Cruisingdad- Thanks for your comments and for the record I wish I had of posted this last week because I was near ft myers looking at the IP35 on Saturday and would have really enjoyed chatting with you. If you don't mind, and you can feel free to privately reply, but I would like a little more input on your choice with the Catalina v Sabre in that you mentioned tankage and livability of the Sabres pushed you off as an option. I general hear IPs regarded, if for nothing else, as good on tankage and storage. When I looked at the Sabres I compared the IP35 LOA 38 with water 90/fuel 48 to the Sabre42 LOA 41.9 water 120/fuel 40, and it seemed that the larger Sabre came close to overcoming some of the tankage concerns of the smaller ones. You also mentioned that you had reservations about the livability of the Sabre and I would greatly appreciate why? Obviously this will be our home for quite some time!
You were correct, I don't have long distance cruising experience, and no offense taken, your thoughts are very helpful. I have mainly daysailing with a little coastal, and will help take an IP42 from Sarasota to the Bahamas in November. We were planning the first year in the Caribbean to get to know the boat and then the following year heading over in April and then back with ARC in November, winter in the islands and then back to the 'real world'.
I guess a crossing has just been something we have both wanted to accomplish on our bucket list so to speak.
Once again, everyone has been incredibly helpful!