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Old 10-06-2019, 17:10   #46
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Boat maintenance/repair/upgrades are my big budget killers really. For those that have done both how do the long term RV and Boat maintenance/repair costs compare?

I'm years away and just wondering.
Unless you're on a cold freshwater lake somewhere, you can think of your boat as sitting in a battery. Salt water is both alive with stuff that wants to grow on the hull AND salt water is an electrolyte. Salt promotes corrosion and all manner of deterioration.

An RV needs bearings repacked with grease once in a while. But you can safely park it for months at a time with minimal upkeep.

Not close enough to even attempt to compare the two.



But if you're traveling with an RV, fuel costs will be higher and fresh seafood will be scarce.
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Old 10-06-2019, 17:11   #47
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Definitely considering a Westfalia. Just not sure if itís big enough to sustain say weeks off the grid. Whaddya think? How long could you boondock in a Westie? Two adults with modest needs?

Definitely seems true that boondocking (outside of Walmart parking lots) is very hard to find along the eastern US. Canada offers some areas up through Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. Heck, in Newfoundland Iím sure you could pull off anywhere outside the small urban areas. There are vast areas of Crown Land through Canada, although again, most of it is away from urban areas.

In the USA, there are free or pretty cheap (~$5-$10/day) boondocking areas in Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas. These are the ones I know of from my motorcycle trip. Thereís probably a lot more. Along the west coast I found areas to camp out on the beach (Oregon mainly). Same along the Texas Gulf coast.

Definitely not as easy as finding a free anchorage, but still seems possible if youíre willing to leave the eastern USA.
This guy drove his VW camper from Chile to Alaska. All off grid. For many YEARS! Often with 3-4 people.

https://www.youtube.com/user/kombilife
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Old 10-06-2019, 18:46   #48
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

One more thing to think about. Even two people generally desire a boat around 35' or larger for extended cruising. After all, you are on the boat for long periods and you must bring along food and other supplies for an extended period. That is really not true of an RV. Every time you stop for an overnight or several days you triple the size of your living area. You extend your awning and set up folding chairs. You adopt the firepit and picnic table that are usually at the campsite. You stop at a local store whenever you wish to restock food and other supplies. You wash your clothes in the laundry at the RV park. You go for walks and visit with others whenever you want. That means a smaller RV works just fine for 2 people. Ours is 22'. It is comfortable to ride in, comfortable to sleep in, and it carries the things we need. The smaller size and lighter weight means it is easy to drive and uses less fuel. Now, some may say that you could cruise in a 26' sailboat and RV in a VW van. Yes, but I am talking about achieving a reasonable level of comfort in each case as I describe.
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Old 10-06-2019, 23:03   #49
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Unless you're on a cold freshwater lake somewhere, you can think of your boat as sitting in a battery. Salt water is both alive with stuff that wants to grow on the hull AND salt water is an electrolyte. Salt promotes corrosion and all manner of deterioration.

An RV needs bearings repacked with grease once in a while. But you can safely park it for months at a time with minimal upkeep.

Not close enough to even attempt to compare the two.



But if you're traveling with an RV, fuel costs will be higher and fresh seafood will be scarce.
Curious that RV/autoís have lower maintenance costs and deterioration over time but depreciate more quickly than boats, you would think it would be the other way around?!!

Iíve always believed that TCO (total cost of ownership = capital cost + depreciation + maintenance) is the right way to compare apples to apples...
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Old 10-06-2019, 23:13   #50
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Originally Posted by KP44 View Post
Unless you're on a cold freshwater lake somewhere, you can think of your boat as sitting in a battery. Salt water is both alive with stuff that wants to grow on the hull AND salt water is an electrolyte. Salt promotes corrosion and all manner of deterioration.

An RV needs bearings repacked with grease once in a while. But you can safely park it for months at a time with minimal upkeep.

Not close enough to even attempt to compare the two.



But if you're traveling with an RV, fuel costs will be higher and fresh seafood will be scarce.
It always goes both ways on this If your boat is properly zinced, bonded, etc, the electrolysis issue is minimal. And for growth, we three do an hour of gentle scraping/scrubbing of the entire hull each week...good exercise and keeps her clean. Anytime we're bored actually, over the side with a scrubbie ya go!

As to the seafood, yes, unless you find a river that nobody claims (harder here in the EU than US by far). But you can always trundle your VW (or even a full-blown land yacht) up to your nearest walmart or tesco or lidl and buy that stuff for 2 bucks a kilo, and cook and sleep in the parking lot to boot. But we spent loads of time on the sea even in the RV, so fishing can be an option depending on where you go...

As an aside, in our living in a VW year, once I found a huge fig tree growing wild nearby. With a coathanger taped to the end of a fishing pole, I harvested buckets a day, and we ate almost nothing but figs and the bread we made for about a week My first wife called them figwitches because she's silly, but holy heck were they ever good....and boy, after the first day of adjustment, were we ever regular
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Old 10-06-2019, 23:20   #51
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

Like so, on the farthest tip of turkish cyprus... almost as nice as being on anchor
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Old 11-06-2019, 06:08   #52
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Responding to Boat Man and Valhalla...

It is a dodge ram Cummins diesel pick up truck. Itís 3/4 ton and heavily modified to carry the load.

The way I have used it in the United States and Canada is to sometimes just pay to park in the middle of a city. For instance, in Toronto, I just paid $20 each 24 hours to park the thing in the very center of the city. Then I can walk to everything or take the metro/subway around Toronto. Becomes like you have a small apartment in the city you are visiting. It fits in one standard parking space. With a bit of an overhang. Iím hoping I will be able to do the same things in Paris, Barcelona, Milan, Zurich, places like that. Or at least do the same in a very nearby suburb of those cities so that we can go explore the city with a short train or bus ride.

We wouldnít be doing too much nature stuff. Because there is plenty of that available in North America. To me, traveling around the world to see another set of trees is not that interesting. LOL however, seeing the different cultures and food and people is more interesting to us.

Do you think I would be able to get in close to some urban areas and small interesting towns up on the top of mountains and stuff?
I haven't seen any 3/4ton pickups but it's 1st world area so as long as you aren't in a rush, shipping in parts should be possible and they do have fiat/chrysler dealers who might hem & haw but should be able to help.

European parking spots tend to be too small and many lots have height guards to keep trucks out. But around most cities, they have lots set up for RVs if you don't want to do a formal campground. Sometimes free or a very modest price. With much better transit systems, visiting cities with your RV is very much viable.
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Old 11-06-2019, 06:42   #53
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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I haven't seen any 3/4ton pickups but it's 1st world area so as long as you aren't in a rush, shipping in parts should be possible and they do have fiat/chrysler dealers who might hem & haw but should be able to help.

European parking spots tend to be too small and many lots have height guards to keep trucks out. But around most cities, they have lots set up for RVs if you don't want to do a formal campground. Sometimes free or a very modest price. With much better transit systems, visiting cities with your RV is very much viable.
Fantastic advice. Thank you so much for that. This really sounds doable. I have been practicing all around North America doing the same. And it has gone very well. I think we will go for it no matter what the outcome is with my boating situation. Also, I think three-quarter ton is maybe an old term. Here is some information about it.

It’s just a 2500 or 250.

https://www.cars.com/articles/what-d...1420690417808/
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Old 11-06-2019, 07:01   #54
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Also, I think three-quarter ton is maybe an old term. Here is some information about it.

Itís just a 2500 or 250.
Thread drift:

Technically true but everyone knows what it means. Even the manufacturers commercials talk about the best "1/2 ton" trucks.
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Old 14-06-2019, 06:36   #55
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Not a boat but I used to own my own airplane. A buddy and I had a mechanic who would sign off on our work which helped reduce costs considerably. I do all my own work on the boat. Both of us agreed owning an airplane was way less than owning a boat! And my plane was always angered.
Well, I've had all three. They're all expensive, but SO much fun! I had a much more even-tempered Cessna 182, though...it was never out of sorts or upset with me at all. Great plane and pretty mellow.
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Old 14-06-2019, 06:43   #56
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pirate Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

In Spain and Portugal theres lots of places one can park up for a while, quite a few marinas supplement the income by making their car parking areas available.
I think in the main you will find Europe pretty campervan friendly.
Re the costs.. I think thats down to the size of boat, the bigger the more expensive.
To be honest over a year I think a 26ft boat will be cheaper than a 26ft campervan.. personal expenses not included.
I used to hit a marina once every 14days for 24hrs for supplies, water and big laundry items the rest of the time was sailing or on the hook, this was the Med.
Caribe I never once went into a marina for 5mths, and bar my time in Horta I spent maybe 3 weeks total in marinas over the 2yrs I owned my 323.. and that was out of high season.
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Old 14-06-2019, 07:30   #57
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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Re the costs.. I think thats down to the size of boat, the bigger the more expensive.
To be honest over a year I think a 26ft boat will be cheaper than a 26ft campervan.. personal expenses not included.
I used to hit a marina once every 14days for 24hrs for supplies, water and big laundry items the rest of the time was sailing or on the hook, this was the Med.
Caribe I never once went into a marina for 5mths, and bar my time in Horta I spent maybe 3 weeks total in marinas over the 2yrs I owned my 323.. and that was out of high season.
You have to compare apples to apples.

Your average 26' boat will have less accommodations than your average 26ft motorhome by a good margin.

On the other hand you average 40' motorhome (a bit big for europe) will have less accommodation than your average 40' boat. This assume no slide outs in the motorhome. With slides, its' probably a wash. Point being at some point as you go longer, the boat will have more space mostly due to extra width.

Of course, for costs, you have to assume the same style of travel. If you are an anchor out to save cost type, you can park free in a motorhome in a great many places in europe, so I would assume you would adopt a similar lifestyle. If you assume anchor out vs pay for a campsite, you are comparing apples & oranges.
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Old 14-06-2019, 07:54   #58
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pirate Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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You have to compare apples to apples.

Your average 26' boat will have less accommodations than your average 26ft motorhome by a good margin.

On the other hand you average 40' motorhome (a bit big for europe) will have less accommodation than your average 40' boat. This assume no slide outs in the motorhome. With slides, its' probably a wash. Point being at some point as you go longer, the boat will have more space mostly due to extra width.

Of course, for costs, you have to assume the same style of travel. If you are an anchor out to save cost type, you can park free in a motorhome in a great many places in europe, so I would assume you would adopt a similar lifestyle. If you assume anchor out vs pay for a campsite, you are comparing apples & oranges.
True, but I can travel 1000nm for virtually free, a distance equivalent to 2000km in a van at a cost of €1.38/litre.. not counting wear and tear to tyres, brakes, oil changes, filters etc.
A 26ft camper will sleep 4-5 people and has one head and a galley.. same as a boat but what the van does not have is a swimming pool.
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Old 14-06-2019, 08:04   #59
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

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True, but I can travel 1000nm for virtually free, a distance equivalent to 2000km in a van at a cost of Ä1.38/litre.. not counting wear and tear to tyres, brakes, oil changes, filters etc.
A 26ft camper will sleep 4-5 people and has one head and a galley.. same as a boat but what the van does not have is a swimming pool.
And the cost of an annual bottom paint (DIY) will cover the fuel bill.

1000nm is only 1850km. If you are claiming it's shorter to sail from Gibraltar to Messina...you can also say it's shorter to drive from Gibraltar to Calais.

Yeah, you do have tires and brakes on motorhomes. You have sails, ropes, and wear and tear on sailboats. Plus unless you go totally motorless, you still have maintenance on the sailboat engine...typically at inflated marine prices.

4-5 people on a 26ft is a lot for either (even if including young children) but much more cramped with the boat. Also the head often doesn't have a separate room on the boat when that small...so you are doing your business right in front of everyone.

As far as having a "pool", I see lots of motorhomes in Spain with your idea of a "pool".
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Old 14-06-2019, 08:13   #60
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Re: Maintenance Costs Boat verses RV Cruising

And basically, Boatman, you are paying upfront. Those sales and rig, if never put on the boat in the first place, could pay for more fuel than you could ever use on a motorhome traveling the same distance.

You aren’t traveling for free at all. You just already paid for it when you bought the boat.
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