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Old 18-09-2008, 10:13   #1
RRR
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Has anyone ever moved a boat inland?

I'm looking at several sail boats right now from 40-60 foot in length that I would like to haul out and move home to overhaul myself. All of them are tall wide and heavy and we are 600 miles from the nearest place I can put one in with ocean access. I'm curious if anyone has ever moved a boat like this before that would have any tips for me. My goal is to park it in the barn for the refit. I know boats like this don't come with trailers. The masts will have to come down and all that to move but I'm just wondering if it is even doable at all down the interstate. I don't want to spend more transporting it here and back again than I spend on the boat either.

Within the next two to three years we will be in a position where we can take the whole winter off and cruise the oceans again. In the meantime it would be great to spend time making our boat just how we want it here. I have lots of plans for our new "old" boat and this one thing of where to work on it is all that is holding me up.
Any advice?

FWIW, I have absolutely 0 experience on sail boats. I am retired Navy though and was an engineer so I can handle just about anything. I've driven and worked on a lot of steel hull big ships and several boats in my life. It's time to move up to sails though with the price of diesel these days.
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Old 18-09-2008, 10:32   #2
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RRR, I once read about an outfit that I think were called BOAT MOVERS. It has been several years, but if I understood correctly, they could pick up a boat and sit it down without the need for a travel lift. Hope this helps.
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Old 18-09-2008, 10:40   #3
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It might be worth it if you can fit it on the back of a truck trailer designed for hauling boats and it can fit under most overpasses but if you have to start shutting down the highway and start taking bizarre alternative routes in order to avoid overpasses then I think it would become cost prohibitive. People have boats hauled by truck all the time but only up to certain cost effective sizes. 40 feet would be feasible as this is done frequently. 60 feet would be way too big unless you could remove the keel...and even then, its a big maybe depending on the design. Of course you would need to hire a crane to lift it off the trailer at your end. Then when the boat is finished you would have to pay again to move the boat back to the water.

Maybe it would be cheaper for you to move near the water?
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Old 18-09-2008, 10:48   #4
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I moved my 39' sailboat many years ago from Conn-Fl. I used a boat moving company that had a special low clearance trailer and shipped the boat in a wooden cradle that I had made to fit. I had a crane lift the boat and cradle together from the trailer into my backyard where I finished construction....very doable, the hauler planned the route to avoid restrictions.

Good luck

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Old 18-09-2008, 11:35   #5
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I would love it if there were a boat made that is capable of safely going from Texas to Australia and back again then be loaded on a trailer for an easy transport behind my diesel pickup. My horse trailer is as bigger or bigger than most sail boats out there but it doesn't have a keel or mast to deal with. It just barely stays within the lines on the road too. Since I haven't bought a boat yet are there any sail boats that anyone is away of that can be trailered easily behind a truck and are ocean crossing capable? I've just seen too many nice ones smashed against a pier to want to risk it when we are at home on the ranch.

I would love to move closer to the ocean but our ranch and my wifes job won't allow it.
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Old 18-09-2008, 11:47   #6
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How many tons can you haul? There are some relatively small cruising boats around thirty feet...give or take a few feet. After being on large Navy ships for your career I don't know if you would want to be on such a small little boat though. You might feel like you have taken up residence in the brig.

How about the idea of buying a cruising boat and keeping it at a marina?...or store it on land near the water until the work is completed? You could always drive out to it on the weekends, sleep on it and do the work that needs to get done then? This way you could have a cruising boat that is not this tiny little thing that you don't have to haul over land.
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Old 18-09-2008, 12:03   #7
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There is such a boat - I cannot remember the name,but it was a 40 footer designed to fit into a container. The idea was to ship it economically overseas, sail, then ship to the next destination, etc.

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I would love it if there were a boat made that is capable of safely going from Texas to Australia and back again then be loaded on a trailer for an easy transport behind my diesel pickup. My horse trailer is as bigger or bigger than most sail boats out there but it doesn't have a keel or mast to deal with. It just barely stays within the lines on the road too. Since I haven't bought a boat yet are there any sail boats that anyone is away of that can be trailered easily behind a truck and are ocean crossing capable? I've just seen too many nice ones smashed against a pier to want to risk it when we are at home on the ranch.

I would love to move closer to the ocean but our ranch and my wifes job won't allow it.
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Old 18-09-2008, 12:07   #8
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The Perry-designed Far Harbour 39 - CONTAINER YACHTS
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Old 18-09-2008, 12:17   #9
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If I get a nice, fairly large cruiser, like a CT-54 which I have really been looking at, then what are the expenses involved in mooring one somewhere on the Texas coast?
I really don't know how long is a good idea for one to be in the water either. Steel ships usually never spend more than 10 years before drydocking I know. Most of the ones I was on usually were dry docked every 2-3 years for some reason. Navy ships are used a little harder than I plan to use mine though.

If I were to buy a 54 footer would it cost a fortune to haul out at a marina and put on blocks somewhere in the yard so I could work on it?
We could drive to Houston on weekends I guess. I hadn't really considered it before. I'm sure it would take a lot of weekend trips from Lubbock to Houston to equal the cost of moving a boat that far and back again.
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Old 18-09-2008, 12:33   #10
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I just had a Mariner 32 trucked from Salt Lake City to NW Washington on it's own trailer by a professional hauler, about 900 mi. The draft is only 3'8" so height wasn't a problem. The beam is 9'9" so it was over width but only required an inexpensive permit in the four states it went through. The problem with the boat trucking companies is that they work the coasts because that's where the boats are and when you get away from the coast it gets very expensive because they can't back haul another boat. Mariner 31's and 32's weigh about 14,000lbs. and can be pulled by a 1 ton pu. There are many sailing the oceans. Don't confuse the William Garden designed Mariner ketches with that other Mariner. Check out the Mariner Owners Asscociation web site.
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Old 18-09-2008, 12:48   #11
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That's a nice boat and one that I have been seeing a bit on the for sale sites. I wasn't aware they were trailerable though. I just did a quick search for them and found several trailers out there for not too much money made just for a mariner 32. I'm going to have to talk to you about yours.

My horse trailer BTW weighs 16,000 pounds loaded. My truck doesn't even know it's back there unless I'm pulling a mountain or something. I think I can handle a boat like yours just fine.

Do you have any pictures of your boat that you can share? You have me really interested now.
Thanks,
Dan


Oh, about my not liking small boats, I can handle it. I was a frigate sailor for 5 of my years and walking on the bulkheads was a way of life. We had tiny little bunks too on all of them. I'll actually have more room on a little sail boat. I never got claustrophobic ever. I have a thing about heights though.
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Old 18-09-2008, 15:36   #12
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I bought my Mariner because I like the design and the price was right. Mariners are usually pretty reasonably priced for a blue water capable boat. 31's & 32's ( same mold ) in good shape can be had for $30-40k. There are a lot of them out there that need a lot of work, usually the deck and cabin sides/top is the biggest problem area as they were built with glassed over plywood decks. Mine is a major project ( I'm being kind ) but I knew what I was getting myself into. I like the whole rebuild process and I'm not new to it. For me it's a way to afford a blue water boat and feel good about the end result. Also after rebuilding a boat you have a good understanding of all the systems and the condition of everything. I paid $1,500 for mine and expect to put at least $10k into it before it goes back in the water and that's doing all the work myself. They have alot of room below for a 32 footer with 6'4" headroom. Very traditional inside and out. I think there were around 1500 built. If you go to the Mariners site there's lots of pictures. Also the trailer that mine was hauled on is for sale by the guy I bought the boat from. It was buit for the Mainer. He's asking $5,950. I'll try to post a picture of mine on the trailer. I really struggle with this computer stuff.
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Old 18-09-2008, 19:16   #13
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60 feet would require lots of permits/ovesizeload/escort vehicles.

Try to find a boatyard....not a marina....it might not be pretty but it would be cheaper without all the hoo-ha.
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Old 19-09-2008, 07:37   #14
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I might have found an alternative to moving a boat over land. And it would offer considerable protection form the weather too. The Brazos and Colorado river both come pretty close to us. I have to research both of them to see which one would allow me to get the closest to home without running aground. Brazos doesn't look good really from what I have personally seen. Too many lakes with dams on them and I don't know if they have locks or not to get around.

If I still lived in Memphis I would have this dilemma. I've been up and down the Mississippi many times in deeper draft boats than I'm wanting.

All that worries me about parking in a river really is the transition from salt to fresh water too many times. Every time I went through the Panama canal in the past we would be chasing leaks all over the ship by the time we hit gatun lake and the fresh water had rinsed all the crust out of the firemain system. Not fun. One time we even had a bilge eductor overboard discharge valve bust loose from the side of the ship thanks to the fresh water. I had to weld a patch on under water that time. NOT FUN!
It was one of those things I had read the book on but never actually done so I got volunteered.
Will parking a salt water vessel in fresh water pose any problems if the hull is fiberglass?
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Old 19-09-2008, 11:10   #15
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Will parking a salt water vessel in fresh water pose any problems if the hull is fiberglass?
Conventional wisdom is that the same chemistry that caused your fittings to become unstuck in fresh water can cause blistering of fiberglass hulls though I had no problems moving my boat to fresh water.

How much work are you planning on doing to the boat while you wait for your schedual to clear? It make a difference as to where you will want to store it. If you have a lot of hull work or other major refit then moving it to your barn might make sense but otherwise I would look for dry storage somewhere near the water. Dry storage rates are usually around $4 per boat foot. So for a 40 foot boat you are only looking at $160 - $200 a month. Much cheaper than a difficult move inland. The difficulty is finding a storage lot with access to AC for tools, easy access, security, and an easy attitude toward ''projects'. Every other boater wants that spot too.

The problem you are going to have is that such spots do not need to advertise. Word gets around and they usually have waiting lists. A car tour of the waterfront and some asking around is necessary to turn up some prospects.

Many marinas have a spot on the hard for tenents to do light maintance on their boats. As you'll be needing a marina slip anyway and most marinas have a wait list so it might pay to get a slip early. I did all the maintance on my 26 footer on the hard at the marina and as long as you didn't make a mess and kept your kit stowed nobody ever said anything. There was not access to power but the security was excellent and access was 24/7, a real bonus when commuting to the worksite.

So many choices.
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