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Old 13-12-2019, 19:09   #76
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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Originally Posted by StuM View Post
And for every one of them, there's a heap of stories like this one:


http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...fl-225007.html


To the OP - don't let "survivorship bias" anecdotes fool you. That said, I realise that you have indeed done preparation.
I guess I’m fortunate enough to see it as a lifestyle choice that I have an informed ‘choice’ over (providing you keep informing me )

I’m currently working through boat surveys that include words like stress cracks and de lamination :
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Old 14-12-2019, 06:23   #77
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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I’m currently working through boat surveys that include words like stress cracks and de lamination :
Those aren't words, they are walking away directions
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Old 14-12-2019, 08:05   #78
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

What kind of boat gets stress cracks?
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Old 14-12-2019, 08:30   #79
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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What kind of boat gets stress cracks?


I bet a huge amount of catamarans even quite new ones will have stress cracking of the gelcoat. Itís just a normal thing and usually nothing to be scared of.

Canít speak for much for monohulls but Iíve also seen some stress cracking on a couple Iíve been on.
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Old 14-12-2019, 09:05   #80
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What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

Gel coat often just cracks, it can be indicative of excess stress, as in the glass flexing where it shouldnít, but Iíve only very rarely seen that and always on cheap boats like old small bayliner run abouts after the wood rots out and the glass is flexing because the support is gone.

But Gelcoat often just cracks, quite often because itís thick there and may be from all I know due to thermal expansion, you know hot vs cold days, strong sun etc.

I donít off hand know of any Gelcoat cracks on my IP. But I almost guarantee you there are some, I believe there is always some small Gelcoat cracks.

But honest to goodness fiberglass cracking from stress is an absolute deal killer, Iíve never seen it myself, except from an impact of course.
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Old 14-12-2019, 09:21   #81
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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Originally Posted by StuM View Post
And for every one of them, there's a heap of stories like this one:

http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...fl-225007.html

To the OP - don't let "survivorship bias" anecdotes fool you. That said, I realize that you have indeed done preparation.
Sigh.

Why is it our society (and forums like this one) are so committed to making sure everyone else lives in fear rather than building them up??

Let's be clear. "for every one of them" is simply not statistically true.
Unless someone can prove otherwise... there has not in fact been one wrecked boat and dreams to correspond to every successful sailor/liveaboard.

I would agree with StuM that you shouldn't assume any "survivorship bias" means you'll be fine, but you also should let those who've failed (or those who clearly succeeded like StuM) talk you out of pursuing your dreams... or sway you in any matter actually. You have some experience and it can be built upon. Not only do you get to choose whether to set sail and become a cruiser, you also get to choose whether you fall asleep at the helm and set your boat upon the rocks...



I wrote into this tread many months ago after only a few months out into our cruising life (with no boating/sailing experience to speak of) and said all you had to do was find a boat and go.
Now, over a year into this life and having had zero experience before i still stand by those comments (but also a TON of experiences and additional thoughts to add to them).

While all you HAVE TO DO is find a boat and go... I think you'll find the transition far more pleasant if you take some other steps now (in addition to reading surveys and thinking about stress cracks and delamination). Yikes... maybe leave that one in the rear view!!

Not only have we had our own fair share of experiences in the last year (the agony of easting, bottoming out the boat in the bahamas, dragging anchor and saving those who are dragging around us, countless squalls and even last week an "unintentional" man overboard experience... oh, and also dozens if not hundreds of sails that were lovely, peaceful and uneventful)... but we've now also had the pleasure of living among and having seen/heard/shared with many others who have recently made a similar leap.

It's very easy when sitting back home to feel that you're the only one crazy enough to be contemplating this change... or to be terrified by "the unknown" on the other side but we have in fact have met many many cruisers who are also in their first year. Various backstories, various skillsets and mindsets, but it's somewhat empowering to realize (though sadly, only after taking the leap) that you aren't alone and others are figuring it all out just like you are.

What's disheartening is the number of those cruisers we've seen turn around and go home within the same year, or leave their boat where it sits and return home... Many of them after dreaming of this lifestyle their entire life and after having sold everything back home in order to make it happen.

What seems to get most people isn't the sailing at all.
For a few it's the hard work (lets be clear...this IS hard work, possibly the hardest of any lifestyle we've lived or seen) but also SO worth the rewards that come along with that work.



For most, the things that send them home aren't related to sailing at all, or not things you'd think/expect. It's more about being immediately thrown into a living situation that most haven't been in before:
- Being removed from all friends and family back home with limited contact
- Living in such a small space with very limited time ashore or off the boat
- Sharing that very tight space with your significant other who (while you may enjoy a great deal) you may not be used to seeing 24/7 and or doing so in only a few hundred square feet.
- Having to figure everything out on your own without simply being able to call the plumber/electrician/mechanic
- Not having constant cell/wifi and being able to connect to the news/social media as often has become habit.
- Not knowing where you'll fall asleep or wake up in the morning and having to make decisions as factors such as weather, tides and other boats change around you.

If you have more time before purchasing the boat and moving onboard i would strongly suggest you also start making changes that will prepare you for the non-sailing part of this life change.
- Move into a smaller home that might be close to the size of whatever boats you're considering.
- Downsize and sell everything that doesn't fit into that home or the eventual boat
- Start spending 24/7 with the person you'll be sharing a boat with
- Start fixing household projects and doing your own engine repair/maintenance rather than hiring it out...
- Start spending less time connected to family/friends or even to the internet and social media.

These things all seem small on the surface but i've been amazed at how those are the things we hear time and time again that people "didn't account for" or "didn't understand how hard it would be). There are certainly other hardships and struggles...but those are easy ones to replicate and experience back home. For those considering this major lifestyle shift, why not do what you can to ease into at least some portions of it while still having one foot remaining in the old lifestyle?

For us the change/transition was easy, but i think that's mainly because we have intentionally lived in very small spaces for well over a decade, we've lived /travelled nomadically in a van (a space much smaller than a boat) for 7 years and purged all of our belongings, figured out mail and services and are accustomed to being disconnected from friends/family.

We have had the benefit of being able to make the transition to cruising while "ONLY" having to worry/think about learning how to sail and live on a boat while others are going through so much more that we rarely consider due to our previous lifestyle. Its not to say you cant figure it all out after leaving... but why not spend the tie you have left onshore tackling some of those low hanging fruit and see if you even enjoy those parts of this new lifestyle?

And then... find a boat and GO!!
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Old 14-12-2019, 17:53   #82
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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Originally Posted by theDangerz View Post
Sigh.


Let's be clear. "for every one of them" is simply not statistically true.
Unless someone can prove otherwise... there has not in fact been one wrecked boat and dreams to correspond to every successful sailor/liveaboard.

Strawman. We're not talking about every sailor/liveaboard. We're talking about those who buy a boat and set out on a "grand adventure" with no preparation, sailing knowledge or skills. i.e. those who follow the "Just buy a boat and go" advice.


Quote:
I would agree with StuM that you shouldn't assume any "survivorship bias" means you'll be fine, but you also should let those who've failed (or those who clearly succeeded like StuM) talk you out of pursuing your dreams...

No one is trying to talk anyone out of their dreams. Just advising them to do appropriate preparation and planning - which includes developing the necessary knowledge and skills before heading offshore.
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Old 14-12-2019, 21:12   #83
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

I did not realize the topic was bluewater passagemaking.

Liveaboard can include playing it very safe, even dock queening, little expertise needed there.
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Old 14-12-2019, 22:10   #84
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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I did not realize the topic was bluewater passagemaking.

Liveaboard can include playing it very safe, even dock queening, little expertise needed there.

The OP said it up front in his first sentence:


About 5 years ago my wife and I had an idea of travelling the world on a sailing boat...


He then asked:


Back to the original point.... Apart from a boat and being able to sail, what are the most important skills and traits to learn before we jump in? My time and money are limited so I guess Iím trying to prioritised what I need to do to move forward.



And we see a string of dangerous, unhelpful comments effectively saying "you don't need any skills and traits - just take off"
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Old 14-12-2019, 22:17   #85
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

I stand corrected.

Hire a captain, or take your time OP
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Old 14-12-2019, 22:47   #86
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

Reading over this thread from time to time I gather that the OP is considering a sail boat rather than a power boat. I happen to be on the up slope of learning on a power boat. A cruiser rather than houseboat or trawler. I also partly by choice partly by financial choice decided it would be best to start smaller rather than larger. Probably a good decision. My boat is an older bug sound so called pocket cruiser by the bigger boat folks. It 34 feet waterline but 40 OAL. TWIN 454 chev based motors. It goes ok bug I simply donít like to push these in order to preserve life. Iíve been around the automotive world for a long time. Know your limits. As we say. Anyway to present a bit different picture Iím in east central Minnesota on the Mississippi River. Before itís written off as another river rat be aware the big river is very unforgiving of mistakes. There are very big tugs with big barges that can produce some very rough water. You learn quickly to plan around them. They donít plan around you. The river has countless wing dams to direct flow. These are solid rock just below the surface After you see the first one and how close you might be to it you continuously watch for them. They are not accurately marked on the maps. If you break down you are at the current mercy. It does flow pretty fast so you may need to drop the anchor quickly and possibly a second one.

On to living aboard. My boat has about the minimum you would want for even a single person. A couple will need to be very comfortable with each other. There is not much privacy room. I live with my medium sized dog so special things need to be done for her. Itís now beginning to be the heart of the winter here. Itís already been below 0 deg f. -7 forecast for tomorrow. Our cruise season is over, itís now the hard core living season. The bubbler for keeping ice at bay was turned on last week. I was frozen in for a day but some judicious chopping I freeded the boat and redirected the warmer river bottom water to the boat. I had an emergency hospital stay right in the middle of winterizing the boat that froze the fresh water system so the spring chore is already on the board. I now have to get water from under water hose. Itís just a daily chore. Getting rid of the trash is another chore. There is 6-7Ē snow on the ground and the trash bin is over 100 yards away so even fat soft wheels cart is tough to pull. This year there are only three of us living aboard on the pier. About 7 more are on the next pier. Interestingly only 3 of us had pump outs yesterday. Wonder what the others are doing.? Itís expensive and I havenít received the bill yet. Then there is the heating. I installed a new AC with reverse flow. They are only good to about 40 deg water. The temp is 33-34 deg right now but by doing some trickery with a milkhouse heater I have managed to keep the AC heater blowing 80+ deg heat. How it extracts that much heat out of the cold water is beyond me. Electric power is quite expensive as is water. You have laundry unless you have an onboard washer. Hot water becomes a luxury.
My medical insurance provides a fitness club member ship so it servers as exercise and shower for the winter.
We havenít even got to boat chores. I had it shrinkwrapped in a milky clear. This creates a greenhouse effect on sunny days. Itís as much as 40-50 deg warmer out back. Tee shirt weather for some. Since all marinas here sell only non oxy premium gas we dont have fuel separation but you can get an unbelievable amount of condensation in the gas. Diesels are affected to, probably worse.

I did manage to board a pretty good sized sail boat and frankly I have more room. The sail boat has more head room but is much narrower inside. Pretty tight quarters.

So this is just touching the edge of a different type of boat. Something to think about.
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Old 15-12-2019, 00:01   #87
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

Quote:
Originally Posted by StuM View Post
Strawman. We're not talking about every sailor/liveaboard. We're talking about those who buy a boat and set out on a "grand adventure" with no preparation, sailing knowledge or skills. i.e. those who follow the "Just buy a boat and go" advice.
Still not factually true.


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Originally Posted by StuM View Post
No one is trying to talk anyone out of their dreams. Just advising them to do appropriate preparation and planning - which includes developing the necessary knowledge and skills before heading offshore.
Iím just sayin...
OP and others come here asking for help, suggestions (and maybe some confidence) from those already on a grand journey that itís possible to make a leap in this direction. Someone suggests an inspiring story/book and the immediate response is ďfor every oneĒ thereís a boat on the rocks?

Itís neither inspirational, helpful or true...

Look... Iím not advocating for it (even if it is the way we chose to do it), just saying that it can be done, and that itís pretty irrelevant here as the OP came to the table with some skills, having taken courses and chartered in the past and looking for advice on even more preparation, so why the need default back to negativity or scare tactics?

If you read most threads on the forum where someone is looking for help getting started the overall advice is ďsail your whole life from shore, then when youíre 90 ask us again and weíll see if youíre readyĒ.
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Old 15-12-2019, 18:40   #88
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

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Look... Iím not advocating for it (even if it is the way we chose to do it), just saying that it can be done, and that itís pretty irrelevant here as the OP came to the table with some skills, having taken courses and chartered in the past and looking for advice on even more preparation, so why the need default back to negativity or scare tactics?

If you read most threads on the forum where someone is looking for help getting started the overall advice is ďsail your whole life from shore, then when youíre 90 ask us again and weíll see if youíre readyĒ.
Seems to me 90% of the folks on this site are not actual cruisers, and have not spent much time "out there" even if it is puddling around near shore ot going up and down the ICW or the like.

Lots of "stuff" is said and folks will go around and around like this here online.

Whatever. Laughing and enjoying this thread. Just go out there and do it, even if you suck. Drop a hook and don't spend every day in a babysitter marina. That'll put you ahead of most of the posers here.
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Old 15-12-2019, 20:52   #89
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

We certainly dont consider ourselves cruisers. But in 2015 we took our 33 ft catamaran from Texas to Bahamas - spent three months there - and then back. Had a new 38 ft cat built and imported to Miami this year, a month commission in Florida and three months exploring northern Bahamas, and then back across the Gulf to Texas. We will do it again in 2021. Family - elderly parent - commitments limit our time out of country. So we plan every other year long cruise, and maybe run to Florida for a few weeks in the off years. We have a waterfront house, and the boat is in the backyard. So we get some day sails and weekends too. Honestly I enjoy our time away on the boat, but we also like our land based life, traveling abroad, etc. Oh, and some of the "cruisers" that were living aboard in the marina back in 2015 that felt they needed to educate us on how to do it, are still there on their boats. Most never even make it into the Gulf. That said, a lot of people seem to think cruisers have to be full time and lose all land based existence. I have married couple friends that have done it several months per year for over ten years, and enjoy it, but would never consider doing it 100%. Also married couples who did it full time for four years and she said done, and the boat was sold and moved back ashore. I think if it was part time, they'd still be out there.
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Old 15-12-2019, 23:59   #90
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Re: What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

theDangerz I think if you say ďfor everyone thereís a boat on the rocks or back on the marketĒ you might be getting closer to the truth. I deal with so many dreamers who put their new to them yacht back on the market within a year or two of buying her. My personal best was within two weeks the couple had realised they had made a mistake and had listed the yacht again.
BlackHeron 90% sounds a bit wild, certainly there are more than 10% of the responders on this forum that have done some serious miles.
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