other cheap plastic boats. Budget has not been set yet, but I doubt I'll have over $100,000 US (probably less than half that) to spend on the boat.
Have you looked at what is listed on Yachtworld.com? I did search for boats $50k and less in the Northeast and only saw maybe 2 reasonable matched. If you can move up to the $50-75k range there are more choices in the mid 80s boat (not enough to get what you consider "cheap plastic" boats though).

I feel you should narrow it down more so you can ask about a specific boat. But if you aren't looking to get a boat yet for 5-10 years maybe you can get one of those "cheap" boats
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:10   #12
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Second the previous comments.

- 200 mile days are not going to happen on your budget. Average 100 miles per day and maybe hit 150 occasionally.

- Your budget will also make it difficult to find a boat with four separate beds without at least one being in the main cabin. Four separate cabins would be pretty much impossible.

One option, if you can find one and your budget hits around $100. The C&C Landfall 43 is a center cockpit with aft cabin. One version came with a cabin and bunk beds in the walk through from the main salon to the aft cabin. Mom and dad in the aft cabin, two girls in the bunk bed, one in the forepeak. Bear in mind that at sea the forepeak can at times be unusable in rough conditions, especially hard on the wind.

On a smaller budget I also like the Morgan Out Island 41. Might be the roomiest 41' boat ever built but you would have to put 1-2 in the salon, maybe 3 if the weather is rough.
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:11   #13
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

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Does this mean your wife gets her own cabin, too? I really think you're overthinking this at this stage in your development. Two kids can easily share a cabin. Do all kids get their own bedroom all the time in homes? C'mon.

The reality is that in good weather down below is the LAST place people want to be.
Accomodations for passage-making is one thing, but the reality is that most live-aboard sailors, and even cruisers, spend most of their time at anchor, or at a dock. So yeah, we would spend a lot of time down below (each night). As far as the kids go, would you like to sleep on the couch at home for the next 5 years? I doubt it. We all like "our space" where we don't have to pack up our bed and put it away every night. Yes, kids can share a double berth, but with 3 of them we would need to be able to sleep 5, each in their own berth (shared double berth for my wife and I). And yes, my kids each have their own bed. Two share a room, but they still have their own bed in their room.
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:18   #14
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Other preferences I have (not necessarily deal breakers though):
-I prefer no bow sprit (takes up extra overall length, and more fragile than the bow of the hull).
-I prefer not to have to climb over someone to get in and out of bed--prefer no pullman-style berths as the main berth.
-The less teak, the better (maintenance issue/varnish, etc)
-I prefer boats without ports below the cap rail, as sometimes the rail gets underwater, and ports often leak.
-It would be nice to have over 6' head room, as I'm 6"1" tall.

I like the reported sea-kindly motion of some of the older boats. I like how many of them were overbuilt. I would like an aluminum hull, but they are $$$$$.
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Old 26-04-2016, 12:32   #15
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Re: Help Me Look for a Boat, Please

Quote:
Originally Posted by johngfoster View Post
Thanks for the suggestions so far. Yes, I have sailing experienc, although not much. I have sailed friend boats on San Francisco Bay. I have ASA certification 101, 103, and 104 (for what that matters). I also am part owner of a Catalina Capri 25, that I sail about 10-15 times a year (read "summer") on Flathead Lake in NW MT. However, I don't have any significant ocean sailing experience. I realize that the smaller the boat, the easier it is to handle short-handed, and the lower the overall maintenance cost is, in general. My "issue", is that I want to do this trip with my family, and want them to enjoy it too and not feel like they don't have their own "space".

With regard to avoiding the Cheoy Lees: I've read (and freely admit my ignorance here) that the Hong Kong produced early boats were of better build quality than the later Taiwan boats. The ones I mentioned in my OP are from the Hong Kong yard, as I understand it, and generally have over-built hulls that are bonded to the decks. I have read that some have deck coring issues, but a lot of these older boats already have had this issue addressed. Any other reasons I should avoid them? The 3-cabin interior layout appeals to me, but I have no experience with them.
First: I have not owned one. I have looked very closely at 3 over the years when thinking of buying. My experience is the early ones were pretty bad. Poor quality plywood throughout that rots readily. A lot of chopper gun glassing, or improper glass type used in structural locations, (hard to tell on some) dry glass that cracks readily. It may depend on the year, model etc. Deck cores are often cheap plywood instead of balsa... same issue ... rot or dry glassing that doesn't bond. I know there are some CL lovers out there, just my experience and evaluation. A thick hull does no good if the deck cabin and cockpit are failing, or the hull to deck joint is fragile. There was one years ago that came apart at the deck/hull joint going down the west coast. Interestingly, similar to the Rebel Heart story.
The Morgan OI 41 is a good suggestion, if you don't care too much about looks. Big boats with a good rep and cheap.
I have friends who took their Gulfstar 43 (44?)all the way to OZ and back to the PNW also.
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