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Old 10-08-2014, 10:59 AM   #41
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Boat size?

I know that this thread kind of petered out and the OP probably has gone out and bought a catamaran Some of the comments about boat size have been niggling at my brain.

First off I haven't done the great loop and my wife and I aren't going to live on our Ranger 29. However we did spend 3 weeks bopping around the PNW on it and I don't remember any complaints about feeling crowded as one of the other posters suggested they would be. I suppose two things were factors: we came from a smaller boat (C-Dory 25) and we tend to get off the boat and walk around wherever we go.

The other thing that comes to mind is our approach to recreation in general. For us the ideal vehicle to travel around the country with would be a camper - good size with a comfortable bed - but a camper. I'm thinking that the 40 foot boat people would like a 38 foot motorhome with pop-outs. Not necessarily bad but a different approach.

Lastly as far as my "smallest boat that takes care of your needs" comment. I may be a relative newby to boating (7 years of boat ownership), I'm not a newby to life and I think that for one or two of us that isn't a bad philosophy.

Thanks for the forum.

Jeff

P.S. I talked to several experienced boat mechanics before I bought the boat and they really like the Yanmars so pbthhh!
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:12 PM   #42
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I like the Ranger 29. The sleeping arrangements are much better than my R27. I did fall in love with the Nordic 32 though. The cockpit is small and pretty much useless for hanging out, but then again we would have the "back porch" up top. The fuel economy is very similar although the R29 does go faster. I appreciate al the responses and I do have some time to make a "mature" decision. I agree that the Yanmar is a good engine. This is the second boat I had with a Yanmar and I love the dependability.

But, I did hear something recently by a good source. When you change the impeller on the R27, you have to jack up a corner of the engine to get to one of the bolts. I really hope he is wrong!

Chester
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:13 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Boont Boater View Post
I know that this thread kind of petered out and the OP probably has gone out and bought a catamaran Some of the comments about boat size have been niggling at my brain.

First off I haven't done the great loop and my wife and I aren't going to live on our Ranger 29. However we did spend 3 weeks bopping around the PNW on it and I don't remember any complaints about feeling crowded as one of the other posters suggested they would be. I suppose two things were factors: we came from a smaller boat (C-Dory 25) and we tend to get off the boat and walk around wherever we go.

The other thing that comes to mind is our approach to recreation in general. For us the ideal vehicle to travel around the country with would be a camper - good size with a comfortable bed - but a camper. I'm thinking that the 40 foot boat people would like a 38 foot motorhome with pop-outs. Not necessarily bad but a different approach.

Lastly as far as my "smallest boat that takes care of your needs" comment. I may be a relative newby to boating (7 years of boat ownership), I'm not a newby to life and I think that for one or two of us that isn't a bad philosophy.

Thanks for the forum.

Jeff

P.S. I talked to several experienced boat mechanics before I bought the boat and they really like the Yanmars so pbthhh!

Hey..a lot of cowboys lived out of saddlebags and loved life.

Of course fresh underware, more than 100 rounds of ammo and enough loose change to buy enough wiskey till the next cattle drive was all they cared about.

Most comments from liveaboards and long term cruisers about buying bigger come from the experience or the lifestyle that requires a few things beyond the basics.

I like to fish...plus it supplements the menu...so a locker full of rods, reels, lures, etc..iis necessary.

I also like scuba/snorkeling and the gear necessary to do underwater repairs...there's another fairly large locker.

Then I like a well equipped dingy...another fill locker.

I also like doing my own work...so there's and engine room full of tools and spares.

Then if on a budget...you tend to buy food, alcohol and all consumables at a good price and need to store them...lots more room.

Also come clothes..depending on your cruising grounds and time of year...WOW...that can fill up the average 29 footer just in that category alone...

Yep...the people out there doing it and "been there done that" know that you can do the loop in a canoe....but most of us say...get the bigger boat...(to a point) you won't regret it.

I lived on much smaller boats with my last being a 37 Sportfish...the current boat is bigger with WAYYYYY more storage....I learned my lesson.

And another thing...as a liveaboard...who always seems to host the parties, dinners, get togethers...etc...etc...it's rarely the 29 footer...it's usually the much bigger boat because tripping over 3 people to get to the beer cooler just doesn't cut it for ALL YEAR ROUND LIVING......

Now...if you are going to loop in 2-3 week stints...sure, way smaller can be just fine...
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Old 10-08-2014, 01:35 PM   #44
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Look at the wasted space on Willy.
Eric--- That space is not wasted when you need to be on deck. And a fact everyone seems to overlook is that below the deck level, the cabins go clear out to the hull. In the case of our tri-cabin GB, this means the berths, cabinets, drawers, heads, etc. in both the fore and aft cabins all "enjoy" the full width of the boat. The only cabin that doesn't is the main cabin as it's pretty much at deck level. But we have never found ourselves wishing the main cabin was a bit wider. And we value the nice width of our side decks WAY more than the few inches in width the main cabin might gain if we didn't have them.

Regarding the tug-style boats the original poster was asking about, we have not done the Great Loop and have zero interest in ever doing it. So we don't know what sort of special requirements it might place on a boat's configuration other than there are locks and low bridges to deal with.

There are a few Ranger Tug 29s in our marina, and a good friend has spent part of the last few summers running one around up in the Desolation Sound area. He loves the boat. We've examined an RT29 fairly closely. Our impression is that it's a pretty clever use of space with a lot of cool doo-dads as a previous poster noted, but in terms of size and user volume, it is WAY overpriced.

Nordic Tugs are aesthetically the best of the lot in our opinions. How important aesthetics are to a boat purchase will, of course, vary with every buyer. People actually went out and voluntarily bought Pontiac Aztecs, and no better proof than that is needed to show that aesthetics are solely in the eye of the individual beholder. (That car was perfect "casting" in Breaking Bad, by the way.)

Aesthetically, the American Tug seems quite off-balance to me. However, I've been on a couple of the 34s when they first started appearing on the market, and I have to say that the use of space on that boat is among the best and smartest I've ever seen on any size boat.

I also think the earlier post by David on the Yanmar engine situation is well worth heeding. If the three tugs mentioned by OP were the only choices, we might well be inclined to put the engine selection above aesthetics in making our purchase choice. Unless the boats were very new and we only planned on keeping whichever one we chose long enough to do the Loop.

I suspect one could do the Great Loop in a 17' Grumman canoe and could also do it in a Flemming 55 if it would clear the bridges, and all the other boats in between. But for the OP's three choices, the AT is probably the smartest choice. However, I suspect that, were we facing the same situation, in the end we would select the NT because we place a very high value on the aesthetics of a boat. We'd just keep our fingers crossed on the engine question.
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Old 10-08-2014, 03:29 PM   #45
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Not a tug and not much cabin but side and aft deck I got .
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