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Old 04-12-2011, 14:55   #16
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

Lived aboard most of the last year now, in La Paz. Biggest changes from shore are finding a place for everything, and making sure it goes back there immediately after use, or chaos expands quickly. I use a 1 gal. brita dispenser w/filter for water and have not had a problem. Also, one quickly learns that a number of things on a boat are in finite quantities and conservation is a must, water, fuel, electricity, and food if away from civilization. If you live in the north, there will be more severe adjustments for heat and transport in the winter if on a mooring.

It is lovely most days aboard. Good luck and enjoy.
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Old 04-12-2011, 15:18   #17
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Re: Preparing yourself for a liveaboard lifestyle

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Originally Posted by Dano72 View Post

There are two things you should remember, the Delta Anchor is the best anchor ever made and you should always, always carry a machine gun or 2 with you when sailing....

If you've missed the humor then you need to read more forums!
Great thread drift!! Anchors and guns in the same sentence! I think you have a new record. Well played.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:21   #18
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

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Originally Posted by bajabound View Post
Stumbled upon this fantastic site recently and have been fervently reading through the threads. So many wonderful seasoned sailors and excellent advice, and an app to boot?!? I'm in a state of pure bliss!

I am currently starting preparation for a complete lifestyle change, going from attic of a house living to liveaboard mooring or on the hook sailboat living.

So many things to think about and be prepared for!!

So...to prepare myself for all the changes, I'm making a list of them all and going to start getting used to them one at a time. Like....

-having only 10% of the clothes and shoes I have now (I'm a woman, this will be an emotional goodbye!)

-get used to drinking my coffee black (no refrigeration so no milk)

-dog will have to be trained to relieve herself on places other than grass (astroturf?)

-no more long showers or baths (maybe I'll wait until I've given up my apartment before I start doing that one)

Ones to add to my list?

First of all, "No refrigeration" does not mean "no milk." You can buy boxed milk in the grocery store. It does not have to be refrigerated.

In addition, your boat surely has an ice box? I joined a sailing club and they have ... free ice ... for members. I love at a dock, but I also have no refrigeration, but I always have milk.

Here's how I approached the clothes thing -- but then, I am retired.

I put three large plastic bins in the living room (for easy sorting). I filled them with clothes. For two months until I moved aboard, I only allowed myself to wear clothes from those boxes (including shoes). If I wanted to wear something not in the boxes, I had to take something out of a box.

I put a cooler in the kitchen and stopped using the refrigerator. Except for the fact that I had to drive to the club to pick up the ice, which is just a short walk now, it really wasn't a problem.

But even if that isn't available, you can look into the boxed milk. Maybe you can't have it every day, but plan your cooking so you use up the milk you don't use in your coffee that night in your cooking. But if I were you, I would find an economical way to get ice. I actually don't get ice at the club now; the marina I live at ALSO provides free ice.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:25   #19
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Re: Preparing yourself for a liveaboard lifestyle

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If you look for problems or reasons not to do something.... they're there....
Its not hard....
Problems does not equal "reasons not to do something." Problems can be solved. I love living aboard. I would not have had the phenomenal experiences I had with bioluminescence last summer. I wouldn't have seen dolphins coming into the marina in the middle of the night hunting -- dolphins so smart that they smacked the RUDDERS of boats to move them out of the way.

You love on the hook and stay alert, and depending on where you are, you're likely to see sea turtles, manta rays, whale sharks and maybe even sunfish.

Have a backup plan in case you don't like it, and make sure you know the local waters well enough to know where you can go for more sheltered waters if a big storm is coming your way.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:26   #20
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Re: Preparing yourself for a liveaboard lifestyle

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Originally Posted by Dano72 View Post
A few weeks later during a haul out I found out that the stuffing box was tightened almost all the way and it needed repacking.
Exactly what happened to me
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:27   #21
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Re: Preparing yourself for a liveaboard lifestyle

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As one with limited experience, I believe the biggest issue with this life style is water. No fresh water, no coffee. Depending upon where you are anchored, or where the mooring field is located, a watermaker will work fine. But many places near civilization come with lousy water quality that will muck up the watermaker. This then requires lugging bottles of the fresh stuff from shore. Not fun. I'd like to hear about how this problem is solved by the more experienced liveaboards.

Go into any public marina, and in Florida, they will pump you out for free. They would probably let you fill your water tanks as well.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:29   #22
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

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Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
We live aboard, have a fridge and freezer, hot showers every day, wash clothes on board etc etc. We live on the anchor, avoid marina's. you don't have to give up everything..

No, you don't have to give up everything, but you must have some kind of dependable solar or wind power generators. Not everyone has the money or skills to install these things and/or maintain them.

Living aboard (even in a marina) will cause changes in how you eat.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:36   #23
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

IMO installing some solar panels and a regulator doesn't call for a very high skill level. Agree they aren't cheap though, but prices are improving.
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:41   #24
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

Good coffee and bottled wine (In Australia we have OK wine casks as well as good bottled wine) are the stuff of life. I have a Bellman stovetop coffee maker that sits on the gas and does a decent expresso and the wand froths UHT (boxed) long life skinny milk. The coffee is just like ones I pay $4 for ashore and impresses guests when we have them over for breakfast. Better than cappuchino's that I made on a $2000 coffee machine on a boat I was working on off Broome (Western Australia). I have two fridges on 37 foot Charon - but even so, would use small UHT boxes if I didn't have them. No coffee - no happy day!!! I can cellar several dozen boxes of decent wine as my bilges have voluminous spaces and the weight helps keep the boat stiff when I sail. I have about a dozen pairs of shoes and boots aboard and last year counted over 30 caps and hats (even my graduation mortar board lives aboard!) before removing most of them ashore. Hot shower every second day, warm central heating (In Tasmania a must - but now in Queensland!), a hanging wardrobe with way too many clothes (I only wear shorts and T shirts now). Four metres of library shelf space (I know people who have no books - Sad!) and a galley and stores for over 6 weeks. Water is tight - but we live happily on 20 liters a day and carry 350 liters. I live a life of complete luxury afloat!
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:42   #25
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

Why give up shoes?
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:45   #26
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

More info on the Bellman. I have the model with the guage and bought it online. It seems to be widely available.

Sorrentina Coffee Online - Bellman Stainless Stove Top Coffee Maker CX25P

R
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Old 04-12-2011, 16:57   #27
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

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Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
IMO installing some solar panels and a regulator doesn't call for a very high skill level. Agree they aren't cheap though, but prices are improving.

I live aboard my boat, and I do NOT have the skills to install these things, and to maintain the solar panels. I have a good friend who lives on the hook with solar panels. He is constantly having to repair one of the three panels. He had to design and place the supporting brackets for them. He's had people accidentally disconnect the panels while they were on his boat, sometimes damaging the connections.

He has the skill to do these things, and I do not. I also know what he went through installing his refrigeration, and I know that I do not have those skills.

It may not seem like a lot of skills to you, but it can EASILY be more than some given individual has. I'm trying to help this person out, having recently gone through the same life style change and facing the same challenges she will be facing. I know a LOT of women who would not have the skills needed. It has been my experience that when someone does something on my boat I'm not capable of doing, they are drawing on years of experience with tools, electrical, etc. that I don't have.

I'm not trying to argue with you here, but having just gone through this process, I know that it's really important to be honest with yourself about what you can and cannot do.
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Old 04-12-2011, 17:01   #28
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

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Originally Posted by Peter Colgate View Post
Why give up shoes?
Uh ... who said to give up ALL shoes? Are you familiar with women's shoes? Many of them are just completely inappropriate on board. Remember the scene from "Captain Ron" when the woman first tries to walk around the boat in her gorgeous shoes?

What I do is carry such clothes off the boat and then put them on. However, storage is a very real issue. Shoes love to "go moldy" if they're not stored well on board. By the way, you can buy silica gel packets on line, but it is then another thing to keep track of, because periodically they have to be swapped out, using new ones while the old ones dry out.

Living aboard takes more time and effort even though there's less to "clean" than in an apartment, condo or home.

Storage can be a real issue. I use my aft berth area for storage, but the storage blocks access to the steering mechanisms. When I broke my rudder, the resulting complications meant that all that storage had to come into the main cabin. It was very cramped for quite some time.
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Old 04-12-2011, 17:04   #29
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

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Originally Posted by speakeasy View Post
Lived aboard most of the last year now, in La Paz. Biggest changes from shore are finding a place for everything, and making sure it goes back there immediately after use, or chaos expands quickly. I use a 1 gal. brita dispenser w/filter for water and have not had a problem. Also, one quickly learns that a number of things on a boat are in finite quantities and conservation is a must, water, fuel, electricity, and food if away from civilization. If you live in the north, there will be more severe adjustments for heat and transport in the winter if on a mooring.

It is lovely most days aboard. Good luck and enjoy.

This is all true.

Regarding storage, I highly recommend a P-touch label maker. I used it outside to label my line clutches, my reefing and toppin'lift lines on the boom, etc. But inside I have actually labeled where things go.

If I have someone on my boat who has a congenital inability to put things back where they found them I put a milk carton out and just have them put anything they use in the milk carton and I put it away later. But you as the boat owner have to consider that you may not be able to store all "like" things away. I discovered that under the galley sink is the best place for engine oil, because ... it's right next to the engine. You really don't need people moving those things to a "better place." I keep my laundry detergent in the car.
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Old 04-12-2011, 17:08   #30
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Re: Preparing Yourself for a Liveaboard Lifestyle

Which Vancouver, BC or WA?

Consider getting a clothes wringer, set you back $125-150 but makes doing clothes a lot easier.
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