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Old 25-07-2016, 03:55   #46
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Talking Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
I think that is truthfully very much key to how much does it cost. It doesn't cost much to sit on anchor never going anywhere and just doing enough maintenance to keep her from sinking. Many do and I am not judging them, but if you plan on traveling a lot and keeping the boat seaworthy, then that is going to cost a lot more.
It almost gets to "what is a cruiser" after a couple of years on this forum, I think I have finally defined what a cruiser is, it's a state of mind possibly, not how many thousands of miles you put under the keel last year, nor how many oceans you have crossed.

I have not done it, but cannot see if the location is carefully chosen, why one could not live aboard comfortably on the amount of money you will have. Although I think location is very important. I don't know how SC does it, but I would assume Zee for instance can have a better standard of living for less money, based on location.

Personally I would stay away from the small boats, I think a mid 30's boat cost little more, somebody said something about a W32,
I think you could do far worse than a W32 myself.

You are on these disabilities, what is your physical condition, how much manual labor, climbing into and out of a dinghy hauling water jugs type of work can you handle?


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Sorry, haven't figured how to isolate a sentence to quote, so just to add , disabilities? I'm sure most of us have them. Disability comes in many forms, and I can attest, ( I managed an aneurysm, stroke,rehab to walk, talk although the talking never left despite a jaw muscle removal ) There is some brain stuff and a boat can handle all sorts. I'm learning it becomes questionable to ones' ability physically but I suggest get one more person for humanpower. And seriously , being short on that, the disbled one can step up. Just gotta try.
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Old 25-07-2016, 04:07   #47
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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I hope I won't be accused of disloyalty to CF for this! OP might like to visit Sailfar.net, mostly small boat people.
Second vote for above... Not nearly as many "discussions" in my experience.


Raised 3 kids on a 40' that was 20 years old when I bought her. Kept that boat for near 30 years. Large, comfortable, sailed and slept well. When the kids grew up and I got older, big boat got to be too much to single hand, and sure didn't need the space. Tried "swallowing the anchor" sold the Escape and moved ashore. Lasted 13 months... Now living aboard a 25, and more than happy with it. Overbuilt rig and another 45 year old hull.

Tight for your average new cruiser. Comfy for me. Can reach the coffee pot with out getting up from the salon table. Cheap outboard kicker (original design includes motor well in lazarette) means more room and less weight. Standing and running rig, half the cost even with being overbuilt. Ground tackle same thing. Transient slips almost 40% less. Living on VA pension and average around 1000 miles a year under the keel.

A boat is a hole in the water you throw money into... Bigger the boat, bigger the hole.
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Old 25-07-2016, 07:34   #48
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

Might I also suggest that you look at the Wharram designs? They are Spartan and can be had in your price range. The Corsair trimarans are also wonderful Bahamian boats and excellent sailors. There are so many ways to skin a cat...excuse the pun.

Rock on, Buddy. In the end it does not matter what others think. If you have the will...bend it like Beckham...smile. It is one life...it is your life...do with it what you want. No regrets....just live
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Old 25-07-2016, 07:52   #49
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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I'm glad I didn't start a new thread then.

We sold our house in March and moved into an RV full time. And we've been discussing selling the RV and moving aboard in the next year or two.

We'd like a blue water boat, something that we could cruise from the Texas Gulf Coast to the carribbean etc. But we aren't sure if we'd enjoy the confines of a monohull sailboat, as much as we would a motor yacht or trawler. So we're stuck between sail or power.

There's plenty of monohull boats in our price range, but they all have the same layouts. Plus there's the added adventure of trying to get water time on each.

Getting experience isn't cheap by any means. Charter's demand a premium price.


In all honesty if that is your ambitions, you may not have need of a "Blue Water boat"
I'd be in a trawler myself if it weren't for this nagging dream that I want to see the South Pacific, but for your stated desire, I think it would be hard to beat a mid 30's or maybe 40' trawler, they have more room than you might think, a trawler will have more room in it than the same length sailboat. And if it is a true trawler hull with smaller engine and you decide you can live with 7 kts or so, it will burn a surprisingly small amount of fuel, it's been argued over and over, but I suspicion that average operating costs for a 40' trawler may be less than for a 40' sailboat.
I'm going to spend close to $20K next year replacing rigging, chainplates etc., stuff trawlers don't have, would take a long time to burn an extra $20K of fuel in an efficient trawler

What size RV? We lived in a 36' fifth wheel for a little over a year with two kids while we were rehabbing the house, I hope it was a good preview, we were comfortable, but a fifth wheel with triple slides isn't small really.


I couldn't bring myself to Charter, just too much money, gone from my perspective. It may be foolish, but I just committed and bought the boat, originally it was to be a starter boat, to see if we liked the lifestyle and if we did, sell it and buy a larger, newer, better equipped boat.
But after we had her for awhile, we decided we didn't need larger, or newer and I could equip this one
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Old 25-07-2016, 08:09   #50
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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I tried a search for posts about living aboard on smaller boats ... what, say 32 feet or smaller.

The considerations and costs are totally different than boats(sail or power), in the 35+ feet range and even moreso in the 40+feet range.
20-30 feet is generally a one-person habitat ... sometimes two ... rarely more.
I'm positive I've read many threads here about smaller boats and budgets, including ones very closely related by you.

Just what "considerations" are you talking about? Pretty much budget is the only consideration and I would bet boat size is mostly about initial purchase budget. After all I don't believe I've even read a thread here that goes "I've got $250k for boat purchase and am looking for boat choices in the used 30-32' range".
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Old 25-07-2016, 08:28   #51
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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Pretty much budget is the only consideration and I would bet boat size is mostly about initial purchase budget. After all I don't believe I've even read a thread here that goes "I've got $250k for boat purchase and am looking for boat choices in the used 30-32' range".
It would make sense though to buy a smaller, cheaper sailboat first regardless of budget if you are unsure sailing, cruising, or being a liveaboard is for you.

Otherwise, you could end up with lots of money tied up in something you don't use or use very little.
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Old 25-07-2016, 10:33   #52
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

Just from my own experience of living aboard a 'small' sailboat. I loved the simplicity and efficiency of living on a Pearson Triton (28.5' Alberg full keel). What a great stable, sea-worthy vessel, which was great insurance for living aboard. Not much room inside, but for a single person she could carry all the necessities.
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Old 25-07-2016, 11:06   #53
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

KatieandJessieonaboat.com is the story of two young (21-23) girls doing the American Great Loop on a Cal 2-27.

Lots of pictures and well-written blogs. Also sold me on never having pets aboard by seeing how much extra hassle they add for these two!

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Old 25-07-2016, 11:54   #54
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

I see the OP already has a Bristol 29. All these discussions of what, where etc seem pretty moot. Ill bet hes thinking more of tips for living on the boat he already has more comfortably?
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Old 25-07-2016, 21:02   #55
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

As SeaDreaming sez: Tips for the day-to-day practicalities. The OP's boat is in the bag, and the budget is what it is, apparently.

Alongside, it's no biggie really. All you have to learn, and adapt to, is that the effective floor area of you "condo" is, say 9 x 6 feet, and that you can't pass your companion in the saloon unless he/she sits down in the dinette.

It's all about learning to bake bread when the surface you have to knead the dough on is 12" x 12", and you do it by hand cos there's nowhere to stow the MixMaster. It's all about learning that you brush you teeth in a 1/4 cup of water in a drinking cup, cos there is only 30 gallons total in the tank and you've already use 25 of that. And you let your beard grow cos there's no hot water for shaving. It's all about learning that, when alongside, you can't even take a whizz in the heads, cos you can't pump while you're alongside, and the "colostomy bag" is already full. As for #2s you walk half a mile to the shore-side loo. At 0330 hours!

It's all about learning that when on passage and you are sailing well, you walk on the furniture, and hang on with your hands - plus your prehensile tail, if you have one. It's about learning that you gotta make like a dog. On deck, when on passage, you should never be off leash. If you need to go forward just sit and whimper till your master puts the leash on you.

There is nothing difficult about living aboard. It's just different.

That why we are keeping our condo. That's why we bought a van as a pressie for the boat. She's always demanding that we haul something or other around for her. That's why I'm not gonna give up my rented workshop. There is NO WAY you can sit aboard and whittle in your lap the sorts of things "upgrading" demands.

So we took the $1.2K/month OCCUPANCY costs we had before TrentePieds came charging into our lives, bone in her teeth, and split it two ways: 6 hunnertbux for the keeping of the Condo, and the other six hunnert bux for the keeping of TrentePieds.

I'm a tad older than the OP. My "family income" will never increase now, but the LIVING expenses will. In this 'ere colony, we've seen food costs go up about 10% in the last year alone. Pension payouts are "blended payments" that draw in part on the residual capital each month. Therefore, eventually there will be no more monthly payouts. 'Cept here, in this 'ere socialist colony where towards the end, 'er Brittanic Majesty in Right of Canada, eventually lets a couple have a "guaranteed income" ("a rose by any other name...") of a bit over a coupla thou a month, until the final bugle blows.

When you think about living aboard, think about the fact that rising food costs are an inexorable trend, and think about two other things: As you grow older you'll be less and less able to compensate for rising costs by taking casual employment, and you'll be less and less tolerant of the constraints of living aboard. Dockmates will begin to worry about the old geezer who can barely keep his balance when walking on the floats. There was one positing here, a day or two ago, about precisely that. We have a geezer like that in our marina. Even I worry about him, although I'm ten years 'is senior.

So strike while the iron is hot. Go live aboard :-)!

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Old 03-08-2016, 07:09   #56
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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Boat size does make a difference... I think it is just the right balance in size, weight, and cost to maintain for me. I'll know better when I finally get it hauled out and start my refit.

I think you’ve hit it, “balance…” What works for one may not be comfortable for another or visa versa, but a discussion helps to at least weigh the options. In previous lives I lived aboard a 48FT deck-and-a-half power boat and a 15-ton ketch although either/both had all the proper box checked the balance turned out all wrong for me, I grew to regret both (never was sure who the skipper was, but I can tell you who the maintenance officer was). For me I moved smaller, then smaller still.

I guess my balance point now is that I need standing headroom, a reasonably easy motion, reasonably water tight, but well ventilated… I like the farkles as well as the next person, but I’ve gotten to the point (embarrassingly close to 70) that gadgets and gizmos that are smarter than me don’t add much to my day, and good mooring lines and ground tackle does. I’m not sure I’ll ever live aboard full-time again, at least not before I retire, but I do know I can be pretty content on a 24-footer as long as it’s the right one (for me). Am thinking about redoing my cabin, so, what is “truly necessary” is on my mind at the moment.
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Old 03-08-2016, 07:52   #57
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

Yep.

And it all changes with where you are too: it is so easy to live aboard a 20 footer anchored in the West Indies. But what is life aboard a 20 footer docked in Alaska like?

I bet it must be nothing like!

Small boats / small budgets ARE easier and more fun in the tropics.

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Old 03-08-2016, 09:59   #58
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

I had a great fun and comfortable living in a 30 footer. 30-32 is a great size in my mind, easy handling and upkeep, roomy enough for a shower, galley etc. My 26 felt like camping. My 30 not camping. Some 26 would not feel like camping I think.


I once considered buying a 'not so pretty' Westsail 32 or similar, and sailing it to OZ. Then just giving it away there and flying back! It actually would have been cheaper than the Catamaran I bought instead.
To each his own but there is a lot of fun to be had on a smaller boat. What do you really get after 32 feet or so? at maybe 40 feet you get another head. Do you really need another head in a space that small? Does a 40 ft RV have 2 heads? even though it is roomier than a 40 ft sailboat...no. At 45+ feet you may get two double berths.
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Old 03-08-2016, 10:11   #59
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

One of the problems I have with the medium (40-50') boats is that builders put 2 small heads in them instead of making one really good head.
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Old 03-08-2016, 10:15   #60
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Re: Small Budget-Small Boat Liveaboard

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One of the problems I have with the medium (40-50') boats is that builders put 2 small heads in them instead of making one really good head.
That is true from a general layout problem...but I can tell you it is sure nice to have a second head to use while one is down for repair! Keeping two heads going with 4 people living aboard is like trying to keep two politicians answering the questions in a debate...both of course or full of Sh$!
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