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Old 16-05-2014, 18:07   #16
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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Originally Posted by s/vfootloose View Post
Couldn't resist first post. After a well found boat I think #1 would be a bimini sun protection system. In the tropics if you can't get out of the sun it doesn't matter what else you have life sucks.
Definitely high priority in tropics. Generally the manufacturers left it as post purchase but nowdays some of the production boat manufacturers are considering it more.
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Old 16-05-2014, 18:17   #17
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

How big of a boat and power or sail.

You seem like you'd be happy with a large power boat euphemistically called a floating condominium. Down below has 3+ state rooms and two decks of living space. Engine room would easily fit a washing machine and your dive equipment.
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Old 16-05-2014, 18:53   #18
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

Thanks so much for everyone's thoughtful answers. I am going to take these away and do some more research. Trying to figure out what we "need" (and I do use that term loosely) vs. what we want, and how much it'll cost to retrofit things once we find THE boat. This helps a lot.

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Old 16-05-2014, 21:24   #19
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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Originally Posted by dwareham View Post
Thanks so much for everyone's thoughtful answers. I am going to take these away and do some more research. Trying to figure out what we "need" (and I do use that term loosely) vs. what we want, and how much it'll cost to retrofit things once we find THE boat. This helps a lot.

Cheers
Thats fine, but there is another way to do it.
Buy the boat and sail it 'as is' to the Caribbean and do your major fitting out here where you can have some fun at the same time. Cruising for a few months before you fit the boat out will adjust your priority list.

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Old 16-05-2014, 21:35   #20
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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Hi all:

What are your Top 10 must-haves, in terms of equipment, for family cruising? No major crossings here, just live-aboard Caribbean cruising...

Here's a start...

1. Water maker
2. EPRIB
3. Radar
4. SSB / SailMail / Sat phone
5. Generator
6. Washer
7. Solar panels
8. Wind generators
9. Electric winch (getting old...!)
10. AIS transponder

What else would you all recommend?
Thanks
None of that is essential. Just a few decades ago, that stuff wasn't available.
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Old 16-05-2014, 21:42   #21
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

Ann T. Cate, how do you find it with no washer? How many people aboard?

Kentobin: yes, we are planning to get a floating sail condo -- I liken it to a mini-van. Not super-glamorous and it certainly won't earn us much respect at the pub, but if it keeps the kids comfortable and happy, then it's a great trade.

We came across one earlier today that has everything on the list except a washer, which we could either live without or retrofit (gotta put my fingerprints on it somehow!). So we'll see. I didn't expect to find something this quickly.
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Old 17-05-2014, 15:02   #22
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwareham View Post
Hi all:

What are your Top 10 must-haves, in terms of equipment, for family cruising? No major crossings here, just live-aboard Caribbean cruising...

Here's a start...

1. Water maker
2. EPRIB
3. Radar
4. SSB / SailMail / Sat phone
5. Generator
6. Washer
7. Solar panels
8. Wind generators
9. Electric winch (getting old...!)
10. AIS transponder

What else would you all recommend?
Thanks
Amazing! I only have four of your ten and none of those four would be on my top ten list for essentials for cruising.

1- Sound vessel
2- Water
3- food
4- Sails
5&6- engine & fuel
7- compass
8- charts
........... this completes the "essentials" list. The next, "pleased to have" items are....
9- crew
10- reading material
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Old 17-05-2014, 15:15   #23
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

What's that survival triangle, safety, food, comfort. So leaving alongside a well found boat, (that includes adequate anchors). Here's my 10, not it any really order.

Windvane steering
anchor windlass - no doubt
hard dodger
Good engine
good tankage for diesel and water
proper chart-table / desk - gets used for many things these days.
big batteries with solar panels - I also have a wind gen but will not get another when it dies.
Good ventilation is a must hot to cold conditions
Good heater - It gets cold, then it gets damp or difficult to dry things out.
Hard tender that rows well
life-raft

oh and it goes on.

Chris
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Old 21-05-2014, 11:21   #24
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

The OP specified "family" cruising and I am a minimalist single-hander so my list would be radically different. Only one of the items on the OP's list (solar panels) would make my top ten essentials list. Most of the other items wouldn't even make my "nice to have" wish list
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Old 21-05-2014, 11:43   #25
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

A friend went to Mexico with his wife and 12 year old son (Catalina 34):

The watermaker was a great investment. I've seen the other side - people buying their water in 5 gallon jugs and trying to sneak in a little shampoo as they steal a beachside shower from a resort. It doesn't look like fun. We love the watermaker.
Capacity is important. The cheaper low volume Katadyne units have to run forever to make enough water. Something in the 150 gpd range is much better. We have a Spectra unit.

Another friend is on his second Bahamas trip with just his wife, Catalina 36, essentially the same boat. They (chose to, have to?)"limit" their water use to some ridiculously low daily amount and keep having to track it, even with 80 gallons of water on board for the two of them and doing half and half marinas (for fuel, food and water) and anchoring for seclusion and cooling wind.

Two realistic experiences.

Your boat, your choice.
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Old 21-05-2014, 12:52   #26
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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  1. Oversized new generation anchor
  2. Good quality all-chain rode, at least 250 feet
  3. Solid, dependable windlass
  4. Good sails, rig and running rigging
  5. Autopilot
  6. Adequate battery bank
  7. Good charging system (solar & wind)
  8. Dingy that can be brought out of the water (davits or on deck)
  9. Large tankage (water & diesel)
  10. Dodger and bimini
  11. Functional galley to encourage cooking on board
  12. Basic electronics (depth, speed, wind. VHF)
  13. Long range comms (SSB or sat. phone)
  14. Good ventilation
I like Mike's list.
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Old 21-05-2014, 13:06   #27
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

#1 - a boat that doesn't leak and keeps the crew dry
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Old 21-05-2014, 18:45   #28
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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I like Mike's list.
Me too
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Old 21-05-2014, 20:57   #29
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

Think systems:
Fuel system; designed and well maintained so that it is delivering clean fuel to the engine and will allow the engine to function properly no matter what the sea state. Also designed and built so that it is easy to keep delivering clean fuel to your propulsion engine, generator and diesel heater (if required).

Electrical system; designed and built to meet all of your needs with some spare capacity so that when you get to the tropics and your fridge uses twice the power you thought it would the system will handle the extra load.

Communications system; includes radios, computers, sat. comm. systems, etc. Plan, design and implement it so that it meets all of your needs.

Nav system; including autopilot, instrumentation, etc...

Fridge and freezer systems...ground tackle system, etc...

Notice that most of your systems will interface with your electrical system.
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Old 22-05-2014, 05:47   #30
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Re: Top 10: Equipment for Cruising

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Notice that most of your systems will interface with your electrical system.
Not really.

Sail handling system
steering system including self steering
storm anchoring system - drogue, para anchor etc..
Navigation system - some instruments interface to electrical system but the system doesn't
Water system
fuel system
cooking system
heads

None of those need to connect to the electrical system and arguably on a cruising boat shouldn't.

I have autopilot but also windvane, and electronic instruments; wind, log, depth, radar, none of the other systems are even connected to the electrical system let alone dependent on it.
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