Best Inside Passage Trawler??

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by DanRay, Sep 10, 2010.

  1. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    Before buying any dinners, or talking alternatives to trawlers (I mean really Trawlers, not the semi something), you should inform the audience about your requirements!

    As Tad mentioned, there is still almost everything unsaid by now.


    That is technically not possible, I assume you meant something different?
  2. MatthewDS
    Joined: Mar 2010
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    Location: Juneau, Alaska

    MatthewDS Senior Member

    I would like to second most of Easy Rider's points.

    Some comments:

    Fuel system. We replaced the original single fuel pump and filter with a double system after we lost power in a storm due to bad diesel. It's a very good idea to be able to throw a couple of valves and switch over to a 2nd fuel pump and fuel filter.

    We ran a 65# CQR anchor and all chain for nightly anchoring, which was backed up by a 110# Bruce anchor with 200 feet of chain+ several hundred feet of nylon for storm situations. This was for a 50 foot full-keel motorsailer.

    Rather than pick a certain hull or model, I would simply leave you with some rules of thumb.

    The vessel should be warm. Southeast Alaska is wet and cold, even in the summer, wind chill can induce hypothermia quickly if you are unprepared. A well heated, and well insulated boat will allow you to get out of the weather, warm up, and make rational decisions.

    The vessel should be reliable. Maintain everything, carry spares, and have backup systems if possible. I have seen two sailboats driven ashore and broken up with crew aboard for lack of working propulsion in a storm, it's heartbreaking.

    The vessel should be heavy. Southeast Alaska tends to have high, unpredictable winds with short fetch, which leads to tall waves with a short wavelength. A fast, light boat will pound you apart, while a slow heavy boat will be more comfortable.

    Make sure you have zodiak with a rigid fiberglass bottom on board. Most places don't have docks, and they are stable and comfortable.

    Buy a copy of "Exploring Southeast Alaska" by Douglass. It's comprehensive, and gives you a very clear idea of what to expect.

    Now, if you want to cross the gulf, or head out to the Aleutians, that's a whole different story.
  3. WestVanHan
    Joined: Aug 2009
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    WestVanHan Not a Senior Member


    Please share your voluminous knowledge and enlighten us on what a 53-55' disp. trawler will use at say..10 or 11 knots?
  4. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    I agree! We've done the Inside Passage a couple of times as far north as Juneau. The photo attached shows Jetti in mid July in northern BC. Colder still in Tracey Arm!!

    And I cannot advise any one to go into the ice pack, however spectacular the ice might be, unless they have a strengthened hull and well protected propellers.

    But I don't think seaworthiness should be a worry. After all the most numerous vessels you will meet going north are kayaks.

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs

    Attached Files:

  5. mark775

    mark775 Guest

    Han, Your hull speed is when you fit into your wave length (I don't remember - 1.5 x sq root of WL?) . It is a "soft" wall, this hull speed, and can be climbed over with HP. Your boat is not even a little on plane at that 11knots, so it will come down to which boat is more easily driven above its hull speed. That boat will be the one with minimum weight and wetted area save methods of "tricking" the wave form such as with bulbous proboscus. There is no way in hell your...what was it? A Sea Ray? way that gin palace has less weight and a more easily driven hull than a true trawler (Not that Nordhavn type stuff). Those are Semi-displacement and have much to recommend them but are not as efficient as a displacement trawler.
    To each their own. Ofttimes cityfolk need to get places faster and if it is your cup of tea to use a planing boat, good for you. I will say tho that I have a little forty foot semi that I cud play "follow the leader" with your boat and literally have to perform a rescue at some point - and mine is nowhere near the sea boat of some full displacement boats I know. The protected waters you travel and your limited experience just haven't awakened you as of yet. That means you are smart and have avoided weather but please don't portray that a planing hull in displacement mode is more efficient than a displacement boat in displacement mode (or more seaworthy). Also, Easy will usually leave when the hackles raise so I'll go ahead and say that everyone wud like to travel faster at some time but that doesn't mean that they are willing to sacrifice other properties to do that.
    Richard Woods, The pic of your wife(?) made me chuckle. Did you know that the Aleut word for "Mittens" and "Sea Otter" are one and the same?
  6. Knut Sand
    Joined: Apr 2003
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    Knut Sand Senior Member

    pretty much as Mark says, but pretty average is often 1,34 x sqrt Hull LW. Check with Wikipedia:

    Its as Mark states, the engine/ hull makes a wave that the hull "sits" in. And smaller waves have shorter span between the tops, while bigger waves have a longer span, giving a different wave travelling speed, check with dropping small pebbles/ bigger rocks straight down next time you're at a lakeside, the bigger waves travels faster. Now; if you're planning to travel faster than that wave, you have to go "over the top", it can be as putting your boat in a slight uphill climb, compared to "go with the flow"... and a journey in a constant climb, will cost fuel...

    The best economical speed will probably be (sqrt 54) x 1,34 = 9,85 knots. Your post #16, stating 13 knots, is then outside your "economical" displacement speed. And we're not difficult or wrong to question that, as Apex did, its just like stating a physical fact, like the speed of sound at different temperatures, air humidity etc...
    A wide/deep hull form, may screw up (ehhrrhh, well down, actually) the 1,34 factor to some degree.

    Another thing to consider, when you compare your boats to others (in addition to hull form, shape, weight); is the drive "chain" arrangement, various solutions, will have some impact to fuel consumption (straight axle, gears, etc..) same with propellers; the best prop is the best prop for your prefered speed, and some aint too good at both sides of the (fast/ slow) scale...

    Colin Archer was one of the first boat designers/ builders that took onto wave theories in building his boats (did I mention that he was a Norwegian?).

    Not easy to understand what i'm trying to get through here...? Well, in case your NOT confused; your fault, your the foreigner..:D
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    FAST FRED Senior Member

    "The best economical speed will probably be (sqrt 54) x 1,34 = 9,85 knots."

    That is the speed for sail boats , that have plenty of FREE wind to push them.

    Most marine motorists will use the SQRT LWL x .9 to 1,15 as LRC (LONG RANGE CRUISE) to reduce the fuel burn to 1/2 or 1/3 of "hull speed" (1.34) fuel burn..

  8. apex1

    apex1 Guest


    do the maths yourself, but compare apples and apples!

    Thought you learned something on my Trawler threads.........real Trawlers not toys, like those mentioned here.
  9. Knut Sand
    Joined: Apr 2003
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    Location: Kristiansand, Norway

    Knut Sand Senior Member

    Point taken... To some extent you're right, slower will reduce the fuel consumption further.
    (But i don't (quite) believe that it'll go down as much as 1/2 -1/3, for deplacement speed... Generally. (Any reports/ tests somewhere? For test of "toys")).
  10. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    That was right Knut.

    In general you need even less than 20% when you go below S/L 0.9. When you have a CPP installed it becomes more dramatic.

    I will see if I find my tables for the boat I am sailing at present.

  11. WestVanHan
    Joined: Aug 2009
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    Location: Vancouver

    WestVanHan Not a Senior Member

    I'm really busy so this is short

    Mark- My limited experience??? With Alaska..yes..very little,been there twice and have no plans to go back.
    Dan said he likely won't make it there...

    Falls off of plane at about 13.4 knots..from 14 to 28 it's there's not much difference in mpg.

    From memory 20 tons fueled and watered, last haul out was half loaded (not me,the boat) and 1/4 tank and think it was 19.7 or something.

    Touch under 7 knots burning 2.5 gph getting a touch under 3 nmpg.

    Just under 10 knots burning 8 gph about 1.2 nmpg.

    Show me some documented fuel burns of heavy trawlers with the same living area.
  12. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    You are argueing with physics West, not with us!

    Your claim is just wrong, although you "feel" it being right.
  13. DanRay
    Joined: Aug 2010
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    Location: BC CAN

    DanRay Junior Member

    Hi all and thanks again for the ideas.

    I was wandering around the docks last evening,and got to talking with the owner of a 46' trawler. I explained that I was looking to get a trawler and deciding between a trawler and a coastal boat.
    He asked me if I wanted to do weekend trips (yes) and if I was doing long distance or winter boating on the outer ocean (no)and he said don't get a trawler.
    He regretted buying it.

    This boating thing reminds me of skiing.
    I go skiing a lot at Whistler,and the Interior mountains.Many of the people seem to think they need $40k to 80k all wheel drive SUVs,4x4 trucks,or Hummers etc to go skiing.I have a front wheel drive car with good tires,and get there just the same.On the rare occasion there's a huge snow storm when I want to travel I'll wait a couple hours for it to clear up,and it's interesting how most of the vehicles I see in the ditches are SUVs.

    Apex thanks for your thoughts but you're calling West a liar. Do you own his model of boat?Do you pay his fuel bills and watch his fuel meter?Instead of accusing West of lying,why not just post the fuel burn of a larger trawler like he asked?I'd also like to know.

    West thanks, I don't think you're lying about your mileage or weights.
    I read a little,you're a financial trader.My brother is one and I have an idea how you guys think-scarily analytical when you need to be.What do you think about buying a US boat with our strong dollar and their bad problems?I looked a bit and there seems to be some deals.
    I've sold my condo and have the cash ready.

    Thanks all for taking the time.

    Dan R.
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2010
  14. Richard Woods
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    Richard Woods Woods Designs

    The main problem with all planing boats is that they rely on high forward speed to remain seaworthy when going into waves.

    Slow down, as one has to in bad weather, and the bow drops and freeboard reduces significantly. A real problem on bow riders which can be swamped by even a small wave when motoring slowly. Not only that, but there is a huge difference in buoyancy aft and forward so as the stern lifts after a wave has passed the bow tends to dig in.

    That's why few offshore commercial boats are planing vessels. True, there are some big RIBs used as pilot boats etc, but they do have high freeboard and lots of reserve buoyancy forward, because of their collar.

    So that is one major reason why displacement motorboats are more seaworthy than planing ones. However they do tend to roll a lot and as motoring along at 7 knots is very boring, many cruisers don't like trawler yachts. And as I said before, the Inside Passage is a very benign piece of water in summer (much safer than the English Channel for example) so you don't need the benefits of a trawler.

    Hence the semi displacement boats. The best of all worlds, or a poor compromise.

    That is why I'm surprised how few power cats there are in the PNW. Why not look out for say a PDQ or one of the French powercat designs, or maybe something like Green Flash?

    Richard Woods of Woods Designs

  15. apex1

    apex1 Guest

    Lets get that straight Mate,

    I did not call West a liar! He just made a impossible claim. That he thinks he has a more economical boat than a comparabe displacement vessel, does not change the physics.

    No, I do not own his model of boat, I do not even know which boat he owns. And I do not bother about that. But I produce motorboats and yachts of almost all types, and lots of them.

    The statement, that a planing boat runs more economical than a displacement boat of similar living space is in general wrong. There may be situations were that COULD be the case, but generally, and when we compare fair, it is not.

    we still do not know your requirements, is that a secret?

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