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Old 07-18-2021, 07:49 PM   #21
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Buying a smaller boat and getting experience with it is a great way to go. After you are confident, rent a boat on the Rideau for a week and see how you both like the cruising life.


Thanks! I think I am definitely leaning that direction. In the end, you donít know till you try it.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:05 PM   #22
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Oh yea, a GB, NOT. You do not want to devote your time to the external teak. Been there, done that with a N46 and its huge rail cap. My recommendation is find a boat with little or no external teak and that definitely includes teak decks.

Side note: learn the Rules for Navigation. You may be able to maneuver your boat but, you want to do it in a safe manner.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:07 PM   #23
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The Loop is only 6,000 miles :-)

Honestly, any boat that I'd want to take cruising for a week on the great lakes would do the loop just fine. Solve for your local needs, then when you're ready just go.

I'm a fan of learning by doing, but check insurance before you get too serious. More and more that's dictating how much people with no experience are able to just jump into trawler ownership. That and an aging fleet. Many of the boats and brands fondly discussed here are well past mid-life. It's hard to predict whether good used boats will be cheaper in the future, but for sure they're going to be scarcer.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:10 PM   #24
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By the time you buy a "smaller" boat and then resell it to get the "bigger" boat, that $10K week long charter with a a day or two with an experienced captain will look like chump change. You may well indeed enjoy the first boat and learn good stuff, but you will not recoup the costs associated with buying and then reselling a boat probably at some price reduction to boot.


Letís say I buy a boat for 10k and give it away 2 years later and spend another 10k maintenance costs. Thatís 2 weeks of charters vs 2 years of owning. Maybe I am missing something, but my friend has a 27ft and hasnít spent that much in 5 years.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:11 PM   #25
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Oh yea, a GB, NOT. You do not want to devote your time to the external teak. Been there, done that with a N46 and its huge rail cap. My recommendation is find a boat with little or no external teak and that definitely includes teak decks.

Side note: learn the Rules for Navigation. You may be able to maneuver your boat but, you want to do it in a safe manner.


Not sold on a GB, just like the layout and size when looking at them. I donít want a boat that has a lot of teak. Donít have time or patience for that.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:14 PM   #26
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The Loop is only 6,000 miles :-)

Honestly, any boat that I'd want to take cruising for a week on the great lakes would do the loop just fine. Solve for your local needs, then when you're ready just go.

I'm a fan of learning by doing, but check insurance before you get too serious. More and more that's dictating how much people with no experience are able to just jump into trawler ownership. That and an aging fleet. Many of the boats and brands fondly discussed here are well past mid-life. It's hard to predict whether good used boats will be cheaper in the future, but for sure they're going to be scarcer.


Thanks Jeff. Itís a good point. Planning on selling our RV in 5 years and will most likely begin boat ownership at that point. Hoping the bubble has Burst with the covid price increase by then and will certainly look into insurance along the way.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:21 PM   #27
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Letís say I buy a boat for 10k and give it away 2 years later and spend another 10k maintenance costs. Thatís 2 weeks of charters vs 2 years of owning. Maybe I am missing something, but my friend has a 27ft and hasnít spent that much in 5 years.
Have you priced summer and winter storage in Toronto? If you're not a yacht club member expect to pay $250/ft per year. The ongoing costs are not trivial.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:27 PM   #28
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On the GLs consider a 30+ft trawler or fast trawler. My brother has done the GLs for more than 3 years on a Tiara boat with his wife, with great success.
He does pay attention to the weather windows.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:28 PM   #29
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Have you priced summer and winter storage in Toronto? If you're not a yacht club member expect to pay $250/ft per year. The ongoing costs are not trivial.


Yeah, I have looked into it a lot as when I got the RV this summer we had gone back and forth about it vs a boat at that time. In the end we were given a very nice RV from a family member so it won out for now. Marina costs were close to what we pay for our seasonal site, but certainly less overall as we donít have fuel and maintenance costs .

Done my homework on the storage costs for sure.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:40 PM   #30
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Trainerdude, ignore fuel costs. It may be a 'wash' between a RV and a boat.
Fuel costs on a boat, IMO, is the least of your costs.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:43 PM   #31
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Couple of thoughts. Having grown up with boats, owned a bunch and spent 6 years running boats while in the Navy I can assure you that since you have 15 years before you will be doing the Loop you have the time to learn much of what you need to know. Buying a boat, any boat, will teach you the maintenance requirements, and there are a lot. It will also teach you the costs of boat ownership and it is much higher then owning an RV. Start reading up on what maintenance of a boat requires. Start learning the terminology of boating. Read up on the various hull designs, understand the differences too. Try to learn what kind of boat you prefer and why? Boating requires docking, anchoring, mooring on a ball, refueling, pumpouts, adverse weather handling and many more skills for both you and the wife to experience. It will take you every bit of 15 years to learn it.

I have traveled from Seattle to Ketchikan (1500 miles round trip) on my twin engine 28 foot boat in all kinds of weather and was a boater for over 50 years at the time of the trip. Was it the ideal boat? Not in any way but because I knew my boat, my abilities and what to do in emergencies very well I felt comfortable taking the trip on it. For you to take on a 6000 mile trip will require you to learn and experience far more then what is needed for a day on the lake.

By the way, any boat you buy for $10k will in the end cost you far more if it is any size at all.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:44 PM   #32
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Spent a lifetime caring for the teak of my woodie GB, but I have seen them with practically none at all and that bit pained over.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:45 PM   #33
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On the GLs consider a 30+ft trawler or fast trawler. My brother has done the GLs for more than 3 years on a Tiara boat with his wife, with great success.


Thanks. I am thinking 36 looks to be a sweet spot for me when I am looking at them online.
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Old 07-18-2021, 08:47 PM   #34
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Trainerdude, ignore fuel costs. It may be a 'wash' between a RV and a boat.
Fuel costs on a boat, IMO, is the least of your costs.


Yeah, itís not a huge concern for me. Main focus will be making sure I can safely do the journey.
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Old 07-18-2021, 09:36 PM   #35
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Every boat comes with two (yes 2) PRICE TAGS!
One is the Purchase Price including the cost of yearly maintenance.
The other is your cost of cruising!
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Old 07-19-2021, 07:46 AM   #36
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Couple of thoughts. Having grown up with boats, owned a bunch and spent 6 years running boats while in the Navy I can assure you that since you have 15 years before you will be doing the Loop you have the time to learn much of what you need to know. Buying a boat, any boat, will teach you the maintenance requirements, and there are a lot. It will also teach you the costs of boat ownership and it is much higher then owning an RV. Start reading up on what maintenance of a boat requires. Start learning the terminology of boating. Read up on the various hull designs, understand the differences too. Try to learn what kind of boat you prefer and why? Boating requires docking, anchoring, mooring on a ball, refueling, pumpouts, adverse weather handling and many more skills for both you and the wife to experience. It will take you every bit of 15 years to learn it.

I have traveled from Seattle to Ketchikan (1500 miles round trip) on my twin engine 28 foot boat in all kinds of weather and was a boater for over 50 years at the time of the trip. Was it the ideal boat? Not in any way but because I knew my boat, my abilities and what to do in emergencies very well I felt comfortable taking the trip on it. For you to take on a 6000 mile trip will require you to learn and experience far more then what is needed for a day on the lake.

By the way, any boat you buy for $10k will in the end cost you far more if it is any size at all.


Thanks Bill. Some great advice here.

I donít doubt that the maintenance costs are far more than RV and I have been looking into them for a while already as this dream has been in my head for a bit.

I am also fully aware of the training involved and I plan to get as much time on a boat as I can before making the trip, but I also know some have done and completed this trip on little to no training, so it can be done. Life is an adventure and sometimes you just need to go for it.

I plan on researching this stuff to death and I am already driving my wife nuts with how obsessed I can be with learning.

As for the 10k boat. I am well aware that Purchase price does not equal end of costs.
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Old 07-23-2021, 02:16 PM   #37
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I try to learn something every day.
I am always interested in folks doing 'it' different than I would do 'it'.
.
I initiated my Keogh in 1973.
I was 21 (twenty-one).
.
I retired at 53.
2003, we built an ExpeditionVehicle, and hit the road.
.
Nearly two decades full-time live-aboard, no regrets.
.
.
An article in INC. magazine asked:
* "What would you tell your twenty year old self?"
The overwhelming answer from industry leaders, entrepreneurs, performers, and medical folks:
* "Action Beats Deliberation"
Over-thinking anything results in developing the habit of 'research it to death'... meanwhile, opportunities slip away.
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Old 07-23-2021, 04:52 PM   #38
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You can also gain a lot of information here. The AGLCA rendezvous in October. I here it is sold out.
https://greatloop.org/
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Old 07-24-2021, 02:10 AM   #39
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Go to any dock with 4 x 6 packs of heavy beer and Iím sure you will get enough advise to get you around the great loop, maybe take some ice to.
Enjoy
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Old 07-24-2021, 06:23 AM   #40
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David
I applaud your having a long term dream and working toward making it happen.
Don't be overwhelmed by the task of having to plan for a 6,000 mi, year or longer cruise. A year is just a series of month long cruises and a month is just 4 week long segments with some necessary flex time.
Researching, Planning and preping for a week or two with a LeBoat rental on the Rideau Canal will give you a reasonable sense of what it would take to do a month.
Check their requirements but I doubt they require extensive training to rent. Get your Canadian / Ontario boater certificate / card as an initial step. Additional training becomes a plus.

My recommendation as a way / source for some training is to join a Canadian Sail & Power Squadron. They not only offer many / varied boating courses but you will immediately expand your network of folks with similar interests. You may be able to find a member that would welcome a helping hand with some maintenance chore or for a day cruise when short handed.
The other possibility is to use the TF Port Capt search feature for your area. It will identify TFers that have "volunteered" to assist others by providing local knowledge & experience. I will guess they might also be willing to share their experiences getting started in boating and again a way to expand your local boating network.
A training Capt can be a much later step once you have your own larger boat and want to know more details about the specific handling traits for that vessel.
Above, of course, my opinions and may vary from what others suggest.
Whatever you and yours do... do it as a team and make it enjoyable. Don't make training a necessary evil when it can be part of a new & exilerating path for vacations and adventures. Don't think of a rental as just an expense but rather an inexpensive way to gain knowledge and experience to maximize your boat purchase $ and avoid a costly purchase mistake... all while enjoying a vacation in a new place / situation.
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