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Old 04-12-2012, 08:41 AM   #1
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When is a Trawler not a Trawler?

The dictionary definition of a trawler is pretty much a fishing boat dragging nets.
In the recreation market, I haven't found a clear definition separating trawlers from motoryachts.
My personal definition of a trawler as I am lead to believe, is a low HP, slow moving, full or semi displacement hull with usually a single engine - usually diesel.
I see many boats that look like trawlers from the waterline up, however, they usually have twin engines of high HP and can get up into a plane and go relatively fast. Sometimes some of these are sold as Motoryachts and sometimes as Trawlers.
On the overall scheme of things, it doesnt really matter because you either want speed or economy when purchasing a boat and you will buy what you want regardless of what it is called.
I was just curious as to what your definitions of a trawler are.
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Old 04-12-2012, 10:07 AM   #2
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Tony, if you step the masts on that ketch, you will have a " low HP, slow moving, full or semi displacement hull with usually a single engine - usually diesel."

Maybe that'll be a trawler too.

I saw a mast-less sailboat traveling the ICW a while back... name on the stern was "Windless" .
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:02 AM   #3
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Tony, if you step the masts on that ketch, you will have a " low HP, slow moving, full or semi displacement hull with usually a single engine - usually diesel."

Maybe that'll be a trawler too.

I saw a mast-less sailboat traveling the ICW a while back... name on the stern was "Windless" .
Yes Ross, I agree 100%. That is why I really dont care if my sailboat sells or not. My signature on here was "If sailboat don't sell, we are still going inland no matter what!!! We can actually make it to Kentucky Lake with the mast up from Galveston Bay. The Admiral likes the idea of a slightly more roomy boat and just loves the enclosures on the flybridge and sun deck. She is a rare woman - she loves living aboard.
As for me, I feel it is criminal to remove the mast from a world class ocean going vessel. I just cant do it. I will have to get rid of or keep the boat just as it is. Fuel economy is great - 5 1/2 kts at 3/4 gal per hour.
Thanks for the comment. I will have to show it to the Admiral.
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:32 AM   #4
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The big oxymoron is "Fast Trawler", which is usually a motor yacht with trawler like deck house stuck on top.

ZOOOOM till out of fuel in a few hundred miles.

Easiest way to ID a displacement trawler (99% of which have NO Passage making ability or ocean grade scantlings ) is io find out the boats weight.

Called displacement , and divide by 2000 (tho 2240 is more accurate)

Multiply that number by 3 to 5 .

5 x will be the rating of the engine at max , with 3x a better grasp of fuel burn HP required to cruise. 1 Gph of diesel is 16 to 22 hp , most use 18hp on a well engineered boat.

So a 50,000 lb boat will give 20-25 when divided , so -60-75 Hp will cruise her and the engine will be happy if its not much over 120 -125 HP rated.

When you see a "trawler " with a pair of 400hp fuel suckers , you have a boat that will be very difficult to cruise with.

But great for water skiing!!!

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Old 04-12-2012, 11:37 AM   #5
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The term "trawler" is probably the most over used word in a boating dictionary. It is also a word that has changed over time as the boating market has changed.

It used to mean a fishing trawler of course. Then it became a boat that is seaworthy and capable like a fishing trawler. Then it became a boat that looks like a fishing trawler and goes slow. It goes on and on.

I would prefer to define recreational boats into three catergories, based on functionality.

Coastal Cruiser

Boats that are seaworthy enough, and outfitted, to travel along a coastline. My 4788 is an example of a "Coastal Cruiser"

Passagemaker

Boats that are seaworthy enough and outfitted for crossing oceans. My Friend steves hatteras 48 LRC is an example of a "Passagemaker".

Sailboat

We all know what that is.
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Old 04-12-2012, 11:55 AM   #6
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We own and enjoy what I call a 34’ tri cabin “Mock” Trawler... in that it has interior size and comfort of a rather small, slow moving, deep draft “Fishing” Trawler carefully converted into a “Pleasure” Trawler... yet ours can do 22+ knot WOT when needed (at too little kpg), and has continuous 16 to 17 knot travel capabilities of a planning cruiser (at 1 +/- kpg); as well as fuel efficient 6 to 7 knot hull speed at nearly 3 kpg when running one engine at a time... which greatly reduces wear/tear on her twin screw power train. Due to her bottom shape, hull shape, and twin engine power she is considerably maneuverable and seaworthy as well as generally stable in various types of sea conditions. Our Tollycraft is my preferred smaller “Pleasure” Trawler in its hull and bottom design and in its power, speed, efficiency, sea keeping and living-comfort capabilities. As well, we really like the ease of maintenance of her well built fiberglass construction and that there is next to no wood on exterior!

IMO: The boat nomenclature of “Trawler” in its purest form is a fishing vessel dragging nets, i.e. trawling. Due to increased capital of the marine-loving public as well as decades of millions of well built boats remaining viable for use... for fun boats/cruisers of a comfortable size the word “Trawler” has morphed into meaning nearly anything advertisers want it to, and we boat owners bought into it hook, line and sinker! The word Trawler carries a mystique and certain amount of romance. At least for a “Pleasure” Trawler it does!

My Idea of a “Pleasure” Trawler is a boat with ample interior/exterior room for comfort and reasonable sea keeping capabilities somewhere between the size of 30’ to 60’. After that, I feel at 61’ to 100’ a pleasure boat or boat for hire is a yacht. In my mind, 101’ and above = Mega Yacht. Billionaires might think Mega Yacht doesn’t start till 150’ +, but, that’s no BFD... who cares what the couple thousand global billionaires want to call their $500M boats... errr SHIPS!!
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:18 PM   #7
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A trawler is a certain style of powerboat. Actually having little or nothing to do w the # of engines but it must look or be somewhat heavy duty, usually styled w a somewhat commercial look of tug boats and/or fishing boats, usually used at relatively slow speeds. Other elements of the type are deep draft and a raised pilot house fwd or aft and an oversized anchor on the bow. Trawler owners think their trawler is more of a trawler and they are more of a trawlerman if their boat is a single screw w a deep keel, has an engine that pushes the boat at hull speed at 1100rpm, their anchor rode is all of chain and it would'nt hurt to have masts and steadying sails or better yet ...flopperstoppers. But if the trawler owners didi'nt want to draw attention to themselves as big burley and salty looking guys that command great respect on the dock the'yd just call their boats heavy cruisers. So slow and heavy are the core elements of the type but if you want a quick def.......slow cruising yachts.
Art,
I like the word "romance" in the trawler concept. And of course romance has much to do w trawlers. Quite a number of our members are well connected to that word.
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Old 04-12-2012, 12:21 PM   #8
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This is the local Vallejo trawler seen frequently in Mare Island and Carquinez straits. It fishes for shrimp bait.



A "trawler" in the recreational vessel sense is merely a marketing term. It means whatever the manufacturer/marketer wants it to mean. For me, a recreational trawler has full living accommodations contained in a mid-sized hull designed in partnership with an economical power plant and being unable to exceed hull-speed. On the larger end of the "mid-size" scale is this vessel:

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Old 04-12-2012, 01:11 PM   #9
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Definition of Trawlermen from the Urban Dictionary:

The term for mentally challenged lager louts that trawl the streets on a saturday night looking to catch the easiest fish and unknowing surprise of saltwater crabs. In this field, catching the biggest fish is not usually regarded as an achievement.

...just sayin'
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Old 04-12-2012, 01:39 PM   #10
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Definition of Trawlermen from the Urban Dictionary:

The term for mentally challenged lager louts that trawl the streets on a saturday night looking to catch the easiest fish and unknowing surprise of saltwater crabs. In this field, catching the biggest fish is not usually regarded as an achievement.

...just sayin'
I need to start a file for "Quotable Quotes". This is hysterical
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Old 04-12-2012, 03:33 PM   #11
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I think the definition of "Recreational trawler" in Wikipedia defines it pretty well:

Recreational trawler - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I also like their definition of yacht:

Yacht - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Yacht lengths generally range from 8 metres (26 ft) up to dozens of metres (hundreds of feet). A luxury craft smaller than 12 metres (39 ft) is more commonly called a cabin cruiser or simply "cruisers." A mega yacht generally refers to any yacht (sail or power) above 30 m (98 ft) and a super yacht generally refers to any yacht over 60 metres (197 ft). (Although they did spell meters wrong!)
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Old 04-12-2012, 04:07 PM   #12
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Tony, if you are looking for a little more inspiration, check this link:
Winnie the Pooh, sailboat to trawler conversion - Trawlers & Trawlering
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Old 04-12-2012, 04:42 PM   #13
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Tony, if you are looking for a little more inspiration, check this link:
Winnie the Pooh, sailboat to trawler conversion - Trawlers & Trawlering
Thanks Ross. It is an interesting article. Most of the conversions I have seen were Morgan Out Island series like theirs. They are popular because older models don't cost very much and they are big for their length. They are not desirable by many sailors including myself. For trawler conversions, they are excellent. If I had a center cockpit, I might be tempted. I have an aft cockpit with a very skinny ass. My boat is much narrower, just not right for a conversion. Besides, I am 65 and want to be boating not renovating. I am in good physical condition inspite of myself and my habits, never the less, everyday I wake up and think that this will be the best day that I will ever have. And, I love the water.
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Old 04-12-2012, 05:54 PM   #14
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A trawler is a fishing boat that pulls a trawl net the mouth of which is held open by otter doors. That's it, that's what a trawler is.

A recreational trawler is not a trawler. It's a power cruiser, cabin cruiser, coastal cruiser, whatever. The marketing people applied the term "trawler" decades ago to recreational boats because they thought the image conjured up by the word "trawler"---- seaworthy, rugged, strong, dependable, etc.--- would help sell their pleasure boats. Which it has.

Some of them, llike Grand Banks, have lines based loosely on commercial fishing boats. But American Marine never used the term "trawler" to describe their Grand Banks line of boat. In all their literature they were described as "diesel cruisers."

So as far as I'm concerned, none of our boats are trawlers other than the fellow in Ireland who is restoring a retired commercial trawler. I don't use the term trawler to describe our or our kind of boat to anyone wanting to talk about them. I simply call our boat a "cruiser."
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:00 PM   #15
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OK, Marin, I agree. Let's change the name of the website to "Cruiser's Forum" ... oops, that one's taken

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Old 04-12-2012, 06:31 PM   #16
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Cruiser's Forum probably isn't any more accurate that Trawler Forum because it implies the forum is about cruising when it's actually more about the type of boat we all have. So I don't know what the right term should be. Since the marketing people have succeeded and most recreational boaters today think of a particular type of recreational boat as a "trawler" even though it isn't I suppose that name's as good as any. I can't suggest anything better even though I myself don't use the term trawler to describe a recreational boat.

I sometimes use the term "cabin cruiser" to describe our boat to people but that's a pretty plain-Jane 1950s term and I suspect today's boaters would find the term somewhat demeaning. Most people have bought into the marketing hype so "trawler" it is :-)
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:44 PM   #17
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I think the definition of "Recreational trawler" in Wikipedia defines it pretty well:

[COLOR=black][URL="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recreational_trawler"]. (Although they did spell meters wrong!)[/SIZE]
Not wrong if you are Canadian!
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Old 04-12-2012, 06:52 PM   #18
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Twin Screw Tolly Tri Cabin, or just, Tollycraft Tri Cabin

That's my answer to those who ask what we have for a boat.

Trawler is OK, but that's not what I think of our Tolly... As I mentioned in earlier post, I could call her a Mock Trawler... but I don't really use that one either!
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Old 04-12-2012, 07:38 PM   #19
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Another one from the Urban Dictionary -

Cruiser and Tug
The very common phenomenon among posh, professional white women.
It's a really stunning woman who is always accompanied by her horrible, fat, ugly little friend
.

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Old 04-12-2012, 08:59 PM   #20
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A minimal definition that works amazingly well is:

A heavy cruiser.
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