cruising costs, maintenance and price of the boat (sailboats versus motorboats)

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Vega, Apr 28, 2006.

  1. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Hei Milan, surprise, surprise (at least for me) I have found a production boat that meets your criteria.:)

    Not surprisingly they also manufacture professional pilot boats and marine ambulances.

    I'll get to it when I have more time.

    Take a look, that is a 35ft boat :
     

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  2. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Sorry for the delay. That boat is a Seaward 35 and it looks to be a very interesting boat.

    The interior is functional, even if the color of the fabrics is awful. The boat has two 260 hp engines. The shape of the boat resembles a Pilot boat and that is not surprising because this company also produce a professional Pilot boat.

    GENERAL PARTICULARS & PRINCIPAL DIMENSIONS
    Length overall (with boarding platform) 11.34m 37' - 2"
    Length overall (without platform) 10.56m 34' - 7"
    Length water line 9.40m 30' - 10"
    Beam overall 3.44m 11' - 3"
    Draught at full load 1.16m 3' - 10"
    Displacement (full fuel & water no persons) 9980 kilos 9.82 tons
    Fuel capacity 1200 litres 264 Imp Galls.
    Fresh water 380 litres 84 Imp.Galls.
    Design Category "B" Offshore Maximum number of persons 12

    http://www.seawardboat.com/New35.html

    The price of a new boat, looking at this 2005 boat price, will be around 450 000 euros. Too much for me.

    http://www.seawardboat.com/Lady Nelson_35.html
     

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  3. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Fcfc, take a look at this Seaward 25.

    They say about it: “The Seaward 25's have proven seakeeping qualities and are probably the most sea kindly vessels in this size range. Ideal for coastal cruising and cross-Channel trips for a couple or small family in comfort and safety.”

    And probably they are right.

    I guess this boat can be trailerable and with twin 75 hp engines it can go at18 knots. It is a bit small for what you need but it has an optional canopy that closes completely the boat and with that it is possible that it fits your minimum requirements regarding space (and price).

    http://www.seawardboat.com/Seafarer.html
    http://www.seawardboat.com/25spec.html
     

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  4. Wellydeckhand

    Wellydeckhand Previous Member

    tough nut to crack these small motor cruiser..... Is it very fuel economy? at what knot?:)

    WDH
     
  5. Wellydeckhand

    Wellydeckhand Previous Member

    tough nut to crack these small motor cruiser..... Is it very fuel economy? at what knot?:)

    WDH
     
  6. Guillermo
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    Guillermo Ingeniero Naval

    And not only. As far as I know, you (or the purchaser) have to go through a full certification process even after the five years if the boat is sold. This doesn't make a lot of sense, but it's for sure the case if you sell the boat to somebody in another EU country: New country local authorities will ask for the CE marking, no matter how the boat was built.
     
  7. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Security and MONEY, I mean taxes. If you do your own job in the backyard and sell it, you are evading taxes and they are obsessive about that. :D
     
  8. Milan
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    Milan Senior Member

    "...If you do your own job in the backyard and sell it, you are evading taxes and they are obsessive about that."

    Although non comercial builders are buying heavily taxed materials, tools e.c.t.

    "...I have found a production boat that meets your criteria..."

    Seawards seems to be nice and seaworthy boats, but I wouldn't exactly place them in economical long distance cruiser category. Being fast, built for planing, they have to burn a lot of fuel and consequently have a quite limited range. I was thinking more about something similar in profile to this http://www.bronsveen.nl/janas.kotter.php but with a lot less beam and weight and a little bit lower to make it cheaper to run.
     
  9. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Not really a planing boat, but a semi-planing boat. Off course I agree with you in what regards long range and economic costs, but as you have said:

    “I was talking about unrestricted passage making type of the boat. You can't find them at the boat shows and custom building is the only way to get one. (Aside from buying second hand lifeboat).
    Why you think that such boat should be expensive? Real lifeguard boats are expensive, especially modern fast ones, because they use huge engines and lot of special equipment and such. But I'm talking about previous generation of boats designed for moderate displacement speed.
    Other question all together is who would want such a boat. I don't think that motor boaters would like her. She would probably appeal more to the sailors, but sailors want to sail. “


    Fact is that motorboaters don’t want to travel at the speed of a sailing boat and if you look at the market to which the Seaword 35 is aiming you will find a conservative market, the ones that come from the sailing boats:

    “This is a serious offshore motor yacht designed and built for that purpose. The craft will appeal in particular to sailing people wishing to reduce channel crossing times to under 4 hours in comfort.”

    http://www.seawardboat.com/New35.html

    Regarding engines and consumption, considering that this boat displaces 10 T, (a relatively heavy and strong boat for a 35ft), the 2x260hp don’t seem inappropriate, and would not make it a fast boat (18/20 knots) neither an uneconomical one at a cruising speed of about 15/16 knots (considering the speed).

    About price, if you could make this hull a displacement hull and change those engines for 2x75hp (I would never have a cruising motorboat with only one engine), this would not be translated in a big difference in price. Instead of a 450 000 euros boat you would probably have a 400 000 euros boat. And that is consistent with the prices of seaworthy new motorboats in the production market. If you have this boat custom made (in steel) it would cost you more than that.

    About the boats in the site that you have posted, they look very interesting for the motorboaters that want to cruise at displacement speed (I guess that is not what they really want).

    From that shipyard, I knew the sailing boats, the Colin Archer’s and mainly the Danish Rose that is a nice heavy displacement boat but also a very expensive one.

    The prices that they post for the motorboats are very interesting, but I bet they are misleading. They offer a ready to sail 20M motorboat with a very good interior for 390 000 euros (ex VAT)...they can only be kidding.

    The boat you have referred to, the 15M Janas Kotter, costs 380 000 euros? Only 10 000 euros less than a Luxe Motor 20M boat? A Beurtvader 12M costs 250 000? (all without VAT).

    This price list seems very odd to me. That’s also the first time that I have seen referring a motorboat price without saying what engine they have in the boat (in these boats they never say what is the engine hp).

    I have asked for prices in another Dutch shipyard, of 40ft steel sail boats very similar to some offered here (kind of Beurtvader with sails) and they would cost as much as the price of the 20M motorboat quoted by this shipyard.....Something smelly here....

    But I agree that they are nice boats, even if displacement speed boats is not what I (personally) want from a motorboat........What I am trying to find is something similar to what Vikendios wants. A relatively seaworthy motorboat that can cruise at about 15 Knots without being too wasteful, with a suitable interior to cruise and a price (new boat) that would be less than 350 000 euros, taxes paid, and ready to sail. I will post the results of that search soon.

    As I have said I would really welcome different searches, for different criteria, regarding what we can find in the production market, or regarding professional quotes for building designs that are suitable.

    There is someone interested in this type of boats?

    After all, even boat dreams have a price tag, if we want to make them true.
     

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  10. Milan
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    Milan Senior Member

    Hi Paulo,

    I'm finally answering your question about amateur boat building, sorry for delay.

    "Let’s then ad the building option. I was avoiding that because most people have misconceptions about the price of a boat and think that if they do it, it will be less expensive.
    For most middle aged people, that have a normal success in their lives, their time is a lot more valuable than the time of a young but competent welder or carpenter…if you build your boat, it will turn out to be more expensive than if you have it built by competent craftsmen, while you earn money doing what you are really good at… for having a reasonable idea of the costs, please go to one or several metal shipyards of your country (they are good and not expensive), show them the plans and ask them a quote for the building of that boat. It will cost you nothing and certainly it will also be a valuable piece of information for you.

    Calculating the cost of a boat is a really difficult and tricky business and if you are not an expert in that area, you probably will not have a clue. You will not be able to calculate the number of hours needed for the various different stages of the building of a boat. That’s why there are so many rusty hulls lying around everywhere…"


    I certainly wouldn't call myself a boat building expert, I'm (very) far from that, but, over the years I was involved in quite a few projects, some of my own and some of the friends, so I have quite a good idea what's evolved in such an undertaking. I know that most of calculations of time and costs tend to be overly optimistic, it usually takes 2 to 3 times more time and money then originally planed. It is certainly so that skilled craftsman works much faster and better then an amateur and production yards also have efficiently organized, time saving production line and economy of the scale on their side. On the other hand, they need to build in big numbers, so it's difficult for them to build specialized boats for small markets. Most of their boats are compromise, trying to satisfy as big as possible group of potential buyers.

    There are situations where amateur building still makes sense. Most people would indeed earn more on hourly bases doing their own work, but most of us also need to do something else in the free time, certainly those with a sedentary, office type of jobs. To do something physical for a change, in the evenings and weekends is good for us.

    I think that key for successful, (reasonably fast and economical), amateur building is simplicity. Everything should be kept as simple as possible. No attempts should be made to make art peace, functionality should be a goal. Too much fussing with details has to be avoided. Avoid nautical toyshops and special nautical materials. Using general industrial materials, frequent visits to the scrap yards and buying second hand equipment can save a fortune. Simple and fast building method for the hull but also for the rest of the boat should be chosen. For example, steel hull built origami way and simple light interior, Ikea style, with big panels, painted white, plenty of filler in the not so perfect corners, (no one will notice it when it's painted). Don't fuss for years with precious exotic woods that have to be covered with zillions of layers of finest varnish. Builder should take a good look at interior he lives in the present and ask himself is that really nice, conventional luxury yacht interior really essential for his well being. If modernist interior is not to one's liking, and something more traditional and boaty is desired, workboat interiors can be good inspiration.

    Moving to the deck, wood in general and teak decks in particular should be avoided. If boat is built in steel, a lot of deck equipment can be easily and very cheaply self built and strongly and quickly attached to the deck. Deck detailing is a chance for an amateur to do better then production boats - most of mass produced boats have notoriously weak and to small mooring cleats, undersized anchors and anchor handling equipment, and weak hatches. With a steel boat it's easy to build Samson posts for decently sized mooring lines so strong to be able to take complete weight of the boat if necessary. For anchoring, stainless steel cable can be used in place of chain, as many working boats do.

    For sailing boats, If stainless still rigging wires are to expensive, galvanized wire painted with epoxy could do the trick. If fastenings for wires are expensive, consider learning splicing. Buy second hand sails. Look at the old fashioned second hand marine engines.

    Boat shouldn't be to big boat but not to small either. Under the certain size, costs saving are diminished. Raw materials are relatively cheap, and lots of more expensive equipment are same for the big and small. In really small, space is very tight, so it's very difficult and time consuming to build interior and equipment in. and even more difficult to reach it for maintenance and repairs later on. So, reasonable size, not to crowded, with a good aces to everything, simple, is faster to build, and probably cheaper and more satisfying to use in the long run, then small, but crowded and complex, full of stuff.

    "...So, Milan, yes to the building option, but get us a professional quote of the boat costs..."

    Commercial custom yacht building yards are specialized for the top price, high quality yacht, so they are probably not the best place for building budget boat. It may be worthwhile to search for yards specialized for workboats. They are more accustomed to economical boats.

    There are other options between total self building and ordering from commercial yards. It's important to keep eyes open. Maybe some skilled craftsman are around who are in pension or made redundant and would be happy to help from time to time in some stages of the building for lot less money then a yard. Or some times there are schools in the area who are looking for projects for their students. There are many possibilities.

    But, in the end, those who are considering building a boat them selves, should first think about most important question - do they have a building bug, (would they enjoy the process just for the sake of it), or not? If answer is yes but they didn't try it before, they would be well advised to begin with a small projects, move around, talk to other people, help them for a day or two on their projects. Try different materials and techniques and see what one likes.

    My schooner will have interior similar as these, minimalistic, light, mostly empty.
     

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  11. fcfc
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    fcfc Senior Member

    Badly, it is not trailerable. Too wide and too heavy. Beam 8'.10" (2.69m) over 8.4 (2.55m) not too much, but over. And displacement 3 tons. About 4 tons with the trailer. 1 ton too heavy.
    And the used price is also twice my budget. I do not even speak of new price.



    ????.

    My father was a woodcrafter, had a full workshop and is interested in boating. He looked for homebuilding a boat. He (and I) helped a bunch of homebuilders. He went up to buy some boats plans (strip planking, cold molded, plywood). But when looking closer, with time, money, tooling and knowledge, he always went to buy used boats.

    Now just a small point:

    Say you are building a plywood boat. You will need a bunch of plywood sheets.

    You spend time to look for best prices for plywood sheets.
    You have found very good price, but you need to buy by the pallet. 30 sheets. 750 kg (1500 lbs). 500 km away.
    So now, you spend time to look for a trucking company to deliver this pallet to your workshop. You have several choices. You work. You want to be there for the delivery. So the delivery will be off office hours. You can still have a good price if your workshop is accessible by a 18 wheeler, and you have 10 minutes for unloading the truck. That means you own, or have rented a forklift with that capacity. If you cannot do this, you need to rent a truck with self unloading capability, and allow a bunch of time to unload your pallet, and you pay premium for it.

    So, now you have just your plywood in your workshop and you have not started any building at all.
    This of course hoping the delivery is correct the firt time : no wrong count, thickness or quality.

    How many time have you already spent for this and what is the real overall price of your plywood sheets ?


    Even if you own a ligth truck. How many time and money for the 1000 km travel and time for unloading the sheets one by one by hand. This of course means that you can go and load you plywood off your own job time.

    The same for many parts, either a 500 kg (1000 lbs) engine or a 15m (50 ft) mast.


    Now, your plywood has to be cut. Either you draft it and use your own saw and file. You will spend months to get the job approximately done. Or you subcontract to a CNC shop that will do it ultra precision within hours. But you are gone back in trucking, loading, etc ...
    Of course, you can also arrange directly a delivery from the plywood factory to the CNC shop. And a deliver hours later from the CNC shop to your workshop. But this is called logistics. And generally in companies it is not a FULL TIME job, it is a FULL DEPARTMENT job. And you need to have some volume if you want your subcontractors to do what they are asked on the rigth time.


    In france there is a subtil distinction. There is no homebuilding. There is amateur (boat) building : that means you own a electric drill and a screwdriver in your garage. And individual (boat) building : You own a truck, a forklift, your workshop has a gentry crane, etc ... : it is a professionnal who builds a boat for himself. Not necessary a professionnal boatbuilder, but a professional in a domain needed for boatbuilding.

    Rate of success is not the same for the two categories. ANd "homebuilt" boat tests published in boating magazines generally belong to the second category.
     
  12. Vega
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    Vega Senior Member

    Milan, very interesting post.

    Yes I agree with you that” There are situations where amateur building still makes sense”, but they don’t have to do with economy, except in the situations were you can not have the boat you want mass produced.

    The fact that the boat you want is not produced also means that there are very few people interested in it, and that means that its value in the market would be very low. If you add the value of your working hours to everything you have spent in the making of the boat, probably you will lose money if you sell the boat, immediately after doing it.

    About costs, you have to take into consideration that mass market builders can get till 40% discount in the prices of hardware and that the interior of the boat costs only about 1/3 of the total cost of the boat.

    But I get your idea (I have done something similar long ago, recovering an old boat), but that only makes sense if you are going to keep that boat for a long time, if you have time to do a lot of maintenance and if you don’t consider, as very important, the comfort of living surrounded by nice things (the interior of the boat) or if you don’t care about owning a boat that will make you proud of it, at least to the eyes of the others.;)

    Nothing wrong about what you want, and it makes sense too, a functional boat for the adventure of traveling to faraway places, but not a boat to live comfortably the retirement days.

    Both boats are not comparable, and the one that you want is not mass produced because there is not a market for it. But if you want an inexpensive boat to do that, instead of building one for the start, it would be a lot cheaper if you bought one of those rusting hulls of amateur construction that lay abandoned in a lot of European ports.

    In my home port that are two of them, nice steel hulls, pilot deck saloons of about 40ft, hull, deck, cockpit and doghouse already completed, rusting away…they are there for so long that I believe they will sell them really cheap….:)

    And mainly I agree with you that it only makes sense if they “enjoy the process just for the sake of it”

    After all, a lot of the guys that really finish the process of building a boat, sell it almost immediately, just to have the pleasure of building a new one.:p
     
  13. Milan
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    Milan Senior Member

    "…The fact that the boat you want is not produced also means that there are very few people interested in it, and that means that its value in the market would be very low…"

    Yes, I'm aware of that fact. That's one of the reasons to keep the costs down. Owning any kind of the boat isn't very wise investment anyway. But if the boat is really used, one of the biggest expenses, (usually very much under estimated), is money that you spent for repairs. That's one of the reasons that I want different boat then standard. Production boats are built for marinas. To maintain and repair anything on them, you need aces to professional high teach workshop. Interiors are built for luxurious living so engines are usually buried somewhere under the stairs as an after taught. If something is wrong with them it's usually necessary to take half of the boat apart just to get to them. And diesel mechanics working hours are very expensive. In many cases they need more time to get to the things then to actually work on them. On the other hand if you have good aces to engine and can work in the comfortable position, it can actually be quite pleasurable. If that is so, chances are that the engine will get more attention that can lead to more reliability. My schooner will have separate engine room with own entrance hatch from the deck and watertight bulkhead that will keep the diesel odors away from the accommodation). Same for the other mechanical parts. What can you do if a rod rigging brakes somwhere in the far away Norwegian fjord, or roller reefing gets stuck in the incoming gale, or….If you are lucky and get to the nearest settlement you have to order very expensive parts from far away, wait, pay the transport costs, find skilled people with adequate work shop. (If you find them, they will know that you are at their mercy so, will probably charge adequately).

    But simple, strong boat that doesn't need complicated facilities and skills will be much cheaper to run.

    "…but that only makes sense…if you don’t care about owning a boat that will make you proud …at least to the eyes of the others. .."

    Well, that's indeed not so high on the mine priority list. That's meter of taste, but I actually think that my boat will have sort of good looks. Not in the way of luxury yachts which impress with a perfection of detail, but I will try to give her sort of esthetics which comes from functional forms in action. Long, low, sort of elegant shape, which moves effortlessly through the water with very little disturbance is very pleasing to my eye. I will probably paint her in just one flat color, maybe very light gray-blue and stainless pipe on the top of the gunwale, stainless railing, mooring cleats, handholds and such. She will certainly not impress general public which likes gin palaces, but sailors may actually like her.

    I also think that functional kind of estethics look much better then luxury type, when intensively used, as small scratch here and there doesn't immediately disturb on the working boat with a plane finish, some times it can even add a bit of charm to such boat. With luxury boat it's very different. There is nothing uglier then neglected luxury yacht, as every detail on them is so shiny and perfect, any small imperfection gets immediately noticed. And if they travel to rough places it's impossible to keep them in immaculate condition.

    So, if the boat didn't cost much in the beginning and was cheap to run for a couple of years traveling far and wide, when the time comes for the next boat and in the worst case scenario no one want to by old one, maybe it makes sense to just strip her from eventually still usable parts and equipment, toss her and move to the next one.

    I know that theoretical value of the conventional boat is higher, but they cost a lot to by, costs even more to keep running over the years, and after a lot of voyaging, chance is that they will need major, expensive refit before offered for sale, or no one will want them.

    "…if you want an inexpensive boat to do that,…, it would be a lot cheaper if you bought one of those rusting hulls of amateur construction that lay abandoned in a lot of European ports.
    In my home port that are two of them, nice steel hulls, pilot deck saloons of about 40ft, hull, deck, cockpit and doghouse already completed, rusting away…they are there for so long that I believe they will sell them really cheap….


    Yes, that is indeed good option. It could be also interesting for you, as 40ft deck saloons are pretty close to your desires. Being architect, you can design nice interior, and you probably know craftsman who can build it for you. Are you considering that option?

    "…About costs, you have to take into consideration that mass market builders can get till 40% discount in the prices of hardware…"

    Yes, they get discounts, but the cheapest hardware is the one that you don't buy at all, so I'll have only basics, mainly self-made and some bougth second hand.

    "… and that the interior of the boat costs only about 1/3 of the total cost of the boat…"

    Yes, it's usually hull and deck 1/3, interior and engine 1/3 and rigging and sails 1/3. So, if economy is important corners have to be cut consequently all the way. It doesn't make much sense to just have cheap hull for example. Even if the hull cost 50% of normal price, if rest of the boat is conventional only about 15% from the total costs is saved.

    "..After all, a lot of the guys that really finish the process of building a boat, sell it almost immediately, just to have the pleasure of building a new one…"

    Yes, I know a few, or they just keep working for years on the same one and never finish. I'm not that kind of the amateur builder. I do enjoy building, at least some times, but I don't like endless fussing with small details, I like sailing more.:)
     
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  14. Guillermo
    Joined: Mar 2005
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    Guillermo Ingeniero Naval


  15. Vega
    Joined: Apr 2005
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    Vega Senior Member

    You mean the Seaward 25? Yes I agree with you and it is probably one of the smallest motorboat to have been certified as a B boat (with the exception of the semi-rigid).

    “The Seaward 25 is designed for use offshore and cross Channel and has undergone stability testing by Lloyd's Register for compliance with the new Recreational Craft Directive Category B for use in wind speeds up to force 8 and wave heights up to 4 meters.”

    About speed and consumption, the boat comes with a choice of three engines, 2X75, 2X100 and 2X125, all Yanmar, from the 4JH3 series.

    The choice of engine will depend on the speed you will want to cruise. With the smaller engines the boat will do a max of 18k and with the bigger, a max of 25K.

    If you want to cruise at 18K, probably the more economical choice will be the 2x125, but if you want to cruise at 13K, probably the right choice will be the 2x75 and between 13 and 18k, the right choice will be the 2x100.

    They say that with the 2x100 the “Fuel consumption at 15 knots is approximately 2.0 gallons per hour per engine”. It’s a British boat, so they are talking about Imperial gallons:rolleyes: (4.5L).

    That will be about 1.2L/mile at 15k.

    I guess that with the smaller engines at 12/13k it can make about 0.9 L/mile.

    This is an interesting performance. A small sailing boat will waste about 0.4L/mile but at 5K. Speed is always expensive, but with this one is not VERY expensive.
     
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