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Old 18-06-2008, 08:08   #1
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12 years living aboard

I've lived aboard a sailboat for twelve years. I'm currently at the Anchorage Marina in Baltimore's, Canton actually, Northwest harbor. This is a coop marina where I own my slip.

There are basically two types of liveaboards: Those that do so because they want a quasi Bohemian lifestyle with limited expense and those that just enjoy living aboard and can afford the lifestyle including the expense of maintaining their boat. You can see the vestiges of the first group's boats all up and down the ICW. At least what is still showing above the water and the mud. This is also the group that creates most of the problems for the rest of us.

No, you do not have to be rich to do this but you need to be responsible. I'm a retired wounded disabled vet so I'm certainly not rich but I thought this thing out before I moved aboard. Over the years I've seen enough of the first group screwing things up for the rest of us. If you want to liveaboard a twenty-five foot sailboat with rotten sails, broken engine, and a non-functioning holding tank that's fine. Just don't anchor or tie up next to me.

I hate being so critical but this really isn't the lifestyle for the broke and lazy. If that describes you then get a house. It will appreciate in value, not sink, spill fuel all over the waterway and cause more locations to pass laws against liveaboards and cruisers.

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Old 18-06-2008, 08:22   #2
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Originally Posted by rseymour View Post
I've lived aboard a sailboat for twelve years. I'm currently at the Anchorage Marina in Baltimore's, Canton actually, Northwest harbor. This is a coop marina where I own my slip.

There are basically two types of liveaboards: Those that do so because they want a quasi Bohemian lifestyle with limited expense and those that just enjoy living aboard and can afford the lifestyle including the expense of maintaining their boat. You can see the vestiges of the first group's boats all up and down the ICW. At least what is still showing above the water and the mud. This is also the group that creates most of the problems for the rest of us.

No, you do not have to be rich to do this but you need to be responsible. I'm a retired wounded disabled vet so I'm certainly not rich but I thought this thing out before I moved aboard. Over the years I've seen enough of the first group screwing things up for the rest of us. If you want to liveaboard a twenty-five foot sailboat with rotten sails, broken engine, and a non-functioning holding tank that's fine. Just don't anchor or tie up next to me.

I hate being so critical but this really isn't the lifestyle for the broke and lazy. If that describes you then get a house. It will appreciate in value, not sink, spill fuel all over the waterway and cause more locations to pass laws against liveaboards and cruisers.

Regards,
Ric: I agree with you 100%. It can be a less expensive lifestyle, but it's really not for the lazy. There's a lot of work involved in keeping a boat ship-shape and sea worthy.

I started a thread on this forum called "boat bums" and took a whalloping for my views, which are similar to yours.

I'm a fairly broke, poor sort of guy, but I sure am out there keeping my boat in good shape.

I agree that those "boat bums" are ruining it for everyone leaving derelicts to be fished out by the state. This will only lead to more laws against boating and more importantly, against anchoring.

Ok... better shut up before I get too passionate. ha ha
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:23   #3
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Interesting editorial, Ric! Although, I think homeowners would object to your suggesting that the sort of people that you're concerned about buy a home in their neighborhood. Bad neighbors are bad neighbors, on the water, or on land. The zoning regulations do seem to work a bit more effectively than regulating live-aboard boaters, though.

Welcome to the Forum! Hope you enjoy it.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:26   #4
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Interesting subject.
I've sadly yet to experience US cruising myself, but was confused a year back when some very respectably pals (he ex Navy Pilot she ex film production) found they were treated like trailor trash when visiting Florida on their yacht.
Can now see where the bad attitudes came from.
A shame.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:29   #5
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There's a solution to that, John. Come to the Chesapeake Bay. Thousands of miles of shoreline to cruise, and the natives are friendly!
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:36   #6
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There's a solution to that, John. Come to the Chesapeake Bay. Thousands of miles of shoreline to cruise, and the natives are friendly!

We were anchored on Bodkin creek for a couple days. A home owner called the police to have us removed. The nice policeman indicated to the homeowner that there was nothing to be done. We aren't the prettiestbiggestsexiest boat going. But I do like to keep her looking nice.

I guess I was blocking his view of the ducks on the other side of the creek.
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:45   #7
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I agree with you Ric,
Here in the California Delta we have those that spend months, anchored out until their boat goes down and then they find another and move a little further down the river..
A new law has been passed in the delta that is geared to these boats, and states that you can only anchor out for a period of 2 weeks and then you have to show proof of having your tanks emptied, If so, you can spend another 2 weeks without any problem..
I think this is the only way they can curb the problem here as not many have the funds to keep up with the laws.
The bad side to it, it also limmits those of us that abide by the laws but would still anchor out for long periods of time...
Heres a couple pictures of those that have given up their homes and walked away...........
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Old 18-06-2008, 08:56   #8
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If you want to liveaboard a twenty-five foot sailboat with rotten sails, broken engine, and a non-functioning holding tank that's fine. Just don't anchor or tie up next to me.
Liveaboard communities could do a lot to self regulate this. I agree 100% BTW.

Living in today's "planned" communities the homeowner's association is in your panties on everything. All in the name of "property value."

There is something to be said about the freedom of living aboard and I moved away from the planned community on purpose because some of those folks are crazy.

But! Living on broken down boats makes the landies angry...
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Old 19-06-2008, 07:34   #9
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From what i have seen here in the UK most of that stuff would get you in big trouble with either the marina or the law (possibly both). I just don't get letting your home run down into a dump (than again that was one of the reasons I left and am divorced from the ex wife, among many).

My wife (the admiral, who IS interested in live aboard and long distance sailing), also realizes that it A LOT of WORK to keep a B.O.A.T. running in it's best shape. Also being the daughter of a Industrial desiel mechanic who has two belt buckles from Detroit Desiel for design upgrades (he really wishes he would have gotten either his ME or EE when younger but the level he is at now in the industry it doesn't really pay to go back and get them in his view) you learn that PMCS (Preventative Checks Maintenance & Services) are really worth it. Heck you need to do that when just living on land let alone a boat.

Michael
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