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Old 09-03-2010, 19:07   #1
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Cruised for Years in a 20-Footer - Need Bigger, but Which?

Pls help with suggestions for our new boat. We live on the West coast.

We have thoroughly enjoyed our Nimble 20 since 2005, but my son is now 11 and demands more speed, more excitement and we adults find his boisterous energy in the small cabin quite taxing. Also we foresee him bringing a friend along.

We don't day sail, nor do we do week-end cruises. Once a year come July we load up with stores and take off for 6-8 weeks on the coast of British Columbia. We also don't do marina hopping but swing on the hook every night.

The Nimble is trailerable, but the next boat will be stored on the hard at a yard, and launched via travel lift.

The budget is up to $15000, but we don't want anything over 28' on deck. No bowsprits or other costly appendages. Limited off shore capability would be nice, as in circumnavigating Vancouver Island.


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Old 09-03-2010, 20:00   #2
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Here's some more particulars:

Common on the West Coast. Many of the, to us, most desirable boats are scarce over here.

Distinctive appearance. Like the Nimble, we would like to have something unique. Low free board and cabin, nice sheer, not too tall of a rig, good space for fore deck work.

Solid construction and good reputation for longevity. Closer to the Cape Dory end of the scale, as opposed to the Catalina image.

Transom hung rudder would be nice. We would rather avoid the unsupported through the bottom rudder variety as seen in for example the Pearson 26. Skeg hung or keel hung best.

Bunk for a guy of 6'4".

No transom hung outboards. Inboard diesel or outboard in well, please.
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:01   #3
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Boat: Beneteau FIRST 42
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Just a thought.. find a boat with a good hull design and stought rig, maybe like a Balboa 27.. and redesign the interior with your son.. gut it and start over.. build it as a project between you and your son...
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Old 10-03-2010, 10:33   #4
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Several Problems with your request. The first is the budget. You are probably not going to find a turn key in that price range. The next is the bunk size in a 28 or smaller. The third is you really need a full cruiser where you are going as a brake down with you left drifting will quickly put you in blue water. I owned a 30 foot Islander set up for Blue Water and was very pleased with it. I had several friends with O Day 28's that were cruising and one friend on an Erickson 27. You need to teach your son that speed isn't all it's cranked up to be. Most of us could walk faster than our boats go if we could walk on water. My 30' had a hull speed of 6.75 knots. Here is the real rub with your request though. The perfect boat is the one which we wish to be seen entering the marina in. All boats do what they are supposed to do, that being getting one from point a to point b. We choose a boat and claim it the best because it suits our personality. I have seen some truly elegant boats and some truly ugly ones. Some have been so ugly that only their owners could love them but don't ever tell the owner they are ugly. All heads will turn when a schooner enters the bay but a cal or Columbia maybe not. Thus you are going to have to find that one boat that you fall in love with. By the way a Columbia 28 wouldn't be bad. Now for reality. 15000 doesn't buy much boat anymore unless you are prepared to do extensive work on it. On the hard or in the water at a marina you have a cost every month. My boat I bought for $8,500 in 1993 and put $30,000 into it getting ready to cruise. I lived on it and paid $375 per month when a one bedroom apartment cost $725 in San Diego. I Thus saved $350 per month which I figured paid the boat off before I left ten years later so it was a break even in the cost. If you are not going to live aboard then you need to figure another way to justify the cost. The nice thing is you can do what you feel necessary the way you want it done and you will know all the systems. Lastly I envy you. I wish I was setting up my new cruise boat but I am now married with a 10 year old so my having enough money to do such is not there. Enjoy the area you are cruising, it is truly beautiful.
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