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Old 11-01-2011, 01:52 PM   #1
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Alternatives to DeFever 49

Just back from TrawlerPort at the Ft. Lauderdale International Boat Show.* Met with a great broker, learned interesting engine tidbits from Steve D'Antonio, saw some cool new electronics and toured a number of $$$$ new trawlers.***

After I*got interested in trawlers and the cruising/liveaboard lifestyle in the late '90s,*got hooked on the dream and began to pursue it my research of designs kept me coming back to the DeFever 49 RPH (all from the 'living on it' perspective, not the performance/sea kindliness/systems point of view) because of its:

- full walkaround with covered sidedecks;

- access to flybridge from pilothouse stairs rather than steep ladder;

- island master so you don't have to crawl over your partner to get in or out;

- door to engine room rather than lifting salon sole;

- cockpit with transom door for access to swim platform/dinghy without a ladder;**

- flybridge forward so you can see bow and water depth;

- U Shaped galley creates "breakfast bar" for most meals;

- '80s vintage under $200k;**

- long production run so reasonable number in existence and thus available to purchase

I assume that all these design characteristics produce the popularity of the model thus*indicating that the liveability, space, performance/seaworthiness must be good.* Yet I see all kinds of other layouts at the docks so I am open-minded to other*designs and am curious as to other*perspectives as*I have no real cruising experience upon which to base my point of view on what I think are the big pluses of the DF49.* So*I wonder:

- how do you dock/board if you can't walk all the way around the boat?

- *how much of a hassle is it to have to climb a vertical ladder to get to the flybridge or go out in the rain to get there?

- what's it like having the salon, galley and lower helm all in one space?

- how much of a pain is it to access engines though a hatch in the sole?

- what's it like preparing meals in a 'down' galley?

- is it really such a big deal to have to crawl over someone to get out of the master berth?

- when you're coming back from the market with bags of groceries in the dinghy how*do you get manage to get them up the stern ladder to the sundeck?

Ken Ferguson

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Old 11-01-2011, 02:32 PM   #2
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

I am currently in love with the Defever 49 and am seriously contemplating that boat for our family.... rolly at sea as I understand it so stabilizers a must if out in open water.

I myself like full walk around decks.
having everything in one space can be a good and bad thing. easy to entertain, hard to get away and have own space.
The easier it is to check on your engines the more love you will give them over the years.
I am not a fan of down galleys due to stairs everywhere to stock galley, serve, etc.
having a full walk around bed makes a HUGE difference in the livability factor.
stern ladder/sundeck....not for me! Plus we have young kids and a dog.
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:23 PM   #3
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

On my office desk, beside the pictures of my granchildren, next to a picture of Budds' Outlet, I have a picture of a Defever 49 laying-to somewhere up the Inside Passage. That's the picture I place myself in when I retire.

There was a blog by a couple out of St Helens OR that took their DeFever 49 from the Columbia River up to Alaska two years in a row. Interesting tales and a beautiful boat. If you can find their blog its good reading. I saw they had it for sale on yachtworld the third year. I wonder what changed in their life?
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:41 PM   #4
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Alternatives to DeFever 49

You might consider a Bayliner 4788 pilothouse as an alternative to the Defever 49. These are very capable coastal cruisers. The advantages we found over the Defevers is that the fleet is 20 years younger than the Defever, something to think about. Bayliner also made around a thousand of these. It is a time proven design with no balsa cored decks, and no teak decking (These were things that scared us about older boats).
Heres what you get in a Bayliner 4788:
A soft chine semi displacement hull with a full keel
U shaped galley up
Walk around queen master stateroom
Full sized guest stateroom
Third stateroom with bunk beds. This stateroom has a door to the companionway, and a door to the master. This makes for either a nice private guest stateroom, or a rather large master stateroom, and all you have to do is shut one door and open up another to convert.
Two full heads, one with a actual bath tub
Super large pilothouse, with helm seat, and setee. Door to flybridge from the pilothouse.
Large salon
Large covered fishing cockpit.
Granted, you do not get walk around decks. I dont know that its a disadvantage. The interior is 3 feet*wider with a full width cabin. Getting from the pilothouse to the cockpit is a straight line, very fast.
The only real disadvantage I found is that the engine room on the Defever is about a foot taller. In the Bayliner you crawl, In the Defever you can stoop, kinda.

Heres a couple of photos of our boat



-- Edited by ksanders on Tuesday 1st of November 2011 08:43:42 PM



-- Edited by ksanders on Tuesday 1st of November 2011 08:44:32 PM


-- Edited by ksanders on Tuesday 1st of November 2011 08:47:19 PM
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Old 11-01-2011, 08:51 PM   #5
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Like many on the Forum I have a DeFever. They are tough, sturdy, well made, fuel efficient*and seaworthy. But, as with all older vessels, the condition of the boat you choose will ultimately determine your happiness. Shop carefully but be advised, there are scanty few of the larger DeFevers for sale on the used market. I met a fellow this summer who had a new 49, they still look good after all these years, Don't pass up looking at other designs*in the DeFever line.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:36 PM   #6
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

We love our DF 48. Much lower center of gravity then the 49 and the lower helm/salon/galley are all on one deck no steps. Three staterooms instead of the two on the 49. The master is a standard Queen and the cabin is full beam 15' huge
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:59 PM   #7
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Alternatives to DeFever 49

Quote:
Budds Outlet wrote:
On my office desk, beside the pictures of my granchildren, next to a picture of Budds' Outlet, I have a picture of a Defever 49 laying-to somewhere up the Inside Passage.
*Is this the shot? At one point this boat was listed with Elliot Bay Yacht Sales in Seattle for $389,900.* It is not listed in their current powerboat offereings so I assume it's been sold.

The deFever 49 is a very nice looking boat.* Very similar to the deFever 46, which we also like a lot.* But of this basic design that a lot of boat builders have used or imitated for their own boats over the years, like the American Marine Alaskan series, I think Tony Fleming has done the best job with it.* His boats seem more in proportion aesthetically to me.* The deFevers seem a bit top heavy in comparison.

But the pilothouse design is our favorite (Fleming, Krogen, Victory Tug, etc) and we think it's superior to*both the*flying bridge or main deck cabin/helm setup like a Grand Banks.


-- Edited by Marin on Tuesday 1st of November 2011 10:06:29 PM
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:21 PM   #8
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

If I could afford to run it I'd go for the Bayliner otherwise I'd go looking for a Krogen.
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Old 11-01-2011, 10:34 PM   #9
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

The 4788 is a great, great boat and one we also would be very happy with. I had the 47's older sister under contract recently (4588) but cancelled due to work needed and price no longer working on it. The nice thing about the 45/47 bayliner is darn near trawler fuel economy @ hull speed (especially with the 4588 with twin hino 220's) but you can kick it up to planing speed if you want. Only real negative is the engine room layout- even worse on the 45 than the 47. But- all around, an awesome boat and one of the best selling classics of it's size class ever built across all brands.
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Old 11-02-2011, 12:49 AM   #10
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Mate the De Fever 49 RPH (with smaller engines) is still my choice of a great cruising boat in the affordable range (for me)
RPH,side decks, walk around bed, galley etc are all strong points, possibly a little top heavy but my mate has one with out stabilisers and he doesn't complain.
I still think they would be a very good addition plus some flopper stoppers for at anchor use.
If you have a good one to buy I would not hesitate.
All the acceptable problems with an older boat will be there but they go with the country it's not a new Nordhavn or Salene
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Old 11-02-2011, 05:05 AM   #11
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

I would agree that the 49 RPH is as close to ideal (for me) as it gets. We looked at a 45' in Rock Hall last month but it lacked a fly bridge, which I can't live without and the saloon was a little tight. We have replaced almost everything but the electronics and the engines on our Grand Banks and it works well for us, but I still lust after a pilot house.
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:46 AM   #12
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Alternatives to DeFever 49

We have a 47 foot C & L Sea Ranger RPH which has almost all of the things you mentioned in your earlier post about the DeFever...
- full walkaround with covered sidedecks;
- access to flybridge from pilothouse stairs rather than steep ladder;
- island master so you don't have to crawl over your partner to get in or out;*ours is midship below the pilothouse
- door to engine room rather than lifting salon sole; we have both
- cockpit with transom door for access to swim platform/dinghy without a ladder;**
- flybridge so you can see bow and water depth;
- U Shaped galley; ours also has*a full pantry
- three stateroms and two heads, one with a bathtub
- covered back "porch"
- '80s vintage under $200k;**
- smaller production run - unfortunately, I haven't been able to find out how many were ever built
*
Just another possibility for you!!!



-- Edited by Delia Rosa on Wednesday 2nd of November 2011 06:49:58 AM



-- Edited by Delia Rosa on Wednesday 2nd of November 2011 03:15:41 PM



-- Edited by Delia Rosa on Wednesday 2nd of November 2011 03:18:03 PM


-- Edited by Delia Rosa on Wednesday 2nd of November 2011 03:20:30 PM
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:38 AM   #13
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

What is under water on a DeFever sets them apart from many above water clones. For starters, look at the keel in relation to the props (or is some cases try to find the keel). Hull thickness, scantlings and line runs are other indicators of a vessel built for the long term. If your cruising is true Coastal, your crew capability is iffy, and you don't lust for far away places then seaworthiness and design/build integrity can take a back seat.
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Old 11-02-2011, 01:35 PM   #14
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Good point.* Perhaps it's just that I see so many more of the double cabin and sundeck designs than pilothousees that I'm thinking I must be missing something in my analysis because I don't have the daily liveaboard experience to know what I'm missing.

As to the person I'm climbing over I'm guessing that as I age I'll be disturbing her sleep requently if you know what I mean.

Ken

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Old 11-02-2011, 01:40 PM   #15
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Good point about the dog Woodsong.* We've got a Golden getting on in age and getting her back on board from the dinghy to a sundeck would be a challenge indeed.**

As far as stabilizers go (and this*should be a new topic) we saw these very*cool gyroscope things at the*FLIBS .. no thru-hull to install*but bulky and heavy.. could be an alternative. *

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Old 11-02-2011, 01:42 PM   #16
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Budds,*

Was it Jim-N-I owned by the Coopers?* Jim Cooper sent me an email on the DeFever board that he's getting ready to sell her in Seattle and retire to land in Alaska.

Ken
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Old 11-02-2011, 01:47 PM   #17
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Ksanders,

Yes, the Bayliner keeps coming up in the searches as having the features we like about the DF49.* Thanks very much for the great photos and the differences between the different models and the DF49.

My preference for full walkaround was based on the stress level I experienced during my three charters anytime we went to dock (KK42 and GB36)* It just seemed really useful that the person handling the lines was able to move around the perimeter of the deck quickly as we backed*into slips*or parallel parked between 2 other boats.

Ken*
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Old 11-02-2011, 01:50 PM   #18
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Sunchaser,* I haven't had too much trouble identifying DF49s for sale, thanks to the DeFever forum (isn't the internet fantastic!!)*and getting connected with a good broker who specializes in DFs.*

What other models would you recommend in the DF with similar features (aside from the new $$$$$ ones).

Ken
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Old 11-02-2011, 05:49 PM   #19
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Daddyo, Interesting.. I'll go onto Yachtworld and look at some photos of DF48s like yours.* Thanks for the tip.

Ken
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Old 11-02-2011, 06:04 PM   #20
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RE: Alternatives to DeFever 49

Nomadwilly,*

The KK42 is our second choice and a model I've chartered twice.* Last month we were in the Panama City area and on the same day looked at a KK42*($135k) and a Marine Trader 49 *(near clone of DF49, $165k).* The KK is beamy and roomy inside, affordable, proven etc. but you have to climb a vertical ladder to the flybridge and the flybridge is set back over the*galley rather than the PH lowering the profile but shrinking the boat deck and eliminating vision of the bow.* The MT49 also has a vertical ladder and the huge PH shrinks the salon to almost nothing thus essentially giving you galley down since you live in the PH.***We did got on a new KK58 at the FLIBS and it was superb but big $$$.

One boat that we toured at the FLIBS that has many of the DF49 features but you have* to buy new was the Selene 45.* They have an interesting layout as you descend from the salon/galley level*to the lower deck.* Rather than a passageway with staterooms along the way it has a square landing with staterooms, engine room, heads radiating from the landing.

Ken**
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