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Old 22-11-2014, 10:30   #46
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

BAM: After reading all of the posted comments in reply to you original post (OP) I went back and read your OP.

I noticed that some have poked fun at your request for suggestions on boats. Given that you have only posted a few times or are new to this forum, I hope you don't get turned off by some responses. The forum members (me included) generally like good natured humor.

I think you are asking reasonable questions/request, and I think your OP also gives good information (budget, desires, reasons).

And, after looking at hundreds (perhaps thousands) of boats online, I have seen MANY that have small, tight, dark, cavelike, low overhead berths. I recently came across one that advertised a "double berth in an aft cabin" and when I saw it, I thought it was deceptive advertising as the berth had about 10 inches of headroom from the mattress to the cockpit floor (ceiling of berth). It was dark and only suitable for storage. So, I don't like boats like that.

I may have a different background than you (I am not a cop) and I may have different experiences or reasons for wanting to have portlights in a cabin, but I also like to "see around" when in a boat.

I don't think that is odd either.

Part of the appeal of the current cruising catamarans being sold today is the "360 degree view" of the scene (whether sailing or while at anchor).

I also like Pilot House sailboats for this same reason (and other reasons too).

And, the increasing popularity of Deck Saloon boats is indicative that monohull builders know that a large segment of their consumer market likes more "view" from their boats.

But, even older boats produced in the 1970s and 1980s may have cabins/saloons and "master's stateroom" with more portlights and better "viewing."

The Vagabond boats (e.g. Vagabond 47) have larger ports (windows) in the cabin top and aft cabin top. That is, they also have aft cabins with multiple portlights. I will post some photos below, but if you google the boat type and look at google found images online, you should be able to see outside and inside views of the ports on these boats and others. Be aware that the interior of one boat may not match another, even within the brand, as I saw several Vagabond 47s, and each had a different interior, some much nicer than others.

I will post some photos of a Vagabond 47 as an example. When I was looking for a live aboard boat, I found the Vagabond 47 very appealing for its style (design), interior finish, size, and "live aboard" accommodations. The master stateroom was very nice compared to many other boats and comparable to what I have seen on much larger yachts and some much more expensive. Vagabonds are a William Garden design and have traveled all around the world.

A quick search on a yacht listing site found this one, built in 1987. It is a real beauty (to my eye) and one I would seriously consider if I were in the market for a boat today. It has a lovely interior, a great galley that looks like a fine place to prepare meals, lots of space inside the saloon, a very nice forward stateroom, nice heads, and the kind of styling I admire. Take a look, as I think it might be an outstanding deal on this type of boat. It is one I would jump on (looking).
1987 Vagabond 47 ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

I will also include a photo of another Vagabond 47 that shows the outside of the boat from the stern. Notice that this boat has multiple portlights (windows) around the aft cabin, but does NOT have the transom mounted portlights as shown in the other photos (a 1987 model). So, be aware that each boat may be a bit different and again, interior qualities may be vastly different.

Here is a discussion on this forum that was focused on these boats:
Vagabond 47- Force 50 - Formosa 51 Info?

While I do like the Vagabond 47, it is a big boat (54 LOA) and I would get a bow thruster added if double handing. But, it is also a boat of a size I would find great for a live aboard and one I would not mind taking around the world.

As with any boat, there are compromises and you should always get a good survey.

Some of the "pirate ship like" or those designed and sometimes called "traditional" may be seen with multiple portlights in an aft cabin. But, many "traditional" boats have very few or minimal-sized portlights and some are very dark spaces when down below.

Good luck on your search, and I hope you will post photos in this thread as you find boats that you think offer a "good view" from the cabins, as I would like to see them and it may help others appreciate those boat too.
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Old 22-11-2014, 10:46   #47
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

BAM:

Another boat you might consider is a Hardin 45.

Here is a photo of one's aft stateroom and a few others.

Comparing this boat to the Vagabond 47, I prefer the interior of the Vagabond 47.
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Old 22-11-2014, 12:23   #48
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Here you go.... asking price is UKPounds 2 million......... not sure how she would go to windward....
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Old 22-11-2014, 13:52   #49
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Did you ever explain why not a catamaran? Any of the Lagoons, for example. You can make a bed out of the cushions in the salon any time you're tied up someplace where you're nervous. Good views of the whole boat in all directions.
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Old 22-11-2014, 14:26   #50
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Those Perspex (plexi) domes were WW2 and 1950's air force bomber surplus, which was cheap until it got expensive and ran out in the 70's. These days? Hens' teeth, or damned expensive if they are made new. Some racers have scrounged newer cockpit bubbles, others have fabbed up "hexagonal" domes from straight glazing and a metal rib structure.


Web cams (which can be cheaper than gopro) might be the way to go today. Unless you prefer to install a periscope and "dance with the gray lady". Of course, they're not so cheap on the surplus market either.(G)


This is why one keeps a crew on deck, on watch, as required.
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Old 22-11-2014, 14:39   #51
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Those Perspex (plexi) domes were WW2 and 1950's air force bomber surplus, ....
The one pictured on the centre cockpit boat is about as much use as tits on a bull... maybe less so.
Zero visibility frd, except of the cockpit.... and maybe the helmsman's bum....
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Old 22-11-2014, 14:57   #52
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Have you thought about just getting a yappy little boat dog?
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Old 22-11-2014, 15:19   #53
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

I believe there are "dome" or "bubble" hatches still manufactured by a major boating supplier.

But, one could also have a dome or bubble custom made. There are sources for these. Here is a link to one that has several stock sizes large enough for boat hatch use.

Plastic Domes | Plastic Hemispheres | California Quality Plastics Plastic Domes and Spheres
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Old 22-11-2014, 16:19   #54
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

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Have you thought about just getting a yappy little boat dog?
Or maybe a bitey big boat dog?

That said my little boat dog wasn't yappy... he had a very deep voice..
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Old 22-11-2014, 22:41   #55
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

For the OP: I'm not sure just what drives your need for seeing out. Is it for security reasons, or claustrophobia, or worry about dragging or folks anchoring too close or what? The possible answers to your query are influenced by this consideration, and we'd like to help.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 23-11-2014, 01:27   #56
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

The deck house on our Swanson 42 affords a 360 degree panorama that puts a fishbowl to shame plus it is very handy to the cockpit. It is my favourite place on the boat.

Perhaps something with a nice airy deckhouse like ours would fit the bill?

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Old 24-11-2014, 11:37   #57
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
For the OP: I'm not sure just what drives your need for seeing out. Is it for security reasons, or claustrophobia, or worry about dragging or folks anchoring too close or what? The possible answers to your query are influenced by this consideration, and we'd like to help.

Cheers,

Jim
It's less about actual security, per se, and more about being able to see out from the master cabin. A camera system isn't going to do the trick, so if it helps to think of it as claustrophobia, that probably works. And yes, I want to see where others anchor, I want to know if we're dragging, and so on, but mostly I just want to see out of the cabin. I might do an alarm, for actual security, and we have an Australian Cattle Dog who is a good alarm system too.

I'm really hoping for a sloop, with two heads with a nice roomy owner's cabin that has "windows", either port lights or dead lights. I'd prefer used to new, just because new is so expensive in the initial purchase and even more expensive in the fitting out. My only opposition to a yawl, which many of the recommended designs seem to be, is that I don't know anything about sailing with a mizzen. Sloops seem to be the modern design that most folks have settled on, so for resale value, I think a sloop might be easier to sell.

This boat will be kept in San Diego, as our business is nation-wide, but mostly in the southwestern US. We'll use it as a second home and a second office, and we will be staying aboard for blocks of time. We're very much in the "research and charter" phase, though, so everything monohull is open for consideration.

We're both really stuck on a monohull - I know people love cats, but I just don't like the way they move. Thanks, -B
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Old 24-11-2014, 13:27   #58
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Hi, BAM,

We, too, like to watch people anchoring near us, but generally prefer to do it obviously, from above decks, so they can be sure we'll speak up if they're too close and will ask them to move (if necessary) before they're into other activities.

We used to have a flush deck sloop, with no deadlights, and could only get 360 deg. from the cockpit, and I guess we just formed the habit of popping up to get a good look around whenever we felt like it. Gotta remember it's only a few steps.

I hope you find what you're looking for. I'm thinking it will be a difficult thing to find, but maybe you can prove me wrong!

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Old 24-11-2014, 13:33   #59
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BAM View Post
It's less about actual security, per se, and more about being able to see out from the master cabin. A camera system isn't going to do the trick, so if it helps to think of it as claustrophobia, that probably works. And yes, I want to see where others anchor, I want to know if we're dragging, and so on, but mostly I just want to see out of the cabin. I might do an alarm, for actual security, and we have an Australian Cattle Dog who is a good alarm system too.
...
We're both really stuck on a monohull - I know people love cats, but I just don't like the way they move. Thanks, -B
G'Day BAM,

Thanks for clarifying that.

Without getting into specific designs, it seems to me that physical reality shows that for anything approaching 360 degree visibility you are limited to pilot house type vessels. No other configuration could possibly provide that scope of view. There are some very nice pilot house vessels around, but AFAIK, none have the "master cabin" in the deckhouse. That location is reserved for seating, steering and piloting. Some have a berth near the helm, or more accurately a settee that one can sleep upon, but this isn't what you seem to be seeking.

As to cats, I'm on your side: they have many desirable features, but the motion is not to my liking and really, while the saloons are spacious and feature wonderful visibility, the sleeping "cabins" are buried below and are, to me, a bit claustrophobic (at least in the sizes that most can consider affordable). This really rules them out for your issues.

So, what are you left with? I think the nearest approximation will be a somewhat traditional design, center cockpit/aft master cabin, with as large ports as possible on the hull sides and the transom. This will allow vision through something like 270 degrees, broken up by the structure between the individual ports. I don't know if that would satisfy your requirements, but I believe that it is as close as you will be able to find.

My knowledge of such boats is only from visits aboard and external observations. I've never owned (or really desired to own) anything of that sort so there are others on CF who can be more specific, but designs like the Vagabond 47, Force Fifty, CT-XX in that size range, and other such creatures do offer this configuration. None of these are new builds these days, for as you note folks nowadays are more into light weight and sloop rigs (myself included). Oh... nearly all of such designs are ketch rigged. There may be some cutters lurking, but a can't think of one right now. There are occasionally well maintained examples on the market, but my observation is that because of their age, most such boats are well down their use-by curves. This means that finding one that does not require major work will be difficult. I don't imagine that a project boat would appeal to you, so take that into consideration.

I wish that I could bear better tidings, BAM, but that's how I see things.

Good luck in your quest.

Jim
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Old 24-11-2014, 13:43   #60
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Check out Peterson 44's. We have loved ours for the last 15 years and still happy! But with older boats you need to be handy with tools and systems.
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