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New and Need Some Information

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by Sooner1, Dec 15, 2010.

  1. Sooner1

    Sooner1 New Member

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    I have been thinking about getting involved in some form of yachting. I have been around boating on a smaller scale for 30+ years. So, I have some questions to get me started with research and understanding. Now, I am not looking to make a purchase and take off into the wild blue yonder. I know it will take a few years to build up these skills. I would just like so guidelines from some experienced folks.

    1) What size yacht is needed to make day cruises in the carribean. An island hopping tour if you will. No overnight?
    2) What type of skills and how much experience is needed to manage a trip like this?
    3) What are some key features that are a must have on a boat for a trip like this?
    4) Any other information is always welcome.
  2. Sir Francis Chichester sailed around the world in the GYPSY MOTH which was only 12 feet long. I was in Antiqua a few years ago for a survey and was told about a 24 row boat that was hauled at the boat yard. The row boat had just arrived after two college age women rowed from England.
    If you wait for good weather, the size of most boats over 30 feet will take you from island to island if you have fuel capacity. What is more important is the comfort level of those on board for longer time periods. For some people for longer periods on a boat might be fine with 30 feet, for two people for longer trips 40 to 45 would make it more enjoyable.
    The Bahamas are much closer, it is only 50 miles from Fort Lauderdale to Bimini, you can cruise there for a long time without going the long distances farther south.
    Needed for most are generator, air conditioning and maybe a water maker at the very least. A dinghy is needed to get to shallow waters.
    Keep working on this dream, you will enjoy it.
  3. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    If you're not planning overnights on board (I have one client who never sleeps on board. He just prefers hotels) I'd consider an express cruisers or a go-fast. 30'-40' would be quite comfortable. 50 kts. makes island hoping easy and quick. Used to know a guy who made day runs to Bimini & back from Ft. Lauderdale in a day. Of course watching the weather is imperative with any boat and more so the smaller you get. An express or go-fast in this range with I/O's can handle the shallows and there's enough space for changing and sleeping on board if everyone's friendly (most 30 footers claim to sleep 6, but it's pushing it with one double, one cubby and a convertible dinette). Fuel capacity is your biggest concern as fueling stations could be spread a bit. Remember the rule of thirds (1/3 out, 1/3 back & 1/3 for emergencies). For day trips I wouldn't worry about a watermaker. Bottled will do. I would recommend a gen. Some times you just need some a/c.
  4. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Really hard to reply since your questions are vague:

    "1) What size yacht is needed to make day cruises in the carribean. An island hopping tour if you will. No overnight?"

    What do you mean by no overnight? Do you mean no sleeping on board, just day trips, stay in hotels? Or do you mean no overnight passages?

    For day triPs, staying ashore overnight you dont need a "yacht", any boat will do

    Sail or power?
  5. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

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    This is the kind of "yacht" my friend island hops in day in and day out in the VIs and BVIs.

    http://www.lionindasun.com/

    You can work your way up from there I guess.
  6. Sooner1

    Sooner1 New Member

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    Thanks for the responses so far. I knew I would be lacking in the amount of info I gave you for you to really give me specific information. But, your further questions helped with that. By no overnight I meant I didn't want tobe out in the middle of nowhere overnight. I would stay on the boat, but at dock or anchor near some sort of civilization was my thought. It would mostly be 2 of us but may include another couple a couple of times a year. I also wonder about navigating and laws around non US islands. I know that GPS has made the navigating part fairly simple, but was wondering what publications were recommended by others that would cover these 2 items. Also I was wondering about any licensing or other requirements needed to do this type of thing. I realize even if there are no requirements specifically, that I would be smart to take some course or read specific publications before attempting this type of feat. I also thought about an EC and wondered if this was appropriate for this type of venture. That is why I jumped at the opportunity to ask the fine folks on this forum who have plenty of experience with this type of thing.

    Thanks for you help
  7. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    I think a 35'-40' express would do you fine. Speeds in the 25-35 kt. range. Proceedures for clearing customs at various locations has been discussed in various threads. When the time comes come back and ask for advice on where you're going. Generally, no licenses are required however, in the U.S. some states require operator licenses.
  8. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

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    Yes an express would do. But then so would a trawler. And for a lot less fuel.
  9. tirekicker11

    tirekicker11 Senior Member

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    1) I "hopped islands" in the South Pacific on board a 28' Newport. Longest stretch was NZ-Fiji at 1000nm in 10 days. 28' is kinda small but will do in my opinion.
    2) I only had a bit of fresh water lake sailing skills and knew how to use a GPS. Cooking dinner or visiting the head when the boat was heeling was more of a challenge then navigating and sailing the boat.
    3) GPS and back up GPS with batteries, foullies, life vest with safety lines, water and canned food. We had a life raft and flares as well.

    In my opinion it doesn't take much to make day trips or to cross oceans, it all depend on your need for confort.
    Since doing these passages on this 28 footer I have sailed many larger boats but never had as much fun as with that 28' Newport.
  10. Garry Hartshorn

    Garry Hartshorn Senior Member

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    12 ft ?? I believe she was 12 meters about 36 ft but still an amazing feat
  11. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    It was a bit bigger than that at 54 ft or 16m.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gipsy_Moth_IV
  12. Garry Hartshorn

    Garry Hartshorn Senior Member

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    I stand corrected, it has been many years since I read his book.
  13. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Sooner1,
    As you can see you can use pretty much any boat. It all depends on how fast you want to go, the comfort level you require and how adventurous you are, and how much money you want to spend. As you look at boats just understand that boats shrink when they're put into the water. They shrink again after you've spent a season bringing stuff on board, and they shrink a whole bunch when you bring overnight company on (especially the wrong company), and if the weather turns bad, the seas kick up, etc.
  14. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    That is a very good average speed for a boat that size going in that direction.

    You must have got lucky with the winds.

    Like you I did a long distance delivery, In my case a NZ to Panama run on a sailboat, that is still the greatest adventure of my marine life so far.
  15. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    It ain't over yet! :D
  16. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    That's what I mean.

    I am not sure the increase in regs and paperwork since I was last at sea will be quite so much fun though.

    At least I will be getting large tranches of time off to enjoy my own adventures to compensate for the added workload when onboard.
  17. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    An express is just aboard the worst boat for this,why wouldnyou want to be stuck living in a cave while in some of the most scenic location in the world!

    Speed isn't important since distances are pretty small. Even a trawler can cover the distance between most islands in a day

    Size matters though and while you can do it in a 35/40 footer storage and tankage will be limited. It will be camping not "yachting" :). Moreover there some open sections where a larger boat will make things easier. Obviously the crossing to the bhamas and from the TC tonthe Carib but also some open areas like between the VIs and St Maarten, around Antigua, etc

    If you don't want to anchor out away from civilization off a nice beach or deserted island/cay you will be missing the best part of island cruising. There are many safe and protected anchorages away from civilization

    No license needed unless you taken paying pax

    Customs: you need to clear in whenever you come in a different country. Bahamas is one country so that s easy. In the Carib it s alittle more complex since many islands are independent or possession of various European countries so you have to clear in which is no big deal

    Nav: redundant gps with electronic charts and paper charts as back up.

    Cruising guides (paper or on line) are good resources, plenty of them. Start with www.*************.com
  18. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

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    "Size matters though and while you can do it in a 35/40 footer storage and tankage will be limited. It will be camping not "yachting" ."

    While bigger can be better, cruising in, say, a 42' GB trawler is hardly camping. :)

    I had 600 gallons of fuel for a 90% range of 900+ nm at 9 knots. And almost 300 gallons of water on mine. Plus genset, full A/C, queen sized master with split head/shower, two other sleeping cabins and a second head/shower, holding plate fridge/freezer, oven/stove/micro/TVs, lots of deck area both aft and on the flybridge, etc, etc.

    Other brands of trawlers offer the much the same. And there are a lot of them out there for sale right now. Along with all the rest of the brands and types out there.
  19. Pascal

    Pascal Senior Member

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    Bill, you're right but as we both know there is a big differnce between 35 and 42, and even more if comparing a 35 express with a 42 trawler!
  20. Capt Bill11

    Capt Bill11 Senior Member

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    True.

    I guess I didn't realize you were still talking about express boats. I was just replying to this:

    "Size matters though and while you can do it in a 35/40 footer storage and tankage will be limited. It will be camping not "yachting" .

    An express in that size range would be like camping. A step or two above a tent but still camping compared to "yachting". :D

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