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Old 20-04-2015, 16:34   #1
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Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

Ok, so I posted a question a few days ago hoping I would get some thoughts on some new directions to look. I got a little, and I mean a little, input. So many of the posts here on how little or much someone needs to or has to spend. I don’t judge someone for driving a 911 or a Yugo, it’s either a choice or a necessity, either way they get where they are going.
I understand that everyone has a budget. But I don’t really think budget is the sole concern. If someone wants to discuss that at length someday, I’m game.

But right now, if money was no (or little option), meaning if you were going to spend somewhere between 100K and say 500K and what you were looking for was a relatively easy to single hand 50ish foot sailboat for 5 people to live comfortable on. There will be at minimum 2 kiddos. Not interested in a cat… I like center cockpits – but am not locked to that. I expect to sail in the Caribbean initially, but really only because many of the boats I see for sail have easy access to the Caribbean. I am not locked to any age of boat; however, from a safety standpoint modern electronics are a must there needs to be life left in the gear. True anything can be replaced, but I’d sure prefer a relatively turnkey scenario.
I like the looks and layout of the Vagabond 47 – but there are so many issues regarding them
Amel builds are interesting, but seem a bit funky layout.
Hylas, Island Packet, Tayana all seem nice – but seem almost sterile in their design
…there are SO MANY designs and layouts out there. I feel sure there are some people on this forum that either love theirs or have been on friends that they drooled over.
I appreciate your input
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Old 20-04-2015, 16:56   #2
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

Noone can answer this for you other than you and your family.
One lesson I learned was the value of buying locally vs the logistics of moving a boat / family long distances.

It's no simple feat to just up and move the family 3000 miles to where the boat is, and get them all accustomed to a life on board. It's not trivial to move a boat 3000 miles so that you can ease into cruising life.

I'm sure you will find a great boat if you watch the market, and be patient.
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Old 21-04-2015, 17:00   #3
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

Have a think about coming over to the Med for a boat or even cruising. I have seen an Ocean Star 51.2 for 80.000 euros; 5 cabins 11 berths, very solid. Maybe a Jeanneau 54 DS for $250,000-$300,000. Sail the Med for a few seasons and the get a crew to bring it back. OK so you have to change a few things to fit shore power but that is not such a big deal on mostly 12v systems. The wiring is still great. Yes, you will have to join the metric world, but you will sail in knots and go nautical miles.

Sailing in the Med is quite an adventure. In spite of the current politics, it's as safe as the Caribbean. Most major tourist attractions are within 50 km of the shore. You will experience cultural diversity and get an insight into the history of the first world.

Cross the ditch, it's a great experience.
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Old 21-04-2015, 17:39   #4
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

You just need to go look at boats. We looked at lots and it was clear when we hit the right one, everyone was sitting there with a big smile!

Big boats are big work so make sure you're up to it or have the bucks to pay someone to do it. My 36' boat keeps me plenty occupied.

Boats love to be used so make sure you'll feel comfortable taking it out on a whim, by yourself.
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Old 21-04-2015, 19:30   #5
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

Quote:
Originally Posted by riderjuan View Post

(...)

But right now, if money was no (or little option), meaning if you were going to spend somewhere between 100K and say 500K and what you were looking for was a relatively easy to single hand 50ish foot sailboat for 5 people to live comfortable on. There will be at minimum 2 kiddos.

Not interested in a cat…

I like center cockpits – but am not locked to that.

I expect to sail in the Caribbean initially,

(...)

I like the looks and layout of the Vagabond 47 – but there are so many issues regarding them

Amel builds are interesting, but seem a bit funky layout.

Hylas, Island Packet, Tayana all seem nice – but seem almost sterile in their design

(...)
You do not want a cat and you want a center cockpit.

Wrong and wrong.

5 people this includes 2 kids in the Caribbean.

You want a cat. Not?

You want a beamy "open transom" aft cockpit (Hanse style, name generic).

You want your kids to be happy. Kids are happy when they have space. When they can jump into the water right from the cockpit. When they can jump up and down on the cat's net. Leave center cockpits to ole ma & pa who are dead scared of falling overboard ...

You do not want an Amel, my friend: they are not 5 people boats.

And 50'ish ... man you ARE getting more difficult to handle with each post ... ;-)

B Sense 50?

What say you?

Yes, they have issues too! Like any other boat ;-)

b.
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Old 21-04-2015, 19:44   #6
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

You have three real, viable options to develop an informed answer to your own questions:

1. charter
2. charter some more in different places
3. while you're chartering in even more different places, look at all the various cruising boats around you. get invited aboard them. talk to the owners, explore them and if possible even go for a sail with them.

... then you will know.

and - it's a heckuva lot more fun than wandering the internet!

best of luck-
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Old 21-04-2015, 23:53   #7
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

How old are the kids? That also plays a big part in what kind of boat you get. An open transom with toddlers...um not safe in my book. Teenagers will sleep in the bilge as long as there is internet access. I am of the opinion that you have to crawl around a lot of boats until you find the one that is closest to the right fit for you.


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Old 27-04-2015, 19:50   #8
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

The kids are (will be 5 and 2), so safety is a concern.
I just like the feel of a monohull...
I love 700 miles from a coast- so jogging down to the marina to gawk is not really an option, hence surfing the web.

I appreciate the input


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Old 27-04-2015, 20:04   #9
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

You can plan all you want on the internet, but your opinions will likely change once you are on board. Use the internet to create a list of must haves, and find out what is available.

As for your electronics, of all the boat criteria I can think of, that is the easiest to change!

700 mile is certainly doable for a weekend. Go to a boat show or make plans with a broker to tour as many boats as possible in a weekend.
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Old 27-04-2015, 20:07   #10
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

S/v delos. Nice boat
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Old 27-04-2015, 20:08   #11
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

You, and your family, will really like the feel of a cat, at anchor, which is where you spend most of your time, even if nowhere else.
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Old 27-04-2015, 23:40   #12
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

I think if I was in your situation I might consider a Benteau Sense.

I have a centre cockpit and lived aboard with my wife and young son, and the steep stairs are a major PITA.

You might think it odd that a guy with a heavy displacement centre cockpit double ender would suggest a boat like that, but with two kids and limited live aboard experience you want something that's easy and comfortable.

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Old 27-04-2015, 23:56   #13
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

I second the amel-s/v Delos it has room for little ones, tons of storage, good size tanks, separate engine room, designed to be sailed short handed, protected helm.. The list really does go on


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Old 28-04-2015, 00:03   #14
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

We are on year 7 of full time living aboard with out two kids now 16 and 17. Four of those years were spent cruising Mexico.

Without budget concerns...hands down, give me a Cat! Our 50ft Hudson Force 50 beast can't touch the space and room on a 38ft cat. Bla bla bla...blue water this and BS that. What matters to our family is living space in comfort.

Call me names, call me crazy, but we are out here living on a mooring waiting for the kids to get out of high school so we can head south again.

We started cruising on a 36ft Pearson 365 but as the kids got older wanted them to have their own rooms (or closets) so we upsized.
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Old 28-04-2015, 00:19   #15
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Re: Live aboard cruising family sailboat thoughts ~

Our family is the same size, we have 3 boys. We own a monohull on the West Coast and have a wonderful time staying mostly in marinas and anchoring occasionally. Whenever we charter in the warm water we rent a cat. There are certain motions I hate in the cat (beating...) but really, that is a small chunk of the time. I love the comfort at anchor, with lots for my boys to do - 3 kayaks, big RIB dingy with a 25, lots of fishing gear. Then below we each have our own stateroom. (Mom and Dad sharing, unless I'm in the doghouse...)

I like monos, I like cats, I like 5000hp sport fishies. They all have their place and they are all fun. Having piloted, and looked at many, many boats over the years, I have a hard time imagining my family of 5 on a 50-55 ft mono for an extended period. A month or 2, but not years. A 45 ft cat, sure. Just my humble opinion for you. Before you drop $$$$ on a boat, go spend $ on a few charters. Low season is coming up, maybe you can swing a deal in Tortola to do 3 days each on 3 different boats. Good luck!


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