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Old 07-11-2011, 16:55   #1
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Thumbs up Cost of Upkeep ?

My wife and I have finally come to the point in our lives where we can purchase a boat of our own! One of the many questions we have, is about up'keep. Why specifically, does a large boat, cost more than a smaller boat to keep afloat. I mean they are all similar, right? What are we missing here? We have been reading as much as we can, and can't find anything more than vague references. We are curious about CSY 44's, Union 36's and Vagabond 42's. Our boat will be a live-aboard once we retire. We plan to start out on the Great Lakes at first and then move down to the Carribean and beyond after 5 years. Your input would be greatly appreciated! Thank you.
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Old 07-11-2011, 16:59   #2
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Re: Cost of up'keep?

The larger the boat, the larger the systems. The larger the system the more stuff to go wrong and to replace. A boat with 2 heads vs 1 head. How many lights are installed? How much wiring? How many seacocks? Likely there will be more rigging on a larger boat.

Also when you paint you'll have a lot more surface area than a small boat. When you dock you'll be charged more (its by the foot typically). Etc etc. The list goes on and on but you get the idea.
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Old 07-11-2011, 17:09   #3
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Re: Cost of up'keep?

Everything on a big boat costs more than on a small boat. Just price 1/4 inch line vs. 1/2 inch or 3/4 inch. If you have to re-new the running rigging you'll soon see why big boats cost more to keep up than smaller ones. More oil in the engine, more pumps to look after, more wax for the topsides. Big and small items. If you want a shock check the difference invreplacement cost for sails for a 45 footer and a 30 footer.
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Old 07-11-2011, 17:10   #4
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Re: Cost of up'keep?

We lived on a 30 ft. boat for a couple of years, a 33 ft. boat for 13 years and our current 41 ft. boat for 26 years. Sure, we pay more related to size for some expenses, but the choices we make in marinas, anchoring, do-it-yourself projects, etc. have a far greater effect than the results of LOA.
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Old 07-11-2011, 17:30   #5
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

You know everyone says a larger boat costs more, and they are right.

But it's not really as much as it is made out to be. The extra costs for say a 45' boat compared to a 38' isn't as much. Now if people are comparing to a 30' the costs are going to seem a lot.

larger hull = more bottom paint = so what be real you are talkinga few dollars, larger sails - yes but the mailes traveled are more do more speed and they still weren't that much more



Get the boat that meets your needs. The odds are are that it is going to fall into a range of 3-5 feet and the cost differences between them will plain compared to the bitterness you will live with for cheaping out!


get the largest boat you reasonably afford and handle, you never will wish you had less space
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Old 07-11-2011, 17:48   #6
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

Also depends on condition - starting with a large badly maintained boat will be far more expensive than a smaller boat in good condition.

Easy for folk (not just newbies) to have eyes bigger than wallet........by buying up in size and trading down in condition.
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Old 07-11-2011, 18:20   #7
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

Thanks everyone! Your answers were what we suspected. It's good to have our suspicions verified. This forum is great! We can't believe how quickly you guys all responded. Thanks again for your help.
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Old 07-11-2011, 20:59   #8
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Went from a twin engine gas power to twin diesels the cost of oil, filters, antifreeze & fuel filters was over $300.00 to service. The cost to upgrade components - batteries, battery charger, fridge, carpet & new isinglass cost considerable more than my 32'. 8D vs grp 27 batteries, 60 amp vs 30 amp charger, the amount of material involved to replace carpet or recover cushions. Bigger the boat the bigger or larger the capacity of systems with a resulting increase in cost. I went from a 32' to a 38' if I had went from a 32' to 35' and stayed with gas the increase in annual cost would not of amounted to much. There is always something on a boat to repair or upgrade.
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Old 07-11-2011, 23:54   #9
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

G'day, mates. A couple of other things that impact the cost are how much upkeep "you" personally are capable/willing to do and how you use the vessel (coastal cruising vs. offshore passagemaking for example). Heading into year 14 now, averaging approximately $2,100 a year. It has helped that our Mason was very well cared for with good quality gear when we bought her. Cheers.
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Old 08-11-2011, 00:12   #10
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

A primary winch for a 45' boat will cost twice as much as the primary winch for a 35' boat. This same principle will hold true regarding the cost of sails, blocks, pumps, autopilots, props, engines, anchors and pretty much anything that has to change to accommodate the boat's size. The things that wouldn't get more expensive on a larger boat are relatively few, such as the VHF radio.
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Old 08-11-2011, 02:27   #11
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

You have a point Bash, but if you get a little creative regarding replacing winches, like rebuilding them rather than replacing, then you can minimize the costs. It is not often one has to replace the sail winches, if they are maintained properly. My 53' costs a good deal more to maintain than my 42' used to, but it is a commercial operation as well as a cruising sailing vessel, so I rationalize the costs of doing business. For pure pleasure cruising, the cost difference between 35' and 45' is not that much compared to the extra living space available, and as Don pointed out no one ever wishes for smaller living quarters when living aboard long term.
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Old 08-11-2011, 04:59   #12
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Large Luke.
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Old 08-11-2011, 05:38   #13
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

Good Morning, thanks agiain for all the input guys! No time for chit-chat today, Im off to go vote and then hot foot it to work to get the money to buy our boat.
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Old 08-11-2011, 05:58   #14
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

I looked up the sail cost for new standard off the shelf main and 135% head sail for a 30' and 36' Catalina. The difference was $300.

I never have seen anywhere, but I suspect that the for the same distance traveled that the 36' sails would last a little longer as they would spend less time in the sun. But even if same the cost per miles is very minor.

Cost difference between a Lewmar CST40 and CST46 winch is $400. Don't know offen you would replace a winch.

I just feel that unless the choice is between a real small boat compared to a real large boat, that the upkeep is minor. I would think for most the choices are going to be something like considering a 36' or a 39', or a 42' to a 45'. In which case it really isn't going to matter much to the person buying/considering that sized boat to start with.
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Old 08-11-2011, 07:45   #15
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Re: Cost of Upkeep ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Lucas View Post
Cost difference between a Lewmar CST40 and CST46 winch is $400. Don't know offen you would replace a winch.
You wouldn't use a Lewmar 46 as a primary on a 45' boat. At least I wouldn't. (And I certainly wouldn't use "off the shelf" sails, regardless of boat size.)

In the WM catalog, a chrome Lewmar 40 costs $1155, and a chrome Lewmar 48 costs $2042. Like I said, that's pretty much the scale you'll find between what works, minimally, on 35' and 45' boats.

I've never bought a boat where I haven't either had to replace, upgrade or add winches. Or sails, for that matter. I guess it all depends on how much you plan to sail the boat.
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