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Old 30-12-2012, 16:39   #1
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The Geriatric Vessel

My wife and I have been living aboard fulltime and cruising sailboats for more than forty years. Now in our mid-sixties we are planning ahead for a new phase. We're thinking of spending our seventies within a smaller cruising range and cruising up some rivers under those low bridges that have always been out of our reach. Our homeport has been the Saint Johns River in NE Florida, but many miles of good hurricane protection has never been available with our high sailboat masts. We are also planning on easier access and mobility in our seventies. I would favor a single diesel, but I would accept small twins or even outboards. Our hope is to find something with a single deck from 34 to 38 feet. I don't see any function in height with levels above. Simple will suit. I see this boat in my head and a Willard best matches my image, but I'm keeping a very open mind. I'd even check out those French/Canadian Canal boats or......yes, I can say the word....houseboat, whew! That was tough to type! I've always been strong with long term plans and expect to make the move in 4 ot 5 years. What are some of your thoughts?
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Old 30-12-2012, 16:47   #2
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

How about a Nordhavn 40 or Krogan 42?
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Old 30-12-2012, 16:54   #3
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

The Mainship Pilot series is what I am looking at to replace Bluestocking. Close to your criteria.
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Old 30-12-2012, 17:09   #4
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For what you describe, in my mind the great harbor trawlers

http://www.greatharbourtrawlers.com

Are ideally suited.
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Old 30-12-2012, 17:22   #5
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

I saw many of all different types while I was coming down the ICW.
There's no reason why a change to a power boat can't be acceptable.
There's lots too that have a single miserly engine and capacity for Bahamas type range.
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Old 30-12-2012, 17:39   #6
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Whatever you decide Capt Force.....keep on keeping on. A long and full life to you both!
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Old 30-12-2012, 17:41   #7
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sailmonkey View Post
For what you describe, in my mind the great harbor trawlers

Great Harbor Trawlers : America's Go-Anywhere Liveaboard

Are ideally suited.
Nice looking.

I always wonder what the "roll" factor is on these trawlers.
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Old 30-12-2012, 20:39   #8
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

With a season under my belt in a Grand Banks 42 after 15 years on a cruising sailboat, here are a few thoughts (we were also looking in the 34-38 ft single screw range, but a friend loaned us his GB):

I would be looking hard at engine room access. The port side of the port engine is no country for old men.

One engine with a bow thruster is easier, cheaper, and gets better mileage than twin engines.

I do like the flybridge--it gives a much nicer view of the countryside, and with the dual steering station you can always come down where its warm and dry.

Without stabilizers, trawlers roll like pigs compared to a sailboat, but that's not an issue if your waterway is only a mile wide.

Powercats are more stable, and a bit fuel efficient, but some of the worst wakes on the ICW were from powercatters and they are way more expensive than the older mono's--$200k buys a lot of fuel.

Air draft is important even in powerboats. It only takes me 15 minutes to drop the mast and go from 23 feet to 17 feet, but 15 feet would take a full day.

Living on the water is still better than living on land. We enjoyed coming up the ICW from Florida, anchoring in DC, the Erie Canal, and I especially like the 1000 Islands area of the St Lawrence.
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Old 30-12-2012, 20:49   #9
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I would also look hard at roll period. The rounded hull shape of some of the trawlers gives better fuel efficiency but has a long roll period.
I suspect there will still be plenty of open water cruising to do getting from place to place. How about a motor sailor with a system to lower the mast!

There is a sailboat at the marina here with a 70' mast. He rigged a system to tilt it back to a 60' clearance! Doing the ditch he lowers it, then raises it when going outside.

We really enjoyed the inland river system and the Great Lakes truly are...
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Old 30-12-2012, 21:00   #10
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Therapy View Post
Nice looking.

I always wonder what the "roll" factor is on these trawlers.
This is why I would prefer a full skeg keelwood w/rudder support.
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Old 30-12-2012, 21:30   #11
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Trawlers really need stabilizers whether they be active or passive. IMO.
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Old 31-12-2012, 05:14   #12
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Since this is not my "first rodeo", closer to my fifth, I will not be attracted to new or expensive. I won't spend more than 20K over what I can make by selling my Morgan 41' OI which will bring me about 50K at best. I can appreciate the Nordhaven & Krogen that DeepFrz suggests or the Great Harbor thought from Sailmonkey, but I know that I can pick up the geriatric vessel I need for well under 70K. Donradcliffe's note about engine access will remain high on my list of needs. I'm not as worried about roll, but I'll need to keep Nancie's needs in mind. I should add that the one-level plan and the whole change is largely due to Nancie's post-polio syndrome which is taking away her ability to climb steps easily. Actually, Blue Stocking's Mainship Pilot recommendation is one that I've been looking at. In addition, there are a few Grand Banks that have fit, but I should add that I will not accept anything with a teak deck or excessive brightwork. ......and then I'll go ahead and mention the darkest side. Nancie was very impressed with the Holiday Mansion Coastal Barracuda that she visited. There is no way I can accept the two big gasoline inborad/outboards, so as long as they are not producing these with a single diesel, I'll remain safe. I must be honest though, I would accept the "houseboat" if it meets all my criteria. I think we'll find a 35-40', one level, low maintenance, single diesel (or two small diesel), fiberglass hull fore under 70K. My best leverage is that I know want I want; I've five years to find it; and I will not be lured by a pretty facade.
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Old 31-12-2012, 05:57   #13
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Too new and shiny to meet your criteria, but maybe in 5 years there will be used ones on the market; I'm attracted to silent running solar powered travel when we get too old for sailing. Hybrid, so you can use the engine on cloudy days, for greater speeds, or long distances. Can Nancie handle 2 steps down to the cabin? (V-berth converts to centerline double) Toured this boat last year in Annapolis, a lot of nice thought. Greenline Hybrid -> Greenline 33
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Old 31-12-2012, 06:33   #14
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

I have not spent extended time on a Grandbanks - but although I love the look of them on my (very!) occassional visits I was struck by how small (pokey?!) they are inside - at least in comparison to more modern designs. Admittedly I don't think I have been above 40 odd feet!

Unless one really wants a flybridge (and especially given some mobility issues, now or in future) I wouldn't get one, for the reduced height, less windage, less top heavy (rollyness?!) and because (IMO) a full length opening sun hatch into the wheelhouse / deck saloon is very pleasant to have, especially when cockpit a bit too windy to be totally pleasant - and depending on how set up an opening sun hatch is a useful place to stick noggin up out of for a quick all round looksee!

If going displacement I would also look for something with a steadying sail - which can also double as a crane, whether for the dinghy or whatever.

Given the budget and that likely to the last boat my feeling is that the best value will be found in boats not widely known by brand name - for the next 5 years I would spend my time inviting myself aboard a wide variety of boats in your target market!
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Old 31-12-2012, 07:24   #15
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Re: The Geriatric Vessel

Capt you lost me with the comment on the "french canadian canal boat". Is there really such a thing??
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