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Old 01-21-2016, 08:43 AM   #21
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Trawlers aren't for everybody. You have to be able to enjoy the trip as much or more than the destination. You will be seeing the world at seven knots. That said, I love mine.

The only flaw I see in your plan is the part about your wife working and maybe having children. If you're counting on the income from her working and she has to stop to have a child or two and raise them, you may be stuck with a boat you can't afford and/or don't have time to use. And raising children is far from inexpensive. I suggest making the decision on children first, then the decision on the boat.

As for a $50K trawler, keep in mind that the cheaper the boat, the more expensive maintenance and repairs are likely to be. I would set my sights a little higher than that is possible.
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Old 01-21-2016, 08:57 AM   #22
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I say go for it and make it work out ,you already have a jump on most getting
started .Our 32 ft draws 3'4" .
Neither one of us grew up boating,so we got a late start probably around 40 . We love evrything about boats , looking ,sitting at the dock , cruising and working on them . I'm almost 60 now and had we started earlier we would probably be cruising more now. Now it's mostly weekend cruises ,sitting at the dock or working on the boat but man all of it's fun. We are looking at moving up to something larger with even more work and it's still exciting . Good luck to you and your wife .
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Old 01-21-2016, 09:17 AM   #23
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We currently have 3.5' at low tide in the winter at our dock, but it'd be simple to run it out another 40' feet. Or build a longer one at the property we own two doors down. Yes, I understand it would take a permit etc. I pulled them all the first time
Um, 3.5' is right at the ragged edge, IMO. I would strongly consider running the dock out further. Bad things happen to a boat which sits on the bottom, even with a fiberglass hull. Thru-hulls tend to get stopped up, more growth and critters on the bottom. Probably other things too, but those two I know about from having had a sailboat which sat on the bottom a lot of time (even with a retractable keel).
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Old 01-21-2016, 09:33 AM   #24
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Um, 3.5' is right at the ragged edge, IMO. I would strongly consider running the dock out further. Bad things happen to a boat which sits on the bottom, even with a fiberglass hull. Thru-hulls tend to get stopped up, more growth and critters on the bottom. Probably other things too, but those two I know about from having had a sailboat which sat on the bottom a lot of time (even with a retractable keel).
Not having owned my own dock, I can't help but wonder...

Would it not be reasonable cost to have a dredge that may be in area on some larger project stop by during transit to give a quick berth and "channel" dredge (say 100' long X 75' wide) that reaches into deeper water off existing dock? Then you could drive some marker posts into bottom. Or, would that small "channel" simply silt back in too quickly; requiring dredging cost too close in successive years? Guess that last question depends on bottom-material conditions in dredged area.
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Old 01-21-2016, 11:18 AM   #25
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I'd buy a 10-15 year-old 2-foot boat, Bayliner, SeaRay, Wellcraft, whatever. Spend a year or two running around, learning the boat and boating. It can be a great weekending platform. You'll learn in the first year whether you like/need/want the ability to run at 22-30 knots. Then you can make your trawler decision. Most of the couples I know who have trawlers and are still employed bemoan the fact that they have to choose close-by destinations because of their lack of speed. With fuel prices half of what they were a couple of years ago, the most compelling element of trawlering (fuel savings) is less compelling.
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Old 01-21-2016, 11:34 AM   #26
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Am I crazy? Doing it cheaply in our 30s

What about a sailing catamaran (or power cat) with an outboard engine or two?. I see those advertised on craigslist from time to time for around 30-50 grand. They seem to have pretty good living space and very low draft.

Modern four stroke outboard power seems like a simple solution.

This might be too strange or utilitarian, plus it's too much money, but just for ideas...

www.ibis035.com
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Old 01-21-2016, 12:31 PM   #27
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"FF and FlyWright, why the recommendations for non-trawlers? Cheaper and faster?"

Usually better construction as most are all GRP with no buried plywood to rot.

Better does not mean ocean scantlings , it means less repair work for you.

Many have gas engines which are cheaper to maintain , or replace, and far quieter to live with.

Your shallow dock makes an IO easier to not have destroyed bouncing on the bottom with every wave,

With less panasche than a "TRAWLER' the price is 1/2 or less for a newer useful boat , and when you move on buyers with few bucks are easier to find than bigger bucks.

If you decide you will be living aboard and require more room , an out of flavor boat like a Hat or Post or Bertram sport fish will have fine US GRP built hull and deck , and the build will usually be far higher (systems , wiring, opening ports)
as their decades of experience and higher output per year , helps greatly.

Sport fish are usually sold on performance , and reputation , not on mere internal volume and teak trim..

IF dollar a gallon diesel comes back the value of these fine old boats might soar.
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Old 01-21-2016, 12:49 PM   #28
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I say go for it!!! I bought my first trawler at 34. Mine was a Prairie 29....something to look at in your price range if you can find one. They do have a tendency to be in Florida. Also the older Mainship 34s. For that kind of money you can find a nice one. Or you can spend $30k and put a little back into it. Californian 34LRC. A Bayliner 38 is also a good buy but they have a tendency to be on the upper end of your price range. Look at my boat in my avatar. I don't think you can get a diesel powered one in that price range but there is a gas one down by me for $59k. And it looks to be in great shape. A Carver is an excellent boat for space...and the build quality is nowhere nearly as bad as most people would have you think. Anyway, you can do it. And if you do decide to have kids, there is no other activity on earth that is better than a family spending time together on the water!!! The kids love it as do the parents!!!!
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Old 01-21-2016, 01:01 PM   #29
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I like your plan. I'm going to do that in my next life.
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Old 01-21-2016, 01:37 PM   #30
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Not having owned my own dock, I can't help but wonder...

Would it not be reasonable cost to have a dredge that may be in area on some larger project stop by during transit to give a quick berth and "channel" dredge (say 100' long X 75' wide) that reaches into deeper water off existing dock? Then you could drive some marker posts into bottom. Or, would that small "channel" simply silt back in too quickly; requiring dredging cost too close in successive years? Guess that last question depends on bottom-material conditions in dredged area.
Next time you're at the boat ask your harbor master how easy it is to get a dredge permit. The dock extension permit should be a piece of cake by comparison.
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Old 01-21-2016, 01:56 PM   #31
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Next time you're at the boat ask your harbor master how easy it is to get a dredge permit. The dock extension permit should be a piece of cake by comparison.
Yup. What he said!

Depending on how far the dock would need to be extended to get deeper water, just floating-dock modules might be enough.
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Old 01-21-2016, 02:36 PM   #32
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Your plan should work.
We started when I was about 32. We had two boats before our current one [32'] of now 30 years.
Our outlaws took their kids with them all the time. We, both families, were out most weekends and almost all vacations together. Yes, the kids fought and argued. They also had a heck of a good time. NOw, all in their [kids] 40's they still enjoy each others company. We all attribute that to the boating [and frequency] as they had to learn to get along, with lots of practice.

I would caution though that too much boat too soon could also goof things up. Not the financial aspect maybe but the mtce. Personally if I had my current boat as the first boat I likely would not be boating at all now. I developed some skills and liking for the boats on the first two. One a 24' I/O and the next a 28' inboard twin, both gas. But if hit with the current boats needs as my first I would have been swamped. Compared to many boats it was not a particularly needy boat with soft decks or the like yet needed a lot more than anticipated.

I'm quite handy as an electrician and millwright with some slightly more than basic woodworking skills and tools but I think this boat would have been too much as my starter.
That's my only real caution that I learned. I have seen others have to give it up for that reason. They swamped themselves without developing SOME skills beforehand and they had to get too much done by paying for it.


Otherwise go for it.
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Old 01-21-2016, 04:04 PM   #33
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Next time you're at the boat ask your harbor master how easy it is to get a dredge permit. The dock extension permit should be a piece of cake by comparison.
You guys are thinking like Californians. What you do is get a towboat on the radio and offer him a case of beer to come over and blast all the mud out!!! Works everytime!
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Old 01-21-2016, 05:23 PM   #34
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You guys are thinking like Californians. What you do is get a towboat on the radio and offer him a case of beer to come over and blast all the mud out!!! Works everytime!
It works out here too we just don't discuss it on a web forum so as to leave the illusion that we care for the tree huggers.
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Old 01-21-2016, 05:27 PM   #35
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It works out here too we just don't discuss it on a web forum so as to leave the illusion that we care for the tree huggers.
Y'all have tow boat drivers around there????
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Old 01-21-2016, 05:45 PM   #36
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You guys are thinking like Californians. What you do is get a towboat on the radio and offer him a case of beer to come over and blast all the mud out!!! Works everytime!
True. However, in this case the OP says he can run the dock out another 40', so for a long term solution extending the dock would be best. Your solution would work great for a temporary deep-water channel. But it would silt in over time. Local towboat operators around here want more than just one case of beer, by the way.

In this part of the world (I grew up in Pensacola) we do not go from 3.5' to a drop off of 6'. No indeed. We go from 3.5' to 3.51' to 3.52', etc.

Of course he could always put a mooring out there, but a lot more maintenance work gets done on a boat which you can just walk down the dock to your boat, with a beer in your hand, and then listen to Linda Ronstadt singing "Blue Bayou" while trying to figure out why in the #$$^@ the PO did some weird wiring! "Hmm. He ran a cable from the positive terminal of the house battery to ground! Must be a reason!"
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Old 01-21-2016, 06:00 PM   #37
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IO/Sterndrives

A word about these. I hope they are less trouble there than here. Most experienced boaters here won`t touch them due to maintenance needs. $1K a year per unit is not unusual just for maintenance. The water must stay outside. A new mechanic, skilled in servicing and repairing them(among the usual skills) just set up on our marina, right away has plenty of jobs.
For you it could be a question of cost, balancing dredging and maintaining the mooring space, vs maintaining IO drives.
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Old 01-21-2016, 06:29 PM   #38
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lots of great advice on here.

Supposedly Twain said "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

works with trawlers, too. Fire up the motor(s). Explore. Dream. Discover.

As one of my boating friends lies in an ICU, fighting for his life, that has become all the more poignant. Do it while you can, you don't know what the future holds.
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Old 01-21-2016, 07:06 PM   #39
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Greetings,
Mr. P. Here ya go. Single diesel, shallow draft and cheap...
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Old 01-21-2016, 07:11 PM   #40
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Tristan, I bought our 65' boat when I was 35. I am still working on it but it will be done this summer. It's never too early. Jump in, if it doesn't work out sell it.
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