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Old 24-12-2009, 07:48   #1
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How Long Is a Boat Actually?

I have been fitting out my custom built Aluminium boat for the last 5 years, and it is finally about to go in the water. The boat was called a 51 ft by the designer, the builder called it a 51 ft, but if I measure it with a tape measure, (which is admittedly really difficult to do), it seems that it is about a few inches under 50 ft.
Now I don't really care how long it really is except that my impression is that some charges relating to docking and maintenance are much more for boats over 50 foot.
Firstly, is this true?
Secondly, can I define where my boat starts and ends for measurement purposes? i.e. do I have to count the anchor roller forward projection?
Can I register my boat as a 49 / almost 50 foot boat, and would this be a good idea?
I suppose that when I come to sell it one day I may curse this decision because buyers pay more for a longer boat.....
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Old 24-12-2009, 08:18   #2
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Congratulations! I don't have an answer to your query, just wanted to say happy boat splash, may she float true.
Merry Christmas,
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Old 24-12-2009, 08:37   #3
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Listen to me: Its 49 feet ORRRIGHT?


Only in a bar is it 50 feet. When coming into a marina its 49 feet. When going into a lock/canal/waterway its 49 feet.

In Greece its 40 feet.

In Australia its 9 meters.

Its SMALL. OK?

If they are calculating the price in Panama Canal YOU hold one end of the Measurers tape. Give him beer. Lotsa beer.


Each year when you are being hauled out go get the quote from the dumb guy who dribbles a bit from the left corner of his mouth. Your boat is infantessimaly tiny it could almost share the travel lift with a super yacht.


Get the idea



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Old 24-12-2009, 08:45   #4
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Good replies on both counts!

This subject grabbed my attention as I have noticed it does indeed depend upon location. I am currently purchasing what is advertised as a 46 foot boat in the USA. It is actually 46 foot on deck, but with it's bowsprit it is realy 54 feet over all.

In the UK and much of Europe, nobody would even mention the LOD, only the LOA, so it would be a 54 footer without argument. In the USA it is a 46 footer. I prefer the Americans method, as I would have to agree with the posts above that the shorter the boat the better as far as charges go - it will save you a lot of money very quickly. The difference in selling her won't make that much of a gain anyway.

Unless as mentioned you are in the bar, where she has 4 masts and 3 gun decks...
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Old 24-12-2009, 09:23   #5
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If its a pain for you to put a tape measure down the deck or the dock, its even more of a PITA for the authorities to do the same. Lower the LOA a foot or two at most and only if you get caught do you later ask for forgiveness.
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Old 24-12-2009, 09:36   #6
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Woops............. I had better change my profile.
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Old 24-12-2009, 09:40   #7
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I agree with David. The Island Packet 38 was 41.5 feet long from back to forward rail but paying for the 40ft slip instead of the 50 was very nice. Length on deck is probably the most common way to measure for things like dockage, insurance, etc.

Jim
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Old 24-12-2009, 11:05   #8
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I've always used what I believe is the Length on Deck measure, which leaves off the bowsprit and dinghy davits. The manufacturer says my boat is 39' 6" long (LOA). The Coast Guard says 38' 7". I always say 38'.

Here's how the Coast Guard measures length for their gross tonnage calculation...
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Old 24-12-2009, 12:56   #9
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I had a C&C 37+ for 10 years. The "+" was over 3 feet as the boat was over 40 feet long. 37 was the length on-deck and didn't add the transom. I must have saved a few hundred dollars in those 10 years at marinas. It said "37+" right on the side of the cabin.
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Old 24-12-2009, 13:11   #10
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My boat is a CSY 33, great for going to the Bahamas as the cruising permit doubles from $150.00 to $300.00 for boats 35 feet and over.

The total lenght of the vessel with the overhangs is really 35'6"...
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Old 24-12-2009, 14:59   #11
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For marinas and most places that actually measure a boat for length, it's going to be Length overall. I'd still register it as short as possible. The longer the boat, especially at the breakpoint 49'-50' is going to cost you in taxes, slip fees, etc.

Be aware that it can be embarassing if you tell someone it's 49' when it's 51' or longer when you actually measure it all the way from the end of the bowsprit to the self steering vane/davits. We got booted out of a marina with our W32 when they were still rare. They didn't ask about overhangs or anything, just what the boat was. Didn't make it a week in a 35' slip before one of the dock Nazis complained to the management. If you are not aware, a w32 is pushing 41' from the bowsprit to the boomkin.

LOD is a much more honest way to measure a boat. If you are looking for living space, it's real hard to bunk out on the end of the bowsprit in a snowstorm.
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Old 24-12-2009, 15:24   #12
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There is a boatyard in Baltimore where the owner went out and remeasured boats that had been hauled.....then sent bills for the difference.

In Marinas around here....they measure from the most extended part of the stern,,,,dingy davits......to the tip of the bow pulpit
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Old 24-12-2009, 15:31   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chief Engineer View Post
There is a boatyard in Baltimore where the owner went out and remeasured boats that had been hauled.....then sent bills for the difference.

In Marinas around here....they measure from the most extended part of the stern,,,,dingy davits......to the tip of the bow pulpit
Boy, talk about pissing off your customers so they never come back.
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Old 24-12-2009, 17:32   #14
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I guess the designer was measuring everything, including the Anchor roller. and maybe a few inches / a bit of rounding - for luck. In this part of the world anything overhanging gets included in a name.

I would register her the same as the design name, when the time comes to sell be good if the boat length matches the design / plans
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Old 24-12-2009, 17:34   #15
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To the marina or shipyard… it is between perpendiculars!

To the girl at a bar…. You actually include the shadow it casts,,,,
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