WHY CHOOSE A MOTOR SAILOR
My first Tradeaboat Column
DON'T GET WET!
The two best days of our lives are when we buy a boat and when we sell a boat, which enshrines Tradeaboat to a very special place in the mind of every boating person in Australia¡in-fact if you look up the definition of ¡°tradeaboat ¡°in the Oxford English Dictionary, you may find many references to the words ¡°Bargan, Offers, Pristine¡±. In the sub section ¡°To Use¡± you may find ¡°Dream, Dreamer, to Dream¡± hence the generic ¡°Book of Dreams¡±, now the popular title for this very publication, accepted by all in the English speaking world¡well every one I know at least!?
In the mid 70¡¯s while working on the slip in Adelaide, a guy with an idea approached me to ask if I wanted to list a free poto advertisement in a new publication called ¡°Tradeaboat¡±..novel idea I thought, never been done before, but I was not selling at the time. Tradeaboat quickly became a part of my life. It created and drove my own dreams. Now, 30 years latter, having had a bit of fun acting out those dreams (with more to come) I find on reflection too many people, young and old, lacking the will or belief in themselves to dream!
A few years ago Margie and I sold out of McIntyre Marine Services, moved to Tassie, did a successful property development and started to play out more Dreams.
When the editor asked me if I wanted to write a regular column, I thought why not preach to the converted, Dreamers! great, my kind of people, so here I am. I¡¯m a sailor of course and have been since my first one week coastal cruise as a teenager, setting off with a sense of adventure in my Heron sailing dingy, an esky full of food, fishing gear and a tent. 20 years on, in 1990 I raced solo 28,000 miles around the world in the BOC Challenge placing 2nd in class, the highest placing for an Australian at that time. My company McIntyre Marine Services built many yachts for ¡°Dreamers¡± ( including me) to cruise and race around the world. The Southern Ocean is like my second home, having spent years down there in yachts and ships voyaging to Antarctica. Now after 40 years on the water it has finally hit me! I don¡¯t like getting wet and love Motorsailors
It has taken some time to admit this. I enjoy the ocean, being out there and going to amazing places, taking your home with you, living in your own world, but who does like getting wet. You are usually cold and sometimes miserable. Rising from your warm bunk at 0200, wet weather gear on, slide the hatch back, clip on and try to act as if you are happy to be relieving the watch as the first spray hits you, even before you have your night vision or a settled spot in the cockpit. Not fun!
Some sailors don¡¯t admit it, so start with a dodger. Then in Paradise it is hot, can rain and there is that sun. Bring on the Biminy. Did I say Paradise? No such thing¡mosquitos, sand flies and sundowners do not mix. So how about side clears and mosquito screens¡is this telling you something? You must have seen them, the cruising boats and even new Beneteaus and Bavaria¡¯s etc. where owners conclude that a temporary glass house down the back is good for more than just growing tomatos? But they look shocking and show an inner frustration.
What is a Motorsailor? after all, yachts have motors. To me a real ¡°Motorsailor¡± allows you to motor efficiently, with or without sail, while keeping a watch from inside the boat, not outside in the cockpit, unless you decide to go out. The percentage of motor to sail mix is up to the individual. The Buizen 48 is at the bottom end, a classic pilothouse motorsailor, 30/70, (30% motor, 70%sail) but some owners may not like you saying that. They see it as a Pilothouse yacht, not motorsailor ( bad image). The Fisher 32 Motorsailor is 40/60 and some of the Bowden designs are 60/40 Motorsailors. They all offer another way to enjoy boating, standing watch in your slippers, sitting in a comfortable helm chair watching the spray hit the windows instead of you and as to going to windward , why? A good Motorsailor can plod along all day into nearly anything, with a large slow turning four blade prop, and a JohnDeere, like trawlers have been doing forever. Did I mention the flopper-stopper stabilizers underway, they are even better at anchor.
If you have been a sailor all your life and the kids have left home, you too may start to question getting wet? Then consider the virtues of a motor sailor. I have to tell you, you owe it to yourself to give it serious thought. Many do and give up on sails altogether, hence the rise of the Nordhavn and similar Trawler designs for world cruising comfort under power alone.? Now even Nordhavn have realized the market for a 45/55 motorsailor with their impressive 56MS.
It took three years and 50,000 Chinese man hours to build my new boat ¡± ICE¡±. It is a 40 tonne, 15.2mtr self righting, Ice strengthened, steel, go anywhere 50/50 Motorsailor. It has a 4500 mile range at 7kts under JohnDeere power, a huge stand up watertight engine room, 5 star fit-out and carries all my Toys including a Polaris Flying inflatable boat. I sit watch in a comfortable Stidd helm chair , looking out through 20mm thick, heated, armor plate pilothouse windows, unless the moon is out, when I may head up onto the fly-bridge. Margie and I can go anywhere in comfort , anytime, any weather, any wind direction or strength, even zero. Sails are optional if we feel lazy and we don¡¯t get wet. My ¡°other boat¡± is at www.bountyboat.com , that¡¯s wet!
Different boats mean different things to different people, but do not underestimate the fun of a pilot house Motorsailor. I believe in them, so bought the design rights to the Fisher 32 and start building them in China next year. Tradeaboat is the book of dreams, so I don¡¯t need to tell you to keep your heart young, aim high and keep dreaming, even about Motorsailors