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Old 09-01-2015, 16:38   #1
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Trawler or Sail Boat

As the name suggest a lot of time on Colorado River from Lake Powell down to Mexico. Limited Ocean Experience but we're getting interested exploring the Caribbean and parts unknown. have a few questions. which are more common among cruisers sailboats or trawlers? average age of each? average length of each? pros and cons of each?. safety issues ? how do people get their prescriptions while cruising? last of all is this an active lifestyle or a lot of solitude ? thanks in advance for your replies
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Old 09-01-2015, 17:38   #2
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

Welcome to CF.
I think you need to get down to the Caribbean and charter to get a sense for yourself.
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Old 09-01-2015, 17:56   #3
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

I think for longer distances sailboats are a lot more common. Let's face it.. they motor about like a trawler speed wise but have the sails as backup! The trawler has a lot more space that isn't like a cave though.
Average boat age? hard one... my guess is somewhere between 15 and 20 years. with the group being 10-30years.
Many cruising boats seem to be in the 35-45 foot range now. more like 40+.
Prescriptions may be easier to get out of the US, but it may depend on what drugs for sure. Some countries the druggist can prescribe antibiotics.
It's an active lifestyle with a lot of solitude!
If you read a lot of these threads on this forum.. you should get a good idea of what it is all about actually. take the extremes posted with a grain of salt and glean the overall statements about any given subject....
Be a good handyman, and willing to be a boat mechanic.
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Old 10-01-2015, 15:25   #4
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

I like Cheechako's answer above. I first thought you were asking the average age of the crew and not the boats. We have a 42 year old boat, but we're not in the Carribean.

I've always thought that sailboats were best suited for those that have a passion for sailing. I see sailing as an activity beyond cruising; as if I would ask someone, "Why are you on roller skates when you can ride a bicycle?" They must like skating.
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Old 10-01-2015, 15:59   #5
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Trawler or Sail Boat

If you want to cruise the great loop and maybe jump over to the Bahamas and that is as all your aspirations are, maybe a good trawler is just the ticket.
If you want to range far and wide, then maybe a sailboat, now there are ocean crossing trawlers, but usually people looking for those made up their mind long ago on exactly what they want, and can afford it too, they are wonderful boats, just not cheap. I'd love to own one.
I bought a sailboat for us to cruise in and travel after retirement. I had never set foot on a sailboat before I started looking for one. I just crunched the numbers and for the mission I wanted a boat for, and with what I could afford to spend, a sailboat was the most logical.
Now that I have one, I find I enjoy sailing way more than I though I would. It's sort of magical to shut down that Diesel and things go completely quiet, and yet not lose one bit of speed, and oddly enough I believe a sailboat has less overall movement in rougher water than a power boat, although being a mono hull it means the world is tilted at about a 15 deg angle, which you get used to, but it's pretty steady as opposed to rocking back and forth.

Don't forget multihulls either, seemingly most just getting into it have the opinion that they have to have a Cat. All I'll say is don't rule out anything early on, reason there are so many different kinds of boats is there is no one superior design, they all have strengths and weaknesses.
I started by defining the mission, then a budget, and those two things sort of determined the boat. I want to see the South Pacific, don't know if I'll ever make it, but that's my goal


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Old 10-01-2015, 16:11   #6
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

It's good to read a64pilot's move to a sailboat as a cruiser first. Since I started sailing as a young child on 8' boats, for me, cruising grew out of sailing. I may need to change my attitude that sailboats are only for those with a passion for sailing. Afterall, a person can grow to sailing from a passion for boating or cruising first.

I should add, though, that I have met people that can never adapt to sailing. I think anyone should have some trial exposure before buying into a sailboat.
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Old 10-01-2015, 16:54   #7
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

As a young guy I wanted to go fast, I had the option of a Hobie or a Husqvarna WR-250, I got the Husky. As a younger guy we raced hydroplanes that were based on a single sheet of plywood and a 10 HP outboard, I have no idea of the name of that class, but they were faster than you would think.
I wouldn't have enjoyed sailing a cruising boat as a kid, truth is even my wife gets bored of it fast, but speed is relative, 400 kts in a jet seems slow, but 120 kts at 10 ft is a rush.

Funny thing is we slightly exceeded 8 kts the other day, and it seemed like we were really flying . I've been astonished at the lack of fuel burned when motoring, and how much distance you can cover sailing around the clock.
But truthfully, if you look at it, I bet a cruising sailboat is probably about the slowest form of transportation that exists today, to me it isn't about the speed, it's the magic of moving through the water propelled only by the wind, that fascinates me. Remember I had never experienced that before.


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Old 10-01-2015, 17:04   #8
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

I started out on boats with a mission.
Fishing.
In my teens, we have 17 foot cuddy boats with large aft deck and a fast 40 horse strapped on.
Then I went to larger motor vessels again for fishing but with a cabin and a galley.
From there I got a sailboat for a large lake, and loved it. Then got another for the sea.
Sailed from the UK to Mallorca on yet a third sailboat because it was cheaper than petrol. Loved the experience.
Went back to large motor vessels in the States, then fell in love with catamarans.
Back in the UK I now have a small Westerly Centaur for coastal hopping. I love it.
If this year works out, the Catamaran will replace it.
Boating is fun.
Decide what you want to do and get the appropriate vessel.
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Old 10-01-2015, 17:21   #9
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

+1 for sailing catamaran. Stable, spacious, efficient. You sail when wind cooperates, motor if not. Best of both worlds.
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Old 11-01-2015, 07:40   #10
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Old Man River.
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Old 11-01-2015, 10:31   #11
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

The best sound is the quiet when you shut down the diesel and hear the rush of water by the hull and the wind in the sails. It is still magical that we can move our 30,000 lb boat and all our worldly possessions without a motor running. However, in light air or no air motor sailing is still beautiful and uses little fuel. So what if I am often a slow trawler with a tall stick. Just happy to be alive and the out here.


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Old 11-01-2015, 10:43   #12
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

Sailing boats are complicated, expensive, and very high maintainence.

Diesel engines are loud, vibrate, stink, and pollute.

Is there another way, a boat that is simple, quiet, clean, inexpensive and low maintainence, low draft, lightweight, roomy. Hmmmm.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:08   #13
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

I'm not doubting your comment on sailing boats being compicated, expensive and high maintenance, but I bet there are 50 threads for how do I fix my engine, for every one of how do I fix my sails / rigging etc.
I've thought this very odd, either most sailors know little about engines, or maybe sails and rigging need very little maintenance, don't break that often? Or maybe a little of both?


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Old 11-01-2015, 11:14   #14
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

Welcome to CF Old Man,
Before deciding, you might want to charter a pilothouse sailboat... I think that could offer the middle ground between a Trawler and a sailboat.

As for prescriptions, it could be an escape from civilization will reduce the need for drugs.
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Old 11-01-2015, 11:53   #15
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Re: Trawler or Sail Boat

Fixing sails isn't difficult. And yes you noticed that a sailboat has BOTH,
not to mention yet another third system of Propane for cooking,
and guess what, yet another fourth system of electricity for lights, winches.
Can it get any worse? Well, yes it can have a portable petrol generator too.
and a petrol dinghy.
Is it little wonder cruising is called fixing boats in exotic places?

Quote:
Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
I'm not doubting your comment on sailing boats being compicated, expensive and high maintenance, but I bet there are 50 threads for how do I fix my engine, for every one of how do I fix my sails / rigging etc.
I've thought this very odd, either most sailors know little about engines, or maybe sails and rigging need very little maintenance, don't break that often? Or maybe a little of both?


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