Hi y'all, been reading threads on this forum for a while but this is my first time posting
So i've been planning to take a few years off work...and everything for a while now. My plan is to take a power/sail boat back and forth from maine
to the bahamas
for the next couple of years. Ideally i would head
towards the bahamas
at/near the end of hurricane
season and then head
back up to maine
(with some stops in FL, MD, DE, NJ to visit family
and friends) around May/June then repeat. From my understanding this is a common practice for some cruisers. During this time i will have a little bit of savings (most of my savings i have after paying of debt will go to buying
a used boat
and repairing said boat) that i'll be budgeting out for the duration, but i'll have a fixed income
of roughly $1000 a month, though i have some skills to find some small work here and there, id prefer to make my plans based on what i know for certain. I'll give a little background on myself then explain the advantages/disadvantages i've researched between power and sailboats.
I’m 30 years old, single
, 6’4, 250lbs and very wide in the shoulders/frame. I've always been a wanderer of sorts ...family calls me a gypsy
, i've lived in over 15 states since leaving the military most of them alone (i like solitude). I prefer the minimalist approach to living, though i do enjoy the luxuries that come with our current
technology infused culture, i'm not govern by it. Some of the best times in my life were when i lived in a cabin
in WA for 6 months, and did gardening, fishing
and hunting for food
. limited electricity (solar panels) and no running water
(had to carry from river then boil and purify it). However, this didn't suit my wandering desire, thus i moved. I've been very interested in living aboard
a boat for a while for the shear fact that if i want to leave...i just up anchor
and go….very appealing to me.
I’ve been tinkering with this idea for about a year. And decided that i'll take the plunge once i have my debt paid off. So my debt is just about paid off and i have a bit of savings to spend on a used boat
and to repair it to get it sea worthy. Im looking for a power/sail boat in the 15-25k price
range at a max of 40ft or under and i figured it will take about 15k to get it repaired to be sea worthy. But im very conflicted about which type of boat to get….very limited experience with boats. Sailing sound fantastic, user the wind
to sail around and motor
here and there when needed (mooring, and docking). Where as with a power boat
i could slow troll (max speed of the hull/ type of hull
displacement) up and down the coast and only really burning fuel
(i’m not trying to start a discussion about limited fossil fuel
..etc). Either way, i would have no set agenda nor schedule other than weather
to abide by.
At the current
moment i'm leaning towards powerboats, for a few reasons. they are easy to shorthand, have more space...and head-room. When i go on this trip, the boat will be my home, and being able to relax once and a while...and stand straight up would be very desireable for me( but not a deal breaker). I have a bit of knowledge about engines(mostly diesel
trucks) and i think i'll be able to do a handful of the maintenance/ troubleshooting myself. I've worked with fiberglass repairs
before and think i can manage small basic repairs
. Im very good with electronics
. But over all the main draw is i have more room for my largeness.
The downside to powerboats that i see is , gas/ diesel
. If my plan is to go back and forth from Maine to Bahamas that about 1400nm one way (give or take a few hundred, depending on stops) so a yearly trip of about 3000nm on a powerboat running 1 of the 2 engines (alternating) at hull speed
that's about 2-4nmpg (depending on weather
, waves, wind
size etc) that's about $6000 a year in fuel alone.this is not including larger engine maintenance
that i can't fix. Then there is typical boat maintenance
..painting, scrubbing etc. though most of this i can handle (maybe not as well as a professional but hey it will get done). The other problem is that powerboats typically have a lot of gadgets on board that draw a lot of power, though i can remedy this by disabling those things i truly don't need or packing them up and throwing them in storage
Then there are sailboats, being able to use the wind as my fuel would save money
(upfront). The challenge of navigating with wind in different situations. Silence… no engine rumbling in the deep (unless there no wind, mooring
, or docking). And just the idea of blowing through the waves in a sailboat is very ...majestic imo.
The drawbacks to a sailboat are, you're kinda SOL if you in a wind deadzone or going counter to your heading.(again i don't know too much about sailing, i've only played around a on a small dingy as a kid) Sailboats in the length im looking for are typically very cramped inside for a person of my stature (most sailboats under 40ft only have 6’3 head-room). And in comparison to to powerboats they seem to be harder to shorthand, and if any of the rigging/ sail breaks underway, it gonna be a lot harder for me to try and repair(my limited knowledge). Last but not least is the draw on sailboats with a keel
will make it harder to park in shallower water
/ near reefs
If i was a millionaire or something i would just get a cat sailboat like a leo+rob with an autohelm
and be done, alas, i'm not. I know some people just motor
around on their sailboats and never really use the sails
, nice idea, but the fuel storage
on these boats makes that pretty impractical for my overall desire. And also i want to be able to do some longer trips through the night. Where as if i go pretty slow 5-7 knots in a powerboat, i've read that people can get 1000+nm out of their tank (depending on size and engine etc) and about $1500 to fill the tank.
Before i commit to anything i plan on taking classes
in sailing / marine
diesel repair, and getting all the paperwork of licence and insurance
squared away. As far as monthly expenses, im just gonna have the In-reach to send messages and updated information, ill just free wifi
when i go on land to check emails, send messages and upload videos.
In short i just have a feeling that this is what i need to do, if i fail no biggy, dust myself off and move on. I feel like i need to live for myself before i get forced to settle down....
So my questions are:
With my projected plan above, would a power/sailboat be possible on said fixed income
What type of power/sailboat would be good for this undertaking?
What type of powerboat/ engine do you have and what's your nmpg? And fuel tank
size & cost to fill?
What are the typical costs with mooring
/ gunkholing or off the hook?
What type of sailboat would be good for this undertaking?
What type of sailboat do you have? What are some maintenance that i would need to learn about before taking off?
What toys / gadgets would be good for solo journey(IE: solar panels
What other concerns should i be contemplating and planning for?
***general question***if you're off the hook and take your dingy inland to get supplies, how do you secure it and where?
I forgot half of the questions i had cause when i submitted this the first time, it logged me out and i lost
everything i typed