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Old 19-11-2014, 14:59   #1
BAM
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Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

I'm looking to purchase my first boat in the next 18 months, and we will sail almost exclusively as a couple, with a bit of single-handing. This probably sounds a little odd to the average person, but I'm a retired San Diego cop and if I can't wake up frequently and take a quick look around out windows in my berth, then I won't sleep at all.

Here are the basic requirements: Monohull, 38-46' boat, must have 2 heads, be easy for a couple or single-hander to manage, and have the ability to see out a "window" (dead light or port light) at least to each side of the boat from the master berth and preferably all berths, and must have a hatch big enough for an adult to get through.

Things that would be nice would be a center cockpit, self-tacking jib, a sea-kindly design, and something sturdy, as we'd like to sail to the South Pacific and back in this boat, plus live-aboard eventually. I'm not a fan of the Ikea design craze in boats right now, but would learn to live with that and will just add handholds. Unless we win the Lotto, I'm looking at a price range of 95K-210K or so, so for those of you who are thinking that the 46' Hylas is perfect - I think so too, but we can't afford one.

I'm welcome to all suggestions and am making a list to search for and to give to our broker to search, as well. No rush on this - so please add here anytime you come across a boat that you think might work. I appreciate everyone's help! -Beth
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Old 19-11-2014, 15:18   #2
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

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...if I can't wake up frequently and take a quick look around out windows in my berth, then I won't sleep at all...
have the ability to see out a "window" (dead light or port light) at least to each side of the boat from the master berth and preferably all berths...
Come on!
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Old 19-11-2014, 15:28   #3
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Virtually all modern production boats, Benteau, Jeneau, Bavaria etc have windows in all cabins and hatches too.
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Old 19-11-2014, 16:18   #4
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Won't you need to see forward and backwards also? Those are the directions the bogeyman usually uses - he caught on to the side port thing a long time ago...

Why not sleep in the cockpit?

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Old 19-11-2014, 16:35   #5
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Everyone has their quirks, some just won't admit it! A Nantucket Island 38 would be an ideal boat. Older boat and there's not many out there but it ticks just about all your boxes.

NANTUCKET ISLAND 38 sailboat specifications and details on sailboatdata.com
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Old 19-11-2014, 16:58   #6
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

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Originally Posted by BAM View Post
...........This probably sounds a little odd to the average person, but I'm a retired San Diego cop and if I can't wake up frequently and take a quick look around out windows in my berth, then I won't sleep at all. .....
Nothing odd about a retired San Diego cop, but your asking for the near impossible with the bolded part. If two of you are out cruising, then best practice (plus actually complying with COLREGS) would require you to have a lookout at all times.

Which means when you are on a passage, your not sleeping at the same time your wife is. And as such, your bolded requirements become redundant.

COLREGS Rule 5:

Every vessel shall at all times maintain a proper look-out by sight and hearing as well as by all available means appropriate in the prevailing circumstances and conditions so as to make a full appraisal of the situation and of the risk of collision.


As a retired cop, you understand what the word 'shall' means.

My suggestion is to eliminate that requirement you have of waking up and looking around your berth, and look at the other items on your list instead as your primary issues.
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Old 19-11-2014, 17:00   #7
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Get a full enclosure and sleep in the cockpit.
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Old 19-11-2014, 17:38   #8
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Bam, I am sure you are already aware that your need is purely emotional, and not logical. Think back to your police training, and how many times you put your life in the hands of your partner. Think of your mate as your partner, and put all of your trust there also. PTSD is just as real in cops as it is in combat vets, and the need to be treated , just as real. The ocean is a damn sight safer than most places you have probably worked. I have known 2 women with opposite reactions to sailing. One never came out on deck in almost 5000 miles of passages, and one never went below deck (other than to use the head) in almost as many miles. Trust your mate!!! You will do fine. ______Grant.
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:00   #9
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

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Get a full enclosure and sleep in the cockpit.
Only place with a quick 360 degree view. Not sure how pleasing it will be for the relationship though when weather turns.
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:05   #10
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

We can't see out of the cabin readily in our big boat. Ports are too high.

I have considered mounting a camera with a monitor.

Just playing with the idea as my bank balance recovers.
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:25   #11
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

If it is that important ... install a plastic "bubble" on the ceiling hatch of the cabin, or install a remote-control camera with the controls and visual display in the cabin so you'll have 360-degree visibility. The simple option is to get on deck (and take advantage of visiting the head on the way back to bed.)
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:46   #12
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Thanks all - I did provide notice that it sounded goofy. Certainly while we're actually cruising this isn't a problem, as someone will absolutely be standing watch 24-hours a day, and clipped on. I'm thinking more about the relaxing evening on the mooring ball or at the marina. And yes, I could sleep in the main cabin, but when unsuspecting normal people come to sail with us, it would be nice to have privacy in our own berth. I do like the camera idea, thanks.

When we charter, we've been enjoying the Beneteau (just had a wonderful week in BVI in a Beneteau 43.5, complete with "Painkillers" from the Soggy D), and for cruising around locally, that boat would be fine. However, we really want to sail to the South Pacific - and back. I've been told by some sailors whose opinions I very much respect, that the Beneteau will get us there, but not back. They recommend sailing there, selling it, and flying home.

I will totally check out the Nantucket 38 - and I've never heard of a plastic hatch bubble, I'll check it out - thanks so much!
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:51   #13
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

How about a Periscope?
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:52   #14
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

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... I've never heard of a plastic hatch bubble, I'll check it out - thanks so much!
In "olden days," lots of the larger planes had such bubbles for celestial navigation.
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Old 19-11-2014, 18:58   #15
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Re: Need to see out from all berths - boat suggestions?

Oceanis 35 or even better, the 38.
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