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Old 13-09-2012, 07:31   #46
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

Jeanneau 43DS, ex-charter, 4 years old when I bought her.
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Old 18-09-2012, 09:58   #47
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

My first liveaboard, a 1979 25 O'day. I just started this summer. its just the dog and me. i don't spend much time inside tho.
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Old 18-09-2012, 11:10   #48
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

Semi lived aboard a Columbia 26. Split my time between that and a VW camper bus. It was in Hawaii which made living pretty easy. Lived on a Morgan 35 in Norfolk. A bit challenging over the winter because of condensation. Went from the Morgan to another VW bus while we built our Westsail Kit Boat. Slowly moved aboard as we finished sections of the boats interior. Got used to sawdust in everything for the first year.
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Old 19-09-2012, 00:05   #49
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

I lived aboard my first Catalina 36 for a few years with my girlfriend & dog. It was like an apartment that also sailed.

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Old 19-09-2012, 00:52   #50
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

My first live-aboard was my Broward 108' MY, (prior boat 16' Prindle). The reason I chose this was that it afforded me space to live, all the creature comforts and world-wide cruising range. It was not horrible on fuel and maintenance was easy enough with the manuals as a go to. I was able to learn how to operate her in 1 week-end ... taught by her former Capt. I then spent another month with him as well as an engineer going over everything taking lots of notes and even making video for certain maintenance items. I would tell you not to allow anyone to dissuade you from buying big. I kept her for 5 years and loved every minute especially summers in Alaska ,wintering in LA was not so bad either. In the next few years I would like to go to a 150 ... I have been looking at Sterling's, but who knows ... too early to tell. Happy Hunting ... Go with you're heart, just don't let it override your pocket book.
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Old 19-09-2012, 14:20   #51
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

46ft monohul with 13' beam. Lovely boat - but the 37' we already had wouldv'e been easier to handle. No going back now though!
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Old 26-09-2012, 01:39   #52
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

45ft ketch. 6 months now and no regrets. Set up for office work on board. Comfy for two and room for crew if required. Sometimes wonder if its bigger than needed but other times think its just right.
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Old 28-09-2012, 02:43   #53
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

Lived aboard a Catalina 27 for a couple years. Now have a Challenger 35, which is plenty big since it's just me for now. Bigger boat = more stuff aboard, and I don't sail this boat as often as I did the Catalina.
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Old 28-09-2012, 03:16   #54
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

My first liveaboard was a 25 Catalina Sailboat. Me and my GF lived on it for about 2 years. It had a pop-top and we had it screened all around.
Then we moved onto a Catalina Sailboat for about 6 years. Great boat, but we lost it in Hurricane Katrina. We currently live aboard an Allied 39 Ketch for about 6 years. We are planning to move aboard out 36 Mainship Aft Cabin around the end of the year.
FYI: All of our live-aboard boats were never more than 20 minutes from sailing. We try to keep the boat with an 'open' look and uncluttered and 95% of everthing is secured. I have known some live-aboards that are usually no less than 2 full days from sailing. Needless to say, they never leave the dock.
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Old 28-09-2012, 03:46   #55
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

My first boat was a Warsash One Design (WOD), 26 foot long, 7 foot beam, and a huge cockpit. She had been sailed out from england by a freind, I bought her off him for a very cheap price (thanks Jim) when I was 21.


Eventually I tidied her up, painted her red and lived aboard for nearly 5 years when I was home from working at sea. For a few years I had no engine, then I got a 3.5 hp tohatsu outboard for the dingy and the stern. It made dealing with the Cook Strait tides a bit easier. Eventually I sailed her across the ditch to Tasmania Singlehanded (in the middle of winter.. DUH). She was a magnificent sailing boat, and so beautiful.



But small, I had sitting headroom only...



Still I love that boat, and somehow the space never felt cramped, maybe the big eye level windows and large hatch gave her an open feel that compensated for the small size.

Eventually I decided I wanted to sail to places a 26 foot fiberglass boat designed to race in the Solent shouldn't prudently venture, and bought the 34 foot steel Snow Petrel.

Now I find the urge for more room (the dreaded Six-foot-itis strikes again), maybe it's time this hermit crab changed shells again?
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Old 28-09-2012, 13:55   #56
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

My first liveaboard was a 34 ft riveted steel yawl, very narrow hull. Inside I could reach everything from my seat. I still miss her.
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Old 16-11-2012, 23:47   #57
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

Since the OP mentioned children Ill chime in here.
Technically we are not on her full time yet but soon.
After considering all the pros and cons and our situation we've settled on a beautiful Nantucket Islander 33' a center cockpit aft cabin with walk through head. I was a bit worried the cockpit would be a bit small but it suits us fine and we have back rails that help you feel secure in heavy seas (along with many clip in points)
We are a family of 4 2 young girls but don't see why this boat couldn't handle teens. I guess it's all about what you get used to.
Heck there's family's 2x as big living in smaller accommodations, that are content.
I think a lot is about set up layout and what you are after.
Sailing is a big requirement and everything we do about getting her ready is with a mind to cruising and making passages.
Minimizing and simplifying goes a long way. Getting creative with storage and making sure everything has a secure place and is put away so that you can sail within minutes instead of hours. This I feel is important because it gives a small living place a sense of freedom and grandeur. Otherwise your just at the dock in a small place.
Another important requirement for us was the boat needed a nice interior. For us that meant a bit of a salty character and nice timber and layout.
To us this makes it cosy instead of small.
Other things we are doing is insulation for comfort, plush seating and we will be adding a bulkhead propane fireplace. Newport P-9000 for ambiance and comfort.
A cockpit you can seal up in inclement weather, having good ventilation etc is to me very important more so than a few extra feet.
Anyway that's my two bob.
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Old 17-11-2012, 11:29   #58
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

As a result of a marriage breakup I moved onto my 32 Chris Craft as a temporary measure until I got my life plans back in order.
I found that I liked it so upgraded to a Silverton 38.
Then I bought a dockominium to keep costs down.
Today, over ten years later I live on my 3988 Bayliner MY
400 sq ft below plus aft deck and flybridge.
2 heads, one with a full tub and 2 cabins plus
a full Galley and room to feel good about my space.
I have no intentions of moving to dirt as long as my health allows.
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Old 17-11-2012, 12:35   #59
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

Lived aboard a Coronado 25 for 1 1/2 years then bought Island Queen a 36' Marine Trader,, and loving the room.
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Old 17-11-2012, 13:12   #60
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Re: How Big ( or Small ) Was Your First Liveaboard Boat ?

This is my first live aboard, 30' but.....lazarette takes up 4 1/2' and the cockpit 5 1/2', from the mast forward (8'+3'chain locker) gives good sitting head room on head, any other sitting head room forward of that requires laying against hull....basically only "living head room" is in main cabin 6'4"hr under mid shiphatch & 5'7"hr under cabin top (6 1/2') and galley 6' 2" hr (2'+ 1 1/2' under bridge deck), narrow beam (8'9")and heavy construction (1"planks w/2x3"frames) make things a bit cozy. I have created a surprising amount of space and increased storage space, something that is needed on live aboards but lacks on boats designed for short term use (especially production boats). I am happy and am rebuilding the interior to be big enough for two (eventually I will add an aft cabin which extends under the cockpit.
Suggestions for first live aboard......get what you can afford (in my case I waited until I could afford what I wanted) and be creative about turning a boat into a home ..... there are alot of people that can tell you what works and what doesn't.
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