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Old 01-20-2013, 03:40 PM   #1
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Shipping a trawler from west to east coast

How practical or expensive is it to ship/truck a 40ish foot trawler from San Diego to Houston? I'd like to stay on one coast for 5 years and then move to explore the other coast. This would be a trawler that shouldn't make the Panama trip.

This would be the alternative to selling a boat and buying another on the other coast. I'd rather not go through the hassle to get a second boat set up a second time.

Thanks,
Mike
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Old 01-20-2013, 05:16 PM   #2
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Probably about $20K or so. The flybridge will probably have to come off.

David
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Old 01-20-2013, 08:36 PM   #3
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Probably about $20K or so. The flybridge will probably have to come off.

David
I assume that would be by truck? The height would be the obstacle, not the width?

Thanks,
Mike
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Old 01-20-2013, 09:03 PM   #4
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I shipped my boat from MI to OR two years ago. The flybridge had to come off and it was shipped on its own truck/trailer because it's 12' x 24'.

A suggestion for you....find a marina that will put the boat back together for you, and have someone from that marina fly to San Diego to supervise the tear down. If you don't, whoever takes it apart will likely just get in there and start cutting cables. If the guy who's going to put it back together is the one who takes it apart he'll be sure to mark every cable before he cuts them.

The guy I flew to MI spent five days there supervising as they took the flybridge off. I paid his airfare, hotels, rental car and a daily meal allowance. Best money I ever spent because it saved days and days of work on the reinstallation work.

If you have any specific questions about the shipping or any other part of the job, you can PM me.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:57 PM   #5
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We used Associated to truck our boat from California to Washington. They are arguably the best in the business so I suggest giving them a call if you have specific questions.

They told us the GB36 is the largest GB that can be trucked on the west coast without removing the flying bridge. Clearances in the eastern US tend to be less because the road system is older.
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Old 01-21-2013, 09:41 AM   #6
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You might want to look at shipping the girl via rail. The railroads are used to large awkward loads. Have had several friends do this going west from Galveston to San Fran. Agree the fly-bridge might have to come down but the wide load restrictions would go away. Also Galveston puts you right on the ICW and on the route to S. FL via the Gulf ports of New Orleans and the other charms of the East Coast. It might be less exprensive, too.
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Old 01-21-2013, 01:33 PM   #7
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You might want to look at shipping the girl via rail. The railroads are used to large awkward loads. Have had several friends do this going west from Galveston to San Fran. Agree the fly-bridge might have to come down but the wide load restrictions would go away. Also Galveston puts you right on the ICW and on the route to S. FL via the Gulf ports of New Orleans and the other charms of the East Coast. It might be less exprensive, too.
The big problem with rail is that it is very hard on the boat. Lots of vibration, very stiff suspensions on the cars, rough trackwork in places, and even with cushion couplers the banging, jerking, and shock as the slack goes in and out of a train, plus the heavy shock that occurs during switching operations makes rail a very risky way to ship a boat. Plus it still needs to be trucked from the train to the water.

As compared to rubber tires on sooth roads with air suspension and no slack or coupling shocks with a truck.

The public relations director for the BNSF railroad in the PNW has helped me out on numerous occasions (they transport all our 737 fuselages from Wichita to Renton) and I once asked him about the feasibility of shipping a boat like ours by rail. His only comment was to say that we didn't want to do it.
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:05 AM   #8
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I can't argue the details of rail shipment - just know it has been done many times - Almost all of our trawlers were deck cargo on freighters from Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore etc, and that might be another option to consider. As deck cargo there would be no disassembly necessary. But probably too costly. Our boat was shipped from the Virgin Islands to Miami at around $15K four years ago. Off loaded directly into the water and driven to the nearest marina. (You might even be able to book passage on the same vessel and vicariously pilot your boat through the Panama Canal!)

As an aside, I'm curious... Your 737 airframes are that more sturdy that they can accept the herky-jerky uncushioned rail transport without problem yet a boat (in theory..) designed to cross oceans cannot? I am guessing that the vibration tolerances would be majorly greater coupled with the tubular cross section being a more rigid shape - sorry, I'm wanderilng away from the thread.
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Old 01-22-2013, 08:19 AM   #9
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Running DOWN , to Panama with the breeze and current is really simple.

Its chugging from Panama up the Left coast that tries boats.

If the boat cant be blown down the coast to Panama , what will you do with it in TX?

Put it in a lake?
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Old 01-23-2013, 09:24 AM   #10
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Running DOWN , to Panama with the breeze and current is really simple.

Its chugging from Panama up the Left coast that tries boats.

If the boat cant be blown down the coast to Panama , what will you do with it in TX?

Put it in a lake?
Texas is the shortest land route to California. Texas is on the Gulf. I'm assuming that shortest land route equals lowest cost.
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Old 01-23-2013, 11:46 AM   #11
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[QUOTE]You might want to look at shipping the girl via rail. The railroads are used to large awkward loads. Have had several friends do this going west from Galveston to San Fran. Agree the fly-bridge might have to come down but the wide load restrictions would go away...QUOTE]

Wide loads are an issue on railroads. The North American standard is around 10'8", maybe 11', I don't remember. There are a few exceptions but not many. The clearance at sidings, parallel tracks, bridges and tunnels is very tight. There's no wasted space.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:04 PM   #12
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As an aside, I'm curious... Your 737 airframes are that more sturdy that they can accept the herky-jerky uncushioned rail transport without problem yet a boat (in theory..) designed to cross oceans cannot? I am guessing that the vibration tolerances would be majorly greater coupled with the tubular cross section being a more rigid shape - sorry, I'm wanderilng away from the thread.
Off topic is good-- it builds character.

The 737 fuselages that are shipped from Wichita to Renton are just empty tubes. The main floor framework is installed but there is nothing else inside them. No wiring, no blankets, no windows, no flight deck, no windows, no nothing. So there is nothing in them to vibrate loose or break because there is nothing inside them at all.

My BNSF contact, as a way of illustrating that shipping a boat by rail is not the best of ideas, described a wood boat (don't know what kind) that was shipped this way and the vibration and shock "broke" (his term, perhaps it was actually "sprung") numerous planks in the hull.

Obviously the damage will be determined by the kind of boat. A simple fiberglass shell of a thing would probably do fine. But if you watch railcars being moved about in a railyard--- there is one next to our marina so it's an ongoing occurrence--- you may be amazed at how hard the cars are slammed together. And when a long train starts up, the slack coming out of the couplers gets increasingly violent down the length of the train.

Kenmore Air Harbor used to get aircraft floats from EDO on Long Island and in the 1950s and 60s they were shipped by rail. Bob Munro, the company founder, told me that the crates were always damaged and broken open, often badly enough that the floats inside were sometimes damaged, too. Eventually they built their own over-the-road tractor-trailor rig that could carry up to 19 pairs of floats (or four disassembled Beavers) and they would drive back to Long Island themselves to get them. (photo)
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:10 PM   #13
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Wide loads are an issue on railroads. The North American standard is around 10'8", maybe 11', I don't remember. There are a few exceptions but not many. The clearance at sidings, parallel tracks, bridges and tunnels is very tight. There's no wasted space.
Good point. The roadbed and tracks through many of the tunnels that BNSF hauls our 737 fuselages through had to be lowered by several feet in order to accommodate the height of the fuselages.
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Old 01-23-2013, 04:55 PM   #14
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Trucking is probably the best option. Shipping by boat is almost impossible going from a US port to a US port, Jones Act requirements limit greatly the # of ships going from a US port to a US port. Most boats shipped out of SoCal are shipped from Ensenada, Mx and from the PNW shipped out of Vancouver, Cn.
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Old 01-23-2013, 08:08 PM   #15
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We shipped a 44' Ocean Alexander from Austin to Green Bay in '06. The truck cost was about $9K. $1000 went to yard in Austin (travelift, large forklift, two men for one day). I did majority of disassembly...yard loaded boat on trailer, then lifted off the arch and fiberglass sunroof and set on wooden platform I had built on sundeck. Yard in Green Bay charged $1500 to reassemble the big pieces (I was not there but sent detailed instructions and photos). Two weeks later I finished reinstalling the dozens of items that had been removed. Do as much as you can yourself is my advice....and be on site at both ends if you can.

I negotiated with transport company to use an escort/pole truck in lieu of removing flybridge. Took a little creative routing, but quite doable. I'd say the cost was a wash as it would have taken at least another two days and a huge effort on either end to get flybridge off and back on. Nightmare. And in my case, there was no place to put it, so would have required a second smaller truck anyway. The trip took three days, where it would have taken two with flybridge removed. I'd never remove the flybridge if I had an option. The loaded height was 15'3"...normal height limit is 13'8" (I believe). Still had to remove a huge amount of equipment...venturi, antenna, electronics, radar, seats, canvas, gages, wheel, etc. Photos, notes and labeling wires and bags of hardware worked out well. The yard in Green Bay had no issues in that regard.

M&B yacht transport out of Menominee Michigan move large yachts for Carver/Marquis, Cruisers, and also transport the new Coast Guard 45' from Green Bay to both coasts. Nice people, family operation, straight shooters...latest equipment...nationwide www.mbyachttransport.com
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