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Water world, life as a live aboard.

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by Huntersun2, May 1, 2012.

  1. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    While this subject has probably been discussed I thought I'd bring it back up.

    My wife and I have been living/cruising aboard our vessel for the last 3 years, mainly the east coast of the US and the Bahamas, over 9,000 miles on this boat to date. Not surprisingly cruisers share similar beliefs with survivalists, self sufficiency/reliance being goal #1. Freedom from excessive govt intrusion also at the top of the list. This past year we have seen a surge of cruisers who will admit there boat is their BOV as well as their home and as a boat broker I have sold several vessels specifically for this porpoise.

    Here is a brief description of our set up.
    50'x23' custom power cat, twin Volvo penta common rail diesels, 160 hp per side. Max range (+/- conditions, speed etc) 1800 miles with a 20% reserve.

    (4) charging alternators 120+160 amp
    (6) Siemens solar panels feeding (5) 200amp house batteries with a trace 2500 watt inverter. All lights are LED.

    12volt cold plate ref/freezer (spent 6 mo's in the Bahamas and came home with meat in the freezer).

    5.5 kw diesel gen-set (1/4 gal per hour). Spare 2kw Honda gas. Air compressor for the Hookah dive rig.

    18 gph 12 volt water maker, water collection available via a guttered hard top.

    (2) hot water heaters, electric and engine manifold.

    Propane grill, stove and oven with 40lbs propane, 1+ years worth of fuel using the grill daily.

    327 gal diesel+(2) 100 Gal bladders, 150 gal water storage with a SeaGull filtration system for drinking and cooking. 75 gal waste holding.

    (2) queen berths with separate heads. A third berth was converted to additional storage.

    Small shop with washer/dryer combo, parts/spares storage and tools.

    (3) GPS plotters, (1) Radar, (3) VHF's (1) SSB with pactor modem, (2) depth/temp units.

    10' AB inflatable w/ 15hp out board (gas)
    (2) bikes and a kyack.
    Lodes of fishing, hunting and diving gear.

    Stores for 6+months for 2 adults.

    (3) sets of ground tackle and enough rope/rode to spider tie if needed during a hurricane (been through 2).

    Lot's more stuff but you get the idea. When she was built the owners intended porpoise was long term/range live aboard with speed, comfort, safety and efficiency being the goal.

    What we have found during our travels are a large number of like minded folks traveling the oceans and water ways.

    Is a boat a good BOV, I'd say yes and before someone jumps me, all our eggs are not in one basket....:cool:

    Any questions/ideas please post them up.
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  2. Bilbo Bagins

    Bilbo Bagins Slacked jawed

    Sep 16, 2008
    If you got the money and skills I think its a great option. I rather have a sailboat with a motor backup, instead of a powerboat just in case if fuel is unavailable, becomes extremely expensive or you need to travel long distance, like across the Atlantic or Pacific.

    Especially for those how already live full time on their boat, nothing better then taking your house and leaving when the SHTF.

  3. itstime


    Apr 9, 2006
    WOW. Pics please. I'm sitting here imagining this.
  4. How about COMS? (Edit: my bad just saw them)

    And judging from your title you must have a good store of alcohol as well ;)
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  5. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    While most long term cruisers are on some form of sailing vessel you'd be surprised to find they sail less the 10% of the time. With speed restrictions, mast hight and draft issues we felt a power vessel would serve us better, also my fuel numbers are very near a sail boat that spends most of it's time "motor sailing.

    We are looking into the possibility of adding a kite rig for down wind running.
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  6. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    Cheap and boats are never used in the same sentence:supergrin:
    BUT you can find great deals in a wide verity of serviceable vessels, just depends on your intended purpose and abilities.

    Thanks for the congrats.
  7. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    Add to the radio coms we can tether our smart phones for internet access where ever we are (with service). SAT phones are available and have gotten better but we have not felt the need at this time. The Pactor modem allows email access through the SSB. While in the Bahamas we buy a cheap BA-TEL phone and prepaid minutes.

    Not sure how you were able to determine my alcohol stores from my title but yes we are well stocked....
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  8. RWBlue


    Jan 24, 2004
    Well there is one sentence that uses Cheap and Boat.

    "You are too cheap to buy a nice boat."

    This fits most people.
  9. pugman


    May 16, 2003
    First thing which came to mind...

    How do you plan on dealing with real world pirates? If this is being used as a BOV it wont' take long for others to figure this out.

    And lets face it...those don't look cheap
  10. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    True, I stand corrected.
  11. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    You are correct but let's think about it for a minute....
    Land based pirates vs true boat pirates, when the shtf and I'm off shore dealing with a few if any properly equipped bad guys vs all the land dwellers that "could" be potential problems. The numbers are far fewer on the water.

    But to your question, we most likely will be traveling in pack's, and the bad guys as usual will pick on the weak/stragglers and Canadian flagged sailing vessels:tongueout: because they know all US flagged power vessels are heavily armed.
    Last edited: May 1, 2012
  12. maybe a Solar Oven, Solar Still..

    Normal survival gear on a larger ocean going vessel?

    Normal USCG required stuff, plus survival rafts (with supply pack)

    epirbs (at least one per vessel - 3, your main boat, your dingy, and the raft).

    extra medical insurance (includes remote evacuation costs back to US if your in the carribean or elsewhere)

    Training - USCG/Boating courses/license, Medical Training?
  13. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    Good questions.

    We started out with a near coastal raft since I had it from a previous vessel, gave it away while in the Bahamas, our vessel is 125% boyant and will work as a raft if disabled.

    (2) EPIRBS, one fixed mounted and one in the ditch bag, since we have no plans on leaving the boat 2 EPIRBS are again redundant.

    Diver Dan's provides great evacuate ins for cruisers/boaters that have issues while on board at a very cheap price ($70/yr).

    USCG offers a safety inspection but there is no license needed and the wife has been in the Med Field for 30+ years.
  14. Nice. Sounds like you're set.

    I don't own a cruiser, but have been rec fishing/boating for years.

    I recommend a book I've got - Boatowner's Mechanical and Electrical Manual. I've got the 3rd edition (2005)... there may be a newer version, but it is great. Covers how things work on a bigger boat (mechanical, electrical, plumbing, etc). Has troubleshooting, Well worth the $50 retail list. Helps if you're handy, but still well worth the read. Keep double ziplocked onboard.

    Fair Winds and Following Seas.
  15. Huntersun2


    Jan 21, 2009
    I agree, Nigel Calder's books are top rate and yes I have them on board.
    No need for the zip lock thing, if I need to worry about them getting wet I'm in big touble..
    Last edited: May 1, 2012