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Old 18-11-2016, 19:52   #136
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

Well as a general rule the newer the cheaper to maintain, there is of course a point of diminishing returns.
But an older well kept boat can be had that is in the sustainment phase, meaning it only needs normal preventative maintenance.
You of course will pay more for these.


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Old 18-11-2016, 20:05   #137
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
Well as a general rule the newer the cheaper to maintain, there is of course a point of diminishing returns.
But an older well kept boat can be had that is in the sustainment phase, meaning it only needs normal preventative maintenance.
You of course will pay more for these.
That's more sensible for us, to pay a bit more upfront without many hidden costs, rather than pay randomly throughout the year when things go really wrong. We will get a person to check the boat but in the meantime I will try to learn as much as possible so he doesn't miss out on any aspects. I really hope an older boat in the sustainment phase is within our budget.
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Old 18-11-2016, 22:06   #138
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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This is my first post here, been a lurker for a month now.

We're planning to live in a boat, my wife an I and we've been considering what small compact boat to get. We're loving the compactness of sailboats but we are not interested in sailing much. It's more of a decision to live in a place that is small, and which would hopefully run us cheaper than rent after the initial investments.

We're fans of living in small areas. We've already lived in supersmall almost capsule houses in Tokyo, I've lived in a cramped living cabin in a cruise ship so we're good on that aspect, but the maintenance costs we're a bit afraid will kill us. We love living this specific way but if it costs more than rent in the city center of San Francisco in a small apartment, then we'd have to reconsider.

Fuel costs will be at minimum as engine usage will be at minimum as well. We don't plan to travel much, especially at the beginning. Once or twice a year in fact.

What we want to get is a high quality used boat, somewhere around the 20 000 usd mark. The idea is that maintenance would be much lower since it's a very small powerboat (sub 30 feet, even 23 feet would be great) but we don't know the details, what hull material is the cheapest to maintain? Anodes, monthly consumables for the boat etc.

Thanks for reading through!
Your best bet is to get a boat with twin elevating outboards. This is the most economical engine source. No corrosion and easy access as well as cheap to service. Get steel or fiberglass boat NOT wood. Make sure you have simple heads not electric a simple popular pump action. Max 3 burner gas hob with small oven. If possible have a small Honda 2000 generated on board. This is ideal for charging batteries when no shore power is available. Good luck😁
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Old 19-11-2016, 05:29   #139
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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Hhahah thanks for the tip! But I'm going to live there with my wife and we will need the space. As others have mentioned, the head, water storage etc needs its space too.

Other than my eternal fixation with tiny living spaces, it's also about maintenance, slip price, portability etc. I also love when everything has to have a place, otherwise it's out of place and it's crowded.
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But that's the point. At 25' with your wife, a head, a galley and all the other stuff needed, it's a really tight fit and moving up to a 30' boat will be negligible cost difference as most marinas (particularly if they allow liveaboard) have minimum price based on 30-35', so you really aren't gaining anything.

Maintenance is not going to be significantly different. Yes, maintenance does go up with size but it's an exponential growth thing and 25-30' is down on the flat part of the curve.

Objectively, there is no significant advantage in going smaller in your situation and some very significant downsides.
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Actually it's about cheapest to maintain. Not cheap in general. It could be an initially more expensive boat than others.

Imagine a 26' boat with typical systems: maybe AC (aircon) if in hot climates, engine, maybe genset, freshwater pump, water heater, toilet, holding tank, battery charger, batteries, fridge, cooktop of some sort, maybe a microwave, etc. Plus living accommodations (seating, berths, and so forth). All those system have to fit somewhere.

Now imagine a 35' boat with the same systems and the same living accommodations. Same stuff, more space.

Imagine engine maintenance on the first boat. Or maybe the freshwater pump. You may have to dismantle part of the house to get to it, or if not, you may have to get yourself into spaces where pretzels don't fit all that well. Work upside down, maybe with a tool on one arm fully extended, can't see the work you're addressing so using mirrors or cameras to guide your hand and the tool... can't get leverage on anything at the distance...

Now imagine engine maintenence on the second boat. Or maybe the freshwater pump. All that same problem may apply, actually.

But maybe less so. You might be able to get closer, actually see what you're working on, actually use the simplest tool with no extensions involved...

When you get to shopping on actual boats, you might have a look at things like that. Access to systems that you'll need to maintain sometimes argues for a size larger than what you might gravitate toward simply for the "living size."

Another related consideration is about hired labor. If you can fix it yourself, all that access time is simply lost opportunity cost (unless you actually enjoy it)... but if you have to pay someone to fix something... they charge for "how long does it take to actually get to the part that needs fixing" time. And then they also charge for the "put it all back together" time. So access can cause cost spirals way out of proportion to the actual work that needs doing.

For example, I can change an engine impeller is about 10 minutes, if it were on the bench. It usually takes me 3 hours, in situ. And it would take about 4 hours to remove the water pump, replace the impeller on the bench, and then remount the water pump. At about $95/hour labor. This, in a boat with pretty good access compared to what might happen in the smaller sizes you're envisioning.

-Chris
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Old 19-11-2016, 05:39   #140
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

For example, I can change an engine impeller is about 10 minutes, if it were on the bench. It usually takes me 3 hours, in situ. And it would take about 4 hours to remove the water pump, replace the impeller on the bench, and then remount the water pump. At about $95/hour labor. This, in a boat with pretty good access compared to what might happen in the smaller sizes you're envisioning.

Ha Ha your having a laugh. Impellar chenge takes approx 10 mins with the pump in situ on an inborad engine. I know we had twin in board deisels on our Cat.
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Old 19-11-2016, 05:47   #141
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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For example, I can change an engine impeller is about 10 minutes, if it were on the bench. It usually takes me 3 hours, in situ. And it would take about 4 hours to remove the water pump, replace the impeller on the bench, and then remount the water pump. At about $95/hour labor. This, in a boat with pretty good access compared to what might happen in the smaller sizes you're envisioning.

Ha Ha your having a laugh. Impellar chenge takes approx 10 mins with the pump in situ on an inborad engine. I know we had twin in board deisels on our Cat.

I've got hoses, fuel cooler, oil cooler, etc. in the way. Only takes me about 5 minutes to get the old one out. Hardest part is inserting the new impeller; can't easily get enough leverage on it while at the same time aligning the key and so forth. But yes, I got it done in less than 2 hours once.

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Old 19-11-2016, 08:28   #142
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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I've got hoses, fuel cooler, oil cooler, etc. in the way. Only takes me about 5 minutes to get the old one out. Hardest part is inserting the new impeller; can't easily get enough leverage on it while at the same time aligning the key and so forth. But yes, I got it done in less than 2 hours once.

-Chris
OK understand.
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Old 21-11-2016, 10:06   #143
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

Boxhome,
I was out getting exercise walking the docks at the local marina when I ran across this very sweet little boat.. It was tiny, but looked like it had great potential for being about the smallest boat for a person wanting a minimal space to successfully live on.. Having a full keel, it would perform well if you do any off shore cruising.. Naturally, mindful of this thread, I thought about you..

It's a Flicka 20, and is could be, from what you are seeking, the perfect boat.. If you care, go to sailboatdata.com and searched on the name "Flicka 20" to see how it is laid out..

May your runs be downwind with following seas.. flk k
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Old 21-11-2016, 10:54   #144
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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Boxhome,
I was out getting exercise walking the docks at the local marina when I ran across this very sweet little boat.. It was tiny, but looked like it had great potential for being about the smallest boat for a person wanting a minimal space to successfully live on.. Having a full keel, it would perform well if you do any off shore cruising.. Naturally, mindful of this thread, I thought about you..

It's a Flicka 20, and is could be, from what you are seeking, the perfect boat.. If you care, go to sailboatdata.com and searched on the name "Flicka 20" to see how it is laid out..

May your runs be downwind with following seas.. flk k
The biggest tiny boat there is & seaworthy to boot! If the OP is as enamored of small spaces as he says he is, this is the boat for him.
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Old 21-11-2016, 10:58   #145
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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The biggest tiny boat there is & seaworthy to boot!
Also probably several times more expensive than the OP is looking for.
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Old 21-11-2016, 13:42   #146
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

Watching YouTube videos I ran across this one of a couple who sailed a 24' boat down the pacific coast and then across the pacific to New Zealand..

So good luck on your endeavors.. flk k
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Old 21-11-2016, 15:27   #147
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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The biggest tiny boat there is & seaworthy to boot! If the OP is as enamored of small spaces as he says he is, this is the boat for him.
Actually, as his post originally stated, there are two of them, he and his somewahat refined wife. So that boat wouln't suit at all.
What is currently bieng cconsidered is a Catalina 30 as there are many available for the $20K budget and in the future travel to far away places is envisioned. And as deep blue water crossings aren't desired a well found Cat 30 will be safe and have adequate room. A Honda will provide the juice and extra fuel & h2o will be carried in deck in jerry cans similar to the 8 x 20 litre jerries I also carry on board.
They'll be fine in a 30'.
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Old 21-11-2016, 21:54   #148
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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The biggest tiny boat there is & seaworthy to boot! If the OP is as enamored of small spaces as he says he is, this is the boat for him.
Of course I am but I also have to think of practical limits. We do want a head, containers for sanitation + containers for water, extra fuel etc. Catalinas are a perfect fit as far as I can see right now.

If it was on land, and the systems were in place, I would gladly live in a 20 feet like apartment There are ways to fit beds into walls and have extra storage within the bed too. I've followed Tiny House communities for a while now so if done well I wouldn't refuse, but I would naturally prefer a boat.
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Old 21-11-2016, 22:09   #149
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

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Watching YouTube videos I ran across this one of a couple who sailed a 24' boat down the pacific coast and then across the pacific to New Zealand..

So good luck on your endeavors.. flk k
This is great. We'll probably have a ton of tricks to optimize space, especially since I already do that in the apartment in crazy unnecessary amounts
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Old 22-11-2016, 00:53   #150
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Re: What is the cheapest to maintain sub 30 feet powerboat?

You don't have to use all the space you know.
I have a 37' boat.
But the stern 3 feet are empty space for access to rudderstock etc. There is a big lazaret which is mostly empty, except for when I have all the sails down and in it, or I need to store rubbish etc.
The v berth is best left empty to sail, but is really handy when I need to remove the berth from the rear cabin to allow easy access to the engine / tankage etc.
(Actually my two little kids live in the forward cabin mostly, but I do kick them out from time to time to use that space)
I have a head large enough to actually stand up and shower in.

Storage space is the biggest issue.
Under V berth is all water storage, with closed cell foam forward of that.
Under rear cabin berth is diesel and hot water tank.
Under one main cabin berth is all spares and tools.
That leaves us with the space under one berth, plus fridge for all food.
All clothes / linen has to fit into small cupboards in the two cabins.
Pots and pans, crockery, glassware etc fills up the remaining small cupboards in the galley area.

Storing a dinghy and engine is a problem - needs to go on deck which I do not like.

So a 37' boat, and I still need to go on deck to change my mind.

You can leave spaces empty and unused, but it's really hard to add space on if you need it.

Mike
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