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Old 02-07-2015, 06:27 AM   #1
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Torn between N40 or N47

We are a retired couple planning to become full time liveaboards this year. We have been focusing on the N47. But since many people have written that you should buy the smallest boat you could be comfortable on - I am wondering if a preowned N40 would be a better choice for us (we have eliminated the 43 and 46)? We plan on being east coast cruisers (Maine to the Keys), with an occasional trip to the Bahamas. We would expect occasional short visits from the grandkids, not all at once.
Please let me know whether you think the N40 would be a comfortable liveaboard boat. I have a few conflicting posts on this issue and would love to have more input. I want to consider the ability to age in place on either boat - the stand up engine room on the N47 appeals to these aging boaters.
I am eager for your input. Thanks.
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Old 02-07-2015, 06:47 AM   #2
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Why did you eliminate the N43..? As it is just that bit bigger than the 40, and almost as roomy as the 47, and has the advantage of room for a proper helm seat. Just interested. I'm sure you have reasons, so just intrigued..?
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Old 02-07-2015, 06:57 AM   #3
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If not crossing oceans...only "N"s will do?

Many think other vessels offer more interior space for a given length.

The money is yours to spend....but picking real blue water vessels for near shore cruising seems overkill....
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:09 AM   #4
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Thanks to both of you. After a great deal of research and finally getting on boats, a Nordhavn is the choice for us. Its probably going to be the 47 but we have seen some really nice very well equipped 40's that appealed to us as well. Budget does figure in. We never got on a 43 as the one we wanted to look at sold. One may come on the market that we could take a look at. What I am looking for here now is advice whether a couple could be comfortable living aboard a 40 full time. I need to figure out whether to rule that model out. My husband is 6' 4" and I am pretty tall too. We will bring our English bulldog onboard. I am a complete newbie as no doubt is evident. (My husband is an experienced boater)
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:14 AM   #5
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OK, thanks for clarifying. I don't blame you falling for a Nordy, but I think the 40 would be a bit tight to live aboard, the 43 could well be a better option there, and not that much more expensive. The 47 is also nice, kinda like a stretched 43 actually. Hopefully Oliver, who has a 47, might come in soon and would know a lot more than I do about them all. If he doesn't, search him and send him a PM. I'm sure he would love to help.
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Old 02-07-2015, 07:17 AM   #6
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Thanks Peter B. This is helpful.
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Old 02-07-2015, 08:20 AM   #7
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Loved the N47 we toured at Trawlerfest. Our boat isn't a Nordhavn but at 38' it should be close to an N40 in available space. I just can't see being a live aboard on a boat that size. I am 6'5" and was impressed with the ER on the N47. If we were selling the farm to go to sea, the N47 or the Defever 50 would be near the top of our shopping list. To me, the main negative is the draft on these boats and the need for stabilizers if you are doing blue water cruising. There have been posts on this forum of very experienced people who have done the Loop and ICW on boats with 5'+ drafts but I do not care to try it and going from Maine to Florida offshore doesn't seem that practical to me. Anyways, here is a vote for the N47.
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Old 02-07-2015, 08:24 AM   #8
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Thanks. I suspected the answer would be that it would be too cramped but I wanted to be sure before ruling it out. I wish it were otherwise - the costs are sure much lower, not only acquisition but slip fees etc. I expect it would be easier to dock too but don't know if this is the case. I like the lesser draft, especially for the Keys.
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Old 02-07-2015, 09:23 AM   #9
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Torn between N40 or N47

The N40 is way too cramped for a liveaboard IMO.

For late mode N47 money (or less) you can also get:

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats...allarta/Mexico

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats.../United-States

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats.../United-States

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats.../United-States

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats.../United-States

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats.../United-States

http://m.yachtworld.com/mobile/boats...tic/CT/United-
States

Nothing against the Nordy-- great boats-- but other options out there with more room to live aboard.

Edit: Wonder which "brand" would have better resale at the end of ones cruising career (assuming it had to end)? Nordhavn, Krogen, Defever, Bearing, Great Harbour? I assume any custom boat would be hardest to resell...
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Old 02-07-2015, 09:42 AM   #10
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Thanks for your advice cardude01.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:09 AM   #11
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47' for the average couple needing average space....hands down! If it were for the grandkids only, the 40 would do.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:12 AM   #12
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Good to know. In that case, hope we can swing the 47 - we will know for sure in a few months.
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Old 02-07-2015, 10:19 AM   #13
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cardude 01 - thanks for your list; that was nice of you to compile for me.
I can't help it: we are enamored of Nordhavn
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:34 AM   #14
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Just remember how many boats are bought then go little used or resold quickly at a major loss because they aren't the right boat for the application.

Sorry can't help myself and am sure Cardude feels the same as many others that are biting their tongue.....if that's what you love...it may be the right choice as that is a big part too.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:40 AM   #15
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Torn between N40 or N47

I started looking at Nordhavn initially because they would be the safest boat, take me anywhere, yadayadayada.

Finally realized I wasn't really going anywhere far flung soon (ever?) and started looking for the newest boat I could get for the least money that fit most of my needs. Not sure I got all that yet since I just got the boat, but I'm just trying to say keep an open mind on the big blue water boat.
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Old 02-07-2015, 11:44 AM   #16
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As far as the "buy the smallest boat you can be comfortable on" saying I, having had five ocean going power boats think that is a completely false statement.

I would, within practical reason buy the most comfortable boat that will safely take you to the places you want to go.

Mainetrawler, I know you are new at this. I know you are focusing on the Nordhavn's right now. Allot of us here were in the exact place you are right now, just a few years ago.

To get to the spot you are in life, clearly you and your husband are smart people. So, like you must do in your careers, approach this boat thing with goals. Define your goals and the right boat will become much more apparent.

So far you have defined to us your cruising range. From your posts you want to do the ICW, and the Bahamas. With that cruising range in mind almost any boat will be seaworthy enough to accomplish the mission. You might be shocked to hear this but my Bayliner is perfectly suited for that mission, as are allot of other boats.

All I'm asking you to do is to analyze your goals first. The right boat will naturally flow from those goals.

You're talking about selling out and making a liveaboard life. If you'd defined your goals as "we want to cruise the entire planet" then I'd (and may others here) would be advising you to buy the Nordhavn and set sail. The problem is you did not define that as your goal.

I will suggest to you that for cruising the ICW and the Bahamas you don't even need to sell the farm. You could almost certainly keep your land based home as a place to return occasionally to, or as an investment, and buy a lesser priced boat that will take you in safety and comfort to the places you dream of.

Then after you get into the cruising lifestyle, and see what its really like... if your cruising plans change and you want to see the world, you could then sell out and buy a passagemaker like a Nordhavn that will fulfill those dreams. Then, you'll be in a much better position to know what you want, and what you don't want in a boat.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:05 PM   #17
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While I may be a little biased , one of the local N40's was used as a live aboard for a couple of years. They are comfortable and capable boats. The only issue I have observed with the 40's is that launching and getting onto/off the dinghy seems a little dodgy if it's rough out.

The N47 obviously has a lot more room for living and comfort. You'd love all of the stand up space in the engine room and I find the location of master stateroom in the middle of the boat to be far more comfortable both at sea and at anchor. Far less motion at sea and no chain or wave slap noise at anchor.

Of course, YMMV,

Good Luck and feel free to contact me with questions about N47's.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:15 PM   #18
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Since you are both tall and desiring to live aboard and obviously have the means to afford a late model Nordhavn. Why not look into the late model DeFever?

Same salty look, generous engine rooms and more interior space(living area) than a comparably sized N. You will notice interior headroom is generous on the DeFever line of boats.

If you are sold on Nordhaven don't let me or anyone else stop you as they are fantastic boats. I'm just saying if you have a few months before things get serious you owe it to yourself to look around at other brands.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:26 PM   #19
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Thanks so much everyone for the very thoughtful replies. You have given us a lot to think about. Trust me, I will mull all of your thoughts over. We want to get this right.
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Old 02-07-2015, 12:37 PM   #20
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Go wit the N47, we were initially looking at 40's and came close to buying a nice one up in Texas, but we realized after a year we'd be wanting to upgrade to the bigger 47'. We have no regrets with our choice.
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