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Wayward Drifter 05-21-2013 12:44 PM

A question of Draft
 
I am planning to spend this June looking for a 25-27 sloop in southern Florida. I plan to live aboard in the upper keys. Because I plan to live on the hook, my limited past experience down there tells me that many of the best spots to anchor are on the Florida bay side of the keys. Water depth is obviously a big concern. The question I'm putting out there is, just how shallow of a draft must I consider to be able to reasonably maneuver on the NW side of the keys. I know that a swing keel would be great, and I have had one before on an Oday 25' that I owned. But looking for a swing keel only, really limits my purchasing options. ANY input would be much appreciated.

ltgoshen 05-21-2013 12:48 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Buy a prout 32. You will solve all youe depth problems

Wayward Drifter 05-21-2013 12:55 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Unfortunately the only 32' cat in my budget being advertised is a fellow in Clearwater that accidently left off a zero.

PBzeer 05-21-2013 01:10 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Gemini 105. Catalina 250 or Hunter 26/260 both have swing keels (but are water-ballasted). Seaward makes raising keel boats. Lot depends on just how much you want to spend.

My boat draws 4 1/2' and I stay on the Gulf side and don't even try to get to some of the marinas.

deltaten 05-22-2013 09:31 AM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Mebbe look out for a Beachcomber 25 ?? Only draw 18 inches board up. Have nearly headroom in cabin. Rather thoughtful interior layout. Trailerable if needed. Free standing mast/s, wishbone booms, roller sails and single line control.
IMHO..the ultimate gunk-holer.

Michael K 05-22-2013 10:03 AM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Herreshoff's Meadowlark would also serve you very well.

http://www.yachtworld.com/boats/1973...s#.UZzPoe_D_IU

...shows the bigger version with standing headroom.

Capt.aaron 05-23-2013 07:29 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
I live and sail in that area with a 3 foot draft. I am alway's envious of the dudes with the Mac 25's and Catalinas with the 18 inch draft that can really creep up in the back country. If you don't plan to sail furthter south, and want to stay in the key's, a shoal draft really opens up 75% of the area that even I can't get to with my 3 foot draft.

MarioG 05-23-2013 08:05 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Theres a Chrysler 26 forsale in St Augustine that is set up to be a live-aboard for 2k. Its not mine but I had one and with the room they have could have easily lived in the keys on it.

I can get you yhe info. if interested

Cruisingdad 05-23-2013 08:35 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wayward Drifter (Post 1033312)
I am planning to spend this June looking for a 25-27 sloop in southern Florida. I plan to live aboard in the upper keys. Because I plan to live on the hook, my limited past experience down there tells me that many of the best spots to anchor are on the Florida bay side of the keys. Water depth is obviously a big concern. The question I'm putting out there is, just how shallow of a draft must I consider to be able to reasonably maneuver on the NW side of the keys. I know that a swing keel would be great, and I have had one before on an Oday 25' that I owned. But looking for a swing keel only, really limits my purchasing options. ANY input would be much appreciated.

Why the upper keys? Job?

You can grab a ball at marathon for 300/month. I am typing from there right now! Bathrooms, showers, workroom, common room with internet, bbq grills, and a damned community. Dont put down the importance of a community. 9am cruisers net abd hundreds of people to help and ask questions of. Wednesday and friday meet and greet and pot luck. Everything from west marine to publix is walkable.

Love key largo. Really do. Will be anchored off Rodriguez in a few day and waiting for a weather window to bimini as i dive jesus. But i would never make it my long term anchorage.

Now here is the million dollar question: have you ever lived aboard? ESP florida in the summer? Last night we saw 82 as our LOW with no wind. Shut down the boat and you fry. Open it up and the mosquito screens let in the no-seeums.

Aint like the magazines. A day like this is fine. A week and the tourists love it. Your life? Well, better be ready to man-up.

B

mad_machine 05-25-2013 08:14 PM

Re: A question of Draft
 
good to know on the price of mooring balls. I am intending on spending a month down there this winter. I will be trailering my boat down to Tampa where my Grandmother has a place and sailing down the west coast.


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