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Old 09-14-2014, 09:41 AM   #1
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Hello all,
My wife and I have been spending a few years researching trawlers and places we would like to explore. Our time frame for purchasing a trawler is 1 to 2 years from now. Our time frame for cruising on her is 5+ years, albeit with the understanding that life's unexpected curve balls can change plans at a moments notice.

We have determined that our desired cruising destinations are varied: eastern seaboard, Great Lakes, St. Lawrence seaway, Carribean, Baja California and the Sea of Cortez, Pacific Northwest, Canada's West Coast and SouthEast Alaska.

We feel this variety poses a particular challenge:what is the ideal boat for this?where sea keeping ability and draft are key aspects. Of course there are lots of other details we have short listed as necessary or desirable as we have progressed in our research.

We look forward to insights from others on this forum, and thank you in advance.
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Old 09-14-2014, 09:47 AM   #2
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Some of your destinations, e.g. the Great Lakes favor a semi-displacement boat with twin engines, others e.g. the Caribbean favor a full displacement boat with a single engine.

Non consensus as to my comment about favoring one type or the other, but you will find that the overwhelming majority of trawlers in the Great Lakes are semi-displacement and the overwhelming majority of trawlers in the Caribbean are full displacement.

If you are serious about the types of off shore places you have listed, Alaska, Caribbean, Baja, suggest you look at full displacement built for living aboard, Krogan's Willards, Ablin's, Defever's etc.
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Old 09-14-2014, 09:50 AM   #3
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Five years isn't enough time to do all that and really explore and enjoy all those destinations, unless you goal is merely to say you went by all those places. So a really fast boat would be the first spec, say a 22knot cruise speed, if that is what you want to accomplish.

Budget? Experience?
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Old 09-15-2014, 09:10 PM   #4
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Thanks Marty and George,
We were already leaning towards the full displacement for reasons of comfort, economical cruising, sea keeping and prioritizing the more distant destinations first. With the idea that a boat with those qualities and benefits win out over any limitations a deeper draft might pose in some of the inland waterways.

While I mentioned a timeframe of 5+ years it is one of things that we have an open mind on and we'll see how it goes, also knowing that schedules and times frames are the arch enemies of fun and safe boating.

Our budget for a boat is not more than 1 million with an annual budget of 120,000 for all expenses while living and cruising on the boat.

Regarding experience, I have been boating all my life which has included owning and operating planing vessels up to 38' feet, crewing on deliveries between Bermuda and the US on boats ranging from43' to 68', chartering boats ranging from36' to 53', and in so doing have been boating in the Caribbean, Florida, the eastern seaboard, the Mediterranean and Bermuda.

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Old 09-15-2014, 09:45 PM   #5
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Greetings,
Welcome aboard.
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Old 09-15-2014, 11:49 PM   #6
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Richard,
That's a great budget to work with. Would you purchase in the states and bring it to Bermuda? I'm guessing not?


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Old 09-16-2014, 12:56 AM   #7
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Your budget eliminates a couple of the older boats, the Albin and the Willard. Take a look at the Krogen 44 and 48, the Nordhavn 46 and 47. There are some Defevers in the mid to high 40s in length that would work well.

Any of these boats will get you everywhere, although the Nordhavns and Defevers may not allow you to go south of Chicago on the rivers (fixed bridge approximately 19 feet).

I am not a big fan of the boats bigger than 50 feet, personal preference. While great going to Bermuda and the South Pacific there are numerous trade offs because of the size when anchoring and getting a marina slip.

There is a eternal debate as to whether it is better to buy new and fit out the boat yourself - and deal with all of the start up problems, or to buy a boat a couple of years old that someone else has worked out all the bugs.

Good luck
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Old 09-20-2014, 12:29 PM   #8
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We are considering doing the trip to Bermuda but we would not keep the boat here. Our plan is explore new places, but we could end up here for a short time along the way.
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Old 09-20-2014, 12:44 PM   #9
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The question on size has the conundrum at its core that every boat is a trade off. For many trips and for living comfort the larger size, up to a point, is better, but the smaller size is better once at many destinations. Are preference for liveability and sea keeping with our desired destinations in mind has us leaning toward a size 50-55'.

My view on the new versus a couple of years old is: you go with the new if you have the money and don't mind the premium/immediate depreciation, there are specifics you would like to have which can best be attained by buying new and you are comfortable with the time and logistics involved with buying a new boat.
You go with the boat with the bugs worked out if budget is more of a constraint, you are content with the compromises of a boat fitted out to someone else's specifications and you are comfortable with buying a boat that has a history.
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