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Old 11-04-2014, 03:46 AM   #1
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Thumbs up Another (hopefully) new future trawler owner checking in

Hi all. The Mrs and I have decided that we want to get into the cruising thing in the near future. We live in the Raleigh, NC area and hope to keep our new baby berthed in "Little" Washington, as it is less than two hours away from where we currently reside. Hope to eventually obtain something in the 35'-45' range. The boat will be used mainly for long weekend jaunts around the Sounds as well as up and down the ICW. Would really like to do the Loop when I retire (but that is ~20 years on down the road, if ever). Haven't really decided on any certain make or style yet. I'm down for practically anything as long as she's big, she's old, and she does NOT have spark plugs (I am allergic ).
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Old 11-04-2014, 05:37 AM   #2
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Welcome to the forum. Lots of good information on makes and models in the archives, and thousands of pics.

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Old 11-04-2014, 06:11 AM   #3
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Just something to think about, but a loop boat and a long weekend boat are two different things. I boated in your local waters for 6 years. Little Washington is a great little town, but the water distances are pretty long for other destinations. Of course, Bath is a pleasant close stop, but not much there. It seems a boat with a good turn of speed say at least 12-14 knots cruise would help on the distances. It would also help when trying to get home if the weather has turned bad. Those NC sounds and rivers can deal a nasty chop.

20 years is a long window. There will be plenty of time to decide on a loop boat.
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Old 11-04-2014, 07:45 AM   #4
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I would just get an inexpensive but comfortable and fast (you can always go slow) cruiser for now....make sure it is inexpensive because many boats are either throwaway now or darn near. Only a few classic or high demand boats won't cost an arm and leg in depreciation.

20 years from now is a long time in your lives and the boat market....I would not be looking to buy a retirement cruiser that far out unless I absolutely knew what I wanted, could afford new or dang near and had the money to maintain it that way for 40 years or so.

Trawlers type size and accommodations and the money they cost are really better suited for living aboard or longer cruises.

If really interested and willing to pay the premium, any of the sem-displacement 32 foot tug style may be your best bet.

For where you are and your plans, I would be looking for a nice, better built houseboat trucked down from one of the fresh water reservoirs.
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Old 11-04-2014, 08:01 AM   #5
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Greetings,
Welcome aboard. Excellent suggestions thus far (post #'s 3,4). 20 years? Hell, I can't even plan this afternoon...Mr. & Ms. md. Just do it now. Yup, get your butts out there. So why the heck are you now reading this? Start lookin....
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Old 11-04-2014, 08:52 AM   #6
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Welcome, this is a great forum with many knowledgeable trawler owners. Just to throw an idea out there, I wouldn't be too fast to throw out gas powered boats just yet, if you are cruising locally they can be had for very short money.
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Old 11-04-2014, 09:35 AM   #7
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Just something to think about, but a loop boat and a long weekend boat are two different things. I boated in your local waters for 6 years. Little Washington is a great little town, but the water distances are pretty long for other destinations. Of course, Bath is a pleasant close stop, but not much there. It seems a boat with a good turn of speed say at least 12-14 knots cruise would help on the distances. It would also help when trying to get home if the weather has turned bad. Those NC sounds and rivers can deal a nasty chop.
Having cruised through and around North Carolina off and on for 7 years, and exclusively for the past 3 years, I wholeheartedly agree with this. Washington is at a dead end, cruising waters wise. The extra half hour to hour or so you save in driving will be multiplied many times over and at much greater cost in extra boat miles.

When we stopped cruising full time and became weekend and vacation boaters, we kept the boat in New Bern for awhile. A little better choice than Washington, but still pretty much at a dead end. We quickly settled in Morehead City, putting us an hour at trawler speeds to Cape Lookout, one of the (we think the) best boating and beaching and fishing destinations in the USA. And it was convenient to head south by ICW and ocean to many more town-type destinations in NC and SC. Beautiful South River a half day cruise, Ocracoke (our favorite town destination within 200 miles, and top ten of all) a day cruise for long weekends, and so on. Also, the support infrastructure for boating (tradesmen, boat yards, suppliers, etc) is excellent in breadth and depth, one of the best in the country.

So do a little more due diligence and decide what works for you and what your cruising plans are.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:27 AM   #8
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Greetings,
Welcome aboard. Excellent suggestions thus far (post #'s 3,4). 20 years? Hell, I can't even plan this afternoon...Mr. & Ms. md. Just do it now. Yup, get your butts out there. So why the heck are you now reading this? Start lookin....
Well unfortunately I didn't win the Mega Millions last night, so I'm afraid that isn't going to happen.

Sure would be nice to hit the pause button on life for about a year and a half though, not unlike the Stobs did (I'm a little over 3/4 of the way through their book right now).
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:28 AM   #9
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Welcome, this is a great forum with many knowledgeable trawler owners. Just to throw an idea out there, I wouldn't be too fast to throw out gas powered boats just yet, if you are cruising locally they can be had for very short money.
Um, yuck. Just...yuck!!!
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:38 AM   #10
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Points well taken in regards to speeds, boat types, and locations. We were looking at Washington mainly because it was the shortest drive, but also because we found the laid-back atmosphere of McCotters to be appealing. Any recommendations for other marinas like that?

I also have a "What would you do?" scenario to run by y'all. If I liquidate a few assets, we would have about $10K to work with right now. We are "on the bubble" as to whether to look for a 10K boat right now, or wait a few years and pay off a few other debts and use those funds for a down payment on something nicer? (Our home will be paid off in less that 5 years, and we recently bought a Kubota tractor that will be paid off around the same time.).

And no, we aren't afraid to put a little sweat equity into the right vessel to make it what we want it to be. Hey at 10K that's pretty much a given!
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:38 PM   #11
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I also have a "What would you do?" scenario to run by y'all. If I liquidate a few assets, we would have about $10K to work with right now. We are "on the bubble" as to whether to look for a 10K boat right now, or wait a few years and pay off a few other debts and use those funds for a down payment on something nicer? (Our home will be paid off in less that 5 years, and we recently bought a Kubota tractor that will be paid off around the same time.).

And no, we aren't afraid to put a little sweat equity into the right vessel to make it what we want it to be. Hey at 10K that's pretty much a given!
Weekend Jaunts will get you out there. If you wait for the 'perfect' cruiser/trawler, much will pass you by while waiting. There is NO perfect boat. They are all a compromise. Granted, there are different degrees of compromise... Go cheap. Go NOW... Just GO, You will be glad you did.
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Old 11-07-2014, 07:41 PM   #12
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Weekend Jaunts will get you out there. If you wait for the 'perfect' cruiser/trawler, much will pass you by while waiting. There is NO perfect boat. They are all a compromise. Granted, there are different degrees of compromise... Go cheap. Go NOW... Just GO, You will be glad you did.
Oh, there is one thing I forgot...

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Old 11-07-2014, 09:22 PM   #13
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I'm down for practically anything as long as she's big, she's old, and she does NOT have spark plugs (I am allergic ).

Hmmm.... big and old is generally a recipe for a bad boat-owning experience unless one has a big budget. If you don't have a super-size boating budget, here's why the combination of big and old is generally something to run away from.

If you have x-amount of dollars in your boating budget, buying the biggest boat x-amount of dollars will buy will almost automatically get you a pretty old one that will generally be in crappy condition. Bringing the boat back up to reliable and dependable condtition will take a whole lot of dollars unless you do it all yourself, in which case it will take a whole lot of time.

If you take that same x-amount of dollars and buy the smallest boat that will still meet your requirements (accomodations, range, etc.), you will get a boat that will be in much better condition or newer, which often amounts to the same thing.

So now you have a boat that you can start using and enjoying instead of being saddled with a project boat that may take years of your time, and lots of your dollars to get to the point where you will trust it farther than the entrance buoys to your bay.

Now, if your budget is huge or unlimited, sure, buy a great big old boat and pour into it whatever funds are required to bring it up to snuff. Or, buy a great big new or newish boat and simply start using it.

For people with a fairly strict boating budget, I think the best rule to follow is "buy the smallest boat you can afford." This does NOT mean to buy a boat that's too small for your intended purpose and requirements. It means that if a 36 foot boat will suit your needs just fine, don't spend your x-amount of dollars on a 45 foot boat just because you find one that your x-amount of dollars will buy. For x-amount of dollars, the 36 foot boat will be-- if you do your shopping intelligently--- in much better condition than the 45' boat. (This is a generality, there can be exceptions.)

Remember that the purchase price of a boat is just the entry fee. The cost of owning that boat will go on and on and on for as long as you own it, and some years when you have to have major work done--- and you will have these years, believe me--- trhe cost of owning that boat can be unexpectedly high.
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Old 11-10-2014, 01:42 AM   #14
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Welcome aboard and best of luck with your decision Marin has some great points for you
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Old 11-10-2014, 02:03 AM   #15
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That post of Marin's could just about justify being made a permanent 'sticky'...
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Old 11-10-2014, 02:06 AM   #16
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Yes it could
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Old 11-10-2014, 07:53 AM   #17
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Skipper Bob originally coined the phrase "Don't buy the biggest boat you can afford, buy the smallest boat you can be comfortable on" . I think that is one of the great truisms in boating. Now for us and what we were going to do with the boat, we ended up with the big fat Hatteras and never regretted it. But then our budget, initial cost and ongoing, was many tens of times larger than the OPs. I mean, our dinghy was more than 10k. We actually looked at some boats in the 60's to low 70 foot range. Too big. We had chartered many 46 and 49 Grand Banks Classics, too small for our mission. Our inner Goldilocks settled on the 56.

10 grand and a diesel? 36 feet? As Marin implies, that is going to be a very very expensive boat. A 25 foot gasser in that price range, for that matter, is also an expensive boat.

Of course, as I have said here many times, it depends most of all on what your standards are for seaworthiness, amenities, comfort and cosmetics. Then, it depends on what value you put on your time, and what work you are able to afford to do yourself to bring the boat to your standards and keep it there. Finally, what it costs to have professionals do the work you can't or don't like to do. The answer to all these questions lie solely with you, they are very personal and ultimately no one here can answer them for you.

Although there are a few things where I think Skipper Bob is dead wrong in his book "Cruising Comfortably on a Budget" (always "two anchors off the bow", "don't go cruising in New England", for example) it is chock full of practical advice.

Also, David Pascoe's "Mid Sized Power Boats". Put aside his biases, good and bad, about various makes of boat or Taiwan trawlers in general (but not his specific relevant issues with some of them), and focus on the excellent discussion on ergonomics, construction and systems. Ignore these factors at your peril!
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Old 01-11-2015, 11:54 PM   #18
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We have altered our plans...slightly. After some deliberation, we have decided to look for an Albin 25 on a trailer. While the coast isn't too far away (and I still dream of having a much bigger liveaboard-type boat berthed there...someday), Kerr Lake, Jordan Lake, and Falls lake are even closer, and that looks like a vessel that we could enjoy on all of those.

So that is what we're now looking for! We are in no major rush though.
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Old 01-12-2015, 09:59 AM   #19
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The only thing you will be able to buy for $10K is trouble.
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Old 01-12-2015, 10:56 AM   #20
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We have altered our plans...slightly. After some deliberation, we have decided to look for an Albin 25 on a trailer. While the coast isn't too far away (and I still dream of having a much bigger liveaboard-type boat berthed there...someday), Kerr Lake, Jordan Lake, and Falls lake are even closer, and that looks like a vessel that we could enjoy on all of those.

So that is what we're now looking for! We are in no major rush though.
Despite being given some excellent advice here-sometimes you just have to give people what they think they want. You asked-and you received! Albin 25' with diesel engine sitting on an Aluminum double axle trailer for $10k. Call the owner at 305-340-1703. CALL HIM. He's in the boat repair business so everything should be in proper condition. It might be the only one left in the world-sitting on a road worthy trailer. These things are oldyou know. So shit or get off the pot!
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The bottom photos are the boats of smart people in the area, and all get used regularly. All have Yamaha's or Suzuki's on the back. ALL are at the minimum double the speeds of a 25' trawler.
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