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Old 08-22-2018, 10:24 AM   #1
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New couple looking for some help/advice

Hi Everyone,


Ok, wife and I have been looking at all the different types of Trawlers, Cruisers, Pilothouse boats for a while now. We currently own a Cape Horn center console Offshore boat and though it's been fantastic we want to move up to something larger with a/c, protection from the weather and would love to be able to spend the night, or even weekend, aboard her. We are really torn on what type of boat would suit us, on the one hand we are fishermen at heart but the thought of being able to just poke along at 8kts while sipping a cup of coffee is appealing, however; we'd still like to be able to get 50-100 miles offshore and do some fishing as well. We port out of Port Aransas, Tx. so we fish the Gulf and I'm sure some of you know it's rarely smooth out there so we'd like something capable of getting out that far and should the waves pick we're still safe while heading back in. I love the look of Sport Fishers but not interested in them. Some of the boats we've had our eye on are the following; Mainship Pilot 30/34, Eastern 31 Casco, Bayliner 3X88, and we even like the Grand Banks 32 but am scared of the upkeep on all the darn wood on that baby. We're at a loss really, one minute we think "Ok, the Gb 32 is the way to go", the next we're against that and back on the Eastern or Mainship and so it goes again and again.


In short we'd like;
Lower helm
Flybridge, we'd like one but can live without
Diesel, prefer single but would consider twins
Seaworthy(Salty?) Able to get 50-100 miles offshore and back safely
Fishable cockpit
Nice cabin to stay out of nasty weather/be in a/c and just poke along if wanted or needed,
Pretty good on fuel
Able to sleep four


We really appreciate anyone's thoughts/experiences especially if you like to fish but moved to a Trawler type boat. Thank you! Any and all recommendations would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-22-2018, 10:34 AM   #2
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Greetings,
Welcome aboard. Sounds like you might be in the market for a cockpit motor yacht.
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Old 08-22-2018, 10:37 AM   #3
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Welcome aboard. What type of budget are you working with? You mentioned several boats that could meet your needs. Have you done any cruising at 8 knots? We love it but itís not for everyone. Some people just have to go faster. Is there anywhere to rent a trawler type of boat in your area? Good luck with your search.
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:06 AM   #4
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Forgot to mention budget and a few other things as well. Budget up to $125K. I don't think there is anywhere to rent a Trawler down here but I could be wrong. I do like to go fast but think I could probably live without it, just being on the water is what we love. I haven't done any cruising at 8kts on these type boats but man do I have some time cruising slower than that for days at a time, though that was underwater.


We love being on the water, fishing, just poking around, whatever, we love being on the ocean but we're tired of rushing. Our "weekend at the coast" usually goes something like this;
Wed/Thu-Get everything we think we'll need packed up a day or two before we leave.
Friday a/m-Day of departure we load everything into the truck and take off.
Fri noon or so-Arrive at coast, go to Aunts house and unload what we won't need on the boat.
Fri afternoon-Drive to boat, check it over make sure all is well, head off to eat, hang out, wait until next morning.
Saturday a/m-Morning of departure; spend an hour or more trying to get kids out of bed.
Reload what we need onto truck, including kids.
Stop and buy food, snacks, water etc.
Load remaining items on boat and take off, usually a couple hours later than we intended.
Cruise at 25-35kts for a couple hours to get offshore.
Sat afternoon-Fish as much as we can, head to a couple different spots and then it's time to head back in.


We figured by moving to a boat with accomodations like beds, a/c etc. we'd cut it down to something like this;
Friday a/m-Throw a couple shorts and t-shirts in a bag, leave for the coast.
Friday noon or so-Park at our slip, walk onboard boat, prepare for underway and leave when we please. Since we can now store our fishing poles, gear, clothes etc. on the boat we won't have to do much but make sure the boat is ready and then take off when we please. We can leave that afternoon, that evening or if it's too rough shoot we can just spend the night on the boat in the slip or on the hook in a cove on the bay.


We're tired of rush rush rush. Does this make sense to anyone?
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:09 AM   #5
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Welcome to the forum! Enjoy the search for your next boat.

I like to cruise at 7 knots, but it's not for everybody. One observation from your post:
If you go 50 miles offshore and back, that's 12+ hours at 8 knots. Being 6 hours (at 8 knots) from safe harbor if the weather goes to crap, is a looong time in a 32' boat!

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Old 08-22-2018, 11:17 AM   #6
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https://www.boattrader.com/listing/1...dard%20listing


Just as an example...
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:34 AM   #7
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I cruise at 7 knots and can push it to 9 knots comfortably if I want to spend the money on fuel. However, it doesn't sound to me as if you would be ultimately happy with that. If fishing is important to you, I doubt that you would be happy spending a full day just getting to the fishing grounds and then another day getting back. You mention using the boat as a weekender, a slow boat makes for a limited cruise radius. Draw a circle 40 miles from your home port. That is the practical limit of your weekend excursions unless you really like spending long hours getting somewhere (I don't mind it but my wife not so much).
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:39 AM   #8
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The other thing I have learned becoming a “fisherman” on a trawler is that with a long time to land, and the lack of a coffin sized cooler full of ice, you have to process your catch offshore. Being tired from overnight passage, and a boat bouncing around on rough seas, hours from any medical help, you pull out a really sharp knife......

Speed would be a plus for shore
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:44 AM   #9
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Thank you all for the advice so far, much appreciated. Thanks for the link RTF!


I think we do need a boat capable of a little more speed than 8kts. I'm really leaning towards something like the Mainship Pilot 34 or Eastern 31 Casco bay but man I look at a nice Grand Banks 32 and it would be so nice just to poke along for the weekend enjoying the cruise. We don't always have to go far out but we do like being far from shore.
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Old 08-22-2018, 11:45 AM   #10
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Well, you're still going to be provisioning food/fuel the boat for trips, that and rotating bed linens/towels, etc. But you'd definitely be able to leave a fair bit of stuff onboard.

I definitely hear you on the rush, rush, rush aspects. It's great having a condo-like setup for a boat. Everything "non-perishable" is already there. Dramatically cuts down on the stuff for individual trips. But does increase the amount of stuff involved for winter/spring commissioning!

The 25-35kts speed requirement puts you squarely in the sport fisher territory. You're just not going to get that kind of speed about of trawler-like boats. Be prepared for the heart-stopping fuel costs. It's one thing to run a 27-footer with gas outboards at those speeds. Start getting into larger boats and your fuel costs can go up quite a bit. Especially when you push them to their top speed. It's one thing to cruise at 19. It nearly triples fuel consumption to push to 30+.

It really depends on how much room you want. We had a 34' express boat that with two adults and a child it was getting cramped. But friends have three kids and seem to manage on a 27' without going crazy. We switched also because I've grown to absolutely despise putting up canvas panels... every... damned... time... Having an above-water, glass enclosed salon is a huge improvement.

I'd look around the marina where you keep your current boat and ask how others like what they've got. That and start keeping a list of what you see out there in the water where you like to fish. That'd be a sign of what folks find comfortable to make the trip. That and boats that are popular locally are also going to have local service folks that are familiar with them. What works in one area might be tediously difficult to get repaired in others.
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Old 08-22-2018, 12:03 PM   #11
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Lots of inexpensive diesel sportfish out there.


Lots of liveable space, fishable, speed when you want it, go slow when you want to.


My last liveaboard was a 37 footer and I would take it back in a second....unless fuel is headed for $5 a gallon again....but that's not a problem for everyone.
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Old 08-22-2018, 12:42 PM   #12
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If your budget is $125k then you should look at spending about 90 to 100k on the purchase and have some money in reserve for upgrades and repairs.
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Old 08-22-2018, 01:05 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SubSailor View Post
Forgot to mention budget and a few other things as well. Budget up to $125K. I don't think there is anywhere to rent a Trawler down here but I could be wrong. I do like to go fast but think I could probably live without it, just being on the water is what we love. I haven't done any cruising at 8kts on these type boats but man do I have some time cruising slower than that for days at a time, though that was underwater.


We love being on the water, fishing, just poking around, whatever, we love being on the ocean but we're tired of rushing. Our "weekend at the coast" usually goes something like this;
Wed/Thu-Get everything we think we'll need packed up a day or two before we leave.
Friday a/m-Day of departure we load everything into the truck and take off.
Fri noon or so-Arrive at coast, go to Aunts house and unload what we won't need on the boat.
Fri afternoon-Drive to boat, check it over make sure all is well, head off to eat, hang out, wait until next morning.
Saturday a/m-Morning of departure; spend an hour or more trying to get kids out of bed.
Reload what we need onto truck, including kids.
Stop and buy food, snacks, water etc.
Load remaining items on boat and take off, usually a couple hours later than we intended.
Cruise at 25-35kts for a couple hours to get offshore.
Sat afternoon-Fish as much as we can, head to a couple different spots and then it's time to head back in.


We figured by moving to a boat with accomodations like beds, a/c etc. we'd cut it down to something like this;
Friday a/m-Throw a couple shorts and t-shirts in a bag, leave for the coast.
Friday noon or so-Park at our slip, walk onboard boat, prepare for underway and leave when we please. Since we can now store our fishing poles, gear, clothes etc. on the boat we won't have to do much but make sure the boat is ready and then take off when we please. We can leave that afternoon, that evening or if it's too rough shoot we can just spend the night on the boat in the slip or on the hook in a cove on the bay.


We're tired of rush rush rush. Does this make sense to anyone?
Others are hearing "rush" and they're thinking of speed of boat. Your rush rush rush isn't the speed of the boat. In fact, that's the thing saving you from rushing more. It's the schedule and the lack of sleeping arrangements.

You still need speed to get to the fish. I know you said you didn't want a sportfish, but in so many ways, other than budget, you seem like the perfect SF candidate. You need trolling ability and a cockpit and space for rod holders and even fishing chairs would be nice. Why is it you say no to sportfish?

Other than a sportfish, then it's some type motoryacht or cruiser that can also serve as a SF. You still need the speed but 25-35 knots isn't available in most. 20 knots may well be as a cruising speed in some. 15 is more common. A lot of convertibles are being used 80% for family cruising and 20% or less for fishing and run 80% slow and 20% at cruise. I know many Post, Ocean, Bertram, Hatteras and Viking fans who do very little fishing. Other than SF, Sea Ray's and Carver's and such come closest to your requirements. Some Californian's that will cruise at 15 knots. Offshore built some Yachtfish.
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Old 08-22-2018, 01:32 PM   #14
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Like BandB said, it would seem like a sportfish would work well for the use you describe. Actually, as we look at trawlers, it seems to me like there are some GREAT buys on sportfish boats compared to trawlers. So much so that I have tried to convince myself that a sportfish would work for us. We have determined they will not, but our use is different than what you describe. Their beamy/roomy cockpit always turns my head and makes me want one! Based on your use, they are probably at least worth a good look. Good luck!
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Old 08-22-2018, 01:37 PM   #15
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Some great advice here, really appreciate everyone's help. I didn't mean to infer that we need to move at 25-35 kts, that is what we cruise at now in our CC. I think a cruise of 10-12kts would be plenty. A couple reasons we don't want a Sport fish is no lower helm(usually), they're usually too tall for our covered slip(15' max height) and fuel burn. We aren't big game fishermen, just like to be on the water and wet a line. Think Snapper, Ling, Amberjack etc. I also think that if we were able to just poke around, maybe head 10-12 miles out, anchor and fish we'd be satisfied. I doubt we'd go 50 miles out very often anymore, just meant that should we decide to do so and the weather pics up that our boat is seaworthy and will get us home. We've been in some pretty nasty stuff out there and it doesn't bother us much, we can take it but can the boat?


The more I think about the more I realize we'd probably be happy just a few miles out on the hook just enjoying the evening, catching a couple fish, hanging out and relaxing.
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Old 08-22-2018, 01:54 PM   #16
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The 15' height restriction on your slip is definitely going to limit your selections. Just about anything with a flybridge is going to need more than that. Be sure the slip is really that important.

That and confirm the actual dimensions AND the dimensions involved with getting into it. We had to switch marinas entirely as the fairway at our old one was 2' too short once the anchor and dinghy were factored into it. It'd have been a huge chore to try to nose in/out of opposing slips all the time to get into the largest ones they had available. Sure, adding bow & stern thusters would have made it "less tedious" but what's the point of trying that hard just to stay in a marina? The new place, Mears Annapolis, beats the old one hands-down for all-around service and amenities. The old place was, basically, just a parking lot for the boat.

Shop around for other slips, get a feel for what other options are out there. Could be something else out there offers a new range of experiences that might go along quite well with a different style of boat.

My point is lay out all your restrictions, your must-haves and, perhaps more importantly, your MUST-NOT-HAVES. I've learned to put a lot more emphasis on the latter. Eliminating "Shnit I never want to put up with again" goes a long way toward keeping the boating fun.
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Old 08-22-2018, 04:42 PM   #17
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Some great advice here, really appreciate everyone's help. I didn't mean to infer that we need to move at 25-35 kts, that is what we cruise at now in our CC. I think a cruise of 10-12kts would be plenty. A couple reasons we don't want a Sport fish is no lower helm(usually), they're usually too tall for our covered slip(15' max height) and fuel burn. We aren't big game fishermen, just like to be on the water and wet a line. Think Snapper, Ling, Amberjack etc. I also think that if we were able to just poke around, maybe head 10-12 miles out, anchor and fish we'd be satisfied. I doubt we'd go 50 miles out very often anymore, just meant that should we decide to do so and the weather pics up that our boat is seaworthy and will get us home. We've been in some pretty nasty stuff out there and it doesn't bother us much, we can take it but can the boat?


The more I think about the more I realize we'd probably be happy just a few miles out on the hook just enjoying the evening, catching a couple fish, hanging out and relaxing.
You're playing mental games on yourself. "The more I realize we'd probably be happy" when you're talking about a major change. Sure sounds to me like you're trying to talk yourself into it. "10-12 knots would be plenty". Don't run your existing boat over 12 knots for the next month of use, then come back and say you still believe that. No lower helm, I tend to agree but a lot of people don't agree with you or me on. There are some SF types with lower helms, although not many. Then one that really bothers me, limiting the boat you're going to buy to an existing slip. You just eliminated nearly every flybridge and your electronics on the ones you didn't eliminate.

Now, it's your choice, but do consider what is leading you to these choices and if it's leading you away from your ideal boat. Finding your perfect boat is difficult but please be sure it's based on your true desires for boating.
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Old 08-22-2018, 05:01 PM   #18
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Go knock on a cabin door in your current marina. Ask to talk to them about their experience. Heck, maybe even offer to fork over for food and fuel for an outing. You are not in charge, but if you find the slower pace acceptable and the experience good, you have answered your issues. Maybe even try a broker and going for around the marina on different boats. Heck, The Rockport and Port A area have a number of boats damaged in storm in you want to take on a BIG challenge. We have had several come thru our marina in Galveston that took little more than a good cleanup, change fluids and go. Some were 6 figure projects!
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Old 08-22-2018, 09:31 PM   #19
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You also need to determine the level of comfort and amenities you (or your wife require). A big one is a "real" head vs. porta-potti. Others include sleeping accommodation (island queen, v-berth, bean bags on deck). Cooking facilities, hot and cold water vs. cold only, etc. These are just as important (probably more) as the boat's range and how "fishable" it is.
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Old 08-22-2018, 10:16 PM   #20
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With your budget and your goals to long distance fish, i would start looking not at trawlers, but at cabin cruiser /fishing platforms.

They provide great livability for a few days at a time and the speed to get you on the fish and back to a harbor or anchorage at the end of the day.

I have always been a big fan of the 30’ osprey. Twin diesels, fast, decent cabin with head, shower, and a nice galley.

Another one i always liked was the Norstar 30. Great quality,
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