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Old 09-12-2007, 19:48   #31
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And another thing

Don't know about the bad experience the previous poster had, but the common washer/drier I know of is the splendide from italy and I know lots of female sailors from whom you might be able to tear it from their cold dead fingers...i.e., once you've had one on board...it's almost a must. Not so much for the washing, but for the drying as it can be darned tough to dry anything out in the tropics. They are stainless so I don't know about the rusting out, and the newest models now have a much faster spin rate which makes the drying much faster. I had a maytag combo on my 54 for 14 years and it never burped...it just made sure I had clean dry clothes. Like I said, once you have one properly set up....

Now if your boat has sufficient tankage and the caribbs is where you're going to hang out, a water maker is probably not necessary as water is easy to come by...however...if you get into the hauling jugs around routine...then..well... hehehe that watermaker may start looking a lot better.

hot showers are a must..but lots of ways to get there. if you get a boat big enough for a genset (and some are quite small), then the on demand heaters coupled with a small engine heated one works very well. I carry something over 250 gallons on the 44...and I like hot showers (it was VERY high on my priority list

but again...we're talking about personal preferences. Some purists like water filled innertubes hung from the spreaders for hot showers, some like doing laundry in a bucket, and some drink more beer than water heheheh, but I can tell you that if you ever decide to go look north...well priorities can change quite a bit which brings me to my next issue.

You might consider a pilot house. Frankly, sailing out in the weather with the foulies on and the bucket in the face routine is fun for youngsters for about an hour. It's a lot like taking the steering in your pickup and putting it outback in the bed and driving around in a thunderstorm. GREAT FUN ...a well built pilothouse can be 'nice'. At the very least get a boat with a substantial dodger, i.e. something that can take some water coming up over the house. There is a metal boat on the web somewhere built in the pac northwest, called "RED". You might google that one and take a look. Nice ship, might give you some ideas. Oh, and that raises another issue. In the US, Fibreglass is king,,, in a lot of other places, people favor metal boats. Accordingly, steel boats can be very very cheap. A professional survey by someone who knows his way around an ultrasound is the ONLY way to go if you consider a steel boat but if well constructed and properly coated and maintained, There are lots of advantages, not the least of which is when hitting something. Right now they are incredibly cheap. I'd be embarassed to tell you how inexpensive my steel 44 was in Florida.

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Old 10-12-2007, 18:51   #32
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Seer - Thanks for the positive note about the washer. I certainly haven't given up on the idea of clean clothes, yet. Once my husband heard that they rusted, he has been less than enthusiastic; but, the washing of the clothes still falls within my realm of responsibility. So, we'll see who wins!
The first boat we looked at was a steel boat - a custom Finot (From France of course). The interior had been redone by the feds while looking for drugs that were being smuggled by the owner. I think the marina must have gotten it from a police auction! Anyway, the thought of steel vs. fiberglass really appealed to us, since we had just read an account of a boat that was sunk by whales in the Pacific. In A Voyage for Madmen, of the 9 sailboats that set out in the Golden Globe Race around the world, the only one that made it was a steel boat. That speaks volumes to this novice! On the other hand, the head space in the one I looked at was approx. 6' at best. Is that the norm?

One of my requirements for the boat is a shower stall. I'm sure hot showers would be a welcome relief. When we lived in our travel trailer, if the wind picked up, it would blow out the pilot on the hot water heater and with the wind, it could not be relit; so, needless to say, I've experienced a few icy showers in my day. None, of which, I would like to repeat!
Thanks for writing!


Anne
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Old 10-12-2007, 18:58   #33
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One of my requirements for the boat is a shower stall. I'm sure hot showers would be a welcome relief. When we lived in our travel trailer, if the wind picked up, it would blow out the pilot on the hot water heater and with the wind, it could not be relit; so, needless to say, I've experienced a few icy showers in my day. None, of which, I would like to repeat!

I thought the whole point of a boat was to go somewhere that didn't have icy wind ;-)

I think I am glad that I am living a sheltered life. All this talk of foulies, and woolies and stuff makes me shudder.

I like my sailing barefoot and bare*ss...
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Old 10-12-2007, 19:11   #34
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Dan - couldn't agree with you more; but, my husband has this dream of sailing the Atlantic..... Me, I would prefer the warmer climates, and some beautiful turqoise waters. That sounds more inducive to a good time!

Anne
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Old 10-12-2007, 19:34   #35
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Anne,

If it was properly prepped, coated, painted and maintained, a well designed steel boat is STRONG. The only boat I know of that has been run down by a freighter and survived intact, was a steel boat designed by Pac Northwest designer Brent Swain. Looked like a banana and the owner broke his arm but amazingly it popped right back up to the surface.

Since steel boats are so strong, and rigid, the interiors can pretty much be set up anyway you wish. My own 44 has 6'5 headroom pretty much everywhere except the aft cabin (because of the cockpit above). That still leaves me with 250 plus gallons of fuel and 250 plus gallons of water in the floor.. (Ted Brewer can design a cruising boat in steel In any event, the answer to your question is headroom varies with the design, not the material.

Regarding the Splendide washer/dryer unit, one thing to look out for is to make sure your genset puts out a good sine wave as opposed to the chopped square wavish signal you see out of some cheaper generator heads, and lots of inverters. Oh, and get the vented version of the Splendide; it dries MUCH faster.

One other piece of advice, to put it somewhat less than delicately, in a seaway, *most* of the marine heads on the market operate very much like a guillotine for *some* men. I don't know why the manufacturers don't allow a little more room *forward*....as if the boat lurches and the seat moves...well, you get the picture, trust me- your husband will thank you for making sure you don't get one of those tiny seat models installed in the name of saving space. Same goes for flimsy seats that slide around.

As others have said, (and i'm sure that other owners might disagree) imho if you are going to get a larger boat, say 40 and up, and want furling on the main as well as the headsails, get the in boom furling on the main as opposed to in mast. Simply put, you get better sail shape and if it hangs up, its down where you can work with it and you can still reef and furl manually until things improve to where you can fix whatever went wrong in better conditions. When an in mast system hangs, it can really ruin your day, your cruise, your....well...I hope you see my point.

Lastly, when looking at boats, be sure and get a full and complete inventory of sails and equipment, and whether all the stuff is in good working order. Just a few hours of perusing a marine catalog will get you in touch with how much money you may have to spend to outfit your average coastal playboat for true blue water cruising and it can be a TON of money above and beyond your initial boat purchase price. This is why I and others strongly suggested that you look for a well equiped and maintained cruising boat that has already had these systems installed and debugged.
It will save you a fortune, not only in the initial price, but in the money and time saved in actually getting you ready to *head out*...

Oh, another *almost*...last etc. Like, Kan, and some others, I'm a fan of divided rigs. Not only do they balance better, they are more versatile, the stress on components is usually less, and you have more *options* available to deal with conditions. Remember, very few cruisers are out there switching sails every hour, flying chutes, and pushing their rigs to the limit. Most are trying to get a good comfortable motion from their boat, and reasonable speed while minimizing shock, wear and tear to their rigs. Ketches can fly a lot of fun useful sails between the masts, or go without a main at all if there's a chance conditions might deteriorate suddenly. Plus most are 'pretty'

You'll also want to make sure that the tranny is equal to the main engine. You have to understand the various ratings (continuous hp rating for instance) to make sure they match up. There are a lot more builders than there ought to be who attach the minimum possible rated transmission to a good continuous rated diesel. Simply put, its just a matter of time, and when that time comes, its always at the WORST possible moment

If you think you might like more speed and accomodations per foot, you might look at the cats, tho they seem presently to be more expensive; AND... make sure you ride a few in a seaway first before buying one Some like it, some don't.

In any event, some more things to think about. and we haven't even gotten to the ground tackle yet...

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Old 10-12-2007, 19:55   #36
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Seer - you are outstanding! I'm going to print your recommendations and start a checklist for our quest. Keep 'em coming!
Anne
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Old 10-12-2007, 23:19   #37
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I'll second the points made by Seeratlas.

To amplify the comment about the gear that comes with the boat I think that once you decide to buy a particular boat it might be very wise to do your own inventory.

Go through the boat and list every item that you think should be coming with the boat and include that list as the inventory in the contract of sale.

Particularly note items like life rafts and self steering gear.

Steel boats might lack headroom because 1) They were fitted out by a short builder 2) The designer was short and 3) it was desired to fit large tanks under the cabin sole.

If you are really looking for a complete cruising boat (and have the budget) a boat with a hard dodger and bimini fitted or even an enclosed wheelhouse would be the ultimate luxury.
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Old 11-12-2007, 04:48   #38
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Hi Anne, welcome aboard
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Old 11-12-2007, 08:05   #39
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Boracay - The inventory before you buy is an excellent idea. We've learned through the years what assumingcan do for a buyer. My husband is adamant about the hard dodger and bimini. I would really like the full enclosure so we can enjoy the cockpit in all kinds of weather.
Jack - thanks for the hello! I see you are looking for a boat, too. Set your heart on anything specific yet?

Anne
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Old 11-12-2007, 08:12   #40
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Hi Anne,

No specific model in mind yet... But I will need one with some headroom as I am 6ft3in. Just rmemeber that the Atlantic leads into those water that you would like....
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Old 11-12-2007, 08:24   #41
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Jack - I hear you about the Atlantic. Got to keep that in mind. We've been listening to some audio CD's about Survival at Sea, and reading some books about the same. And, I've got to tell you, for me, sailing that ocean can be a fearsome thing. We've talked about me flying over and him getting a crew to go with him. I would hate to miss the experience with him, but........ Oh, well, we are a good ways from that voyage. I'm especially enjoying the planning phase and looking forward to our first cruises in the Caribbean.
At your height, headroom is not a luxury. My husband is 5'10'' and I'm 5'7', so we don't have to worry so much about that. But, that steel boat with 6' head room made me feel a little claustrophobic!
Good luck in your quest!

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Old 11-12-2007, 08:28   #42
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Anne,

I have noticed that a lot people cruise up and down the east coast. So maybe you can do both. The atlantic during the summer and the islands during the colder months might not be a bad way to go.

Yes, I am out of luck when it come to head room, of course my wife is 6ft tall so we are both out of luck in that regard but no matter what we will find something that we can live with.
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Old 13-12-2007, 15:14   #43
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Anne,

The Atlantic is no better or no worse than any other ocean on the planet. It all has to do with picking your seasons to sail.

There have been horror stories written about the Pacific, Atlantic, Indian Ocean, Tasman Sea, Southern Ocean, the Great lakes.........etc. Don't be intimidated by any one body of water over another (with the possible exception of the Cook Straight, NZ).

I know about currents vs wind direction and every ocean has areas with these conditions (try the east Coast of South Africa). The Atlantic is not unique. Where the Atlantic is unique is, it is the jumping-off point for more newbie cruisers than any place on Earth. Therefore, it has more incidents from inexperienced skippers than any place. It's just simple math. In 99% of the cases, problems are caused by inexperienced skippers and failed systems, rather than "Bad" oceans. The dynamics and laws of physics are the same, world-wide.

Don't let the Atalantic intimidate you. Many a small boat has crossed that body of water succesfully. In fact, it holds more small boat records than any body of water. An Engishman once rowed a 10" boat from England to the East Coast. There have been many such exploits as that.
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Old 14-12-2007, 08:00   #44
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Kanani - Thanks for the reassurance. Much of my fear has come from my selection of reading material. Thus, the glass is either half full or half empty. From what you and others are saying, there is no magic here, and preparation and planning are the keys to success. I don't want to regret missing out on the adventure in a boat that I love to be aboard. But, I do have more sense than to row!
Thanks for the good word!

Anne
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Old 14-12-2007, 08:07   #45
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... Thus, the glass is either half full or half empty ...Anne
And not to forget the third option, that the glass is too large.

If the glass represents our expectations, and our expectations are only partially met, we may decide that our glass is half empty or half full. It be that that the problem is a mismatch between our expectations and reality. The cure for the mismatch may be to adjust our expectations to fit reality (put the water in a smaller glass).
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