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Old 07-07-2016, 07:09   #1
RKO
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Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Here it is in a nutshell: I have a Columbia 8.7 with a 10 foot beam In reasonably good shape
I'm a single male used to a home, but I am comfortable in small spaces.
Is it foolish for me to think I can use this boat as a live aboard? I have no thought that I am going to take any large ocean passages. I plan to bop around the coast of Florida mostly in the keys With the occasional Jaunt to a nearby island once I am comfortable doing that.
I will have about $3000 a month to live on.
It seems doable to me, but I keep reading posts here that indicates that anything under 40 feet is ridiculous to try to live aboard.
I'm interested in your honest opinion.
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Old 07-07-2016, 07:30   #2
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

It depends on what you mean "live". For some a boat is a floating condo that contains their land based life style. Everyone has their own ideas of how much stuff living takes.
Me, I prefer to minimize everything. Less choices mean less anxiety and less to care for and less to keep track of. I am happiest when I an not losing stuff and buying duplicates of the lost stuff. My boyfriend says I can live in a shoe box.
28 feet isnt particularly small, just smaller than others might chose. But many choose smaller.
Edited: my dimensions. I shoulnt post at work!
I guess you have to decide how much stuff you feel you need.
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Old 07-07-2016, 07:33   #3
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

We basically live aboard a 35 Hughes for the summer months. One week it is two adults, and the next week is two adults and two kids (10 and 3). No problem. No complaints either. We're all very happy.
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:08   #4
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Thanks. I don't need stuff. At home I am a chronic thrower away of things.
I think this will work fine. I have a fair sized house but basically live In one room of it, with occasional excursions to the fridge or bathroom.
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:09   #5
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Additionally, I've had a larger boat, 36 feet. I much prefer to sail the smaller boat with a tiller to a larger one with a wheel.
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:32   #6
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Sitting in the cockpit of my Cabot 36 with the ICW as my backyard feels larger than the 900 sq ft apartment I moved out of. As I spend most of my relaxing time around the boat sitting in the cockpit I don't feel cramped. For me size below mostly and feeling cramped is based on how much stuff you own. I might be cramped on your boat because I have stuff for my hobbies (photography, drone, scuba stuff etc) but if I didn't have that stuff then it probably wouldn't be an issue.

Disclaimer - I've learned to live small as a lifestyle choice, I'd probably have a harder time if I was to go straight from my previous life (with house full of furniture, storage unit filled with stuff etc) to a small boat.
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:32   #7
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKO View Post
Thanks. I don't need stuff. At home I am a chronic thrower away of things.
I think this will work fine. I have a fair sized house but basically live In one room of it, with occasional excursions to the fridge or bathroom.
Exactly. Actual "living" space is, for most of us, quite small. The stuff you store simply needs to be used rather than "saved". With the exception of boat repair materials and spares, life does not take up room. After that, biggest concern is simply reapplying when consumables run low. Not a big issue for one!
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:37   #8
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Quote:
Originally Posted by RKO View Post
Here it is in a nutshell: I have a Columbia 8.7 with a 10 foot beam

(...)

It seems doable to me, but I keep reading posts here that indicates that anything under 40 feet is ridiculous to try to live aboard.
I'm interested in your honest opinion.
We have an 8 meter long (26ft), 9 feet wide boat.

Have been living aboard and sailing the world since 2003. Well over 40k miles sailed, lived in 3 different countries and climates meanwhile.

Just get onboard of what you have and live it for half a year or so, then decide it for yourself if the boat is too small or too big for you. Stepping up is damn simple - countless boats for sale at mickey mouse prices these days.

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Old 07-07-2016, 08:40   #9
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Sure you can live on it. it just takes some getting used to and adjusting how best to do things. Are you working? It's a bit of a pain getting ready for work living on a small boat sometimes.
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Old 07-07-2016, 08:43   #10
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Your home is where your heart is.

It is fine to have all the life garbage in a huge floating condo but then why live aboard at all? Get a waterfront cabana and skip the boat part ;-)

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Old 07-07-2016, 08:45   #11
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

What's foolish would be not giving it a try.....
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Old 07-07-2016, 09:20   #12
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

It can certainly be done. Many do it.


It's just a question of if you will be happy. (we can't answer that for you)


With a $3k/month budget, you should be able to mix in plenty of marina time which really helps if you feel trapped on the boat. So much easier to just step off.
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Old 07-07-2016, 09:30   #13
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

The good part is that I won't have to work. I'm retiring on September 1 and since I was a government employee for many years, the $3000 is actually a fixed benefit pension. So as long as the pension system doesn't collapse, I should be able to count on that much. If I think I need a little more money, I may take a short term pick up job for a while. But I won't have to rely on working a job daily.
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Old 07-07-2016, 09:31   #14
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Oh, no significant debt and NO BOAT PAYMENTS!
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Old 07-07-2016, 09:58   #15
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Re: Small boat. Is this a foolish idea?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SV THIRD DAY View Post
What's foolish would be not giving it a try.....
What Rich said.
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