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Old 05-22-2022, 07:15 AM   #1
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Wanted: 38-43' Trawler/Tug

Recently retired sailors eager to begin cruising life. Searching for a trawler or tug 38'-43', newer model, single engine, pilothouse, flybridge. Preferred boats include: Kadey Krogen 39, Helmsman 38, Nordic Tugs 37, American Tug 34/365, TransPac Eagle 40, etc.
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Old 05-22-2022, 08:39 AM   #2
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Those are all great choices. For full time cruising you need a large fridge and a big enough head with a separate shower compartment. Definitely prefer a propane stove so you don't have to start the generator to cook.

Speaking of generators, you can get by without one with a big battery bank and several hundred watts of solar and a high output alternator with an external regulator on your propulsion engine. Whether you can make this work depends on your energy use. When I was cruising full time on a similar sized sailboat, I used 50-75 amp hours daily but some will use twice that amount.

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Old 05-22-2022, 12:03 PM   #3
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Also look at the KK42. A fine boat for live aboard
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Old 05-22-2022, 12:13 PM   #4
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Welcome aboard.
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Old 05-22-2022, 05:02 PM   #5
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If you can find one, find an AT in the 40+ft range and beg for a walk through. I think you will be impressed. If you check the models, you will fine a couple with 2 stateroom.

I am a traditionalist, I have a generator and a couple small solar panels to float the batteries.

There are obviously a couple of tweaks that can done for the electrical system.

I have yet to hear about someone using fuel cells on a boat.
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Old 05-23-2022, 07:52 AM   #6
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Thanks. All good suggestions.
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Old 05-23-2022, 07:53 AM   #7
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Definitely, not out of the realm of possibilities. We have toured many and like the boat.
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Old 05-23-2022, 07:56 AM   #8
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So true. Thanks.
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Old 05-23-2022, 12:12 PM   #9
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Was in the same situation. Looked at the boats you mentioned plus nordhavn 40 and a 43. Favorite was the nordhavn 43 but so few for sale. One I wanted went well above initial asking price. Then found a nordic tug 42. Considerably more room than the 40 and as efficient. More efficient than the comparable American tug. Lower profile and less beam. Been living on her the last few weeks so early days but quite comfy. Currently on first long hop as mom and pop. So far so good other than usual teething pains as we learn the boat.
So would recommend a nordic tug 42 or a 44(same hull) with a Cummins.
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Old 05-23-2022, 01:32 PM   #10
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I chose my Nordic Tug 37 after chartering a 42. While the 42 is more spacious, it doesn't actually have any more cabins than the 37/39/40 apart from the second head. The 37 can accommodate a dinghy crane and a ten foot console RIB on the boat deck and has space for water maker down below.

The 37 is plenty comfortable for a cruising couple for months at a time, and can take a few kids/grandkids or another couple that doesn't mind cozying up for modest stints. I took mine up to Alaska for several months last summer with my wife and occasional guests on board and never felt claustrophobic.

The 37 is much easier to one-hand. I have no problem taking it through the Ballard locks by myself. The windage is significantly less. I found this to be a problem with the 42, whose thrusters aren't really sufficient to keep it from drifting sideways in any kind of cross breeze.

The 37 will go quite a bit faster (16Ė17 kn) and with greater efficiency above hull speed when you need to get somewhere in a hurry. I actually prefer the cozier, side-by-side seating for the skipper and mate in the pilot house to being in the pilot seat with the settee behind in the 42.

Moorage is another big consideration. Forty feet LOA is a big differentiator on that front. We were able to find covered fresh water moorage on Lake Union for our 37 right away. We likely would have waited years to secure the same for a 42.

With that said, I wouldn't want to live aboard a 37 full time. But I'd want something bigger than a 42 for that purpose too. My guess is that coming from a sailboat either will seem quite spacious to you.

The 37 is quite seaworthy, but I have found myself wondering at times with wind against current in places like Clarence Straight or the Straight of Georgia if I wouldn't have been a little more comfortable with some more mass below me. You wouldn't be able to easily retrofit a gyroscopic stabilizer in the 37 like you could a 42, but I gather it's a factory option on the current model 40 (which is essentially the same boat).

The full walk around is a nice feature on the 42 but also one that is more necessary with the additional freeboard and the need to go aft from the pilot house to step on to the dock from a reasonable height.

For either boat, be aware that older models experience significant wave-slap noise in the bow cabin in even the lightest chop, though it is definitely worse in the 37. This can be remedied with expensive fiber glass work (~$20k including lay days) to soften the chines. You should either budget for this or for a divorce lawyer if you are purchasing a used boat that hasn't had it done.

If I were going to go bigger than 40 LOA in a tug-style, semi-displacement boat and had the money, I would probably skip past the NT 42/44 and get an American Tug 485. I got a tour of a fine specimen last summer and loved the layout. The banquette off the galley is an especially nice amenity compared to dining at the settee in either the NT 37 or 42. And the lounge space on the boat deck is superb.

Have fun boat shopping. I hope you find something great!
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Old 05-23-2022, 05:14 PM   #11
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Well. Maybe it’s dance with the one you brought. But there’s significant differences between the 37 and 42
If you’re married or cruise with friends two heads are a big deal.
Also having hydronic heat. Three ACs. Washer/dryer. So far we’ve
Docked port and starboard to so he walk around has been quite helpful. We lived on a sailboat (outbound 42) for close to decade and now the NT42 for close to a month and see no issue with living on it continuously as many are currently doing. Yes with the freedom lift our LOA is significantly longer than the 37 but when docking in a slip find its beam that makes for tight sphincters.
C/w the AT preferred the position and therefore the sight lines of the NT. Far enough forward to see coral heads or other issues but enough aft for good sight lines docking.
Use to north swell and wave slap from cruising the Caribbean Yes the wave slap can be heard but at least on the 42 hasn’t bothered us.
Mostly own boats to move around. So far CT-RI, RI-VA, currently in progress of VA-RI. Boat rides wonderfully and runs great.
If I was going to the 50’ range and intended long term cruising while changing cruising grounds would look only at FD hulls. For that much money want greater flexibility in options of cruising grounds.
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Old 05-23-2022, 11:29 PM   #12
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Well. Maybe itís dance with the one you brought.
No, there were 42s on the market in my price range when I bought my 37 and it was a better boat for my needs for the reasons I said. Plus I had an extra hundred thousand dollars of boat budget to play with for extras and upgrades.

But I wonít claim that it wasnít a close decision, and for many of the reasons you say. The washer-dryer especially is something I would love to have but couldnít shoehorn in without making the already small guest cabin even more cramped.

Canít go wrong with either boat. But Iíd also prefer a 50+ FD passagemaker to either of them if I were retired, in no hurry, and living aboard most or full time. Sounds bigger than what our poster has in mind though.
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Old 05-24-2022, 10:26 PM   #13
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Hi, we almost purchased the wetsig c tug 40 in St Pete FL. It's an amazing boat, cummins single,,incredible design and use of space, , literally the best of everything,, but wife wanted more outside space. I reccomend it if you like the look. We looked at an eagle 40 at the same price and it was a train wreck. Saw a N46 at what I thought was a good price and it too was really bad off.
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Old 05-25-2022, 07:14 AM   #14
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Outbound 46 my bad. Just reread the various NT v AT threads and information. Seems both are great boats. Seems some of the usual misinformation about both. Salient thing is NT is less beamy, has aft rocker so more efficient. Also less mass above the waterline although heights inside are quite generous. So for protected or calm day cruising you get more bang for the buck with the AT at the same size. There’s more interior volume. But about the same amount of storage space. For long range and long near shore cruising hops the NT maybe smidgin better choice. We had a transient on a AT 42 next slip at Deltaville. With the two side by side it was obvious that the AT had more above the waterline and was wider.
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Old 05-25-2022, 09:40 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by AnsleyS View Post
Also look at the KK42. A fine boat for live aboard
I was always interested in the whale back but I guess they weren't popular
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Old 05-27-2022, 01:33 PM   #16
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A North Pacific 43 worked for us. Not much inventory available recently.
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Old 05-27-2022, 02:23 PM   #17
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I have a 49ft motor/sailor that only draws 3ft,has 125 yanmar diesel 3/1 reduction transmision 21in 4 blade prop,articulated rudder,and many other tugboat fetures for sale call me if you have any interest?Ed Watson 941 780 5801
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Old 05-28-2022, 09:35 AM   #18
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I will be selling my 2009 Nordic Tug 37 next month once I close on a new boat. It's in pristine condition, located in Lake Champlain. Shoot me a note if you are interested tparrent88@gmail.com
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