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Old 31-07-2015, 18:05   #1
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Looking at boat sizes

Any recommendations as to how to get a feel of different boat sizes (both mono and cats)? There aren't sailboat shows in my area (just power boats)...and I'd like to move around in them to get a better idea of what size would work best for me and my family.


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Old 01-08-2015, 17:04   #2
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

What area are you in? Sailing clubs with a small charter fleet are a good option. Travel to boat shows (some do just for fun). Charter...not cheap, but WAY cheaper than owning a boat...especially if you realize its not the right boat for you.

IMHO 40' something, whether cat or mono, works well for most cruising applications.
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:17   #3
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

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Originally Posted by ReadyToSail View Post
Any recommendations as to how to get a feel of different boat sizes (both mono and cats)? There aren't sailboat shows in my area (just power boats)...and I'd like to move around in them to get a better idea of what size would work best for me and my family.


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Welcome to posting in CF!

You ask what would work best for your family regarding size, yet you say nothing about:

1. The size of your family! Number and ages.

2. The budget!

3. The place you intended to sail!

4. Your experience!

5. How much time you intend to spend on the boat! A day? A weekend? A year? Several years?

Answer those questions and it will help others here help you with something that might Fit your family.
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:17   #4
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Size, as in length overall is only one of many factors--and in many cases, only an indirect factor in determining if a boat is right for you. More important are your personal considerations which are likely not a topic for this forum, unless you want to divulge a lot more information. But at this point, if you are not even set on a cat or a monohull, so why even discuss size or length? It's like asking "Do I want to buy a split level in the country or a townhouse in the city" Or perhaps Should I buy a motorhome or an airplane or a tent or a cabin at the shore? How would we know? Why don't you tell us about your experience with boats and what are your plans and goals and perhaps we can help. It amazes me how many similar original posts are here on CF. Sometime it appears that the OP does not even know where to begin, but there has to be a knowledge threshold somewhere before anyone here, no matter how well meaning, can begin to provide you with relevant information--because your question has little relevance or substance. You mention "your area" but what area is that? Where are you? Colorado? Texas? Maine? Carbondale, Illinois? Surely that basic information will allow us to be of some help. But the"snarky" response would be "if you want to look at boats, go to where there are boats." Finally, what size would work best for you and your family? Well, that depends...on many, many things, not the least of which are WHO ARE YOU? Where do you wish to keep the boat? How many are in your family? How old are they? Do you want to do extended cruising or what? So you see, someone will likely whine that I am being sarcastic or due, but the fact is, how can we help you at this point? Work with us and let's see what we can recommend BEFORE YOU EVEN THINK ABOUT SIZE OR LENGTH!!!. One caveat--do not get bogged down in a specific boat or builder. That comes much later--believe me please---much, much later! So, help us to help you....
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:29   #5
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

In the same vein of not providing enough information, which can lead to meaningless replies...

47 x 15 x 3.5 or 7 + 50000 + 6' 3" + 62 = boat

How crazy is that?

Those numbers represent a boat, but do they fit your needs?
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Old 01-08-2015, 17:48   #6
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Perhaps I understand the OP's question differently. I think he asked "how can I learn more to understand what I want". My answer would be to visit marinas, talk to boat owners, praise their boats and they will invite you in to look them over and tell you why they love their boat. Once you have narrowed it down just a bit, charter a few different types, volunteer to crew, and any other things you can do to get out on the water.

Once you have done these things, you should be closer to size and type and you can come back here and ask more questions and provide more information for the kind folks here to help.
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Old 02-08-2015, 07:51   #7
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

12ridehd- Thank you, yes that is what I meant. That was my first post, and I'm new at this whole experience. I'm just starting to gather information.

We (my husband, one year old son and I), belong to a boat club in the Western NY area, where we have access to 25' boats. It's a small club with just a few boats. I would like to get on other boats (bigger ones) as well, just to check them out. That's where I'm looking for advice. The docks around us are all private, and you can't just walk around on them and stop to chat with people. How do we get in there, or meet others with larger boats so we can talk to them about their experiences?


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Old 02-08-2015, 07:54   #8
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Belizesailor: We like the idea of boat shows, but it seems like the ones in our area are just motor boats. We are willing to travel to some closer ones, but are also trying to save money. Do you know of any boat shows that are worth traveling for?


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Old 02-08-2015, 08:09   #9
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Steadyhand- I just want to start getting on more boats (we aren't ready to buy yet because we need more time to save). But, I'd still be happy to share a bit more: We got certified to sail this year, and have been taking out 25' boats on Lake Erie. In our future, we are planning to live aboard for at least a year. It would be my husband, my son (who is one), and hopefully one more child. We plan to start off by sailing part of the great loop and the Caribbean.


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Old 02-08-2015, 08:30   #10
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

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Originally Posted by ReadyToSail View Post
Belizesailor: We like the idea of boat shows, but it seems like the ones in our area are just motor boats. We are willing to travel to some closer ones, but are also trying to save money. Do you know of any boat shows that are worth traveling for?


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Chicago (Strictly Sail show), NYC, Annapolis, Boston...all major sailing communities with boat shows which are relatively near to you.
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Old 02-08-2015, 08:43   #11
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Thank you!


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Old 02-08-2015, 09:24   #12
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

RTS,

Ask yourself this question: could we live in a space 40ft by 12ft for a year?

By way of a comparison that's a average size living/dining room/kitchen in many modern houses. It is also the size of my mono that my wife and I have been living aboard for the last 5 years (with winters in relatives's guest rooms).

We have 3 double cabins and 2 heads (both with standup showers), a decent sized galley and a comfy saloon. For 2 adults it is plenty of space and if we have guests they have a dedicated cabin and we have an ensuite heads forward.

We do not have a TV but use a laptop for watching anything and an iPod for music. The nav table doubles up as our office if we have to do any work stuff while on our days off but generally we spend all our time in the cockpit or sprawled out on the deck or hanging in the hammock.

She works for us but that does not mean she'll work for you and your family but I hope it gives you an idea of how much space you do actually have or another way to put it is how much you don't actually need to have.

I suggest you browse the "for sale" pages of the yachting press and go online to look at various models. You should be able to find an engineering drawing to give you an idea of different layouts and what you get at different sizes. Don't get bogged down in manufacturers just yet and weigh up the pros and cons between mono and multihulls (cat and trimaran). With a young family a cat might be more friendly with it's bigger saloon area to play in.

Definitely try to get to a couple of boat shows if you can and do not be afraid to get on the display boats and get a feel for the size down below. Can you stand up in the shower? Do you need to climb over one another to get in and out of bed? How well lit is it (both natural light and LEDs)? These and other questions can only really be answered when you are physically in the boat.

Hope this helps and good luck

Keiron
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Old 02-08-2015, 09:25   #13
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

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Originally Posted by ReadyToSail View Post
Any recommendations as to how to get a feel of different boat sizes (both mono and cats)? There aren't sailboat shows in my area (just power boats)...and I'd like to move around in them to get a better idea of what size would work best for me and my family.


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Here's an idea for you. If it's going to be a while before you can attend a boat show, go to your nearest mobile home park and step inside a few trailers (the shipping-container rectangular type). Some are larger than others. Then decide what size you'd feel comfortable in. Much the same as a monohull yacht, yet with the boat you can't go outside for a walk while underway.
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Old 02-08-2015, 09:39   #14
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

Another thought on seeing boats is to head to a local marina and ask brokers to show some different boats to you. You will not be obligated to buy anything, it will familiarize you with different boats by different manufacturers. This would probably be the least expensive ways to peruse a large number of boats.

This will help you to understand the relationship between length, beam and headroom and how it will accommodate your families needs and desires.

Boat shows are fun to check out and you should if you can, but they are only one way to see boats and generally not the best for seeing boats in real world use.
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Old 02-08-2015, 10:01   #15
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Re: Looking at boat sizes

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Originally Posted by klmmicro View Post
Another thought on seeing boats is to head to a local marina and ask brokers to show some different boats to you. You will not be obligated to buy anything, it will familiarize you with different boats by different manufacturers. This would probably be the least expensive ways to peruse a large number of boats.

This will help you to understand the relationship between length, beam and headroom and how it will accommodate your families needs and desires.

Boat shows are fun to check out and you should if you can, but they are only one way to see boats and generally not the best for seeing boats in real world use.
This is the obvious choice. G
o look at boats listed for sale. You need to get a handle on size. I would look at ~35 ft and then ~40+ feet... often the major difference in these is just an extra head.
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