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Discussion Starter #1
I fully realize that ANY boat purchase is all about comprimises and NO boat is going to fully meet the mail on ALL counts. Having said that, does anyone have any recommendations on a 40-45 foot production boat that is (fairly) sturdy, has a centerline berth, and has at least one separate shower stall? The Endeavor 42's fall into that catagory (I think). What else?

I'm looking for a live aboard candidate that is a capable sailor. I'm not looking to go race winning fast, point amazingly high or tack on a dime - on the other hand I don't want a boat that is going to be so contankerous and slow to sail as to take all the fun out of it.

The candidate doesn't have to cross the Atlantic and survive huricanes, but it ought to stand up to extended coastal work and occasional blue water forays (like crossing the Gulf of Alaska).

In short, I'm looking for a retirement boat. Any suggestions?
 

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It would help if you said what your budget is.

BTW, I'd point out that the Gulf of Alaska is pretty dangerous waters...

I would recommend you read the Bluewater boat thread to get an idea of what some good choices might be.
 

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If you are on a budget then look at a well-built Samson ferrocement boat. Very sturdy. If the budget is not so tight then look for an Island Packet.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sailingdog: we're looking at in-the-neighborhood of under $150K. The problem with the 'bluewater' thread is that it overwhelmingly favors vessels capable of making transoceanic crossings and circumnavigations over ones that have the creature comforts I'm looking for. While a pilot's berth in the main cabin may be desirable for off-watch folks on extended overwater trips, it sucks up space that (my preference) could be better used. Crossing the Gulf may take as long as three or four days but, at least at this juncture, that's the longest I intend to be at sea out of site of land. Most of our retirement plans can be achieved with coastal cruising, watching our weather windows and ducking into ports or coves when it looks like heavy weather is going to be setting in. Point is, I don't need a tank to go into battle with, I need a winnabego to live in that's capable of most anything I am LIKELY to encounter.
 

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Dave—

Have you considered a catamaran. There's one sailor I know of who has a Gemini and regularly sails it down to the Patagonia channel islands... has some amazing photos of the boat down there too.. some of which are used in Performance Cruising's advertisements for the boat. It might be a choice that is well suited to what you're doing, if a bit unusual.
 

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A few to consider...

Ive been helping my parents find a retirement boat that would meet a similar set of requirements. Ive crawled around on a bunch of boats and the 2-3 that I liked were, in no particular order:

Caliber 38-40

Island Packet 38 or older 380

Passport 40 (maybe a 42?).

All different boats in ways, but well made, traditional, capable, comfortable, and can be found in your price range in decent shape.

IP- lots of passionate owners and boats around. A Modern Full keel-er. Bigger inside. Comfortable at sea and at dock/hook

Caliber-seems a little better sailing boat in most conditions but smaller interior than the IP. More nautical but very nice.

Passports-lots of teak decks, which may or may not be a deal breaker for some. Similar to Caliber in many ways.

Far from an in depth analysis but just a few quick thoughts. Lots of boats out there and a good time to be buying. All boats are compromises so find one that fits your needs best.
 

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In that size range and price range, I believe, you will be looking at a vessel built in the mid to late 80's. Are you planning on being a full time live aboard. Summer in Alaska then sail south for the winter? Are you a Single-hander or will you have crew aboard.

A few boats that came to mind are

Nordic 44

Mason 43

CSY 44

Whitby 42

Peterson 44

Hylas 42

Gulfstar 44


Just my thoughts
 

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Dave, I just returned home from delivering a late 80's Tayana V-42, aft cockpit, and I really came to love that boat. This was my first time trying on an "old shoe", canoe stern vintage vessel, and it fit perfectly.
I've sailed on a lot of boats and for the money, that boat was sweet. I think they can be had for around 150k.
Before sailing this boat I was convinced that a boat that would perform in light air, a newer production boat, was the ticket. However, after sailing the "old shoe" in light air I think ventilation is underrated. That boat had what, 8-10 ports that opened, and maybe 6 good sized hatches and I almost forgot the 3 dorades. It always had air moving through it.
I delivered a newer Jeanneau 46 a few months back and I was joking on this trip that I could disassemble the Jeanneau and store the entire boat in the cabinets on that Tayana, including the dinghy! It had a huge amount of storage room, 2-6'2 settees and one that folded out to make a huge double.
I never thought I'd like the wheel arrangement in a canoe stern but you get used to stepping around the wheel.
It had a separate stand up shower and a the galley that functioned well in a seaway.
I sailed this boat around Florida, up the stream and up the Chesapeake Bay and I can say few bad thing about the boat. I didn't like having the tack the gyb around the inner forestay.
Given how much the "old shoes" get trashed on this site I was convinced they were good for ocean sailing only. However, on newer boats like the Jeanneau the only way to move air around inside is to start the AC and generator if sailing. I kept thinking that one of the trade offs is speed vs. ventilation when taking your time and coastal cruising.
I do like a boat with a sugar-scoop but as always, there are trade offs......
I just have to affirm what others have said, and that is that a big old boat over 40' in length is a lot of boat to dock without a few extra hands around to help.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It'll be my wife and I (although we might enlist help crossing the Gulf, if not for anything else, just for watch keeping).

Likely we'll start in Alaska and sail South. Whether we sail back depends on how it goes...

:)
 

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Dave,

I'd definately second the previous recommendation re: Island Packets. They're solid, roomy, rigged for 2 easily and some of the older ones are a good deal on the market.

A friend's parents have one (they're in their 70's) and they get out just the two of them every season. Though mostly for day sails but they practically live aboard weather permitting.

Happy hunting!!
 

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Hi Dave,

All though an IP might be a good choice, I think you will be hard press to find one in the size range (40-45) you are looking for, for under 150k unless it needs some work. There is an abundance of boats on the market, which can fill your needs. I wish you luck, in your search.
 

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My parents own the Tayana Vancouver 42. I am on it all the time. I agree with every comment made above. However, she stinks in light air and tacking through the inner is a real pain. Most of the systems are quite accessible, but you will probably be dealing with black iron tanks that will have to have close inspection. Many of these also had teak decks (my parents does) - so love it or hate it. I would think for the Pacific NW it would be a positive versus the big negative in the lower lat's. Another negative is your ability to get on/off. You will go everywhere in your tender and you will pretty much board amidships.

Here I will show you a pic to illustrate. To port is the Tayana Vancouver 42 (mom and dad), and beside it a Catalina 400 (ours).





We LA'd and Cruised on a Catalina 380. It would fit every requirement you want. SHe is a good boat and heavier built than most of the other Catalinas. I can discuss in more depth and detail if you want:



We currently have a Catalina 400. It is like a big (fast) 380. It is the best boat (at least from a cruisers standpoint) I have sailed. She is sure footed and fast. Do not under rate the ability to perform well. That is very important for a variety of reasons. Here is another pic of the 400:



Other boats we considered were a Baba 40 and Passport 40. I think the Passport may be the better of the two. Chris (Labatt) is currently on a Passport 40 and can answer any number of your questions on her.

- CD
 

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Dave,

I'd definately second the previous recommendation re: Island Packets. They're solid, roomy, rigged for 2 easily and some of the older ones are a good deal on the market.

A friend's parents have one (they're in their 70's) and they get out just the two of them every season. Though mostly for day sails but they practically live aboard weather permitting.

Happy hunting!!
Well having sailed on an IP a time or two, most recently in the islands this winter... They are solid built, but overhyped (my opinion) and overpriced, the cockpit layout isn't the best and they don't go to windward worth squat! And forget light air performance. Everytime I see one on Chesapeake Bay I can blow their doors off unless it's blowing 20 +.

That said, for the islands or in places that always have wind in the teens I can see where they would be a good boat.
 

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IP38 logic

My logic for throwing the the IP 38 on that list was that relative to the length of the boat, they are much larger than most of their competitors, and more livable for extended periods. While only 38 ft in length, the interior/living space is larger than many boats in the 42-45 ft range, so it might be an option. A little easier to handle shorthanded as well.

Theres lots of boats that sail better in light air so it really depends on your location. Given your Alaskan locale, wind may not be a problem. Most of the heavy "blue water" cruisers are purpose built so they're slower in under 15 knots of wind.

Re: production boats--you could likely get a bigger, newer, and faster sailing boat if you went that route. Most would suit your needs just fine, and provide the Winnebago creature comforts you mentioned, but you'd want/need to be a little more weather sensitive. We took a Catalina 42 across the Gulf Stream a couple of times last fall, once crossing in farily tough conditions and it handled it well when the wind swung a bit and the waves piled up. That boat could take way more punishment than us.
 

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We have a Passport 40... love it and it would be wonderful for a cruising couple. It's a bit tight for a family of 4 - not comfort wise, but storage wise. It's built heavy but is still a somewhat spritely vessel. Today we were sailing in about 20kts of wind gusting to 25kts on a beam. We double reefed the main and single reefed the genny (for comfort - we didn't need to get any place fast) and were still seeing speeds in excess of 7kts. I'd be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Chris
 

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...does anyone have any recommendations?
If only you could have stopped at this:
"40-45 foot production boat that is (fairly) sturdy, has a centerline berth, and has at least one separate shower stall"

But you did of course have to go and complicate it all with "occasional blue water forays (like crossing the Gulf of Alaska)." :) :) :)

Does this suggest that you may be considering cold weather sailing? That the boat ought to be insulated? That it should have or could fit an oil heater, perhaps even a Dickinson stove?

Might it ... could it even be that a deckhouse design might be in your sights?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Like all things in life, buying a boat is a comprimise. Current strong contenders are Pearson 365's. No centerline bed and a bit smaller but sound and well mannered, at least by reputation. Thoughts?
 

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I can recommend the Caliber but if you want a centerline berth and given your budget.. take a look at the Pearson 422 which I believe has that type of berth.
 

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Alright, At risk of personal injury from those off-shore purists, I would recommend a Nelson-Marek designed Morgan 44 from the late 80's early 90's. These boats will fit in your budget with $$ left over for upgrades, has a centerline queen, seperate shower stall, will sail decently and is capable of going off hsore for periods of time, though not quite robust as the Tayana Tanks......
These boats can be found for about $125k in decent shape on Yachtworld. MIght be worth a look.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Just an update for those who might be interested:

After doing a lot of internet research and going over reviews and posts in Sailnet and other forums, my wife and I developed a list of about 6 boats in the Puget Sound area to look at. Three of them were Pearson 365's. We fell in love with one particular boat (a Pearson 365 lieing in Olympia, WA) made an offer, accepted the counter offer and are now hip deep in the process of purchasing her and getting her moved up to Alaska. Haul out and survey is on the 8th of June and we hope to have all the paperwork finalized by the 12th. After that, it's up to the delivery skipper (and God and the weather). If everything works out, our new good-old-boat will be on station in Seward in time for the Fourth of July!!!! EVERYONE we've worked with to bring this off has been absolutely fantastic so far.

WHAT A RUSH!

Thanks all for your kindly advise over the last few weeks.

Respectfully,

Dave
 
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