Living Aboard in the Annapolis area - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 3 Old 11-25-2002 Thread Starter
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Living Aboard in the Annapolis area

I was wondering if anyone could tell me what it is like to live aboard in the Annapolis area? Also what type of heat you use? Is there a problem with condesation? Is the 30 Amp breaker enough for use with a heater and other items at the same time like a small TV? Do you have a water source all year long? I want to buy a live aboard but have a lot to learn.
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post #2 of 3 Old 11-25-2002
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Living Aboard in the Annapolis area


We lived aboard on Back Creek for 3 years, full time, and the answers to your question depend in part on where the boat is located. I''d suggest you stop in and visit with a few of the marinas that host liveaboards year-round (Port Annapolis, Mears Marina, Bert Jabins all leap to mind, tho'' this was a few years ago) and discuss it. Better yet, talk with a few of the ''regulars''.

Condensation? Oh my, yes - unless your cabin heat is kept refrigerator level. But there are ways to cope...

Best heat source? Probably diesel fired heater, either a forced air model or a bulkhead mounted drip-type using a non-pressurized burner. Some boats lend themselves nicely to hot water heating (like old fashioned radiators in apartments). However, some of these are dependent on a reliable source of shore power, something Annapolis & Eastport are not always knoown for. A bulkhead mounted, serious BTU-rated heater is the most independent source.

30 amps is more than enough for 2 space heaters. OTOH you''ll have lots of other things you might want to run; you''ll need to match up AC utilities with your boat''s electrical system.

Water is shut off at the docks. Liveaboards hold Hose Parties, break out all their hoses and daisy chain them to the boats from an inside faucet on occasion...just hope you''re not the one with the smallest water tank. <g>

Is it great? A huge hassle? Uncomfortable? Mostly, it''s what you make of it...but that includes how much thoughtful prep you do in the Fall.

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post #3 of 3 Old 01-02-2003
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Living Aboard in the Annapolis area

Currently living aboard in Annapolis -- this is our first winter here after 5 years in Great Lakes. Here''s what we''ve learned so far:

Jack''s right about condensation. We have 2 space heaters, one oil-filled and one forced-air; the latter helps dry things out somewhat. We also have insulated the most offending of the hull lockers with 1/2-inch of styrofoam, and put everything susceptible to water damage in ziploc bags, our best friends in the pantry. We also blow a circuit breaker if we have both heaters maxed out and we try to use a power-piggy toy like a hot air popcorn maker or electric coffee pot. ("Give it up and use the stove, girl!" "I know, I know, but the electricity is free and the propane isn''t!")

Sanitation is another winter issue as many pumpouts are turned off. Unless you or someone you know has their own portable pump, your options are: Electro-San (expensive), use marina bathhouse (occaisionally inconvenient), the bucket system (unaesthetic), or overboard dumping (illegal).

If you tarp over with clear or translucent plastic, on sunny days it can be warm enough to have a drink in the cockpit in the afternoon, a real treat after weeks confined below deck.

A few more hassles than summer or warm climate living aboard, but still FAR superior to living on land! As Jack said, it''s what you make of it!
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