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Old Today, 12:30   #16
MJH
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

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Originally Posted by eefj33 View Post
Hi everyone,


My partner and I are looking around to buy a liveaboard boat this year. We want to live on it almost immediately, but the goal is to sail around the world with it asap. We're still a bit in doubt about the size we want, though. The general 'rule' everyone keeps repeating comes down to 'go small, go cheap, go fast'. I get that the bigger the boat, the more costs you will have on maintenance, mooring, insurance ed. I also found some loose statements like '40ft is the magic boundry' and 'maintenance is 10% of the purchase price'.


But the one thing I've been searching for but are unable to find is, how much more expensive is a 42 footer actually compared to a 35 footer? Are we talking about a few bucks per month, or does it add a few thousand per year? I get I won't find any hard numbers, but are there people who have owned a boat around 35ft and around 42ft who would like to share their experience?

Thanks in advance!
Eva
I would agree with Coquina, any expenses having to do with length will cost more i.e. mooring, line, etc.

If you look at any marine catalogs see what the item cost is for a 35' and compare to same item for a 42'. Length usually also means more weight which means more power needed to move, so go up an engine size or two and more fuel consumed.

Off the top of my head (all other things being equal...but nobody lives there) I would guess at lease 20% more for starters. Larger boats usually means bigger wants and that you will buy things for a larger boat that you wouldn't for the smaller...life just works that way.

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Old Today, 14:36   #17
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

A simple rule of thumb, that applies to both NEW boat prices and to maintenance costs. The costs rise with the CUBE of the length of the boat--for similar boats.

Try it yourself. Take boats built by Hunter. They are convenient because they make a large range of sizes of new boats, and of similar built quality across the range. Plot price vs LOA and see how that compares to LOA^3

This sounds insane, but when you look at it a boat grows in length, width and height all together to keep similar proportions. Loads on sails and engine sizes grow in a way that is MUCH more than linear with LOA. The overall weight of the boat increases the same way.

For SIMILAR boats a 42 foot boat will cost about 75% more than a 35 foot boat to buy and to maintain. even though it is only 20% longer.

You don't have to believe it, but it's true.
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Old Today, 14:57   #18
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

Maintenance differences between a 35’ and 42’ are hardy anything in the big picture. I betit is way less than $300/yr when averaged out.

The pleasure, enjoyment, and comfort of a 42’ cruiser over 35’ one is Priceless!
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Old Today, 15:19   #19
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

boatlength is measured in linear foot, the long way, but because a boat is like a ball, threedimensional, cost go up by factor 3, so easy. Actual cost will depend on your personal standards.
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Old Today, 16:17   #20
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

As mentioned already: buy the highest quality boat in the best condition you can find that fits your budget.

But the cost of a boat -- to build, operate, and maintain -- is driven primarily by displacement. And displacement increases by the cube of length.

For example, a Baba 35 weighs 21,500 lbs. If scaled up to an imaginary Baba 42, the displacement would be 1.2^3 or 1.73 times as much. The cost to run the 42 will, over a lifetime, be 1.73 times as much money.

Sure, there are a few things that will be the same, like a VHF or how much food you eat. But sails are bigger and heavier material. Winches for those sails are more. Blocks and lines are more. The autopilot needs to be stronger. The amount of energy you will use is more. Even slip costs go up non-linearly.

The biggest long term problem with a bigger boat is that the loads are higher and therefore more dangerous. As we age, the negative impact of injury increases dramatically.

Personally, after a life of sailing larger yachts, for retirement and cruising we went with a light displacement 40 footer, that has about the same displacement and interior size as a Catalina 30, which is plenty. So my costs are like a 30 footer, but speed and motion in a seaway are fundamentally better.
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Old Today, 16:55   #21
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

As far as accommodation goes I think 35 feet to 40-42 feet gets you an extra head. That's pretty much it.
Maintenance once you are cruising is probably more about :
-How much you will do yourself
- a gallon extra of bottom paint.

But it can be huge.. if you dont start out ahead of the game, this is why:
-If the boat you buy has everything maintained and not too old, your maintenance will be very minimal. Probably more like 1%.
-Here's how I know; My boats I usually went through everything before going off shore cruising. Hoses, clamps, rigging, sails, engine parts, cutlass bearings, packing glands, chainplates, pumps etc etc etc. So things that others might have cost for, I never had. ONCE I WAS CRUISING THAT IS!

The moral to this story is to buy the best fitted and maintained boat you can find and afford. Because what the previous owner loses on those upgrades is somewhere between 50% and 100%!

But there is an alternative:
The other way is to buy a good sturdy boat that works but is not great aesthetically.. Maintain nothing unless it keeps you from moving. Sell for the same low price you bought it for!
We had cruising friends who did this. They bought a Pan Oceanic 46 (?) it had obvious detriments. One side the teak deck was buckled up about 3/4" in places. The Perkins 4-154 diesel worked fine though.They just used the boat for 3 years. (Ended up having to buy a mainsail though.) When they returned to the US, they listed and sold the boat for what they paid, buckled deck and all. Cruising cost? almost nil.
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Old Today, 17:10   #22
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

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Old Today, 17:41   #23
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

1. buy the boat in off location and off season gives you a top notch 42ft for the same price a 35ft will cost in a hot spot in season.

2. for livearboard buy the biggest boat you can afford. The rise in quality living space pays off several times for the higher maintenance costs.

3. an old quality boat lately well refurbished is better on the long run then the newer floating home with sails. Quality and sturdyness was reduced in the last 10-15 years exponentially plus lost a lot off sailing capabilities. Sure some exceptions here too but I think all agree if you compare a 20 years old Jeanneau with a 5 years old one.
4. jump from 35 to 42 is not that much, all major gear is still small enough to be manual eg whinches or only 1 or max 2 numbers bigger but still in "small" category which is still on the lower end of the exponentiell cost increase in length. you can also get a ketch rig on the 42, so the actual size per sail is comparable to a 35ft one as well as standig rigging.
5. marina fees: yes you pay per meter but in most marinas your are still in the same category with the same price per meter with a 35 and 42ft (12m) boat. Above 42ft its a differnet category with a higher price per meter.

6. Do maintenance yourself.
7. Never buy electronic gadgets new, last years generation costs you 50% less but works great the next 10years.



so overall with 1-7 done right a 42ft is just a couple hundred bucks more then a 35ft to maintain. Done wrong a 35ft can cost you significantly more then a 42ft done right.


I disagree with displacment and rising cost as long as its not to far off means a steal compared to a light GFK boat. Heavy displacement means in a lot of cases more sturdyness and longer lifespan.
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Old Today, 20:26   #24
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Re: 35ft vs 42ft: maintenance costs

I would say that weight is equally important to maintainace but the whole thing is to complex for yes no type answers. When measuring size what counts is mast hight, sail area and tonnage which equate to drive and load. So a light 40ft may need less sail and motor than a heavy 35ft, that means the engine rig and sail would be less to maintain on the larger boat. BUT if it light because it is a race bread flyer than all the gear will be specked to be just OK when new rather tha having a good margin of safety and that make it short lived. Fast boats may need new rigging every 3 to 5 years. Hevy wights it cold be every 2 years and so it goes
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