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Old 19-12-2007, 07:12   #121
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While nationalism has its place (or does it???), we are getting a bit off topic here, don't you think? The original post was from someone debating retiring on a boat in several years and asking about the comparative cost of power versus sail.

Since the original post suggests no experience in boating, don't we have the cart before the horse? Surely the answer is to get experience in both and then make a decision based upon what they enjoy/feel comfortable with. Cost will likely be the least of their concerns. Sure, arguments can be made for either sail or power as to which is ultimately cheaper. Obviously so much will depend upon the price of fuel where you sail (huge in the Caribbean except for Venezuela), the efficiency of the vessel, the number of miles you intend to motor each year, whether you insist upon clean running rigging/great sail shape and therefore replace them frequently, etc., etc. But the real issue is NOT cost. If sailing is more expensive than power, so be it - I'm a sailor. My friends who are power boaters have been largely saying the same thing, despite huge increases in the cost of fuel. What they should do is join a yacht club and offer to crew, and/or take some courses THEN decide.

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Old 19-12-2007, 07:25   #122
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[FONT='Calibri','sans-serif']But the real issue is NOT cost. [/FONT]
I have to agree. They all cost a lot so it eliminates a lot of people. It also comes down to how you live. If you spend a lot on land you'll not spend less on the water.
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Old 19-12-2007, 15:36   #123
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Originally Posted by Southern Star View Post
The original post was from someone debating retiring on a boat in several years and asking about the comparative cost of power versus sail.
Yep

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Cost will likely be the least of their concerns.
Hold on, werent they asking about cost?

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Sure, arguments can be made for either sail or power as to which is ultimately cheaper. Obviously so much will depend upon the price of fuel where you sail (huge in the Caribbean except for Venezuela), the efficiency of the vessel, the number of miles you intend to motor each year, whether you insist upon clean running rigging/great sail shape and therefore replace them frequently, etc., etc
Which is why I picked an example, my example and compared apples to apples.

Not I have a 40 ft sail mono with second hand sails and its cheaper to run than that 50 ft Maritimo with twin 500hp Detroits that does 30 knots.

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But the real issue is NOT cost
.

For some it is (me)

I thought the original poster asked about it

Some of us want to get on the water and don't want to be a wage slave working for the rig, sails and winches.

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If sailing is more expensive than power, so be it - I'm a sailor. My friends who are power boaters have been largely saying the same thing, despite huge increases in the cost of fuel
I'm a boater, if going power gets me living on the water NOW and keeps me out of the office slaving away to get the sail version, well power it will be. (in my example)

If my example worked out cheaper in sail, guess what I would have.

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What they should do is join a yacht club and offer to crew, and/or take some courses THEN decide.
Maybe so, and then they will still have to do a cost comparison for their individual circumstance.

I know more than a few people who sail OPB's and charter yachts as well and they will never get their own because their excuse is the expense of it.

All they have compared to is a Beneteu 52 and a 45 footish Dufour.

They cant afford either, so they cant get out on the water (their view is too blinkered)

I have sat down with them and shown a few power examples that would give similar if not better comfort levels and cost a hell of a lot less up front than the sail and over their intended cruising distances (stooging around the Whitsundays) and timeframe would be so far in front that its a no brainer.

Unfortunatly its the concept of sail (and the percieved luxury) that is more important to them.

For me, the concept of getting on the water is more important and in my example, I need not be a wage slave for several more years

Dave
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Old 19-12-2007, 15:41   #124
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If you spend a lot on land you'll not spend less on the water.
I always spend less on the water.

I don't have to buy my seafood at the fish board several times a week

I won't have to pay rates on a house (and I dont do marinas)

There are no shops to buy stuff at on a whim.

I can't just say "bugger it, i'm going out for dinner tonight"

I don't have mates ringing up saying "Lets go and watch the Rugby on the big screen down the pub"

etc etc.

Dave
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Old 19-12-2007, 16:03   #125
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I would like to know what the real figures are for the percentage of time a sail boat actually has the motor going while underway. I think to many people live in a fantasy world that the wind will always blow you were you want to go. And it is a load of crap that the wind is for free. I love sailing and would be happy to never run my motor but saddly that is just a dream.
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Old 19-12-2007, 16:36   #126
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I get a heap less seasick on a sailboat then I do on a power vessel--even a hydraulically stabilised one. Different motion--one is rocked by one and bounced by the other--and then there is that noise--

And even with my little Yanmar which is quiet by diesel standards--there is a blissful relief when the wind rises and I can give it a rest. My little tri goes way faster under sail too--and sometimes there is some nice shade on the windeck made by a set and drawing sail.

The charm of sail for me is the motion and the sounds of the ocean and seabirds. I HATE noise, so I suspect a power vessel for me would be just transport. Mighty luxurious transport and nice when laid to an anchor in a smoothwater haven--

The costs of running either depend on what you have, what you do with it and where you are and intend going. Sail is not cheap and all boats require maintenance. One thousand dollars worth of fuel does not go very far these days in a sizeable cruising power vessel, but it would keep me in diesel oil for weeks or months.

I suspect that the ownership costs of an equivalent priced new vessel would be similar--it is only the running and maintenance that might be a little different. Sailors can afford to travel offshore whereas many power cruisers are only used weekends and holidays.
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Old 19-12-2007, 16:59   #127
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I was not suggesting that money is no object, only that I believed that if they made a decision based solely on a perceived cost benefit they would be making a huge mistake. And I say 'perceived' because, although a life-time sailor, I am still not convinced that the costs over a number of years for a trawler are greater than a sailboat with comparable space. If you plan upon circumnavigating, there is no question which comes out on top. If you are planning on going no further than the Bahamas or perhaps the Caribbean, well.... My point was that they should decide which they prefer, and feel more comfortable with at this stage in their lives. It may be that they will find sailing a little too taxing physically. Who knows? What I clearly don't know is anyone who is an avid sailor because it is cheaper than power....

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Old 19-12-2007, 17:19   #128
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I would like to know what the real figures are for the percentage of time a sail boat actually has the motor going while underway. I
Most of the time aboard any long term trip is spent not moving. Some at anchor and some in a marina. Most of the time you are not traveling you are some place. It is in that time that you set your expectations and spend all the big money. Power or sail not moving is still not moving. You can't buy anything while in transit but you sure can make up for it sooner or later.
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Old 19-12-2007, 19:01   #129
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Originally Posted by cat man do View Post

All they have compared to is a Beneteu 52 and a 45 footish Dufour.

They cant afford either, so they cant get out on the water (their view is too blinkered)

Dave - This is the problem almost everyone has. They want more than they can afford. Or they think that they need more boat than they really need.

You have made your case for your boat. And this thread has been mostly about your boat. We haven't really addressed the OPs questinos very well as a result. We have been talking about your specific case. No one is knocking your decisions.

I'll say this again. If you have $35k and are a couple or couple +1 you could pick up a boat here in Singapore (Mico Verde) that is ocean proven and be cruising in less than a month. Now that's cheap cruising IMO.

The other salient point made on this thread is that some people are sailors and some are power boaters. I don't have huge allegeience to either but I do like it when the motor is off and the only sounds are the wind in the rigging, the slap of hallyards and the spalsh of the wake.

For a "similar" cost I would always choose sail. It's a visceral decision.
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Old 20-12-2007, 01:39   #130
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Originally Posted by viking69 View Post
I would like to know what the real figures are for the percentage of time a sail boat actually has the motor going while underway. I think to many people live in a fantasy world that the wind will always blow you were you want to go. And it is a load of crap that the wind is for free. I love sailing and would be happy to never run my motor but saddly that is just a dream.
Entirely depends on your cruising grounds how much time you spend sailing compared to motoring. In my particular case, I can almost always sail. I am lucky in that regard. HOWEVER- I do motor alot because I get lazy and don't want to go through the tacking to get 25 n.m. to my island anchorage. And I have the fuel and powerplant to do it. So, I really don't use my rig to all of its potential. Not so much that I couldn't sail as much as the fact that I get a bit lazy hauling up 300 plus lbs of canvas to go 25 miles.
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Old 20-12-2007, 02:11   #131
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One reason my fuel bill gets up a bit is running the diesel to recharge batteries. Since I like to make an early start I can motor for an hour or two before the wind rises--then shut down the diesel and sail until late afternoon. I then have fully charged batteries for anchor retrieval and house, refrigeration and lighting purposes as well as the GPS anchor alarm. The diesel uses less than a gallon an hour, but I allow this amount of useage when planning for a trip.
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Old 24-12-2007, 23:34   #132
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New Zealand yacht designer John Welsford is planning on building a motor boat for himself, as a long range ocean cruiser. He has an old six cylinder Gardener diesel which he has had rebuilt as new. He has calculated the costs and established that this option is not only cheaper than sail to build, but the running costs will be lower as well. It is worth noting that sails also need maintainence, the cost of which needs to be compared to fuel costs and can be surprising when compared to a motor vessel designed for economical voyaging.
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Old 26-12-2007, 05:16   #133
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Bit late reading this thread........

I think someone has already come up with the answer: "it depends"

FWIW, although I have no numbers to back things up (but fortunately we are on the Internet) I will mention my father who has run a 33 foot displacement Motorboat for the last 10 years. Flat out at 9 knots and cruises at 8 knots. and he uses it extensively and is away for months at a time.....been as far north as Paris and south to the Bay of Biscay.

It ain't free to use, but Diesel costs are only a small part of his total costs (and he is "careful" with his money! and does most work onboard himself) the "Big" expense is mooring costs when away - most of the time is spent moored - hence him not liking Marinas.

8 knots does not sound fast, for a MOBO, but it is a speed that allows for a relaxing passage involving being able to put the kettle on in comfort and the miles do get eaten up, just not "quickly" - but fortunately he has no great time constraints.

And I reckon length for length a MOBO gives more accomadation that a yacht, so maybe the costs of a 35 foot MOBO shoud be compared against those of a 40 foot yacht?

And finally, when it comes to the engines - if you start with new engines and maintain them properly the costs are far far less than trying to make up for previous owner(s) poor maintanence. The old man bought 2 new engines a couple of years after the boat cos' he could see where he was going with the existing engines (and he knew by then that the boat was a "keeper"), 8 years or so later they are still immaculate and look (and run) like they were installed last week......
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Old 26-12-2007, 19:49   #134
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Dave's boat looks a bit like a big sailing cat, something like a Simpson--originally I suspect it was designed for sail. If I am correct then all he needs is a couple of wooden sticks and some awning material, ropes and a couple of bamboo spars--and presto--a crab claw rig costing peanuts which will out-pull many expensive sail and rig combinations--

I like sailing cheaply--and a sailboat which elects to be a motor cruiser is fine by me--as it is a choice which does not close off any future options. A design power boat will never be anything else--but then again some folks might not want anything else.

Nice to have the option though--one sailor here in Oz has a big motor-trimaran. He never fitted the rig either--but meanwhile he is out on the briny having a heck of a good time. That is what it is all about--having an affordable good time--
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Old 27-12-2007, 05:11   #135
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Cat Man Do -
Personally I find it fascinating (your design) and what really got me thinking was the litre/nm figure.
All my preconceptions went out the door on that one.
Until I read your posts, I thought a stink boat was a stink boat.

Personally I don't like motoring , and do it as little as possible. Don't like the fumes, vibration, carbon monoxide etc etc
I do like being able to motor when ever I want to though - and can't imagine going without.

and then...

I love the sound when the engine is off, I love being able to feel the rig doing its work, just you and the lonely sea...
I won't like replacing the rig! I don't like dropping spinnakers in the drink, I don't like having too much sail on in a squall..etc etc

But what you say makes perfect sense. I have learned a lot from your posts, and if if gives the power/sail camps a little more understanding of each others view, then good!

Let us know when your boat has it's sea trials / maiden voyage and all that. There are heaps of people following your progress with great interest.
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