Originally Posted by Skipper1969
I'll be retiring in the summer and need some free advice and thoughts on a few boats. I've budgeted 80k to end up with a completely outfitted live-aboard cruiser with passage-making ability. I'm not fussy whether its a turn-key 80K boat or a 40k boat that needs 40k poured into it... It will just be myself and my super cool dog...cruising the great lakes and wintering in the BVI.
Small spaces are fine with me. In fact, the smaller the better.
So, can I beg for thoughts on which of these would be your choice for seaworthiness, ease of repair and reliability
1993 Flicka 20
1995 PSC Orion 27
1981 Hans Christian 33
1982 Bristol 24
I see this is your first post in the forum. Welcome!
($80K) allows for a lot of possibilities for a nice boat to cruise
the Great Lakes and down the ICW
and into the West Indies or Bahamas
. There are so many that would fit that budget
that is perhaps tough to narrow the choices. But you have.
Since your boats above are rather short on LOA
the issue becomes how comfortable you would be on the smaller boats. You say you are ready for that and "the smaller the better." I respect that.
Have you already spent some time on a similar size boat small boat for any period of cruising or trips of any length?
From your set of possible boats above, the longer ones would appeal more to me (HC33 or PSC27 Orion). I like the Flicka 20 and think it would be very nice IF one must trailer the boat and IF one is physically smaller (than I am) in size etc. There is something "cute" about the Flika 20 and I would enjoy owning one. But, it would not be my first choice for the type of cruising you are intending to do in the areas you mentioned, nor would it be my first choice for a "liveaboard."
I would personally prefer to have a boat that has a separate enclosed head
. Some of the smaller boats have that, some do not.
I also like to cook (because I like to eat) and I do not like boats that one must step onto the galley
or use the galley
in such a way that everything has to be covered/uncovered and then there is no where to put anything. I would prefer a boat that has some "space" on the counters/lockers, especially if I am going to live aboard the boat for extended time.
While I like Hans Christian boats for styling, it is not the boat I would pick for the places you are intending to cruise
because I think some other boats would be more "comfortable" for the type of sailing I would do, the places I would want to sail, and the things I would want to do from the boat (snorkel, scuba
, lots of time in the cockpit
, frequent excursions in dinghy).
I look at the boat choice as based first on the places I want to sail and the type of sailing I want to do. Then I consider the amount of time I would spend on the boat. Is it for live aboard or short trips. Then I consider things I want to do with the boat (e.g. get access to places to SCUBA
or snorkel or "skinny water" places with 6 foot or less in water).
Given the places you are considering for your cruising grounds, I would add a $30K Hunter
30T to the mix as it has some nice "live aboard" features for a single
person. There are now three listed for sale
in the Great Lakes area (WI) for about $30K.
I also think the cockpit
and some other features of the H30T would be nice to have in the warm water
areas you would be cruising. They are also roomy for that LOA
. As a "live aboard" I think it would offer more space in the saloon
with nice settees, separate galley (with sinks) and it even has an aft double berth, and the forward V berth does not look as cramped as some I have seen.
Since one can purchase
a 1990s version Hunter
30T for about $30K, that would leave $50K of your budget to buy other things to outfit the boat for the best, most comfortable cruising. In fact, I would expect to buy all of the items I would want on my boat AND still have some money
left for fun.
To that stock boat I would add: EPIRB
, PLB, full Bimini
, multiple solar panels
, an aluminum
Solar/wind arch, and some hookah gear
(in addition to any SCUBA or snorkel gear). A good dinghy
with a small lightweight 4 stroke outboard
would be nice too. And, given the number of recent rescues of sailors, one might consider a life raft too, since you are planning on some passages between islands etc. I would also likely add a clear bottom kayak
to assist in my hunt for nice snorkeling areas.
What makes this boat particularly nice for the Caribbean and Bahamas?
The stern of the H30T has a set of lockers and "swim steps" to make entry from the water
easy. This is something I would want if single
handing and spending time snorkeling and scuba diving
places. I would prefer an easy way to get in and out of the boat from the water.
Note: I am suggesting the 1990s version of the 30T model (the "T" has a higher cabin
top in the forward section of the cabin
, giving more headroom).
I will attach a few photos to give you some idea of the boat I am suggesting.