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Category A Ocean

Discussion in 'General Yachting Discussion' started by Pelagic Dreams, Sep 20, 2013.

  1. Pelagic Dreams

    Pelagic Dreams Senior Member

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    Is one of the primary requirements of a yacht having an "all ocean" certification is the inclusion of water tight bulk heads? Or is it a combination of features that make a true blue water boat? With all things being equal in length, features and comfort would you be willing to pay more for a ISO rated yacht? I am talking about someone spending extended time...like six months aboard cruising.
  2. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    In general for a yacht to be able to operate for worldwide navigation without restriction there will be a lot more to consider than the watertight bulkheads.

    Depending on what size yacht you are thinking of will dictate what is required and by whom.
  3. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    I wonder if there might be some confusion when I hear "All Ocean Certification", "ISO rated" and "true blue water boat". How big of a yacht are you thinking about. There are more than a few people cruising the world on 40' sailing yachts that are "true blue water boats".
  4. sunchaserv

    sunchaserv Member

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    A short primer on ratings can be found on the Nordhavn website. But building a boat to rating and adequately maintaining/operating/crewing (AMOC) it to rating are different things. Lots of rated boats have met with disaster and lots of non-rated boats are plying the seas, it all depends on AMOC.
  5. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Classifications

    There are actually 13 members of the International Association of Classification Societies. Several but not all of them do classifications. Information on the Society is found on their web site at www.iacs.org.uk. Actually Lloyd's started classification over 250 years ago by setting standards of what they would insure. Lloyd's Registry of Shipping was the original classification group.

    There is a publication on that site of common structural rules. They even have available a listing of over 40,000 ships classified as well as those with classification suspended. There was talk here recently about thickness measurement and they have a list of Thickness Measurement Firms.

    Also there are classification organizations that are not members.

    This is one place insurers have actually done the consumer a service. While it's not a perfect system at least they required some form of certification where otherwise there were no standards. In new yacht construction this can become a critical specification. I know at least one yacht manufacturer that has advertised and promised a certain Veritas classification and failed to have that at time of delivery. The yacht would not initially meet the Veritas requirements and took, as I understand it, substantial time after delivery and even a legal battle to remedy the situation.

    As said, this doesn't guarantee sea worthiness but it does assure certain specific standards.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013
  6. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    CE Certification

    CE Certification is required for all recreational boats in the European Union. That information is available at NMMA and is handled by the International Marine Certification Institute. Information is available at www.imci.org - International Marine Certification Institute - CE Boat Certification Service, Recreational Craft Directive[/url] . It has become a standard worldwide as most manufacturers do sell their boats in Europe.

    They even have a section on their website with fake certificates listed.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013
  7. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    I would suggest you have a look at the wide range of interpretations of their rules that are applied by local surveyors before giving such a sound endorsement.

    Same for CE, There was recently a vessel posted about on here that was involved in a fatality. It did not meet the CE standards it was supposed to be built to.

    All the Class Societies etc rules are the absolute bare minimum you need to get certified, it is not difficult to improve any of them during the design and build phase, correcting a questionable decision on an existing vessel is a whole other can of worms.
  8. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    I agree on CE, especially. Those are standards to be built to and you're quite right that a specific boat may not meet those.

    I feel better about the IACS certifications. However, even there just because all the elements meet all the standards, doesn't mean it comes together in such a way that the boat handles all conditions perfectly. It's an ongoing process of learning and, unfortunately, we learn sometimes from tragedy. Also, your point about the actual surveyors is well made. It's all subject to human performance and error. The best rules ever can be compromised by sloppy work in enforcing them or surveying.

    All standards too are based on professional and expert operation. The Costa Concordia would point out the problem with that.

    I'm basically conservative in my approach so I also tend toward tried and true designs and proven manufacturers who are financially stable. Again, no guarantees. But I want something proven seaworthy by experience rather than determined to be by design and theory. Yes, that philosophy would tend to restrict new ideas. But, I'm willing to let others far more experienced than me experiment with the new ideas.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013
  9. Pelagic Dreams

    Pelagic Dreams Senior Member

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    That is why I posted the question; to tap into all of this collective knowledge.
    I agree that any vessel is only as good as those who run her. Captain/owner/crew will determine the final performance of the craft.
    We are leaning toward a vessel in the 65' range. A steel hull vessel is our first choice, but have not ruled out FRP.
    With that said, we want to ability to "go anywhere" with confidence that if unforeseen conditions occur, the boat can handle it.
    Our top priority is safety, redundant systems, max 5' draft and ride quality. Of course we have layout concerns but that is secondary to quality.
    Seeing the little 40' Nord circumnavigate in just over 200+ days is impressive for it's size and trumps up the build quality of the boat. But that's not the entire story...they rotated the crew, professional crew, and had an unlimited budget for the journey.
    So which Class Society carries the most credentials in global terms?
  10. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Steel, go anywhere, safety, and ride quality......contradict Max 5' draft in a 65'. If you're going steel, your looking at a displacement or at very most semi displacement......and 5' draft is most likely going to limit your seakeeping ability. 6' would be realistic.
  11. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Since you mentioned Nordhavn, just to emphasize what Capt J said a 64' Nordhavn has a draft of 6' 10". Even a 40' is 5'2". A 52' is 5' 11". Now their "Coastal Pilot" versions are shallower. You will find some boats in that size range in Aluminum and Fiberglass or Composite with that draft. Then the other issues of go anywhere become subject to debate.
  12. Pelagic Dreams

    Pelagic Dreams Senior Member

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    Great point, when I said "go anywhere" we don't do cold. Ice is for cocktails. We want to be able to do the entire Carib. Belize is very shallow we know. Thru the canal up the pacific coast to San Fran.
    And one day, with many sea miles under our keel, cross to Europe. We want an all seas boat. If the Admiral had her way, Fiji is her one best "got to go there" destination. That is the boat we are talking about.
  13. Marmot

    Marmot Senior Member

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    For the size of boat you are talking about, you asked the wrong question. The cost of building under class survey and maintaining class is probably far more than any benefit you would ever accrue.

    The builders who understand class standards don't usually mess with little boats (but probably will if you pay them enough) and little boat builders are generaly clueless about the whole concept. Be careful what you ask for because unless you are willing to live near the builder's yard until delivery or know more about what you are looking at than the builder or the (not very interested) surveyor, or can afford to employ someone full time who does, you will get a royal screwing.

    It appears to me that you might be better off looking at buying a used boat with a good history of the type of performance you want to experience. There are many boats on the market that will satisfy your craving for adventure and the money saved will most likely pay for first couple of years cruising.
  14. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    Very good advice. Also comsider how long the average person owns a boat today. There's a very good possibility that the boat you initially buy will not be the one you cross oceans in. If you try, as Marmot pointed out, the boat you buy for those long runs may well have cost you the money to make them while still in the Carrabean. You may even consider switching to sail before crossing the Pacific. That's a lot of fuel to burn between the U.S. and Fiji.
    Although a 65' motoryacht is comfortable to live aboard and cruise the coast, it can be small for crossing oceans. Also fuel range can become a major concern.

    I've found that what seems to work well is a 3 year plan. That is: Where do I intend to cruise over the next 3 years, and buy a boat suitable for that. Then the next 3.
  15. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Something that fits into your three year plan too is the lead time on custom built boats or even semi-custom if one is going that route. I've found that varies from a short end of 13 months to a long end of 3 years after you actually decide what you want and enter into a contract. The advice I received here and elsewhere made it clear that was the route I'd have to go to get the boat I ultimate want to have. Had I waited for that, then I wouldn't be enjoying the water now. I don't anticipate a trans-Atlantic crossing or a trip to the West Coast until about three years from now. Now, even if someone wants to go used on the ultimate boat (which is not our choice) it still takes a lot of time to figure out what you want and to find it.

    Ultimately to us the smaller boats, under 70' are going to get a lot of use and are good for most of our boating. The bigger boat is for a different type of use. The cost of it versus the smaller is many times greater, in our case actually 7 to 10 times. Makes it a lot more critical too not to make a mistake on it. Under 70' if we follow your pattern and want something different in three years the cost is moderate. over 100' a change of heart and mind is very expensive.

    As to sail, we did go out the first time for us on a sailboat off Fort Lauderdale a couple of weeks ago. Loved it but we didn't do any of the work to speak of. Not something we're at all tempted to switch to but it was fun for the day. Well, at least until it started raining. However, the person above may find he loves sailing.
  16. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Buy a temporary boat. A used Nordhavn 64' or use Northern Marine or something along those lines. Get your feet wet and start cruising, then figure out what you want and most importantly don't want in the ultimate boat. The temporary boat may suffice for the duration.

    Of all of the great custom SF's I've been on. The owners had owned several production SF's for a decade or so prior to having their custom built. I've also seen customs where the buyer didn't know what they wanted and told the builder to do it all your way, and ended up with some not so great idea's. Even from the same builders.
  17. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    If you ultimately want to go way off shore and head to Fiji you will need to find a boat that can do this with a safe margin of bith redundant systems and fuel range when you start looking for your boat.

    The fuel range can often be extended a bit on a displacement boat at the expense of a few knots.

    The redundancy issue is a big one as it is a long way to anywhere on big steps through the Pacific from the West Coast.

    You will also need to be aware that once out of the US and some parts if the Carib you will not be getting shore power anywhere unless you either hire a shore Genset or have a shore power unit fitted.

    If your boat needs a Genset running 24/7 that's is some 8000 hrs a year, it doesn't take long to wear these small fellas out.

    Light bulbs and electrical tools/appliances can also price difficult to obtain so take some with you if you have room.

    Ideally you will engage the services of someone who has done similar before to help steer you away from trouble.

    Your chosen Captain folks might be nice people and mean well but if they have never been offshore properly to remote locations running a boat I would have reservations about placing my complete trust in their ability to plan a voyage across the Pacific.

    Before you write me off as a prophet of doom, I have done the Pacific and Atlantic on both sail and motoryachts.

    Long distance cruising can be great fun if undertaken properly.

    As the old saying goes "An ounce of prevention is worth a ton if cure"
  18. Pelagic Dreams

    Pelagic Dreams Senior Member

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    I should have stated this in the beginning, we are looking to purchase a trawler...either steel hull, FRP or power cat with extended range. 8 - 10 knots cruise is fine with us. We are all about sea keeping ability. No time table for travel. If the weather window is not great, we stay put. This is not about work and boat, this is all about boat only. Not a vacation, more like life on the water.
  19. NYCAP123

    NYCAP123 Senior Member

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    To satisfy all of your needs I think you're looking at a Nordhaven or something similar.

    P.S. When you're crossing an ocean you don't have the option to stay put. If you're there you're dealing with what Mother Nature gives you. That's why most owners send their boats over and fly. Nobody but the Navy and Coast Guard plans to be in 20' or 40' or even bigger seas, but sometimes you just end up there on long voyages. You don't outrun much at 8 kts.
  20. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    Hi,

    Have you seen this vessel, it was advertised on YF a while ago.

    FOR SALE - VIDEO OF SEAGOING DUTCH STEEL MOTORYACHT. QUALITY LIVE ABOARD VESSEL - FOR SALE - YouTube