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Old 24-01-2009, 08:33   #1
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Best Feature(s) for Living / Cruising Aboard?

Hello,
We are in engaged in the great search and are looking for input on that feature or features that make your boat great for living and cruising. Alternatively is there something missing from your boat that you have seen (used) on another boat and will place on yours at the first opportunity.

thanks Cathy and Shawn
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Old 24-01-2009, 09:44   #2
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Best live-aboardy things about my boat: Full-size mattress in the cabin, lots of storage space, ac/heat, waterfront view.

Wish I had a generator.

Cheers

Bill
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Old 24-01-2009, 09:59   #3
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Lots of natural light.
Open feeling.
Dry..Dry
Protected compaion way, Dry..Dry
Stand-up showers.
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Old 24-01-2009, 10:06   #4
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A separate aft cabin with queen sized bed and real mattress.

A full cockpit enclosure which allows cruising comfortable in all weather AND provides another ROOM in the house when at anchor during inclement weather.
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Old 24-01-2009, 10:21   #5
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even though it's less "best features" and more the package...

...we like having enough solar/wind power to spend weeks on the hook without ever running an engine, and having 200 gallons of water tankage to help make that possible, and--as weird as this may sound--we like the fresh water electric macerating toilets almost as much as we love the stand-alone shower in the owner's stateroom. (The stateroom has a head on the port side and a shower on the starboard, and it's a nice thing when they're two completely separate spaces. I never use the shower in a marina or yc because it's just never as nice as my own.) More than anything, I guess, we enjoy the size of our 46-footer, because the accoutrements of living aboard don't weigh her down enough to compromise sailing performance. The previous boat we lived aboard, a 41 footer, had just enough storage but certainly not the extra storage that the current boat has. When we moved everything from one boat to the other, the 41 came up three inches on her waterline, and the 46 settled just less than an inch. I would have never though the extra few feet of waterline would make as much difference as it has.

Oh yeah, and I agree with Camraderie that a REAL mattress makes all the difference.
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Old 24-01-2009, 14:46   #6
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We love our huge cockpit! Would love a dodger (someone wanna donate one? )

Refrigeration we have 12 v but want engine driven. But on passages we don't use refrigeration at all.

a good matteress would be good.

Solar pannels would be nice. Not wind. Its too noisey!

But most importantly we keep it simple. If you get the fewest mod-cons then you won't be a slave to them


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Old 24-01-2009, 15:49   #7
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Originally Posted by shawnkillam View Post
Hello,
We are in engaged in the great search and are looking for input on that feature or features that make your boat great for living and cruising. Alternatively is there something missing from your boat that you have seen (used) on another boat and will place on yours at the first opportunity.

thanks Cathy and Shawn

"Cruising" and "living" are two different animals who do not have the same priorities. If you want to pretend that a boat is a house then you will probably need all the comforts of living in a house. If you want to use your boat for cruising then you will need to outfit it for going offshore. It is not practical to have home comfort in the middle of the ocean, and it might even be dangerous. There really is no compromise. You are either a sailor or a landlubber on a boat.
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Old 24-01-2009, 18:42   #8
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Thanks for the input.

Thanks everyone for their input.
Radiuschine you are undoubtably correct but all boats are a comprimise as are most lives. We will have to return to a city periodically to work and top up the kitty and if possible we will be living on the boat. Additionally everything I have read and everyone I have ever talked to says that 95% of the time you are either at dock or at anchor. So if you are one of those very rare individuals who does not have to comprimise in their life, my hat is off to you. I would gather from your posting that you are a cruiser and therefore would appreciate knowing what you consider to be the features of your boat that make a great cruising boat.
thx Shawn and Cathy
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Old 24-01-2009, 19:23   #9
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Originally Posted by shawnkillam View Post
Thanks everyone for their input.
Radiuschine you are undoubtably correct but all boats are a comprimise as are most lives. We will have to return to a city periodically to work and top up the kitty and if possible we will be living on the boat. Additionally everything I have read and everyone I have ever talked to says that 95% of the time you are either at dock or at anchor. So if you are one of those very rare individuals who does not have to comprimise in their life, my hat is off to you. I would gather from your posting that you are a cruiser and therefore would appreciate knowing what you consider to be the features of your boat that make a great cruising boat.
thx Shawn and Cathy


The boat you choose should have been designed and built for the purpose you intend to use it for. Would you rather sail around the horn in a 38 foot Cabo Rico, Hunter or Beneteau? I know what my choice would be. How often are you likely to encounter heavy weather? How much time will you spend at sea? Where will you sail? Do you want to get there fast? Do you prefer a boat that has a comfortable motion? How big is the crew, and how experienced? Do you like to accumulate a lot of junk? In theory, before people buy a boat they should ask themselves the right questions then go looking for a boat that has all the right answers. I know a couple who bought a Bristol Channel Cutter because they liked the way it looked. The problem is they are fair weather sailors. After one season they got rid of it, thinking it was an overpriced, useless little boat. It may or may not be overpriced but the BCC is certainly not useless and it is the only 28 footer I would consider sailing across an ocean. Buy the boat you need not the boat you like.
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Old 24-01-2009, 20:01   #10
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I thought the question was what are some features that make livingaboard and cruising better? In my opinion a seaworthy boat goes without saying for any cruising boat.
Some of the things I would look for in a cruising boat as opposed to a day sailor or dock condo are:

solar panels/generator (a way to become self sufficent away from the dock)
auto steering system
watermaker (if budget allows)
radar
GPS/Chartploter
dodger/bimini (for protection from the elements)
lots of storage
SSB
a good dinghy (outboards are very common and I love ours)
lots of fans (depending on cruising grounds)
good tankage

There are probably a ton of other things but those are a few that come to mind right off. Of course not all boats out there cruising have all the above but I would say most of these items would make life easier as a cruiser/liveaboard.

Good luck in your search!
Jackie
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Old 24-01-2009, 20:39   #11
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My wife and I have sailed from the great lakes to south america with our son who graduated fro High School at sea in the eastern carrabein. If anyone wants any insite on offshore living or living aboard feel free to write.

Fisherman
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Old 26-01-2009, 09:43   #12
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Ed,
I am curious how that went for your son? Is he still on the boat?
My daughter will be 18 when we leave to go cruising and I am wondering how many others are out there in her age group or early 20's cruising.
Jackie
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Old 26-01-2009, 10:32   #13
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natural light, dingy davits, large bimini, good autopilot, roller furling headsail.
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Old 26-01-2009, 10:43   #14
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Jackiepitts had a pretty comprehensive list. If I had to select my favorite ONE item to put on a cruising boat, it would definitely be a watermaker. The second would be enough solar panels to power it.

The wife agrees on watermaker as first choice but disagrees saying reliable refrigeration (freezer and refrigerator) are her second choice. She also wants to add a high quality gas grill that lights and doesn't blow out in windy conditions, a pressure cooker, lots of fans for cooling and mold prevention.
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Old 26-01-2009, 12:53   #15
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Separate aft cabin
small enough to be handled in heavy weather, large enough to have lots of storage.
solar panels
foot pumps
Easy way to dump holding tank over board
at least one really good sea berth
lots handholds
floorboards that lock down
a good enough hull that can be handled under sail alone in tight quarters
bimini
100 gal.water tankage
non electrical self steering
hatches that are really waterproof
non skid cabin sole- i.e ultimate sole varnish
it could go on
hope this helps
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