Hey folks...I hadn't been here in a while, and thought I'd drop by.
Yeah, that young couple was brave to do that trip in any boat, including an Endeavourcat 30! However, I will say that Endeavour makes some incredibly rugged boats. I have had my EC30 for 3 summers, and spent almost every weekend of the summer on it.
I wanted something bigger...I took another look at a Mainship 34 (as you saw, I liked the one that I had looked at 4 years ago), but decided against it for one main reason: only one stateroom. I have a 13 yr old daughter who is with me every other week, and spends lots of time on the boat with me...plus I wanted room for guests to feel comfortable. (The other gripe I had with the Mainship 34 was that the steps down in the salon vs. the bottom of the windshield are just perfectly positioned for me to constantly bang my head against that corner...yes, apparently I'm too dumb to remember to duck!
However, I stumbled across what I believe is a gem of a trawler yacht...a Bayliner 3818
(made for over a decade, and named 3818, 3870, and 3888, but all the 38xx's are essentially the same boat with only minor differences). Named as a 38 footer (if you measure it including the swim platform and bow pulpit, it actually measures 42 feet...but most marina's aren't going to break out a tape measure), almost all of them have twin 175hp diesels made by Hino (a Toyota subsidiary...they are pretty bulletproof engines, although not that common...large displacement, slow-turning, naturally-aspirated with a huge amount of torque), two staterooms plenty large enough for two full-size adults in each, two heads, one shower/tub, full galley, generator, roomy aft cockpit, large flybridge. It struck me that it's a bit similar to the Mainship 34, but a lot more room and a lot more engine. I bought the 4th 38xx that I looked at and sea-trialed a little over a month ago. Myself and crew brought it up the coast from Port Royal, SC to Carolina Beach, NC, and had quite a fabulous time doing so!
Fuel burn is surprising good...I used about 120 gallons of fuel (average speed of around 9 knots or so) to go 230 miles on the trip home, so that's not bad for a 10-ton boat loaded down with people and stuff. Guys...I REALLY like this boat, and am spending as much time as possible on it this summer (even working from it during the week when possible).
I still have the Endeavourcat 30, and it's for sale for a REALLY good price. They say you learn by doing...in the case of getting the Endeavourcat here 3 years ago, I learned by NOT doing. The delivery captain that I hired to bring it down from northern Virginia ran the mast into a bridge and damaged it.
I decided after that myself and a bunch of drunk buddies could bring a boat hundreds of miles with less damage...and whattaya know, we did.
I will never again hire a delivery captain to bring a boat anywhere FOR me. Anyway, I ended up motoring around most of the time even before I discovered the mast was damaged (sailing isn't great in the area where I am), which then lead me to decide "If I'm gonna motor the majority of the time, why don't I just get a trawler or motoryacht?"...so I did, and gained a heckuva lot more room. I may have the mast repaired on the sailcat before I sell it, unless someone wants to snag a bargain and repair it themselves (best guess on the repair is $3-4K...$1K to pull the mast, $1-2K to repair it, $1K to re-step the mast)...but, as much as I love the sailcat, I really don't need two boats. It has definitely served it's purpose...I got some sailing experience on a larger boat (before I discovered the mast was damaged), had some great times with friends, girlfriends, and my daughter, and spent many a peaceful night or weekend on the boat. The Endeavourcat 30 is a quite a special boat (was custom-commissioned by the original owner) and it has some things that I WISH all other boats had (including my new one)...like the fiberglass/polycore honeycomb/fiberglass hull and decks (light, strong, positive flotation, and no wood to rot), or the copper-clad bottom (it never needs bottom paint...hard marine growth can be brushed right off quite easily, it doesn't stick)...etc. I've got a new outboard on it that's still under warranty and barely sips fuel, plus new fuel tank, new head, etc. I had some catch-up to do on maintenance, but after the mast repair is done it'll be a really low-maintenance boat for at least the next decade.
Anyway, back to my new one...if anyone is looking for something just a little bigger than the Mainship 34's but still in the same ballpark in terms of size/price/maintenance/operating expense/etc, I would highly recommend giving the Bayliner 38xx's a look. (And interestingly enough, the smaller Bayliner 32xx's are also quite well-equipped with two staterooms and twin engines, although most of them have gasoline-powered Crusaders instead of Hino diesels...but then, that means they are also less expensive to purchase). The 38xx's are close enough functionally to be quite comparable to the Mainship 34's, just bigger and faster, and they have the similar "Down East" styling, which I really like.
Here's a pic: