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At the end of my season a little over a month ago I had my mind made up. I'm going to try the dry dock at a different marina down the road. How about a little background. For the previous 2 years I have kept my 26 foot swing keel trailer sailor at a dock. Very convenient to just get on and go. Before that I had a power boat at a private dock for a few years. Before that I trailed and launched my power boat every time I wanted to go out. Not a huge issue for me to hook up a trailer and back a boat down a ramp. My previous job was moving aircraft with a tractor around on an air craft carrier. You know the guys in the yellow and blue shirts. Yes I do believe the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower CVN69 is the best boat in the Fleet. Anyway now I'm having second thoughts about the dry dock. Here is how it works. I have a parking spot for my trailer less than 100 yards away from the launch. I am able to keep all my rigging up and ready to go. When I get there I will have to hook up my truck and back it down the ramp into the water then tie it up to a transient dock until I'm ready to go. This is a private launch so there shouldn't be any problem with traffic at the launch. One of the reasons why I am considering this is because it will save me $1000 per season. The other is that when my boat is in the water unattended I am very nervous. I stop by almost every day to check on it. A couple years back I had a 5 months new to me boat sink at the dock. That was the worst call I have ever received and seeing it 1st hand underwater was heart breaking. I also lost my ass on the deal. Insurance company's are the scum of the earth. So the pros are obvious but how about the cons. Drinking beer. I don't go out and get hammered but I do like to have a few while cruising the harbor. I have a company truck that I am allowed to use for personal stuff. I am the Boss and like to take my employees out on the boat but don't want them to see me having a few beers then driving the company truck. My other vehicle is not capable of towing the boat so if I'm going on the boat I will need to be driving my truck. This will also add approximately 15 minuets to the beginning and end of every trip. that doesn't sound like a lot but I go out sometimes 2 or 3 times a week after work for 3 or 4 hours. Having to put the boat in the water might be the thing that makes me not go out if I'm wore out and just want to relax. I don't usually just go sit on the boat but it is nice to do once in a while and I wouldn't do that in a parking lot. I would love to hear from someone who has done this and has real life experience.
 

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If it were me, I'd prefer to have the boat already in the water. Just close all the through-hull valves before you depart the marina and make sure all the cockpit scuppers are clear.
 

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We prefer a mooring to a dock, and would much prefer either to the dry dock arrangement you describe. But, we spend a lot of time on the boat at the mooring. It's basically our "waterfront cottage" during the season, so we're there almost regardless of what weather is doing, and usually sleep on the boat on weekends.

I guess it all depends on how you use the boat.
 

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So much easier to phone ahead to have the crew ready the vessel and chill the wine.
At my dry dock they do that.....$50 and a call ahead and they will launch the boat, tie it to a transient dock and even put ice in the cooler if I ask...
 
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If your boat is set up right you should not have to worry about it sinking at the dock. It is more risky keeping the boat at a mooring but lots of people do it. If you can swing the extra grand per year that is a nobrainer for me. Launching a 26 footer from a trailer and then loading it back at the end of the day is a PITA.
How did your other boat sink?
 

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I would go for the dock. For a few years, we kept our powerboat in rack storage in Jupiter, Fl. You would get there, go to this phone and ask for your boat to be launched. Within 10 minutes, you were on the boat and ready to go. If you could find a setup like that for your sailboat, that would be awesome. But, you are asking for some hassle having to hook it up, etc.

The benefits of drydock is the bottom stays clean, and of course less worry as you mentioned.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I didn't know I was being graded on my writing skills. I don't write for a living. I fix performance and engineering flaws in residential and multifamily homes so please excuse the poor grammar and punctuation. Those of you who have a problem with that can go screw yourself. The the one that sank had a undetected deck drain leak at the water line into an area that was not accessible. Who ever put the hose on the through hull fitting for the bilge pump didn't tighten down the clamp which was also not very accessible. When out on the water I must have hit a wave a little too hard and the hose came off. After a week of sitting and a heavy rain fall it ended up under water. It was at a private dock in a secluded area so there was no one to let me know except for my neighbor dock that wasn't there for a week also. I purchased the boat through a reputable marina and it was supposed to have been checked over. Every boat I have had since has had 2 separate bilge pump systems with separate batteries.
 

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The dock would be very nice and it is what we did this past summer for our trailer sailer and will again this coming year. But..., if I could save 1K by dropping it into the water (rig already up) I would consider it for sure. Our dock has a great launch and easy transient pier to access. I could even do it by myself with little effort. If it was like some of the other boat ramps I know, it would be a major pain. So, I guess it depends. ;)

EDIT: This had me thinking after the post. In our case this might even save time when we go out. We have kids and loads of stuff that we have to carry out to the boat every time. The docks are NOT wheel cart friendly to say the least. So it would be nice to pull the car up, toss everything into the boat and back it into the water. My wife and I are also both really good at trailers. For some hooking/backing up a trailer is scary. Not for us or it sounds like for you.
 

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I would not do anything that would potentially cause me to pass on a day of sailing. That's not a purist speaking, but a realist. Once usage declines, the thought of not owning one at all starts to creep in. Assuming I had the money, I would rather spend a few more bucks and enjoy it than not enough and feel I wasted what was spent.

Old marketing adage..... Spend too much, waste a little. Spend too little, waste it all.
 

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We can't answer the question for you because we don't know how important that $1,000 is to you. Will you have to give up something else that is more important?

But generally speaking adding 15 minutes to the beginning and ending of time on the boat is a deal killer for me. I like being able to jump on my boat even for just a half hour to have a beer and watch the sunset.
 

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For me it's a 2 1/2 hr drive just to get to the boat....


Once it's in... it's in for the weekend 3-4 days whatever....

The 15-20 minutes on Friday and Sunday afternoon are not deal breakers..

And in my world...$1,000 is still $1,000...(buys a lotta Rum and good food for the trip)
 
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I didn't know I was being graded on my writing skills. I don't write for a living. I fix performance and engineering flaws in residential and multifamily homes so please excuse the poor grammar and punctuation. Those of you who have a problem with that can go screw yourself. The the one that sank had a undetected deck drain leak at the water line into an area that was not accessible. Who ever put the hose on the through hull fitting for the bilge pump didn't tighten down the clamp which was also not very accessible. When out on the water I must have hit a wave a little too hard and the hose came off. After a week of sitting and a heavy rain fall it ended up under water. It was at a private dock in a secluded area so there was no one to let me know except for my neighbor dock that wasn't there for a week also. I purchased the boat through a reputable marina and it was supposed to have been checked over. Every boat I have had since has had 2 separate bilge pump systems with separate batteries.
There ain't no rules here about grammers; your post was clear to me., Thanks to you and all of your brothers on the Eisenhower for you patriotic service.;)
 

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Again, I think a big part of this is how you use the boat, the ease of the launch, etc. How about give it a try, if it is affecting your lifestyle negatively, put it in the slip.

I also love to go sit in my boat in the slip and hang out, but 1K is a lot of money when you are raising a family. For us, it would mean a new roller furling unit for example.
 
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