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Old 10-06-2007, 11:47 AM   #1
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Condos versus cruisers

No I'm* not talking about developers buying land to build condos and destroying marinas.
I'm talking about a trend in boating to make a large trawler into a floating condo with every possible amenity included.* A trend supported by the major boat builders it would seem.

Its an insiduous process* that starts with* the desire for litle creature comforts, like having hot water on tap.
Unfortunately it doesn't stop there. Eventually it leads to such excess* that the end result is not really a cruising trawler, but a floating box* whose "extras" could buy a complete ready to cruise good used trawler.

I now work as a designer for a builder/ design group and see first hand what kind of requests* the new boat buyers are making.
In some cases the electrical power demand exceeds the capacity of most marina slips.*You would need a megayacht slip in order to get so much shore power.* And the installed generator capacity is as much as most other trawler owner use for main propulsion power.

Is this a wide spread trend or just a small isolated anomaly* from a few people* with too much money burning a hole in their pocket?
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Old 10-06-2007, 02:54 PM   #2
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

Of course you have your 100-foot plus yachts gleaming in the marinas, but for the more modest budgets, I think it is economics.

For instance, I met several owners in Marathon a couple of winters ago who keep their boats there permanently and admit to seldom taking them out.* It is much cheaper to spend $175 BU up front, plus a little insurance and $400-600 per month slip rental for a waterfront "floating condo" than several million for the same view from the shore.

Besides, "I will be spending the winter aboard my yacht in the Keys," sounds really cool!
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Old 10-06-2007, 05:01 PM   #3
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Condos versus cruisers

Anothe reason our 43 Silveton was taken to Atlantic City for sale. There are quite a few folks there that buy these boats, cause it is a whole lot cheaper than a waterfront home.
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Old 10-08-2007, 11:24 AM   #4
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Condos versus cruisers

I listed a 45 foot boat, a motoryacht, the other day and the boat was quite pretty inside. Terrible lines outside however. In doing some research on her, indeed, the builder boasted that the interior is like a condo. Elnay make a good point. The trend these days is to design boats with every comfort known to man it seems. But I guess we cannot blame the builders as they are giving buyers what they want.

The way I see it is this. Its a diferent age of buyer out there. You don't see builders producing many new boats with the salty, traditional trawler lines of the 80's. Builders have done away with teak rails as buyers don't want to spend a weekend a year varnishing etc. Buiders try to make owning a boat like buying a car, nothing to worry about. New buyers like the European lines, with lots a stainless and glitter so thats what they are getting.

Too bad.

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Old 10-09-2007, 09:42 PM   #5
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

You got it!
*** ** I can't name the number of unpleasant hours spent listening to generators in* a picturesque anchorage or at the dock because some folks have to bring everything they have at home along for the ride. Nevermind listening to the gulls or the oystercatchers, the cry of a lone eagle, or the lap of little wavelets against the hull (that's why I'm on the boat and not at home). I have seen boat run their gens at a state park dock for eight hours or more. Although I may not have all the ameneties, I can run for a week on batteries alone. I don't and won't have a generator, but I also refuse to bring television, electric ranges, and consumptive furnaces. Yes, I have propane aboard to provide heat and cooking needs, but it truly is safe if the system is set up correctly, and I don't have to spoil the anchorage with my noise and sooty emissions. Down with floating condos. Insist on simple, quiet systems when you set up your boat.
*** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** ** Carey (stepping down from my soapbox now)
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Old 10-11-2007, 10:08 AM   #6
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

Newbie here or not, I just can't walk away from this without responding. Just like opinions (everybody has one), everybody's boating wants/needs are different. If a person has the financial wherewithal to buy/build a vessel with many creature comforts, then it's their right. So what if you can run for a week on batteries? That's your choice. Others (including me) choose not to.

That doesn't mean I'm going to run my gennie 7/24. Far from it. Like most (but, unfortunately, not all) boaters, I'm a considerate guy, and have no desire to alienate my neighbors in an anchorage. However, if I need to run my genset, I'm going to do it... period.* My genset is <u>quiet</u>, and if you can hear it, you're too close anyway.

There are many naval architects that can design a vessel containing all the creature comforts that still have a distintive nautical (i.e., "salty") look, and can travel anywhere in the world.* Eric Sponberg and Steve Seaton are 2 that immediately come to mind.

The boat shown below has many creature comforts, yet the builder (Rodriguez in Louisiana) is well known for building excellent fishing vessels (i.e., shrimpers).* That said, it's all about intelligent design.

And for those who consider hot water on tap insidious, you <u>must</u> be single.* Are you going to tell your wife/SO to take a cold shower, or worse, that she can't shower at all?* Talk about a death wish...

Teak rails?* Who wants em?* And if you think it only takes 1 weekend/year to properly maintain teak rails/decks in the SoCal or Mexican UV, you've clearly never been there.* I don't want stainless, either... give me painted steel like that in the picture.

OK... now I'm off my soapbox.
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Old 10-11-2007, 02:49 PM   #7
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Condos versus cruisers

You make some valid points that brings up the issue of when does more become excessive.
A typical household of two people living, 4 or 6 for dinner and a dozen for a cocktail party can be accomodated with a 12kW geset.
Why then insist on providing 25 kW of genset plus another for backup and then . plus . . plus . . plus etc. Well you get the idea.
That is just plain wasteful and excessive. Hot water! of course; but there is a efficient way to get it and a wasteful way.
Emulating the super rich with very conspicuous consumption may be great for the ego.
However what does that say about the person and their global habitat citizenship.
supposedly boaters care about the environment and preserving nature intact for future generations. Wasting resources and consuming energy at a profligate level is not consistent with good conservation practices.
And calling these floating condos "trawlers" is quite a stretch of the imaginations.
A trawler should be capable of going to sea in safety and comfort, Some of these over loaded, top heavy condos are no longer sea worthy.
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Old 10-11-2007, 10:19 PM   #8
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

Well, many of you might know I am a confirmed dock queen as we very seldom leave the dock, and if we do it to tie up ASAP to another dock.* Being a live aboard we have most of the creature comforts.** The Eagle is a 1978 ugly Trawler built on a commercial hull, so it's quite capable, but usually by 4 hours I had enough cruising and ready for a nap.*

If we did not have all the creature comforts we would not have been a live aboard for 11 years.* We like the condo/dock queen live style., and since we live/use the boat 24/7 there is*few needs/reasons to leave the dock.*
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Old 10-11-2007, 10:31 PM   #9
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

Although I try to avoid conspicuous consumption at all costs, I could really fall for the Rodriguez. If I did however, I would insist on a large battery bank and large, well insulated hot water heaters. In addition, I would desire a propane range, and diesel furnace. These items and a few other well thought out system choices would make me least obnoxious to those with whom I would share a pristine anchorage. However, if I was priveledged enough to own a vessel of this stature, I would likely be hopping from one prestigious marina to another, where shore power would definitely be available, and I would be dining at the finest restaurant available. But, not to worry, as I won't need to make such choices. My ego is more than happy with enough boat for myself and my partner. Cheers!

-- Edited by Carey at 23:34, 2007-10-11
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Old 10-11-2007, 11:17 PM   #10
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Condos versus cruisers

Carey wrote: I would insist on a large battery bank and large, well insulated hot water heaters. In addition, I would desire a propane range, and diesel furnace.

Ah yes hot water. Now tell me why would you waste all that energy maintaining a large tank of hot water if you could have instant hot water when yo uwan tit but not use any enegy when you are not using hot water. And think of the amoun tof space you would have extra if you didn't have those great big hot water tanks..
And then you said:
I would likely be hopping from one prestigious marina to another, where shore power would definitely be available.

Okay so you want shore power but would you spend an extra $50,000 equipping your vessel with dual 50A or worse 100A shore cords when you know you probably will be lucky to find one 50A or more than likely only one 30A power outlet available?

Just because you can doesn't mean you should.
And why would yo uinstall a garburator if yo ulive in a marrina. It illegal unde the Marpol regulatiosn to discharge ground up garbage within 3 miles of shore.
Or how about 500 Gallon hot tub up on the top flybridge deck abotu 20 feet over the waterine. 500 gallons weigh 5000 lbs. Have yo uany idea what that does to the stability of a 50 foto boat placing that much weight so high up?
Ah but the status of saying you have a hot tub up on the flybridge deck - must be worth it.
That's the kind of conspicuous consumption I'm talking aabout.
Or how about A 20Kw lightining system to make your boat look like a landing craft from space. Oh did I mention such a system cost about $50,000 installed?
You could buy a whole trawler for the price of a few of these status symbols.
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Old 10-12-2007, 06:56 AM   #11
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RE: Condos versus cruisers

We got up close and personal with the Rodriguez again yesterday. Not sure if the Admiral is 100% sold on it, and it's a LOT of boat for 2 olde fartes at 76'x20'x6', even if the price is right.

I don't disagree with the idea of battery banks, diesel heat, or any of the items that make one inconspicuous... to the extent possible. Not sure I agree on the propane range, though.* Propane isn't always readily available, and those bottles get heavy.

Believe it or not, the Rodriguez has 2 (yup, 2) 32kW gensets, and NO house batteries. Overkill? Probably. But, you don't hear a genset until you're within 6 feet of the boat. Either way, I'd still install a house bank... cuz I'm cheap. What's the cost delta between battery replacement every 5 years and the amount of diesel you'd use in the gennies over the same time frame? 'Nuff said on that one.

If the boat deal gets done (on the Rodriguez, or another one), the last thing I'd be doing is marina hopping to show the boat off.* We're getting into this to be able to avoid doing that for extended periods.* The LRC is the escape from the rat race for us, not an entry into a prestiguous yacht club.* Besides, I'd not join a club that would have me as a member.* The Rodriguez is currently docked at San Diego YC, and the first thing I thought of when entering the place was Bushwood Estates CC in Caddyshack
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Old 10-13-2007, 05:17 AM   #12
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Condos versus cruisers

Its really simple , until folks EGOS or PC get in the way.

The Condos are seldom if ever moved , so the choice of a boat designed for this service is .
A Houseboat !

These Excel at being a home afloat and easy to live with with low cost house equipment.

But a "trawler" sounds more MACHO, the Brit's TSDY (Twin Screw Diesel Yacht) is Not! PC.

The boats that Cruise CANT be 3 stories tall with an oxygen tent on top (fly bridge fully entombed)
since few combinations of engines and bow and stern thrusters will get this style boat into a marina slip with over 5K of breeze blowing.

And as much time is spent waiting for bridges to be opened as rag baggers , these boats are usually left in place till sold or sunk.

If folks could be honest enough with themselves, that being on the water is pleasure enough , and actually boating is NOT their "thing" it would save millions.

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Old 10-14-2007, 04:28 AM   #13
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Condos versus cruisers

The rare breed of folks (perhaps 1 in 1500) that has OCEAN use in mind might consider this as a starting point.

http://www.atoa64.com/

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