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Old 12-08-2020, 06:19   #1
It is only boating
 
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Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Extra costs for cruising on a "big" boat verse a "small" boat comes up frequently. Those of of us with "big" boats say it isn't all that much more expensive. We of course are just liars, so since I acturally keep records that make it possible to figure out I looked up the cost difference between cruising on my "big" 41' boat compared to a 31' "small" boat. Here goes for ME during the last 46 months:

Boat maintenance, repairs, upgrades
difference between a below deck and wheel autopilot drive motor - $700
cleaners etc - $100 (just a wag to be "fair")
bottom cleaning - $130
haul out - $70
bottom paint - $200
yard space - $35
mainsail - $1627 (difference between OEM pricing)

total - $2827 or $61.46/mo
this is out a total $27,742 for the whole boat so 10.2% more to have that extra 10' of space and comfort

Marinas
$1,953 for the extra 10' during the 46 months for the time spent at a slip. That works out to average of $42.46/mo. That is out of $11,851 total spent on marinas and mooring balls the last 46 months or 16.5%.

The total costs of the extra 10' is $4,780, which is $103.91/mo. As a percentage of total money spent the 46 months the extra works out to 3.5% more. I asked my wife how much she would be willing to save per month to give up the 10' of space and the comfort that goes with it, she paused at $500/mo. So to her the "bigger" boat was worth spending somewhere between $400-500/mo to have.

So in the end it has cost us 3.5% more to cruise on a 41' boat instead of a 31'.

Left the story spinning begin.
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Old 12-08-2020, 06:22   #2
It is only boating
 
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Fuel - I forgot about fuel. So lets just call it 25% extra on fuel to drive bigger boat. So add $1,089 or 0.8% more.
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Old 12-08-2020, 06:41   #3
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

A 41ft boat is not a “BIG” boat IMHO. Larger boats begin at 50 feet these days.
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Old 12-08-2020, 07:13   #4
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Depending how you look at it the 10' jump between 31 to a 41' is ~32% more boat than the 31.
I believe your numbers and your final was 3.5% increase of budget for 32% more boat doesn't seem that bad to me.

On a size basis there are relatively high baseline costs for any boat (including a 31'). IMO you have shown that there isn't a 1:1 proportional increase of cost for the larger boat, but really much less.

Which would you be rather living on full time, the 41 or 31' for the better comfort factor?
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Old 12-08-2020, 07:17   #5
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

I am in the process of buying a boat (pending survey). A 38ish foot boat would fit my "needs"/wants. I found a good example of what I want (Sabre) in a 42. I definitely don't "need" a 42 boat and the extra cost of ownership was definitely my biggest hang up. After really reviewing I came to the same conclusion. More money for sure in ownership. But in the big scheme of things not really that much more. If I couldn't afford the 42 then I couldn't afford the 38 either really. 50-100 per month of average is not a deal breaker when one is talking about sailboats in my opinion.

Thanks for the break down from your real experiences.

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Old 12-08-2020, 07:34   #6
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

I wonder if making the jump from 40-50 would be a linear increase in cost. Also, I wonder about long term ownership. New sails. Replacing rigging. Motor. Electrical ect. Do these systems increase exponentially with size? How do new sails and rigging compare in price between a 30 and 40 foot boat?

I feel like "Living" on a 31 foot sailboat would be pretty gritty living. That jump to 40 feet is massive in terms of living conditions. From 40 to 50 feet seems like it would really start to provide comfort.
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Old 12-08-2020, 08:57   #7
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Oh boy, you sure like to screw up popular opinion of keyboard sailors with facts and actual experiences!
Next you need to upgrade to catamaran so you can tear down those walls too
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Old 12-08-2020, 09:18   #8
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Sailor boy 1, thanks for the thoughtful breakdown.

Having had a 34 foot coastal cruiser and sailed on the weekends and vacations, and now a 40 foot world cruiser that we live aboard, it would be hard for me to make a similar comparison. I know we have spent more on the 40 footer by far, but I have to think that is driven largely by the type of usage
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Old 12-08-2020, 09:37   #9
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Well I think you already know that I agree with you in terms of dollars (except for refit and purchase price).

That being said, there's more to it than just financial cost. When we were removing our jib for Isiais, I was REALLY glad that it wasn't any heavier. When we paint the bottom, wax the hull, or polish the stainless, I never find myself thinking, "Boy I sure wish I had a bigger boat."

I do take exception to the poster who said that living on a 31' boat is pretty gritty. Our 30' boat is far from that. You're welcome to come take a look if you're ever in the area.
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Old 12-08-2020, 09:47   #10
It is only boating
 
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

[QUOTE=Cthoops;3206785]Well I think you already know that I agree with you in terms of dollars (except for refit and purchase price).
/QUOTE]

For the most part a bigger boat MAY cost more to purchase. That would greatly depend of course on the boat.

But the cost difference between your boat cost with purchase price and refit and what my boat cost me is $40K. I have had the boat 10 years so $333.34/mo, well below my wife'S $400-500/mo thesehold
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Old 12-08-2020, 09:54   #11
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

[QUOTE=sailorboy1;3206795]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cthoops View Post
Well I think you already know that I agree with you in terms of dollars (except for refit and purchase price).
/QUOTE]

For the most part a bigger boat MAY cost more to purchase. That would greatly depend of course on the boat.

But the cost difference between your boat cost with purchase price and refit and what my boat cost me is $40K. I have had the boat 10 years so $333.34/mo, well below my wife'S $400-500/mo thesehold
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Old 12-08-2020, 10:41   #12
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Thanks Sailorboy. Just what i thought. Now going above 50' things might look a little different but still reasonable.
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Old 12-08-2020, 10:58   #13
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill O View Post
Depending how you look at it the 10' jump between 31 to a 41' is ~32% more boat than the 31.
I believe your numbers and your final was 3.5% increase of budget for 32% more boat doesn't seem that bad to me.

On a size basis there are relatively high baseline costs for any boat (including a 31'). IMO you have shown that there isn't a 1:1 proportional increase of cost for the larger boat, but really much less.

Which would you be rather living on full time, the 41 or 31' for the better comfort factor?

I agree.

32% more boat at only 4% more recurring money.
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Old 12-08-2020, 11:02   #14
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by IslandInfedel View Post
I agree.

32% more boat at only 4% more recurring money.
Really close to double the boat size.
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Old 12-08-2020, 12:05   #15
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Re: Extra Cruising Cost for a "Big" Boat

Having been in boating all of my 70 years and from a family that built boats and owned a marina ( rack storage) - for those interested in the power boat side of that equation I would definitely say things go up more like exponentially. Not really liner except in the smaller boat ranges. Say 16 to 21 ft. All about the same. 22-26 slight operational increase. 27-31 now starts the steeper incline of the expense graph. 32-38 feet also Considerably up quite a bit more especially if inboard engine(s) are in the mix.
But making the step up from 40 feet I would say costs and maintenance would likely double with every 5 feet in length.
No hard figure to quote like the OP. But I have owned boats in every one of those ranges at one time or another.
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