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Old 03-14-2013, 12:53 AM   #61
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I chose to have a "boat" rather than a floating "apartment." That is, not wanting to maximize space and conveniences at the expense of desirable boat-handling attributes.
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Old 03-14-2013, 02:06 AM   #62
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Interesting observation Eric. Our boats are similar in size and find the dinette to be a huge waste of otherwise usable floor space in our small cabin. We'd far prefer a settee like in Willy. ...
A drop-leaf table help solve that problem.

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Old 03-14-2013, 06:27 AM   #63
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My wife and I would never want a dinette. It is too dedicated to sitting at table type stuff, something just as easily done at a fold-out table fitted into an L-shaped settee, which then can be converted to a double bed and also allows one to stretch out for that delicious afternoon snoo....I mean read...
We both like to be able to do this in the saloon, so no-one is forced to go below during the day. We like to be up where you can see out etc, so for us, an absolute must have, is two full length settees in the living area.
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Old 03-14-2013, 08:54 AM   #64
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Wade the walk around decks or sun deck vs cockpit issues are really something personal to every boat owner. How YOU intend to use the boat is the important part. Side decks make line handling easier yes, but how much time do you plan on spending handling lines? I have side decks that don't get used at all for docking and I manage to tie up just fine.

If you fish you definitely want a cockpit. If not a sun deck would seem to be very desirable. The extra interior room would be a nice bonus too. If no side decks you will find a way to make it work just like all the other wide body owners do IMO. Charter both and spend a few days on each to see the pluses and minuses.
Very well put. We all have our own personal ergonomic requirements. For us, side decks had a lot more value than just line handling.
  • The awning over the side decks keeps the salon and pilot house cooler, and the side windows cleaner and dryer
  • It makes it very easy to get from bow to stern dierectly without having to weave through the salon and a couple of doors
  • You can to/from lower helm to aft deck to flying bridge in foul weather without tromping wet through the salon
  • It makes it easier watch special guests riding along the aft quarter:



Just to name a few benefits..
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:00 AM   #65
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I will jump in here and maybe add some insight/

Wide Body

I was concerned about not having side decks, but found we do not miss them, because when we dock we use the mid cleat in from the of the Portuguese Bridge and the stern line. Its almost as fast to cut through the pilot house, through the salon to the back beck. Maybe a couple seconds difference. Also the bigger the boat the higher the decks are from the dock/water., so we sue the swim platform. Our stern rail is 6 ft off the water and the mid cleat is about 7 ft, and the bow is 10 ft, so dock access weather we had side decks or not would be difficult. There have been a very few occasions that side would have been nice.

Being a dock queen condo lie aboard having the full beam, 14 ft, so with side deck is the salon would be about 10 ft. Four feet is a 40% increase in living space. Also one of my wife must have was solid tails for safety purposes, as we had small grandchildren at the time, and the wide body with no sided decks was even better. So children/passengers can be contained with in the confines of the boat. Especial if the stern canvas is down, which makes additional living area.

Anyway we like the full body, and would not have side decks!

Bow vs. stern stateroom.

Bow vs. stern stateroom is first dependant on the basic design/lay out of the boat. However, water lapping/noise, has a lot to do with the hull design. If the hull has is a rounded hull, not hard chimed, the water lapping. noise will greatly be reduced. Itís the hard chime that causes the water/lapping noise.

If the floor is above the water line that will also reduce the water napping noise, and if the floor is carpeted, or exterior walls have something against them. The final selling point for the Eagle is we can not hear the water lapping/noise because all the staterooms exterior walls have draws, closet/bed against them, the floor is a couple of inches above the water line, are carpeted, and have curtains/this that absorb the sound. so even if the boat has hard chimes the water/lapping noise can be reduced.

Center vs against the wall beds

I agree having a center bed is preferred/nice. However against the wall is not that bad either, if you have the right covering/bedding. if you will notice mast boat tend to have a thick quilt, which is very easy to throw/straighten. All our beds have heavy quilts that is nice for those cold/chilly days, and with a flick of the wrist/arm is straight/smooth. Then with a couple of accent pillows a side bed can be as easy to make as a center bed. We can make our side bed up as quick as a center with in a 5 to 10 seconds. this quilts cover a lot.

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Old 03-14-2013, 11:22 AM   #66
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If you fish you definitely want a cockpit.
Not to mention a "shooter or two" at sunset!
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Old 03-14-2013, 09:31 PM   #67
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All great points concerning side decks. So my take-a-way from this is basically, we tend to overcome and adapt. Although there are preferences which are based on personal tastes, and which may dictate which kind you ultimately get, whichever type of side decks you have, you just work with it. It's all doable. I didn't get the impression that there was an overwhelming negative response from either camp. So we'll have to charter both if possible and see what we like!

Regarding aft deck space, I don't fish but might do so if the opportunity presented itself. But is not something I would probably do as the sole reason for being on the boat. More importantly to us is the ability to sit and enjoy the view with a Margarita or Martini.
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:33 PM   #68
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I chose to have a "boat" rather than a floating "apartment." That is, not wanting to maximize space and conveniences at the expense of desirable boat-handling attributes.
BINGO!!!!! And that is ultimately my question back to the OP. You do not want it to be a "production" every time you take the boat out. If it is, then you likely will not use it AS A BOAT!!! The people on here that are answering your questions that have bigger boats also have had a lifetime of boating experience...or at least significant experience.

I have always said, "If the 'dream' and reality are too far apart, then the boat will fail to fulfills its purpose." Your job is to define the dream and make it fit into reality. IOW, not to make your "dreams a reality....but to make your reality more like the dream"!!!!

Okay...so I went a little abstract and philosophical....but hopefully you get the gist...

If you are never able to gain full confidence in handling the boat, your experience will suffer significantly....regardless of how ****ing comfortable the boat is. Now if all you want is a floating condo...go for it. A waterfront condo is cheaper and a better investment.
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:46 PM   #69
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" Your job is to define the dream and make it fit into reality."

Now if all you want is a floating condo...go for it! A waterfront condo is cheaper and a better investment.
It only took me 7 boats and 11 years to understand this. I finally figured out that what I wanted was "soft adventure" but with a good bed, a potty and a galley to cook my food in. (Add in a refrigerator. ) I didn't want to create my house all over again!

Good post, John!
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Old 03-19-2013, 02:13 PM   #70
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one thing at a time

Because I am upgrading too, I would offer one piece of advice to the OP. Several of the replies had to do with the limits of size and available dockage. I decided to seperate that issue and get it out of the way so it did not interfere with my ultimate boat choice.
This year I have shopped Great Lakes marinas carefully for price and size capacity. I am making the change before I desperately need it so that I am comfortable with whatever deal I do end up with.
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Old 03-19-2013, 02:13 PM   #71
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BTW a little shopping in February also saved me almost 50%
Clubs can save real serious dollars as well and I have been a member of one for several years but I have also seperated the club from the dockage. In my case that works but I have seen others where you don't want to do that.
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Old 03-19-2013, 02:45 PM   #72
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All great points concerning side decks. So my take-a-way from this is basically, we tend to overcome and adapt. Although there are preferences which are based on personal tastes, and which may dictate which kind you ultimately get, whichever type of side decks you have, you just work with it. It's all doable. I didn't get the impression that there was an overwhelming negative response from either camp. So we'll have to charter both if possible and see what we like!

Regarding aft deck space, I don't fish but might do so if the opportunity presented itself. But is not something I would probably do as the sole reason for being on the boat. More importantly to us is the ability to sit and enjoy the view with a Margarita or Martini.
Indeed.

Like Phil, we don't miss the full walk-around decks- having a full width aft cabin and sundeck are great trade-offs, though!

Practice has made docking a non-event, as the two of us work as a team and have Eartec headsets so we are always aware of what the other is doing.

As for fishing; we have a cockpit with controls in the cockpit, and I'll be installing a pot puller this spring. Plenty of room for crabbing and shrimping. When we get offshore, I'll feel more comfortable about using the aft controls for trolling for tuna (won't have to worry about the confined waters).

Our norm is morning coffee in the cockpit, and evening drinks on the sundeck. Life IS good

Wade, we'll be at our outstation on Bainbridge Island this spring- I'll PM you when we know we're heading that way for the weekend.
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Old 03-19-2013, 09:24 PM   #73
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Wade, we'll be at our outstation on Bainbridge Island this spring- I'll PM you when we know we're heading that way for the weekend.
Peter - that sounds good. Thanks.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:50 AM   #74
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[QUOTE=Chrisjs;140780]I think that apart from all other considerations mentioned previously, you really need to consider what size is manageable for 2 persons. I know that other may jump in here and brag how they single-hand a 65ft yacht, but that is not usually the reality!! We find that a 50ft single screw presents enough of a challenge for 2 agile persons. Get much bigger and you start to need a third crew member. Another consideration is deck access. We have side decks that enable us to work the boat from any position. Many boats are stacked up in such a way that you have very limited flexibility when docking. We apprceiate having dock hands (usually dock mates) but this is seldom the case, and you need to be able to do it all from inboard of your vessel. Lastly depending on where you boat, you may have difficulty finding a slip. At our marina and most of those around where we live in New England, there are very few slips that can accommodate vessels much larger than 50ft. So finding one to rent annually or on an itinerant basis can be tough. While 50ft is small in Florida it is quite large in New England!![/QUOT

From a female perspective... my husband usually has the wheel and I am the one jumping off to tie up. We live on the gulf coast and there is usually a wind and you have to check hourly to see from what direction. Trust me, I can get that first line on FAST but I have to agree with the above... think of what you are both fast/strong/agile enough to handle. Also, as we are still working, we have a home slip in a particular marina and have "slip hopped" as more desirable slips have become available (closer to bath house, with covered dock, near a small peninsula for dog walking). We LOVE our slip and like our neighbors so we are sticking to a size that fits in this area. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 03-29-2013, 12:11 PM   #75
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Interesting observation Eric. Our boats are similar in size and find the dinette to be a huge waste of otherwise usable floor space in our small cabin. We'd far prefer a settee like in Willy. It would make access to the v berth far more comfortable. Unlike Willy though, Bliss has a large spacious canvas and eisinglass enclosed cockpit that adds significantly to our living area.
CP the main reason we're not on that like a fly is because of lost storage space.
The big complaint from me is sitting sideways. I want to be able to look fwd or aft and be high enough to see out well. One of the main reasons we were drawn to the Nomad model. Great visibility.
With a dinette on Willy the fwd dinette seat would be over the engine compartment hatch so I'm think'in about building a 3 seat dinette. And a folding chair for the 4th person. Another thought is to put in a diesel oil stove where the fwd dinette seat would go (by the window) and just have a 1/2 dinette w the seat all the way aft and facing fwd. The minimum effort plan would be to just raise the L settee up for good visibility. But the practical part will probably win out and I'll spent that time cruising instead. It's a project I could do in the slip though or even in the rain .... ?????

But re boat size considerations Moorage rates RULE.
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Old 03-29-2013, 02:02 PM   #76
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But re boat size considerations Moorage rates RULE.
Being under 30' in our area has 1 big benefit I'm discovering. Almost everybody has at least 1 vacant 30' covered berth available. So becoming a marina gypsy is in my very near future.

As to the dinette/settee issue. Visibility in our cabin is not an issue because there is none. No one is below while underway anyway so settee and extra floor space would work well. I like your 3 seat dinette idea though, if I cut the forward seat in half and removed the inboard section access to the vee berth would be much improved.
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