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m000ve0ver 12-23-2003 12:32 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Hello everyone. I see a ton of great information on numerous topics from very eperienced people on here. I hope to tap into that if I may. I know this is a sailing centric crowd, but I have some power boat questions. If you are against power boating then stop reading now :^) Or perhaps you can point me to a power message board?

I have been freshwater (inland lakes) ski/rubabout & Jet ski boating for about 15 years now. It''s been great but I want to slow things down now. I have found that I don''t ski anymore. I just drive the boat around the lake and socialize with friends. All the time wishing I could sleep in the boat rather then climb ashore and set up that darn tent. So it''s time for change. BTW: I live near Santa Cruz, CA. -

I love my current 79 Glastron Carlson 225hp I/O 18'' open bow. I''ve restored her fairly well and have taken great care of her. I like older boats! I enjoy the work of fixing them up and the sense of accomplishment when I take them out. The best part is the great lines (character) of older boats. I have been searching the classifieds and have seen boats I like. I have decided after much reading that sailing doesn''t totally interest me and I know that it definitely does not interest my girlfriend. Power cruising is what we both want. If this is going to work (cruising together), it has to be something we both want, not just me. Luckily we are in the same camp on this one! I have read "Voyaging Under Power" and so many webpages my eyes are falling out! All this has just reinforced my want for what I refer to as a "chugger". I want to set the throttle & auto pilot and cruise at 6 to 8 knots directly to my destination. The tacking and "working" the sails to meet the conditions just does not appeal. Many journals that I read from cruising couples say that they power more than they sail anyway. I know this is most likely because rather than get up on deck and do physical work in low wind, battle high wind or wait for opportune weather it''s very tempting to just click off the brain and click on the motor. I can tell you now, that is what I would end up doing. I know there are endless debates about sail vs power. But I want to power.

What I want to do: I want to move up to a larger boat (not live aboard full time, but live aboard able for weeks or months while cruising) and cruise with a small group (maybe me, my girlfriend and another couple or just the guys) around the SF Bay, up the coast to Seattle, down to Monterey, LA, through Catalina Islands or down to San Diego. Even someday down to Mexico. Coastal & Bay cruising is my first goal. From there I may want a better boat and try some Ocean going. But that is very far in the future. In fact all of this is still one to two years away. Maybe more. There is a lot of west coast to explore and I may never need more. Who knows.

The boats I have seen: The "passagemakers" I read about in "Voyaging Under Power" were great. But way more boat than I need (would love to have but don''t "need"). Also they are way out of my price range since I don''t plan to sell my home and live aboard. The Trawlers are also pricey and most are just not my style. Very tall and awkward looking. I really like the lines and layouts of large day boats like Chris Craft, Harco, Tollycraft, Owens, etc, etc. But these planing hulls are very limited in range and most have dual gas engines that love to drink. So those are out.

The boat I like: This boat (picture attached or use link) is what I want. It''s in need of lot''s of work but I look forward to doing it. There are many many writings about new vs used. Then there is used vs fixer uppers. I know this is a fixer upper and high maintenance. I''ll end up re-fastening with hopefully not too much wood replacement. Bottom coating and painting. Then fixing up the interior. It has almost no electronics, so all new electronics will be on the shopping list. This way I know they work, I know how they are installed and I have the latest in technology. I may need to re-power or maybe I can rebuild the Ford Diesel (my background is in auto/truck repair). This work doesn''t scare me. I enjoy working with my hands. I have built specialized autos and trucks and have at one point in my life been a full time mechanic for both autos and large trucks. My point is, I know there will be a lot of work and money invested. But I think that even a 50K boat would need updating and I would end up taking things out before replacing rather than starting with something that has almost nothing.

So what is it exactly that I am asking? I am asking about the part of this whole experience that I know nothing about. Is this boat (hull design, style or type) capable of doing what I want it to do? Once I restore it and update it will I be able to take it up and down the west coast safely? Let''s assume that my work is sound. And I don''t cut any corners. I just mean the design, the model, the build - will it be safe along the coast? What weather should it handle if any?

Seems like it should have about a 1000nm range with it''s 360 gallon fuel capacity and 120hp Ford Diesel (Dry exhaust). Construction is single plank. I have tried to get more info about the type of wood used for the hull but the salesman didn''t know. He is going to get back to me on that. Don''t worry, I plan to have it surveyed before making any purchase. But for now I want to know if I am even looking at the right boat?

Thank you in advance! Gene-

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m000ve0ver 12-23-2003 01:19 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Forgot to mention, it''s 38ft and approx 20K disp.

slipacre 12-23-2003 01:26 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Oh boy. When was this boat built? The plumb bow makes me think it was pre 1940
What is its beam?
I had a very similar boat thirty years ago and it was old and tired then. This one may be in better shape, but if you are talking refastening - you are talking project boat and the odds are that - even if you do the work yourself - you will never recoup your investment plus whatever money you put into it.
Second my boat had a narrrow beam and had a tendancy to roll - really roll. Not sure it is suited for anything that smacks of off shore. Unfortunately there is no ICW on the West Caost.
Third you are handy - good. a mechanic - even better. But be aware that carpentry on a boat involves curves in more than one direction.
Fourth get a survey.
Fifth do you have a boatyard where you can do all this work? You will need lots of power and tools at hand.
more later perhaps
Todd V

m000ve0ver 12-23-2003 01:49 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Thanks so much for the reply. This is a 1933 with a 12''6" beam. I have been reading about roll. Flopper stoppers sound like my only option, but installation sound spendy and difficult. But compared to active fins, easier. How do Trawlers battle roll?

I know this is a major fixer upper. I don''t plan to cruise the coast right away. I expect to work on the boat all this summer and maybe use it in the SF bay. I imagine this will give me a good idea of how it will be out on the ocean. I have been searching for boat yards and found a few on the east bay. Alameda and Richmond sound promising. I am always open to suggestions.

We have the Delta over here. But it doesn''t really interest me. I have been on it numerous times in my ski boat.

m000ve0ver 12-23-2003 01:55 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Thanks so much for the reply. This is a 1933 with a 12''6" beam. I have been reading about roll. Flopper stoppers sound like my only option, but installation sound spendy and difficult. How do Trawlers battle roll?

I know this is a major fixer upper. I don''t plan to cruise the coast right away. I expect to work on the boat all this summer and maybe use it in the SF bay. I imagine this will give me a good idea of how it will be out on the ocean. I have been searching for boat yards and found a few on the east bay. Alameda and Richmond sound promising. I am always open to suggestions.

We have the Delta over here. But it doesn''t really interest me. I have been on it numerous times in my ski boat.

slipacre 12-23-2003 02:11 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Let me ammend that. Get a survey first. And you may have trouble finding a surveyor who really knows wooden boats. If there is a serious problem find out about it before you fall in love with this boat.
The hull looks old, the cabins more recent.
But you will be lucky if all it needs is refastening, and that is a huge job. Don''t know what your price range is, but unless this boat is nearly a gift, and you have a LOT of time to devote to it. Look at other classics an - old ELCO might be worth salvaging - one final thing you are planning on moving to a different boat for Mexico etc - realize that selling this boat will be problimatical and will not get you what you think it is worth - seeing how you will have put much blood into it by then. We are talking blood equity here.
Todd V

slipacre 12-23-2003 02:25 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Too late - sounds like you are in love.
Flopper stoppers - so far as I know only work at anchor. Not when you''ll need then in a beam sea. Though 12 foot beam is better than some.
One example of the problems you may have.
When I had my wooden classic -1938 45 ft the yard I was in would not use the travel-lift to haul her - was afraid that she could break with all the weight on only two points
instead I had to use a railway. Maybe you''ll find a yard that will use travel-lift and that is good because working on an incline is much less fun than on level. But remember both are on your back.
Good Luck Mate.

WHOOSH 12-23-2003 09:37 PM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Gene, I sure don''t want to rain on your cruising dream - and having cruised some of the area you are considering, it''s a wonderful dream to have! But the way you position your question makes it sound to me like you think cruising along the Pacific Coast and "trying some Ocean going" are two different things, when in reality they are one and the same, big time.

I''m not experienced in power boating but we''ve gained a small appreciation for the challenges of powerboat cruising while along the East Coast and in the Caribbean. Power boat crews are quite challenged in dealing with any amount of heavy weather and, even on the protected ICW, must remain at anchor if a strong wind puts several feet of chop onto waters they must take on the beam. Power boats heading offshore do indeed rely on either active or passive roll restraint systems (and BTW passive systems to work underway at see, not just at anchor - I''m sure you''ve seen but perhaps need to reread Beebe''s book on Powerboat Cruising).

If starting with your circumstances and goals, I''d take a different approach: what can I trailer up/down the PacCoast that will permit me fair weather motorboat cruising in mostly protected waters once I arrive in interesting waters like Puget Sound, the San Juans, the SoCal coast (make the runs between protected harbors pronto, in good wx!) or San Diego Bay. This of course means a BIG truck and a boat intentionally designed to meet this objective (e.g. look at Ted Brewer''s line of pocket cruisers), neither of which are going to be cheap.

Great looking boat, BTW! Condition allowing, wouldn''t she be a nice boat to permanently locate on the Chesapeake or up in the San Juans, where it would take you many years to exhaust new cruising opportunities.


foxglove 12-24-2003 07:02 AM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
My wife and I have a 32'' sailboat in the Chesapeake Bay and we do far more powering than sailing because of light winds. Our cruising speed under motor is about 6 knots.

Maybe you should consider buying a sailboat and motor it wherever you go. No law says you have to hoist the sails. A 38'' sailboat should motor at the 8 knots you desire, can be purchased for less than the chugger (if you are patient in looking for one) and will stand up to high seas if you get surprised off the coast in a blow.

You could add to the fuel capacity to increase your range. The engine will likely have far fewer hours on it than a similar sized powercraft and be smaller and simpler to work on (mine is a three cylinder Volvo). It might, also, provide better fuel economy. We burn about 8 mpg.

m000ve0ver 12-24-2003 10:39 AM

Powerboat Cruising info needed
Thank you all for the input. I hope to hear a lot more as well. All this really helps me to find new areas of research and also new ideas or directions.

slipacre: I have put much consideration into the "money pit" factor. Seems to me that any direction I choose will be costly. My guess from what I have read is that it seems to be a 5 year cycle. You make your initial investment and then maintain it for 5 years before you need to really dump money into major repairs. Sails and Rigging being the large money on sailboats and fasteners/wood replacement/motor work on powerboats (such as my example boat). The boat I was looking at is already low priced and I would hope to get it even lower because of the small market it attracts. This leaves me enough budget to re-fasten, replace boards, bottom coat, rebuild the engine and purchase electronics. The interior work is cosmetic and can be done over time. Once all this work is done I calculated to be on par with a fairly well set up Sailboat that would still need work anyway. Having this work completed I hoped to get a good 5 years out of the boat with regular maintenance and bottom coats. Maybe I am wrong. Please anyone jump in here.

You did bring up a good item for me to research. That is the willingness of yards to participate in wooden boats. I had not added that to the equation. I am researching that now. As far as tools, I have TONS. I even have a portable sawmill for turning logs into the lumber I will need. I also have 15+ years of welding experience (which has made me look at metal boats).

WHOOSH: A little rain on my dream is not going to stop me. I can take the heavy weather and appreciate the lessons learned from it. When you say power boat crews anchored in weather, I wonder. Because there are so many different types of powerboats. Sailboats are all very much alike. Powerboats are almost all different. I am sure there are many types that can not go out in weather. The goal of my post was to find out the difference or at least get closer.

The flopper stoppers in Beebe''s book are referred to as just that. I do understand the difference in systems to work underway and at anchor. It''s just hard to dump everything I have read about into a post. As I am sure it is hard to dump advice into a short post. Beebe uses stoppers that look like an airplane while anchor stoppers are like mushrooms.

I have considered the trailer idea and didn''t spend more than 5 minutes on it. I would rather learn to sail if that is what it took to accomplish my dream. I am a huge fan of bigger boat but sailing a bigger boat requires skill I don''t have. But powering a bigger boat seems manageable.

Glad to hear you like the looks of the boat. At least I am not alone there. I really love the classic look and low profile lines.

Foxglove: Your input about motor vs sail is exactly the same as I found in many many peoples journals or logs. I have actually considered your suggestion. Figuring I could even possibly learn to sail on optimum days since they (the sails) would be there calling to me. It''s interesting to hear that you get such high mpg. I am going to have to research this more. I have found that most sailboats hold 90 gallons or less. Adding tankage is very high weight and probably not too good if it raises the waterline. Another consideration however is the cost of maintenance. Sure less use would provide less wear. But the rigging is still aging. And mistakes can ruin sails. And lot''s of motoring means more engine maintenance. I just don''t know the effect on the "money pit" factor.

ALL: Again, thank you so much for your input. Please keep the input coming. Good or Bad I want to hear it all. I am going to get out there. I just don''t know how yet.

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