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Old 07-21-2015, 02:06 PM   #1
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Thoughts on different boats

As I've been researching on what boat I'd like to buy in the next year or so to enjoy in my retirement I've kind of narrowed it down to a few types.
I like the Mainship 350/390 they have more of the features I'm looking for than others. I also like the Hatteras 40DC models. With a larger custom swim platform and stairs rather than ladder to aft deck it would work. But doesn't have the lower helm I like on the Mainships.
Most of my use would be in Lake Maurepas/Pontchartrain and ICW to Florida and possibly a winter Bahamas trip once or twice.
Either of these should be comfortable for a month long trip or so for my wife and I.
But another boat I like is the older Mainship 34. It would work for local cruising. But wouldn't be as comfortable as the others for a month or so "at sea". But looking at the price difference of $50k or more I could cruise it over to the Bahamas and rent a condo or beach house to stay in and have the 34' to do day or multi day trips. That $50k would buy a lot of rentals.
Any thoughts?
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Old 07-21-2015, 02:23 PM   #2
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Thoughts on different boats

That is the big boat/small boat dichotomy in a nutshell.

Edit: How many 30-40' boats have you chartered?
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Old 07-21-2015, 02:34 PM   #3
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My opinion as an owner (and currently a seller, so take it for what it's worth) of an older 34 Mainship, I think you are looking at two fairly different boats. The Mainship will be more economical in every way, but the Hatteras will be more comfortable to live on. You are also paying a premium for the Hatteras name.

It took several years of boat ownership for me to really figure out what I wanted and did not want in my next boat. I would suggest that you physically walk on as many as you can before zeroing in on your target. Also, consider that after you purchase and use your boat, you may discover wants or needs that you had not considered. Purchasing a less expense first boat can help minimize the turn costs associated with getting to the boat you really want in a few years.

Good luck.
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Old 07-21-2015, 02:34 PM   #4
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Have you been on one of these for any length of time? The Mainship 390 is a nice boat, a few flavors of which we have chartered, but for us the water slap noise in the bow master was not tolerable. Others tolerate it quite well. We overcame it by using the pull out couch in the salon, a set up I liked, right there by the galley and helm. Choose your weather and I see no reason not to take it to the islands. On the other hand, if just for weekend and vacation use, not buying a boat at all and merely renting one when wanted makes a whole bunch of economic sense while eliminating the stressors of boat ownership.
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Old 07-21-2015, 03:50 PM   #5
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The only charter was a week in France on a 42' canal boat. I've had boats up to 21' outboards until a few years ago. We had planned to buy a boat but changed our minds after Katrina and Rita. Bought a motorhome instead. So we do have experience living in small spaces with limited water, etc.
Right now I'm just trying to narrow down our choices. Probably will start looking this winter.
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Old 07-21-2015, 04:48 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clynn View Post
It took several years of boat ownership for me to really figure out what I wanted and did not want in my next boat. I would suggest that you physically walk on as many as you can before zeroing in on your target. Also, consider that after you purchase and use your boat, you may discover wants or needs that you had not considered. Purchasing a less expense first boat can help minimize the turn costs associated with getting to the boat you really want in a few years.

Good luck.

Quote:
Originally Posted by caltexflanc View Post
Have you been on one of these for any length of time? The Mainship 390 is a nice boat, a few flavors of which we have chartered, but for us the water slap noise in the bow master was not tolerable. Others tolerate it quite well. We overcame it by using the pull out couch in the salon, a set up I liked, right there by the galley and helm. Choose your weather and I see no reason not to take it to the islands. On the other hand, if just for weekend and vacation use, not buying a boat at all and merely renting one when wanted makes a whole bunch of economic sense while eliminating the stressors of boat ownership.
Both of you guys have been reading my mail haven't you?


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Originally Posted by folivier View Post
The only charter was a week in France on a 42' canal boat. I've had boats up to 21' outboards until a few years ago. We had planned to buy a boat but changed our minds after Katrina and Rita. Bought a motorhome instead. So we do have experience living in small spaces with limited water, etc.
Right now I'm just trying to narrow down our choices. Probably will start looking this winter.
I'd charter a bit more before diving in if I where you. The larger boats I was seriously looking at a couple years ago would have been an almost total failure for us. Buying our small "starter cruiser" has paid off huge dividends. Simply speaking, we didn't know what we didn't know and now that we do we are considering a complete change of direction.
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Old 07-21-2015, 08:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CPseudonym View Post
The larger boats I was seriously looking at a couple years ago would have been an almost total failure for us. Buying our small "starter cruiser" has paid off huge dividends. Simply speaking, we didn't know what we didn't know and now that we do we are considering a complete change of direction.
This is true for us too!
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Old 07-21-2015, 08:23 PM   #8
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After owning 2 express cruisers for about 27 years we wanted a retirement boat and decided on the Mainship 390. we made a list of what we wanted: single Diesel with bow thruster; steps (not ladder) to the fly bridge; no outside teak; a bed with access from both sides; protected and wide side decks; teak and holly deck in cabin; second cabin for friends/storage; lots of engine room space. We've had it for 10 years and it has been great. There have been some issues we have learned to live with: very small rudder so maneuvering in really tight quarters require the thruster. Limited head room at the top of the bed; salon table must be mover to access the engine room; wave slap on windy nights when anchored (as earlier stated we just use the sofa bed on those nights.) It's a big investment and there will be surprises once you purchase.
I suggest making your own requirement list, going to used boat shows and talking to owners of the type of boat on your short list. (also, Mainship is a coastal cruiser. the Bahamas would be fine, but you're not going to want to try Bermuda).
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Old 07-21-2015, 09:04 PM   #9
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Just my .02 since you mentioned the Mainship 390 as well as an older 34....How about an older Mainship 40? Perhaps double cabin? Economical enough all around, Sound enough for the Bahamas...And VERY comfy living quarters with a nice aft deck to boot! I am a little prejudiced since that's what the wife and I have, but, honestly it seems to fit ALL your requirements. But I do agree...WALK A LOT OF BOATS!
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Old 07-22-2015, 08:21 AM   #10
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Just my 2 cents;
Boating and especially cruising is an expensive hobby. Yes you can save money with a smaller boat that's not comfortable and requires you to get a hotel room every night but you won't know the joy of anchoring out in a small secluded cove watching the sun set. If your considering saving money via a small boat why not just trailer and get a room every night?
Boating in the south does not require a lower helm and in my opinion takes away from room better used for living space. I doubt you'd use the lower especially in FL or the Bahamas.
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