Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 07-12-2017, 10:50 AM   #1
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle
Country: United States
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 46
Hit Me With A Dose Of Reality!

Hey Everyone,

My wife and I just submitted documents to attempt a pre-approval for a boat loan. Once we hear back on that (hopefully with a 'green light'), it will be time to seriously start the search for our perfect boat. With that in mind, I wanted to share some info on how we intend to use a boat, our "must have's" and "wants", and then get your opinions and feedback on whether a particular boat I'm lusting after might be a good fit or if I'm looking at the wrong thing all-together!

First off, here's my current "baseline" for what a perfect boat looks like given our needs, desires, budget and personal taste. I'm not saying this is THE boat, but I would LOVE to hear feedback from this awesome community as to what the good, bad or ugly might be with a boat like this....so that I know if my head is even in the right place right now in terms of what a "good" boat might look like.

I'm not speaking so much about the condition of the boat (unless you notice an obvious issue from the pics)...as I realize that would require a thorough survey, mechanical survey and sea trial. So, i'm more thinking along the lines of layout, mechanical setup, etc...

The "baseline" boat: Used 1991 Ocean Alexander 440 Sundeck, Bellingham, Wa - 98229 - BoatTrader.com

Now, here is some additional info on how we will be using the boat, what layouts we are looking for, etc.....

* We will be living aboard the boat FULL TIME in the Pacific Northwest

* Realistically, the majority of our time will be spent at the marina, hooked up to shore power. HOWEVER, we do plan on taking the boat out for some cruising around the sound. Day trips, weekend trips anchoring or mooring and maybe some 1-2 weeks trips up to the San Juans. As we gain experience, perhaps the Inside Passage to Alaska would likely be the furthest we would go.

* Regarding layout. A fully enclosed sundeck is a NEED for us. We recently stayed on a 42' Grand Banks for 3 nights as an inital "test run". It was a nice boat, but it really seemed like not having a covered sundeck in the PNW is a massive waste of the space above the aft cabin (for liveaboard purposes anyway)

* Regarding our boating experience: We are members of a sailing club and have taken a few courses to get the certifications necessary for them to let us sail the Puget Sound on our own. HOWEVER, when it comes to boats larger than 30', or power boats in general, we have ZERO experience. I fully intend on taking classes (diesel engines, electrical systems, etc), and likely hiring a captain to spend at least a few days with us once we get the boat.

Ok, I'll cut myself off here. Sorry for the long post. Again, as the title says, hit me with a dose of reality. I'm lusting after Ocean Alexanders, TollyCrafts, and some DeFevers right now. I think I've we've got the layout dialed in (sundeck, aft-cabin CPMY). I think we've got our ideal size dialed in (42-46').

So....am I on the right track? Am I an idiot? Am I missing something? Does a boat like the one I showed lack something that is, in your opinion, important or critical given out intended use? Let me know!

Oh, one more thing. Thank you in advance for your feedback. This community has been beyond amazing, helpful and informative. Every single time I ask a question, the feedback and advice you supply is above and beyond what I could ever hope to expect!
__________________
Advertisement

PNW Jeff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 11:59 AM   #2
Moderator Emeritus
 
ksanders's Avatar


 
City: SEWARD ALASKA
Country: USA
Vessel Name: LISAS WAY
Vessel Model: BAYLINER 4788
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 4,256
Increase your search to include the Bayliner 4788 and the Meridian 490.

Tough to beat that design as a liveaboard.
__________________

__________________
Kevin Sanders
Bayliner 4788
Seward, Alaska
www.boatparts4less.com
ksanders is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:15 PM   #3
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle
Country: United States
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by ksanders View Post
Increase your search to include the Bayliner 4788 and the Meridian 490.

Tough to beat that design as a liveaboard.
LOA on the Bayliner 4788 is a bit too long I'm afraid. We need to stay under 50' for marina / slip purposes. There is a lot to like about that layout though. I do want to check out a few of the 4588's as part of our search as well. With a max budget of $150k I think the Meridian's will be a bit out of our grasp.
PNW Jeff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:19 PM   #4
Guru
 
dhays's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Kinship
Vessel Model: North Pacific 43
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 7,673
Jeff,

I agree completely about needing covered outside space for a PNW boat. Nothing against Grand Banks, but that design is not something I would want in this region. A covered and enclosed sun deck would be good, or a boat with a decent covered cockpit such as the Bayliner 4788 that Kevin mentioned.

Edit: Just saw the reply after I posted. Length would be a problem with the 4788 but definitely check out a 4588. Keep in mind that the Bayliner will be a twin engine design, for good or ill.
__________________
Regards,

Dave
SPOT page
dhays is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:20 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
kwmeyer13's Avatar
 
City: Freeport, N.Y.
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Guns 'N' Hoses II
Vessel Model: 2004 34' Pilothouse Sedan
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 175
Jeff good luck with the financing. While I have limited hands on experience with brands of boats I have done a lot of browsing. My best suggestions would be
1. make a list of must haves and it's seems you have done.
2. don't rule any brand out
3. when you find what you want have it surveyed
I am sure others will have excellent ideas.
Good Luck,
Kevin
__________________
Kevin
2004 Mainship 34 Pilothouse Sedan
Twin Yanmar 240's
Freeport, NY
kwmeyer13 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:25 PM   #6
Veteran Member
 
Jamup's Avatar
 
City: Virginia Beach
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Bay Tripper
Vessel Model: '06 MS 34 Pilot
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 76
From your post, you seem to be going in with both eyes wide open even down to taking the time to charter the GB to see how it fits. I would expand your search to also include Hatteras. We have liveaboard friends who live on a mid eighties 53 Hatteras and the price point is similar to what you're looking at.

You also mentioned that you're looking at financing part of the purchase. You'll probably find that lenders will give more preferential terms on a boat that is less than 15 years old. All the best in your search and enjoy the process.
Jamup is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:29 PM   #7
Guru
 
City: Northport
Country: USA
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,319
Hit me with a dose of reality...


With what you have posted so far my thoughts would tend to be much more general in concern....
- Have you ever tried to live in a smaller space
- Might you get sea sick just rocking at the dock one night
- Have you ever rode out a storm in a boat
- Do you have a place to put "all your stuff"
- If you have cars/trucks where will they go
- Will you be OK with work life and mail/phones/data
- Do you have any pets
- Are you planning for any kids


If you have never tried any of these things before for weeks at a time then I would have some concerns before picking out a boat.
If you have please ignore this post and return to the regularly scheduled programming.
smitty477 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:38 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Ka_sea_ta's Avatar
 
City: Puget Sound
Country: USA
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 405
We typically live on board 4 to 6 months a year in the PNW and cruise for a few months during that time. The boat gets smaller as time on board increases. I find the more space that can be enclosed the better it is. We have an enclosed cockpit and fly bridge. The canvas is on slides much like a patio door that can just slide behind other panels to open the area up.

Galley with easy access storage is a must for us, as well as enough counter space to prep meals and clean up. A trash compactor is nice to have as well as an icemaker. The living area should be comfortable and have enough space so one person can get around without disturbing the other. Heating is a big deal we prefer a diesel powered hydronic it's quiet,clean and keeps the boat comfortable.

The beds should be a standard size and be able to walk around, we have his and her heads in the stateroom that helps too. Sewage can be a big deal you don't want to move the boat every week to empty the holding tank so at slip pump out is a must.

A washer and dryer is nice but a convenient laundramat is better.

We have covered decks so staying dry while getting the door open is not an issue but we have had boats where you get rained on while trying to unlock the cabin door, its worse if you have an armful.

good luck living on the water is worth the hassles.
Ka_sea_ta is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:39 PM   #9
Guru
 
foggysail's Avatar
 
City: Ashland, MA
Country: United States
Vessel Model: 1990 Silverton 40 aftcabin
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 1,033
Enclosed sundeck? Have big bucks for custom canvas? Alternative, have time, lots of time, consider purchasing a decent walking foot sewing machine and do your own. This stuff is not rocket science and you can easily save enough to purchase a good machine along with all the materials needed for the job and have big $$$ left over. Check the videos at Sailrite and YouTube.
foggysail is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:39 PM   #10
Guru
 
City: Northport
Country: USA
Join Date: Aug 2015
Posts: 1,319
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhays View Post
Jeff,

I agree completely about needing covered outside space for a PNW boat. Nothing against Grand Banks, but that design is not something I would want in this region. A covered and enclosed sun deck would be good, or a boat with a decent covered cockpit such as the Bayliner 4788 that Kevin mentioned.

Edit: Just saw the reply after I posted. Length would be a problem with the 4788 but definitely check out a 4588. Keep in mind that the Bayliner will be a twin engine design, for good or ill.

If overall length is a key the 4588 will poke out a bit over 45 as well - unless the pulpit has been modified. The molded hull on the 45 is 45'4" without swim platform or pulpit.
smitty477 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 12:51 PM   #11
Guru
 
Hawgwash's Avatar
 
City: Sidney
Country: Canada
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 2,262
Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW Jeff;
Are you lusting over pictures or have you been aboard?
Never mind, here are some questions I would ask about THAT boat, that will help when looking at any boat for your needs.

Any heat on that thing?
No gap records, from first launch, on the 8.2s?
Was it bought last year in BC?
And, um, how far away is the nearest pump out?
Hawgwash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:02 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
clynn's Avatar
 
City: Memphis
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Ivory Lady
Vessel Model: 46 Jefferson
Join Date: Jun 2015
Posts: 274
You just described our current boat and I could live on it, but there are a lot of stairs with that design. I haven't been on one, but I love the pictures I've seen of older Cheoy Lee 55's. Galley, Salon, and Aft Deck are all on one level, which looks nice, plus it has a stove (how cool is that!). And is there really that much difference between 46 and 55?

Just saw the post about needing to stay within a certain length...maybe find a different marina?
clynn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:04 PM   #13
Guru
 
dhays's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Kinship
Vessel Model: North Pacific 43
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 7,673
Quote:
Originally Posted by smitty477 View Post
If overall length is a key the 4588 will poke out a bit over 45 as well - unless the pulpit has been modified. The molded hull on the 45 is 45'4" without swim platform or pulpit.
If I recall he needs to stay under 50' LOA
__________________
Regards,

Dave
SPOT page
dhays is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:13 PM   #14
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle
Country: United States
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by dhays View Post
If I recall he needs to stay under 50' LOA
Yep, that's correct. Why? Because we're ONLY considering one marina which happens to be EXACTLY where we want to be (in our favorite neighborhood, close to work, outside of the locks, etc etc etc).

Once you go beyond 50', the slip size goes all the way up to 60' and the cost difference for moorage is larger than we are willing to go.

While I was hoping to stick with a 46' slip, I'm not opposed to going to a 50'.
PNW Jeff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:17 PM   #15
Veteran Member
 
City: Seattle
Country: United States
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawgwash View Post
Are you lusting over pictures or have you been aboard?
Never mind, here are some questions I would ask about THAT boat, that will help when looking at any boat for your needs.

Any heat on that thing?
No gap records, from first launch, on the 8.2s?
Was it bought last year in BC?
And, um, how far away is the nearest pump out?
Admittedly, I'm lusting over pictures, layout, and what I've heard about the brand.

Great points you make regarding this specific boat...and all of them would be things that would need to be answered.

The next step for us, after we get pre-approval on a loan, is to step on board as many boats as possible to see what they *actually* look and feel like. We've been on probably a dozen boats in this size range and even stayed on a GB 42' for a few days....but I fully realize we are nowhere close to narrowing our search to the eventual boat that suits us best.
PNW Jeff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:33 PM   #16
Guru
 
Benthic2's Avatar
 
City: Boston Area
Country: United States
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 1,444
Did you have a captain on the GB you chartered, or were you running that yourselves ? Was the layout similar ? Did it have thrusters? Will there be just the two of you on board ? Are both of you committed to being very active participants in the docking/departing process ? The lower helm doesn't seem to offer lines of sight or communication to the stern, and there's no pilot house door to stick your head out of. I think I would find that boat difficult to dock without thrusters and electronic communication, a lot of practice and a lot of trust in my mate's judgement. Going from a 42 foot boat for 3 days to owning a 50 footer seems like a big jump. Hopefully you were controlling that 42 like a boss and could make it dance to whatever tune you wanted.
Benthic2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:50 PM   #17
Senior Member
 
Portage_Bay's Avatar
 
City: Seattle
Country: United States
Vessel Model: Tollycraft 40 Tri-cabin
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 381
If I read your post correctly you're looking for a boat to be primarily a full time liveaboard, secondarily a local cruiser. Sounds like you are still working full time? That puts the daily "live-ability" attributes at the top of the list.

It's hard to tell from the pics but I don't see an easy way on and off the boat carrying sacks of groceries. Not a big deal in summer, but in rain soaked winter you need to be able to get doors open, get yourself and your bags in quickly and easily.

Take a critical look at the main saloon / wheel house. Will you be happy with that built in seating? Is that where you want to spend your winter evenings when the enclosed sundeck is too cold? Pretty much late Oct through early May. The enclosed sundeck is nice but it won't be usefull most of the winter unless you enjoy being cold. Cabin fever on a PNW winter liveaboard is a real concern.

Will you be happy with the ladders (stairs)? Carrying all your stuff? In winter?

I don't see any mention of the heating system or the electrical service. If your slip and or boat is limited to 30 AMPs you're going to need more than electric heat to make it through the winter. According to Sure Marine it takes about 50,000 BTU to handle the colder days for a liveaboard. To get that out of space heaters requires more heaters than you can power. With 50 AMP service you'll get a little closer but you still won't make it.

50,000 BTU = 14,654 WATTs = 122 AMPs. Speaking from personal experience you can get by with a lot less but you won't like it.

Hydronic is the way to go, lots of heat and it heats your hot water too leaving more of the electrical service for the rest of your liveaboard needs.
Portage_Bay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 01:58 PM   #18
Guru
 
Hawgwash's Avatar
 
City: Sidney
Country: Canada
Join Date: Feb 2015
Posts: 2,262
Quote:
Originally Posted by PNW Jeff;
We recently stayed on a 42' Grand Banks for 3 nights as an inital "test run".
Jeff, I keep coming back to this line and wonder what it means.

Did you take a change of clothes and hang out with friends at the dock or actually look at it from a middle of January home where wet stinky laundry needs to be dealt with?

Are we just looking at the centerfold and missing the lifestyle compatibility?

Edited; never mind me, while I was posting Portage Bay saw the same things and said it better.
Hawgwash is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 02:00 PM   #19
Guru
 
dhays's Avatar
 
City: Gig Harbor
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Kinship
Vessel Model: North Pacific 43
Join Date: May 2015
Posts: 7,673
Great points from Portage Bay. I am convinced that a PNW live abourd needs diesel heat. Since that is a PNW boat then I imagine it already has it.
__________________
Regards,

Dave
SPOT page
dhays is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2017, 02:04 PM   #20
Guru
 
Tom.B's Avatar
 
City: Cary, NC
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Skinny Dippin'
Vessel Model: Navigator 4200 Classic
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 5,646
Since many of us are pitching the same models we own, in the PNW, there are lots of Navigators. The 42 and 44 meet many of your criteria except for enclosed cockpit. The 15' beam is your best friend and they have an insane amount of storage. Our 2000 model came in at your price range, but you could find older ones for less money.

Navigator (Power) Boats For Sale
__________________

__________________
2000 Navigator 4200 Classic
(NOT a trawler)
Tom.B is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:04 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012