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Old 07-01-2019, 18:48   #16
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Re: Boats for river cruising

The Mighty Mississippi is a great place to sail. I learned to sail on Pool 11 (Dubuque) pulling lines on a Mariner 19. Now we live on the shores of Pool 14 (LeClaire) where we sailed a SanJuan 21 before moving up in sails, hulls and speed to a Corsair F28.

All have been great river boats. Swing keel monohulls - it is not if, but when you run aground on the upper Mississippi. We threw a chute on Pool14 when the wind is out of the South (all summer). The F28 has been a joy. 14 knots cruising by barges. Pull 10Ē of water with the board up.

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Old 07-01-2019, 18:54   #17
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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Originally Posted by gamayun View Post
If it's only two people aboard, my friends have a Rosborough 25 that seems pretty comfortable. They've only done overnighters at the marina thus far, but I'm hoping to convince them to take it up the Delta this summer (with me tagging along ) for a warm water adventure. With the antenna down, they need about 10 feet of clearance; it has a gas outboard though. Around here, the Nordic Tug is a popular vessel. Cute but super expensive, is my understanding.
I agree that the Rosboroughs are great pocket cruisers. I'm not so sure they are any cheaper than comparable size Ranger Tugs or the like, however. (the current Nordic Tugs are quite a bit bigger, and accordingly more expensive as you'd expect/fear)
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Old 07-01-2019, 20:53   #18
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Re: Boats for river cruising

https://www.yachtworld.com/boats/cat...ype/Pluckebaum

Great quality, fast, efficient, well appointed river cruisers. Excellent attention to detail, usually powered by CAT 3208s, living space for days.
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Old 08-01-2019, 10:38   #19
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Re: Boats for river cruising

Thank you all for the ideas.

I've liked the English and Scandinavian boats that are part of the classic tradition on the Norfolk broads:


https://www.topsail.co.uk/boat.php?refnum=2023#images
https://www.topsail.co.uk/boat.php?refnum=1987


The key design features to me are:
# The counterbalanced tabernacle mast, allowing the rig to be dropped to shoot under a bridge even with minimal crew

# Relatively low freeboard and a non-self-draining cockpit, allowing easy access to the water and the shore
# A fixed, shallow-draft keel and well-protected rudder

# A relatively high coach roof. This makes it possible to recover standing room below given the low freeboard, and maximizes natural light and ability to see out while below decks

# Gaff or gunter rigged to make the most of a relatively short mast
# In many cases, a sloped or pop-up coach roof to further reduce bridge clearance and windage






The Norfolk Broads tradition is one of vacation cruises and so the boats are on the small side for a longer journey. With the reduced freeboard and lower cockpit there isn't room for an engine in the usual palce. A few have well thought out auxiliary engines, usually with the engine placed in the bow with shafting leading astern. (I can't seem to find photos of these at the moment)



Others put the auxiliary in a lazarette and so the prop ends up offset from the longitudinal center line:


https://www.topsail.co.uk/boat.php?refnum=1951#images


I also have come across a few motor sailor designs that seem well thought out for river cruising, usually outside the USA:


https://falmouth.boatshed.com/nautic....html#group1-9
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Old 08-01-2019, 13:58   #20
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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[*]Large cabin cruisers, which are designed for operation at planing speeds, and perform poorly at the 4-10 knot speeds typical for river cruising. Also these are really mostly weekenders and don't have an interior fitout suitable for long term living. Most have gasoline engines

Let me suggest you revisit that one, too.

There are just boatloads of sportfishers (or convertibles), motor yachts, etc. that can be run efficiently at slow speeds, especially in calm waters... No need to be up on plane all the time, or even often. (FWIW, we often putter along at 7 knots, in the neighborhood of 2-4 GPH, often around 2 NMPG.)

Ours is OK for longer-terms -- the longest we've been aboard was about 3 months, and that was comfortable enough (for us, and the cat).

The many of the aft-cabin motor yachts and cockpit motor yachts have boatloads of space within, above, and enclosed. For example, a 40' aft-cabin motor yacht may have twice the interior space we have. We know two live-aboard couples who have those, one 39' and one 43' -- palacial. But then I can see aft to dock stern-to easier than they can.

Anyway, many are diesel powered, too.

Not the panache of a Norfolk Broad (the boat version), of course... but a boatload more space and no exterior wood to mind.

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Old 08-01-2019, 14:23   #21
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Re: Boats for river cruising

Thanks, Chris. Those are available locally with prices starting at "free with one year slip rental" on up. I do also consider that a river trip is more about the journey than the boat.
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Old 08-01-2019, 14:37   #22
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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Anyway, many are diesel powered, too.
Speaking about over 30 foot cabin cruisers, sport fishers, etc, I think it is fair to say that large gasoline powered boats of this type have essentially disappeared from the newer boat market. The only way you will acquire a large gasoline powered cruiser is to hunt down a 50 year old Chris Craft, Pacemaker, or Hatteras. As the operating cost of these older gasoline boats is quite high, they can usually be acquired at very low prices if a live aboard that seldom leaves the dock or moorage is desired.
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Old 08-01-2019, 15:42   #23
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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I think it is fair to say that large gasoline powered boats of this type have essentially disappeared from the newer boat market. The only way you will acquire a large gasoline powered cruiser is to hunt down a 50 year old Chris Craft, Pacemaker, or Hatteras. As the operating cost of these older gasoline boats is quite high, they can usually be acquired at very low prices if a live aboard that seldom leaves the dock or moorage is desired.

Most of the boats in the 30-40' size range that are on the market here are gasoline powered, probably 90%.


Here are the listings at a local dealer. I count six diesels out of 50 listings. All but one diesel is on boats 47' and over.



https://www.yachtworld.com/core/list...roker&lineonly


Here's another dealer, no diesels, all gas:


https://www.yachtworld.com/core/list...roker&lineonly


There's a 2005 38' Meridian 368 Motoryacht in there with twin 420 HP gassers and 125 gallons of fuel tankage. Looks like it's in a slip on the St. Croix river, which probably means it is never taken out overnight, nor more than 20 miles from home. Good thing, they'd have to call ahead to check fuel availability.
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Old 08-01-2019, 16:31   #24
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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Most of the boats in the 30-40' size range that are on the market here are gasoline powered, probably 90%.
In fairness, you are talking about Minneapolis, while I am talking about Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver, BC. That is to say - places where people more frequently take cruising boats longer distances. Even then, going down your local brokerage lists, all but a couple of the larger gassers are at least 30 years old. There are, as I commented, boats over 50 years old on those lists. As I'm sure you agree, the cost of operation of most of those larger cruisers is prohibitive. These days their use is typically as a more or less stationary live aboard. With the advent of lighter weight, higher rpm and power output diesel engines - all the new cruising vessels of larger displacement are diesels. Some electric boats are beginning to make an appearance these days - though mostly with diesel gensets as well as solar panels. I suspect that is the future of larger powered cruisers.
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Old 09-01-2019, 05:13   #25
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Re: Boats for river cruising

Gas is viable for specific use cases.

I wouldn't be surprised if 75% or more of the ACMYs and CPMYs under 40' on the market are gas...

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Old 09-01-2019, 06:16   #26
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Re: Boats for river cruising

Houseboats were designed for river/small lake cruising. You can find them from the mid-20ft range up to 70-80ft monsters. Without the need to handle big seas, they can focus on maximizing living space.

Obviously your various power boats work fine but you won't get as much accommodation per foot of boat.

Sail cats (with or without the sails) make excellent river boats. They are typically shallow draft. As long as the beam doesn't get crazy, no problem docking them.

We took a Gemini on the Great Loop and it was a near ideal platform. Only issue was having to pull the mast for part of the river section and the Erie Canal section. If we were to do it again, I might pull the mast for the entire trip as most of it isn't conducive to sailing anyway.
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Old 09-01-2019, 12:36   #27
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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Gas is viable for specific use cases.

I wouldn't be surprised if 75% or more of the ACMYs and CPMYs under 40' on the market are gas...
You don't have to guess. Just look at a selection of brokerage listings. You will find that a large majority of the bigger gas motor yachts are older boats (30 years or more, often quite a bit more).
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Old 09-01-2019, 14:07   #28
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Re: Boats for river cruising

OK, just used Yachtworld to check all 35-40' "aft cabin" and "motor yacht" listings with gas engines in the U.S. Sort by years, newest to oldest, it starts with 2019 models and goes backwards from there. 773 listings total, at 50 listings per page, it takes 8 pages (400 boats) to get as old as the 2000 model year.

Same search except diesel, 543 boats.

That's a surprise. Only ~60% are gas... thought it'd be more. (Hence my guess.)

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Old 09-01-2019, 15:43   #29
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Re: Boats for river cruising

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OK, just used Yachtworld to check all 35-40' "aft cabin" and "motor yacht" listings with gas engines in the U.S. Sort by years, newest to oldest, it starts with 2019 models and goes backwards from there. 773 listings total, at 50 listings per page, it takes 8 pages (400 boats) to get as old as the 2000 model year.

Same search except diesel, 543 boats.

That's a surprise. Only ~60% are gas... thought it'd be more. (Hence my guess.)
That is surprising. Since that is so different than my experience in the Northwest, I followed your example and searched Yachtworld for the "Pacific Northwest", 30'+, and AC/MY. Noticing that a few very large vessels showed up in the MY category, I capped the search at 80' to eliminate boats that really wouldn't be used for cruising by anyone I know. Adding together the AC and MY categories, I found 85 gas boats and 538 diesel boats listed. That would be 86% diesels.

That made me go back to Yachtworld and search US listings in the same way. The result was 1,497 gas boats and 4,266 diesels. That totals as 74% diesels.

It does show that diesels are more the norm in the NW than across the Country as a whole, but seems to show that diesels are in the majority in over 30' powerboats. Not sure why your and my results are so different as I would not have thought that restricting your search to 35-40 foot boats would make all that much difference. Interesting in any case.
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Old 10-01-2019, 05:15   #30
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Re: Boats for river cruising

Makes sense to me that many (most) powerboats over 40', especially those planing hulls, are diesels; available gas engines just run out of the necessary ooomph (?). And the "slow boat" designs are often well-powered by relatively small diesels.

Anyway, my earlier point was only that there are boatloads of boats in the category that could be just fine for river cruising.

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