Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 08-15-2019, 03:28 PM   #1
Member
 
City: Key Largo
Country: USA
Join Date: Nov 2018
Posts: 13
Type of Trawler for Caribbean?

Hey Guys...
Forgive my ignorance and I hope I am phrasing my question correctly. I have a lot of experience in running fishing boats offshore (I was an offshore Captain for years in the upper Keys) but I have no experience in live aboard trawlers except for performing engine work on a few.
Anyway...my wife and I have been pondering our decision of investing in a trawler designed for ocean crossings. We are now thinking of keeping our house in Key Largo and buying a trawler that would allow us to spend a few months in the Bahamas and maybe hoping islands all the way to the Caribbean. Anyway....would these "coastal trawlers" be suited for that type of cruising?
Thanks guys
__________________
Advertisement

homeby5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 04:05 PM   #2
Veteran Member
 
mvweebles's Avatar
 
City: Saint Petersburg
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Weebles
Vessel Model: 1970 Willard 36 Trawler
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 62
My wife and I will be retiring in about a year to head cruising. We moved our Willard 36 Sedan/Trawler boat from San Francisco to Ensenada MX, south of San Diego, last year for a major refit. Eventually, we will end up in Florida where we have a slip behind our condo. Weather in Florida is similar to Caribbean. We have owned the boat for 20-years, and decided to refit her versus buy a replacement for several reasons. Given boats are a personal item, I can only speak to our reasoning - I'm sure you'll get many, many responses.

1. Size. 36-feet will fit in our slip in Florida. Perfect would be a 40-42 foot boat.
2. Stabilized. Weebles has original equipment Vosper hydraulic stabilizers. Personally, I consider stabilization required equipment for long passages (our trip from San Francisco to Ensenada last year was 75-hours non-stop)
3. Covered outdoor living space. We have modified our Willard from stock to have a fully covered aft deck, and a hard-top over the flybridge with bench seats that can double as bunks. For us, tri-cabin layouts are fine for PNW, but less useful as you venture further south.
4. Watermaker. This is a debatable requirement. But it's handy if you anchor out a lot.
5. Range and economy. 500-gallons and she burns around 1.25 gph @ 7-kts.
6. We removed the mast (went with a Nick Jackson davit) just in case we decide to do the Great Loop
7. Sedan layout. This is a holy-war issue. Not bragging, but I have several dozen multi-day offshore runs and while a Pilothouse is nice underway, bulk of our time will be dawdling and at-anchor. Love the layout of a sedan.

Compromises - things we thought about
1. Second stateroom. Would be nice, but not enough to swap boats. We seriously considered a Willard 40.
2. Larger engine room. Willard 40 definitely has a nice engine room.
3. Washer/Dryer. Would be nice, though they sure use a lot of water.

Overall, Cheryll and I had a candid conversation on how we would use the boat. We do not anticipate many visitors so a second stateroom is not an absolute necessity. We need a dependable dinghy of decent speed. We are installing an Iridium GO antenna for weather, the single most enabling tool for cruising. Mostly, restoring our boat came down to two big factors: she would fit in our slip, and she is an absolute classic Wm Garden design and deserves another 50-years of life. She will be our last boat.
__________________

mvweebles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 04:23 PM   #3
Guru
 
OldDan1943's Avatar
 
City: Aventura FL
Country: USA
Vessel Name: Kinja
Vessel Model: American Tug 34 #116
Join Date: Oct 2017
Posts: 3,698
If you buy a boat, you will suddenly have a few friends wanting to go along.

I am not going to recommend a brand, just mention some high points

Minimum 40ft, 2 staterooms, 2 heads.

One or two engines, your decision. Your comfort zone. Single engine, strong bow thruster and stern thruster. Again, your previous skills and comfort zone

Stabilized, if possible, for comfort

Lots of storage space.

Personally, no external teak to maintain.

East coast, A/C and heating.

Ocean cruising, SSB radio. I enjoy Sat radio too.

Reasonably up to date nav electronics and paper charts.

I have a water maker and a washer/dryer that will wrinkle all your clothes.

Generator and a min of 2000 watt inverter.

I'll let others add to the list.
__________________
SPAM on a tacco? Pork favor.
OldDan1943 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 04:24 PM   #4
Veteran Member
 
mvweebles's Avatar
 
City: Saint Petersburg
Country: United States
Vessel Name: Weebles
Vessel Model: 1970 Willard 36 Trawler
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 62
Homeby - one item I did not mention. For me, a comfortable 1500 nms range is my target (our Willard 36 has 2000+ range). This puts the Panama Canal in easy range. Yes, there are other fuel options, but do not want to be a slave to fuel stops. The Willard's look more seaworthy than they actually are - these are very good coastal cruisers and have made offshore passages (a W36 sistership went from San Diego to Hawaii in 1986 at 6.4 kts on 335 gallons of fuel, but small 15-foot West Wight Potter sailboats have also made trans-ocean trips). In my opinion, being comfortable with weather forecasting (given your background, I'm sure you are) and having the patience to wait out known weather windows reduces the need for a serious offshore boat.
mvweebles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-15-2019, 04:30 PM   #5
Guru
 
djmarchand's Avatar
 
City: Litchfield, Ct/Punta Gorda, Fl
Country: USA
Vessel Model: Atlas Pompano 23
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 4,696
You should think hard about the Caribbean requirement. Most any coastal cruiser can make it across to the Bahamas if they wait a few days (sometimes weeks) for a weather window. But unless you want to spend a month or better getting past Puerto Rico by doing the "thorny path" (see Van Sant reference below it is harbor hopping while waiting for nice weather windows each time), then you need as they say "a bigger boat".

Well bigger isn't really the criteria. Tankage is one, but many coastal cruisers can handle the longest leg to PR. Superstructure strength (scantlings to use the NA term) that can take multiple slugs of green water over the bow and into the front windows without tearing them up. Sure you can wait for weather but you might find yourself sitting in many harbors along the DR coast for a while to get the right conditions.

Boats like the Nordhavn, Kady Krogen, some Selenes can do it. Nordhavns also have redundant or very robust systems to keep you going in rough offshore weather.

Stabilizers is more a comfort thing than a safety one, but many won't go there without it.

So think about the Caribbean requirement. There are lots and lots of lovely places to go in the Bahamas that don't require that kind of boat.

If you are serious about the Caribbean, get yourself a copy of Van Sant's A Gentlemen's Guide to Cruising South.

David
djmarchand is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-16-2019, 10:03 AM   #6
Member
 
City: Key Largo
Country: USA
Join Date: Nov 2018
Posts: 13
Thanks to all. I hopefully will check out that book!!
__________________

homeby5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off





All times are GMT -5. The time now is 06:44 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2006 - 2012