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Old 10-02-2020, 02:58 PM   #1
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Talking S&M in Seattle

My wife, Marilyn, and I recently purchased a 1978 CHB Trawler on north Lake Union in Seattle. It is our first power boat of any kind, however, we have been sailing a San Juan 23 for about five years, and crewing on other people's sailboats for years before that. My job and the sailboat are landlocked in Yakima and Rimrock Lake, respectively, but we love Seattle and visit my daughter there occasionally. We have also trailered the sailboat over the mountains and sailed the San Juans and Gulf Islands on an annual boat club cruise the last two years.

For some time we had been contemplating a condo or timeshare or something in Seattle where we could stay when we were there, since my daughter lives in a tiny apartment. Around June of this year Marilyn spotted a trawler for sale on the Facebook Marketplace and we finally got over to check it out at the end of June. The boat and the owner were both full of character, and the boat came with an assumable liveaboard slip on Lake Union. Needless to say, we bought it. The engine wasn't running, and it needed a little restoration in general, but that is a hobby of ours, so we set about it and had her running around Lake Union and Lake Washington within a couple of weeks.

I rapidly learned that driving a nine-ton single screw boat bore little relationship to driving a two-ton outboard as I smacked her on a pier piling and gave her a fat lip the first time out of the slip. Nothing too serious, but we do get to learn teak railing repair now. We've struggled with docking and undocking her a lot, but we're much better now and take her out pretty much every time we visit, which is every couple of weeks. Obviously we have a lot to learn about power boats, but we love our funky old Trawler and plan to keep sprucing her up.

I am near retirement, so eventually we will likely cash it all in and live the liveaboard dream. Although we are planning on doing that on a blue water sailboat, the trawler is our toe-in-the water liveaboard experiment toward that end. It's probably better suited than a sailboat toward cruising in the Sound anyway, since we have learned that "San Juan Sailing" is motoring around in a sailboat with the sail up. There just isn't that much wind in the San Juans that we have found.

I have already learned a great deal from The Trawler Forum and enjoy it so much I bought one of the cool TF burgees to fly on our trawler. Thanks for the opportunity to introduce ourselves.

Satch & Marilyn in Seattle
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Old 10-02-2020, 08:38 PM   #2
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Welcome. I moved to a trawler from sail a bit over 3 years ago. Never looked back. I spend time in the San Juans on first my folks SJ 21, then on their SJ 24. Never had a SJ 23.

There is a learning curve in handling a single screw power boat. They simply donít turn and donít have a decent rudder. I am fortunate to have bow and stern thrusters, but take the time to learn to use prop walk and shots of power to and rudder to move your stern around.
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Old 10-02-2020, 08:44 PM   #3
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Welcome aboard and congrats on your new boat. Remember that slow is pro when docking and never go faster than you are willing to hit something at. It is a steep learning curve with a single and no thrusters. Keep at it and you will pick it up. Good luck.
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Old 10-02-2020, 08:49 PM   #4
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Yes, welcome to TF Satch.

Take heart. When we bought our 1975 vintage CHB 34, (called Clipper here is Oz), back in 2002, for the first couple of trips out of the berth and back, which were, at times, a bit like your experience, a bit exciting, I was thinking, yeah, we must get a bow thruster as soon as possible.

However, I soon got the feel of using her inertia to our benefit, rather than fighting it - and the way a good burst of revs, while moving slow, acted in a way like a stern thruster, with most movement sideways, directed by rudder angle, rather than forwards, and before long thoughts of the installation of thrusters fell by the wayside.

16 year later when we sold her she still didn't have one. If money is/had been no object, sure - better to have than not - but they are expensive, and just another thing to go wrong or need maintenance. Just sayin'...
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Old 10-05-2020, 02:34 PM   #5
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I forgot to mention that it has a bow thruster. I am told the without it we would never get it in and out of the slip we are in. We decided to move to a bigger slip on the other side of our marina where there is twice as much room to get in and out.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:23 PM   #6
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..but we love Seattle and visit my daughter there occasionally.

For some time we had been contemplating a condo or timeshare or something in Seattle where we could stay when we were there, since my daughter lives in a tiny apartment.
Satch & Marilyn in Seattle

Satch,
Welcome aboard.

We have been using our trawler as "home away" for visiting our daughter in Tacoma, and now the U-District for four years now, although we do cruise actively, as much as 5-months in 2018. Considering relocating the boat from Tacoma now, but prices are an issue. Where are you located?


You will find many of us here who have crossed over to the "dark side" for reasons similar to yours.


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Old 10-05-2020, 03:49 PM   #7
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We're in the triangle formed by the I-5 bridge, the University Bridge, and the north shore of Lake Union, where the marina is. It's called the Washington Boat Center.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:58 PM   #8
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We're in the triangle formed by the I-5 bridge, the University Bridge, and the north shore of Lake Union, where the marina is. It's called the Washington Boat Center.
A good friend (and TF member) tegdesign is at that marina!
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Old 10-05-2020, 04:23 PM   #9
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We're in the triangle formed by the I-5 bridge, the University Bridge, and the north shore of Lake Union, where the marina is. It's called the Washington Boat Center.

Across the street from Voula's!
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Old 10-05-2020, 05:25 PM   #10
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Love Voula's!

Satch - Welcome aboard. Like yourself and many here we're also recovering sail-boaters. Our first boat was a 30' sloop moored in Rockport Maine.

Our first Trawler was also in Lake Union (West Lake Marina)...actually it still is as the new owner kept the slip. I think half the boats in Lake Union are used as condos.

We're on the salt side now in our "dream trawler", don't own any dirt anymore and love it.
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:04 PM   #11
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We're in the triangle formed by the I-5 bridge, the University Bridge, and the north shore of Lake Union, where the marina is. It's called the Washington Boat Center.
I had dinner tonight at Agua Verde. Is your boat one of those right in front?
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Old 10-20-2020, 04:01 PM   #12
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No, it's a little farther west, on the other side of the University Bridge. Literally across the street from Voula's.
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Old 10-20-2020, 04:11 PM   #13
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Literally across the street from Voula's.

Yeah, I realized after posting from the deck at Agua Verde that the geometry of the bridges was wrong. You are actually in Voula's mural...well, maybe not you specifically.
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Old 10-20-2020, 04:29 PM   #14
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I saw the title of this thread and thought I got my forums mixed up......
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Old 10-20-2020, 07:50 PM   #15
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I saw the title of this thread and thought I got my forums mixed up......


Me too!
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Old 10-22-2020, 11:03 AM   #16
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I saw the title of this thread and thought I got my forums mixed up......

Disappointed?
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Old 10-22-2020, 03:26 PM   #17
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Nah.....Boating can be a cruel mistress that provides great pleasure!!
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Old 10-22-2020, 04:15 PM   #18
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Wifey B: Of course, since I'm so innocent and naive, I never thought of S&M as anything other than two persons names. Good thing they didn't include Bob and Debbie as part of their group.
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