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Old 29-10-2016, 09:33   #16
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

35 is plenty big. Just depends how you use the space. I agree with Raindog. My 35' you can go about 2 weeks then you run out of groceries and trash disposal.
There are a lot of people in the Caribbean on even smaller boats.
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Old 29-10-2016, 09:40   #17
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

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Originally Posted by ToddMc View Post
What are your thoughts on a 35 footer sailing the Bahamas and the Caribbean. We have a lead on a new old stock Beneteau Oceanis 35 shoal draft. We love the boat, has 3 cabin setup but would switch it to two for more storage space. It would spend the first few years of its life on Lake Erie then down to the Caribbean. Would this boat be enough "boat"? Or should we hold out for a 38 to 40 footer. I know it would be great for the lakes but not sure about down south.
===

We met a couple in the Caribbean a few years ago who had just gone around the world in a 35 footer. They claimed it was the ideal size for two people to handle under sail and they may very well be right. As others have mentioned, you really won't have room for guests but if you learn to travel light you should have plenty of room for the two of you. Seaworthiness has more to do with how the boat is built, equipped and sailed than with size but it is true that larger boats take the sea better. That's not that big an issue in the Bahamas however, at least once you get there. Try to find a boat with adequate diesel tankage since that seems to be an issue for many people, at least based on the number of jerry jugs we see strapped to the lifelines.

Plan on creating plenty of sun protection for the cockpit. It's a must in the tropics, and you can incorporate some solar panels and maybe a dinghy hoist into the design. Mechanical refrigeration is also important unless you can learn to live without. It is becoming increasingly difficult to buy blocks of ice, and they usually only last 2 or 3 days.
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Old 29-10-2016, 09:49   #18
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

It's interesting that all of the comments thus far are about storage space. I think if you're going to sail in big water, there's a significant advantage to having a bit more waterline length. If I've identified the correct Beneteau, looks like she carries a significant amount of beam almost all the way aft to the transom, and her waterline length exceeds 31 feet, so she will probably have a motion more like a traditional 38-40 footer. But still, when the going gets a little rough, it really is nice to have an extra 3-4 feet of waterline. I think the suggestion to charter one and sail it for a week sounds like an excellent idea, especially if you can do a passage and see what she's like in a seaway.
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Old 29-10-2016, 10:52   #19
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

You can sail anywhere on a 35 ft sailboat, there are better choices for high latitude sailing than a Benni 35 but for the Caribbean it's all you need and more. Our first boat was a lighter weight 36 ft with little water and fuel yet we made do for cruising several weeks without provisioning including 2 ocean crossings of 2500 miles each so it's really about you more than about the boat. A 35 footer is certainly allot cheaper to look after than a 40 but usually not as easy to sell.
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Old 29-10-2016, 12:17   #20
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

Agree its just fine, if it suits your personal preferences, for typical Caribbean sailing.

Re storage...you dont need to stow provisions for months at a time for typical Carib cruising...people have access to food in the Carib too. Provisioning locally is part of the experience.
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Old 29-10-2016, 12:20   #21
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

35' mono will limit your ability to accommodate guests aboard. That may be a pro or a con.
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Old 29-10-2016, 13:37   #22
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

Size is fine, the trip down the east coast would be my concern, high volume shallow draft and poor righting moments are not qualities I would look for on any ocean passage so you may want to do the inside route and a slow coast hop found the exposed bits. There was a case where a Spanish coroner condemned the skipper of an Oceanis 40 for recklessness in trying to cross the Bay of Biscay in a boat that was unsuitable for ocean sailing. (rolled repeatedly and several lives lost in a moderate gale off Ushant).
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Old 29-10-2016, 15:35   #23
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

Make sure the boat you choose can handle the Caribbean wind conditions, which regularly blow 15 to 25 kts. Lot more than Florida east coast, bahamas.
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Old 29-10-2016, 15:57   #24
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

I lived and sailed on my Contest 36s in the Caribbean for several years. It had a large cockpit and 3 cabins and quite a large interior and stowage for her length. No problem. Perfect for a couple and may with a kid.
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Old 30-10-2016, 05:13   #25
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

The right 35 foot boat should be fine. I have an Island Packet 35 and though I'm still learning, I think she will be fine for the Caribbean and beyond. Take a look at the travels that Hayden and Radeen have made on their IP-35, Island Spirit. Island Spirit Sailing Adventures
The nice thing about an IP-35 is that she is fairly heavy for her size and very roomy, having more room than some 38 ft boats I also checked out when shopping.
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Old 31-10-2016, 05:22   #26
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

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Originally Posted by UNCIVILIZED View Post
It's not real clear to me what it is that you're asking. Better questions = better responses.
I don't know in how far the issue is his writing or your reading...


Your second answer was good, but at the end, you're asking again what boat it was, which he already spelled out in his first post.


I know, its a common thing to look for the fault in the other person's work before checking one's own...

.

As for my 2 cents on this thread: OP's question and Uncivilized's response has helped turn my guess at needing something around 40' into certainty.

It becomes clear that if one needs space for four people plus skipper, a 35' wouldn't work.


It seems lucky if you only need a boat for two, as it will save expense and maintenance effort.

But then there's also the issue of handling in rough seas. Some people say, that handling and stability improve if your boat is a bit longer.

Seems to me that sufficient space wouldn't be the only consideration on the ocean?
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Old 31-10-2016, 05:44   #27
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

We have a Catalina 42 and have taken it to the Bahamas twice on extended cruises. But, we, as a couple, would have been fine on a smaller boat. We traded up from a 32 footer for the first trip, which we now realize would have been
big enough.
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Old 31-10-2016, 06:56   #28
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

Sorry to say,but our experience with Beneteaus has not been good. We love to actually sail. They don't seem to meet that need.
Helped bring a B'First'38 from Freeport riding the gulf stream to Charleston in April and did not feel secure - forward bulkheads flexing, not pretty.

Our perspective has been to look for older, well-tried designs/builders and have completed 2 total refits of classic, sailing vessels 30-37'. They go, are built the old-fashioned heavy layup way and once refit, are hard to keep up with.
Not a 'condo' like the B's, but if you want to sail, get a sailing vessel.
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Old 31-10-2016, 09:00   #29
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

Storage is not a big issue. The E. Caribe is mostly daysails with a few overnighters. People eat there too, albeit not very well I suppose!
More waterline is always welcome. But French Canadian friends I met in the Bahamas on my way south sailed around the world in their Dufour 34. Took them several years but they were in no hurry and stayed long at many places.
The Dufour was not a boat on my radar until I met them. I didn't realize how well built they were for a modern style boat prior to that.
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Old 31-10-2016, 10:26   #30
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Re: 35 footer and the caribbean

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Sorry, Traveling for an extended amount of time on a 35'. Making the trip down the east coast on a 35'. Will I be ale to outfit a 35 footer with solar and a watermaker (space wise) The will be 2 people most of the time. Will it be enough room for everything needed for up to a month?
In June 2014, I bought a 1987 Ericson 34 (34'11") almost 6 metric tons on lake Michigan & sailed it with my son to NY/NY then alone to the West Indies. It's a good size & good displacement to carry what is needed for long holidays or live aboard provided you're not more than 2 people full time or 4 for short periods. The only thing I'm not crazy about is the 5' draft... I would have preferred 6' but the boat was in such good shape that I gladly compromised on that. Having done lots of offshore sailing, I know that sailing close hauled is less than 10% of my sailing time: Only once did I do Tahiti-Hawaii, clause reach, in 21 days on one tack! Cheers
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