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Old 02-28-2014, 08:45 PM   #1
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Mainship 390 Delivery

After dreaming, looking , and lurking this forum for 2 years I am pulling the trigger on a Mainship 390. The boat is in Fort Lauderdale, I am near Savannah. I have arranged for another local MS 390 owner to spend a couple of days with me to teach me boat systems and handling as we head North. But I will be single handling the boat from about Fort Pierce North to Savannah.. My plan is to anchor out at night and just get into a boat delivery mindset. Go from dawn to dusk And crank out as many miles as I can. All my kids, wife, and friends are working so its up to me. I cant afford a delivery captain.

I figure it will take me a week. Any suggestions on anchorages or mooring fields on the way would be helpful and appreciated.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:49 PM   #2
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Get Active Captain, it'll tell you all about all the anchorages along the way, and many other things in your area.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:52 PM   #3
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congradulations Pluto, smooth sailing
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:00 PM   #4
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Yes sir, I have my trusty Ipad with Active Captain as my guide. I think I can pull it off.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:04 PM   #5
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I have made that trip several times. I just find a place out of the channel that is deep enough for anchoring. Creeks, wide parts of the channel, etc. Even using a paper chart you can find a place. There are several stretches that are dredged ditches with nowhere to stop. So plan ahead.

Creeks are favored, as if the wind comes up you are sheltered. Better sleeping if it is quiet.

Congrats on the boat!!
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:04 PM   #6
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I second activecaptain.com for info. Vero Beach has a great mooring field, but it is only about 15 miles north of Ft. Pierce. St. Augustine has a great mooring field with a water taxi, and Fernandina has some moorings.

Watch going by Daytona Beach, and make sure your head seacock is closed and secured. The sheriff's patrol is very active through there.

Rock House Creek just north of New Smyrna can be a good anchorage.You can anchor near Ft. Mantansas south of St. Augustine. There are really too many anchorages to list.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:14 PM   #7
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If you are in "deivery mode" anchoring out will save you lots of time, not to mention money.
Active Captain will be a big help especially the reviews.
Have a great trip!
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:16 PM   #8
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Greetings,
Mr. P. Have fun, be careful and keep an eye on the tides. Some skinny water in the low country at low tide.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:28 PM   #9
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Make your P and J sand. the nite before.Have everything you need on the bridge plus a big neck pee bottle and know your Bridges. Have a safe trip.
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Old 02-28-2014, 10:11 PM   #10
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Take a magic marker and draw a big skull and crossbones on that Pee bottle so no one gets confused!
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Old 02-28-2014, 10:17 PM   #11
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Good luck with your 390. i love mine. My first trip with it was roughly the same distance. Just started further north.
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Old 02-28-2014, 10:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pluto View Post
After dreaming, looking , and lurking this forum for 2 years I am pulling the trigger on a Mainship 390. The boat is in Fort Lauderdale, I am near Savannah. I have arranged for another local MS 390 owner to spend a couple of days with me to teach me boat systems and handling as we head North. But I will be single handling the boat from about Fort Pierce North to Savannah.. My plan is to anchor out at night and just get into a boat delivery mindset. Go from dawn to dusk And crank out as many miles as I can. All my kids, wife, and friends are working so its up to me. I cant afford a delivery captain.

I figure it will take me a week. Any suggestions on anchorages or mooring fields on the way would be helpful and appreciated.
I don't know your experience but assume you have experience and the two days are just to educate you further on this boat. Assume you know how to read charts and navigate and basic experience in handling seas. If that two days is the extent of your experience then all I can do is say "Don't do it."

Also assuming you have mechanical ability and knowledge to undertake this trip on a boat that's new to you? Assuming it was surveyed and you had a sea trial?

Now, "delivery mindset" implies delivery captain type experience. Otherwise I caution against that mindset. Being in a hurry, going to a schedule are the enemy. Long days are fine but be prepared to have exit strategies to shorten those days if conditions warrant. Know where you would go if conditions changed. Respect conditions and wait for windows if you must.

I am assuming other responsibilities are your reason to hurry the trip but haste can lead to mistakes in judgement. Be prepared in worst case to make it part way and leave it at a marina until you can return to complete the trip.

Good luck in your trip and hope you enjoy your boat immensely.
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Old 03-01-2014, 07:47 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pluto View Post

My plan is to anchor out at night and just get into a boat delivery mindset. Go from dawn to dusk And crank out as many miles as I can. All my kids, wife, and friends are working so its up to me. I cant afford a delivery captain.

I figure it will take me a week.

It's a relatively easy trip, assuming you have previous general boating experience, but I'd recommend you not push yourself too hard, and that you not push on to dusk in any case. Instead, enjoy the trip, do what you can to preserve your own comfort and attention span... and then get yourself anchored by a couple hours before dusk. That'll make it much easier to ensure your ground tackle is properly deployed, your anchor is doing it's job, you'll be able to sleep well... 'cause you'll need the regenerative effects of some relaxation at the end of each day.

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Old 03-01-2014, 08:29 AM   #14
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Greetings,
Mr. P. One thing that hasn't been mentioned and I think is most important is tow insurance. Per my post #8, there is some skinny water and the inevitable shoaling that WON'T necessarily be noted in any of the cruising guides and the LAST thing you want is to be hung up on a falling tide. Tidal range can be 8' in some areas. Try to approach known shallow areas on a rising tide if at all possible. Read your tide tables!
Ft. Lauderdale to Savanna is about 490 miles (statute) so 70 miles a day is a LONG day. As suggested, don't wear yourself out and be prepared to leave the boat if you can't make the full distance.
I would strongly suggest you make the run from Lauderdale to Lake Worth (I think) OUTSIDE if the weather allows. You'll skip 22 bridges (I think) and save a lot of time.
Sorry about all the "I thinks" but the memory dims......
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Old 03-01-2014, 08:29 AM   #15
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Cocoa is a good anchorage and right next to it is a city dock with 3 hour tie up. No current and as long as the wind is westerly flat calm...Easterly or Southerly could be a bit rough but can anchor north of causeway if southerly.

Titusville has a mooring field and they don't even require you to dingy in (I think) just pay CC by phone.

St Augustine has a few mooring fields but I have no experience with them.

Anchoring for the whole trip is easy if you never have to come ashore....the only issue I see is when you get closer to Savannah and it's tidal currents in small creek anchorages...try to pick them out well enough ahead ...and as other posters mentioned.... get set up before dark and fatigues sets in and forces a bad decision.
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Old 03-01-2014, 09:54 AM   #16
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We have made the trip to and fro several times in a larger, deeper draft boat, anchoring in a wide variety of locations and mooring (Vero) all along the way. Yes, it would be good to know what your experience level is. Another very good on line resource, that I personally prefer to Active Captain, is

Cruiser's Net.

It is little better vetted than AC. and for me easier to use. A copy of the Waterway Guide Southern and AICW editions is also excellent for planning purposes and a little easier to navigate than the on line stuff.

Have you practiced picking up a mooring single handed? It can be darned tricky if the wind and current are working against you. Anchoring is generally easier but again requires practice for any particular boat. Although you don't plan on it, also practice docking and undocking the boat both with and without on-shore help, floating docks especially but fixed too if you have the time; the best fuel stops along the way are fixed/bulkheads by the way, or you may have to make an emergency landing after hours... things happen!

Also what is your plan for when nature calls? For meals and beverages the 390 (we chartered one a few times) is a nice set up since it is all right at the helm, but advise having the day's plan for eats and drinks organized before departure.

Agree also that dawn-to-dusk is inadvisable, both from a stress standpoint especially if you come upon a destination at dusk where you can't find room or get a good set. Now you are hunting around in the dark. Give yourself plenty of time to find a good spot and relax. It will only add a day or two to that relatively short trip. It is a fun a pretty trip, so why not enjoy it a little. Ditto on a tow company membership for absolutely sure. Even if you don't need them, they are very helpful providing local knowledge.

Why don't you put together a draft itinerary and let some of us vets advise from there?
Then, make sure you file a detailed float plan with someone reliable and check in with them regularly during the day. Cell phone service is generally very good along that stretch though it can get a little sketchy in spots.

Have you considered including a weekend so helpers can come join for a day? It is not a very long drive; one can deliver a crew mate and then shuttle the car to the next pick up point. Regardless, this can be a very very fun adventure with proper planning.
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Old 03-01-2014, 10:04 AM   #17
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I just sent Pluto a PM offering to help make the trip for expenses. Not to upset the other licensed delivery captains (yes I usually charge a fee) but it's been a brutally cold winter and I'm in dire need of a warm week.
I'll soon get busy but I have a window and would love to get away.
We'll see what he says.
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Old 03-01-2014, 10:06 AM   #18
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A few bits I might add: I've done the trip both single handed and with help. Having the help along makes for a much more pleasant trip. Being able to hand off the watch so you can pee, make lunch, take a nap, etc converts a trip from tedium to pleasure. Especially the naps. Nothing like a nap with a motor purring in the background!!

Try to arrange family or friends to meet up with you at various places and join the ride, even if for just a day or two. Savannah is not that far from mid Fla, so it is drivable. What complicates it is what to do with cars- The dreaded "car shuffle", as one always ends up 80mile from where you want it!! Someone has to drop off a car somewhere and figure out how to get it back.

Also, anchoring out is fun and saves money- but every couple of days treat yourself to a marina dock. A nice meal, shore power, a store, laundry, zero stress sleeping, top up fuel and water.

A 390 can run 10-12kts, but be aware it will burn like 2-3times the fuel per mile than running 7.5kt. Some folks new to a boat don't know that.
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Old 03-01-2014, 10:22 AM   #19
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You are only talking about 382 miles which at 10 knots, 10 hours per day is 4 days.

Most of the ICW through Florida is pretty good. As you hit Georgia you do find some trouble spots.

An aggressive schedule would be:

Fort Lauderdale to Fort Pierce to Daytona to Jacksonville to Savannah.

A more relaxed schedule would be an additional day:

Fort Lauderdale to Stuart to Titusville to Palm Coast to Fernandina to Savannah.

There are plenty of great anchorages and marinas along that route.

And absolutely have tow insurance before you undertake the trip. The tow company serves a second purpose as well. They are excellent sources for local knowledge if you find yourself in need along the way.
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Old 03-01-2014, 10:27 AM   #20
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If the weather cooperates...the first day you can run with the gulf stream to Ft Pierce...pick up a few knots, the inlet is easy and several anchorages just inside.
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