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post #11 of 26 Old 02-14-2007 Thread Starter
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Cam, I saw that you had owned one and traded up, way up! I looked on your webpage and enjoyed your pictures. I was curious to see your response to TDW's questions. I am only able to 'look' for boats online as there aren't any boats larger than a 27', typically, here in Southern Idaho. I have been on an Irwin 43, but liked the idea of the swim platform on the stern of the 44. I know that typically about 90% of my time will be in port, so I am placing alot of my emphasis on interior space and layouts. I have heard of much smaller, and much lighter built boats (Catalina's) circumnavigating and have read if a person can wait for the correct weather windows and not operate on a strict schedule most voyages can be made fair weather, fairly predictably. Again, my experience is on the very slight side, so I certainly appreciate input, but cannot afford the most top of the line bullet proof boats out there, although I certainly wish I could. Searching for a safe boat, roomy space, wife likes a walk around berth (nice in port, sucks at sea), and have to be able to buy it before I expire, or the dream does....
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post #12 of 26 Old 02-14-2007
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Look...you can circumnavigate in a bathtub. The question is how much luck do you need.
I LOVED MY Irwin44 and it was a great cruising boat for my 2.5 years up and down the east coast and through the Bahamas/Keys and West Cost of Florida. ...and the drop down platform was great for loading groceries on to from the dink or snorkeling. The speed under power on the ICW was great and she is a fine sailor as well...BUT...BUT ...BUT she was designed with just that in mind. The hull is not rigid enough and the layup not robust enough, etc. etc. to stand up to the POUNDING that takes place in the open ocean during a gale or worse. If it was I would not have spent 3x the money on my Tayana. You need to be at sea in a good gale for a couple of days to TRULY understand this and when you coastal cruise...you can avoid this issue by ducking into port when the weather gets stinky. When you are a week away from your nearest landfall...you need a boat that can take the punishment...the Irwin 44 AND MOST MASS PRODUCTION BOATS can't do it. You must decide what you want more...space and comfort and a boat that can take you a lot of nice places OR bluewater adventures and a cramped (but comfortable at sea) existence. On your budget you CANNOT have both unless you are prepared to put yourself at considerably more risk than most of us are comfortable with. Figure around $200K as a sailaway price for a mid-40' boat from the 80's that is both roomy per your requirements and ocean capable. (I'm thinking of Hylas44 or Peterson44 here).
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post #13 of 26 Old 02-14-2007 Thread Starter
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Cam,

Great points, I certainly appreciate them. Darn that whole weighing money and desire to go against getting the safest boat I can to go in.... The general construction of the boats is one thing I can't discern over the listings on the internet. Gonna either have to learn it from people, like you, with experience, or get to the coast where I can get on, and sail the boats to see the different qualities, and get a feel for the different amenities on the boats. Kinda hard to do apples to apples comparisons from here.

Again, thanks for the input.
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post #14 of 26 Old 02-14-2007
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Thanks for the feedback Cam. Hylas or Peterson , both lovely boats.

Cheers

TD

Andrew B

“Life is a trick, and you get one chance to learn it.”
― Terry Pratchett, Nation

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post #15 of 26 Old 02-15-2007
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BD,

I just read this. I have to admit the same eyebrow went up when you talked about a circum on a Irwin. No offense, I like the boat too, but in my opinion, Cam is right.

Don't be discouraged. Forget that whole circum thing until you have rally put some time in on the water. I am here to say again: People get lost in the islands and baha. There is more to see in this hemisphere than you can do in a lifetime. I am not "against" people that want to circum, just don't underestimate what is on this side of the pond. If you have not lived on a boat and your offshore experience is limited, then take my advice: Get something that you will be comfortable on. A good liveaboard that will get you around the islands and "Coastal" cruising. Until you have weathered a few good storms offshore, you have no idea what you are getting into. It is ugly!!! Forget the whole weather window thing. Many of your offshore jaunts will be measured in weeks, not days.

Don't give up on the dream. Get out of Iowa and get down to the coast. Find a nice boat to live on and get out there and start enjoying the life. A year living aboard and cruising will give you a nice inclination whether you want to circumnavigate - or reaffirm that listening to Marley off the coast of St. Lucia will be juuuusssstt fine.

My thoughts. If I can help, let me know.

- CD
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post #16 of 26 Old 02-15-2007 Thread Starter
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CruisingDad,

Yes, that is what I have heard, to buy the boat and liveaboard her for a few years before casting off and disappearing over the horizon for good. The move to Florida won't happen until the boat is purchased, so the experience, except for chartering, will stagnate until then. The dilemma we have at this time is that a boat that is comfortable and affordable for living aboard does not always a true blue-water boat make. Trust me, the dream won't die off, not without life making a drastic intervention of some unfortunate fate. Just get a little impatient wanting to at least be coastal now, but don't want to get into a boat that I later have to try to sell in order to get my cruising boat. Let me know if you need crew in the future, I would love to get some more experience!

Thanks again
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post #17 of 26 Old 02-15-2007
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Not a problem. I will say too that Florida is a great place to shop for boats. Real estate is out of sight (as is slippage) but rents are still pretty cheap. What about moving down there, getting a job, an apartment, then searching for a boat from there? If by some chance you cannot get what you want, then Maryland and Texas are just a short plane ride away.

Just thoughts. Best to you. Fair winds.

- CD
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post #18 of 26 Old 02-15-2007
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BD...you know that chances are something greater than 95% that you will NOT circumnavigate. I would suggest getting that big coastal cruiser and doing some sailing and exploring as far as it will take you. You could probably spend 5 or more years full time cruising the East Coast, Bahamas, Caribe...Eastern and Western and more time through the canal and Mexico and Baja and the West Coast...all in a boat that will coast you 1/3-1/2 the price of a similar sized bluewater boat. If after doing all that, you still have bluewater dreams...you won't lose that much on a well maintained older boat. Just another alternative to the bigger vs. blue-water dilemma.
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post #19 of 26 Old 02-15-2007 Thread Starter
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Cam,

I will be glad to fill that 5%. Better than 1%! I have found some Petersons for approximately the same price as the Irwin 44, just hadn't ever stepped foot on one. It is sound advice to get a boat that can do it all rather than one that may hold me back at a later date. I am not going to buy a boat figuring on the failure of my circumnavigation dreams. I never have accomplished much when I make my decisions planning on not achieving my true goals. Never have been much of a second place is good enough kind of guy. However, I certainly could see that there are many beautiful and enjoyable places to go without crossing the pond. Hope to one day fill that little 5% void you spoke of, though. Nice thing about odds like that would be empty anchorages!

CruisingDad,

Simply living down there would help fuel the flames some. Couple that with living near a sailing community and having a close proximity to the boats for shopping and comparison purposes and one can certainly see benefits to relocating for the purpose of establishing myself while searching for the boat. Nice thing, rent, month to month... So used to a mortgage I don't tend to think outside that box. Thanks for the idea and feedback.
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post #20 of 26 Old 02-15-2007
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why buy on the west coast

bdkorth -- i do not understand the need to buy on the west coast - in fla there are boats for sale as well as in north and south carolina - and let's not forget the caribbean - that would save you the sailing time and the cost -
by the way are you plan on living aboard down here? if so you should begin to get your name on any waiting list as they may be quite long
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