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Old 04-11-2010, 11:07   #1
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Island Packet 350 - is it Adequate for the Eastern Caribbean ?

Looking between Island Packet 350 and 380. Want to coastal cruise East coast and Bahamas first year and then down island the next few. We (wife and I) have looked at many boats and boat types, sailed all of our adult lives - mostly great lakes and some Caribbean and Atlantic.

We think the 380 would be a fine boat to cruise for several years, but in thinking about the eventual return to land, a 350 would be easier on the budget (not as much net worth tied up in original purchase and upon return, buying a house again and keeping the boat) and would appeal to a larger market when reselling.

So, a couple of questions:

1. For you 350 owners, is this model large enough (incl. tankage, storage, ability to handle weather) to cruise like this for a few years?
2. If you have experience with the 350, do you wish you would have bought a larger boat? Why?
3. For everyone, does this logic make any sense?

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Old 04-11-2010, 11:27   #2
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I have chartered a 350 and owned a 37 which is essentially the same size as the 380.

Our 37 was perfect for us and we did exactly what you describe- east coast and the Bahamas for a year. I suspect most cruisers like us never make the trek to the Caribbean.

But it could easily be done in a 350. Just a little slower and smaller.

If you haven't found it, post your question on the IP Owners website- But I suspect the above conclusion will prevail.

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Old 04-11-2010, 11:48   #3
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Hey there,

We are in the looking mode as well and definately leaning toward an Island Packet as well. We have friends who own a 350 Island Packet that we have spent a considerable amount of time aboard, including a week on the east coast before they shipped her back to Minnesota.

There is ample storage on both the 350 and the 380. Both boats are roomy enough to accomodate both you and your wife, as well as guests when necessary. We routinely had 3 couples aboard the 350 for a weekend or a full week without any problems. Sailing characteristics should be fairly similar.

The only real differences that may have an impact between these 2 boats for the purpose that you describe are:

1. Tankage - I would not consider the tankage (at least for my purposes) to be adequate on the 350 if I were sailing in the caribbean.

2. Separate shower area that can be sectioned off on the 380.

If these issues are issues for you that can be reconciled against the increase in cost in the 380, well that would be the decision point, from my perspective.

I guess with the lower cost of a 350, you could certainly add a watermaker and mitigate the smaller tankage on that boat.
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Old 04-11-2010, 12:27   #4
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We looked at both models before buying a 380. Both are really nice boats, but the island double bed (no climbing over your partner to get up in the middle of the night), and the big, separate shower did it for my wife. Those two features, and the additional tankage and storage space did it for me.

The 350 can be cruised comfortably. Our friends, Bob and Lesley, owners of IP350 Grainne have put a lot of miles on theirs. Check out their blog: Sailing Vessel Gra'inne Another IP 350 successfully completed a single-handed circumnavigation. My opinion is that you'd be happy with either, but a bit happier with the 380 if you can swing it.
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Old 05-11-2010, 09:21   #5
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Thanks for the input!

As a follow up...we are particularly interested in the fuel capacity on the 350. Is it enough to do the type of cruising we are considering? I agree with Sweetsailing about being able to use a watermaker for the water capacity, but fuel capacity is not as easily compensated for.

Also, Hud, do you think Bob and Lesley would mind if I emailed them? I did not see an email on their blog site, and was wondering if you could PM me with their address?

Thanks again!
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Caribbean, eastern caribbean, island packet

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