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Old 12-18-2019, 12:13 PM   #1
Samm's Avatar
City: NYC
Vessel Name: Looking to buy (Jan '20)
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 6
Talking Greetings

Hello all, I'm Sam and for some strange reason I am searching for a smallish Trawler (single diesel -eg Island Gypsy?) or a Cruiser (eg MS-Pilot 34). Something I can single-hand primarily along the eastern half of the loop. Call me a budding snowbird...
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Old 12-18-2019, 12:52 PM   #2
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City: Slicker?
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 15,031
Welcome aboard Mr. budding snowbird.
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Old 12-18-2019, 12:55 PM   #3
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City: Litchfield, Ct
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 6,154
I owned a Pilot 34 for several years and would not consider it a great live aboard cruiser. The living space is short benches behind the helm seats enclosed by roll up plastic in the back. Not very comfortable to hang out in. Great for short 3-4 day cruises but any more gets to be too much for me.

But if your budget can stand the $100K or so of the Pilot 34, there are plenty of newer trawlers in the 34-36' range that would work and even 40' if you are ok with something from the 80s. These have a much more comfortable living layout.

There is a nice 1999 Albin 36 with twin Cummins listed in Connecticut on Yachtworld for $99,000.

Welcome aboard and good boat hunting.

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Old 12-18-2019, 01:59 PM   #4
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City: Seneca Lake NY
Vessel Name: Bacchus
Vessel Model: MS 34 HT Trawler
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 5,829
The MS 34HT is IMO a lot more livable than the 34P.
Completely enclosed saloon and no canvas. Large enough covered aft deck for outside seating.
It is a 2 person boat and although very practical and easy to single hand there just weren't many sold so they are somewhat rare.
2008 MS 34 HT Trawler
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Old 12-18-2019, 02:14 PM   #5
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City: Oconto, WI
Vessel Name: Best Alternative
Vessel Model: 36 Albin Aft Cabin
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,149
Welcome Aboard!

I think perhaps you should spend a little more time in research and thinking through what your needs, wants and future plans are. A trawler and a cruiser are actually a lot different. Mainly in speed and space although a purist would list about 20 differences. (I'm not a purist)

A small cruiser (34 feet) can imitate a trailer in many ways . Sure you can make it go slow, and maybe even achieve some good fuel economy but you giving up a few things which a live aboard will probably want.

Either way, Go for it !

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Old 12-18-2019, 03:55 PM   #6
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City: Au Gres, MI
Vessel Name: Black Dog
Vessel Model: Formula 41PC
Join Date: Jul 2015
Posts: 13,826
Welcome aboard. My neighbor has a 1979 34í Mainship for sale at an incredible price. PM me if you want his contact info.
Boat Nut:
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Old 12-18-2019, 04:03 PM   #7
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City: Tri Cities, WA
Vessel Name: Red Stripe
Vessel Model: Monaco Cayman 35' diesel pusher
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,374
Welcome to TF and good luck with your hunt.

Let me caution you on your search: Buy your second boat first.

By that I am suggesting that many first time boaters get caught up in the hype of owning a boat, fall in love with one and plunk down the bucks to own her. Only to find out a year or so later that she doesn't really suit their needs.

They sell her, taking a beating on the price and go about looking for their second boat.

So, my word of caution to you would be to take your time, do your due diligence, walk a lot of docks, talk with a lot of boat owners about what the like and don't like about their boats, and THEN buy the boat you would have bought the second time.
Mike and Tina
2008 Monaco Camelot 350hp Cummins
1981 Boston Whaler 13'
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Old 12-18-2019, 04:14 PM   #8
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City: Southern Maine
Vessel Model: Prairie 36 Coastal Cruiser
Join Date: Dec 2012
Posts: 2,323

Your plan is sound. You don't need anything large for the waters you're talking about.

What you'll want is something comfortable. What that means is up to you. My preference is lots of "indoor" space. More often than not, it's too hot, too sunny, to cold or too buggy outdoors. I'm a lousy fisherman, so a big cockpit is of no value to me.


If I were looking at anything in the 30' and under range, I'd be after an express cruiser. Something that can get up on a plane when needed, or be run at a slow, economical "trawler" speed when wanted. There are some really nice "pocket trawlers" out there, but I wouldn't give up on other designs just to get in the "trawler" club.
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Old 12-19-2019, 11:18 AM   #9
Samm's Avatar
City: NYC
Vessel Name: Looking to buy (Jan '20)
Join Date: Jul 2019
Posts: 6
Thanks everyone! I've cruised on a couple of trawlers, canal boats, and an assortment of daycraft & sailboats... and I like the MS34P cuz it's a bit fa$ter, a bit larger than the 30P, and way less day-to-day care than a trawler. Yes, the living quarters are small-ish and the below deck salon a bit submarine-ish. But a trawler feels like more space than a solo traveler needs to maintain and more boat to single-hand. A MS34HT would be a great compromise but how to find one in my $$ range!? Island Gypsy also made a Sedan model but the ones I've found were ~40 yrs old w/ low engine hours. Anyhow, thanks again for your warm welcome, perspectives & opinions! I'll figure it out...
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