A question about General Oceanic Boating...

Ok my wife and I have a Grady Marlin . It’s a 30 foot cruiser we use for diving, fishing, and general run-about fun. I have a Chevy Avalanche that pulls it. We have no slip. 2K a month around where we live is highway robbery. So I dump it in, and take it out all the time. Whenever I’m not working on a treehouse or someother such cockamamy project. My question is this:

I want to moor it off shore but I am concerned about the wear and tear on the hull/props etc…etc… I have two twin Yamaha 250’s on the back and I am so obnoxiously anal retentive about cleaning the boat when I get it out of the water, that I am considering suffering another couple seasons putting it in, taking it out, then putting it in again and taking it out etc…etc…

What are the stats for fiber-glass boats being moored. Should I worry about degrading of the hull, prop, engine wear tear from not washing it off?

How well do they (moorings) hold? I’d be quite perturbed if i show up at the marina and see her smack’in up against the dock because her mooring broke… Incidentally, if anyone ever is boating between Block Island and Long Island and see’s a white Grady named The Loaded Pickle (long story) give a toot and I’ll come around…

Phlosphr! (forgive my lack of bolds, I’ve never bothered to learn the proper intricacies of proper formatting on the SDMB, as you probably know from the other thread that I don’t know how to link to - I’m so ashamed!..)
Anyway, back to your question. Ok, first, $2000 a month???!!! Holy Smokes!!!
Ok, nice boat! Is it new? What kind of water are you planning on mooring in - salt (I assume based on your comments) or fresh?; does it get rough?; How will you get to your boat once it’s moored - dinghy? I can’t tell from the website what kind of resin they use in the layup, but most production boats use some type of polyester (as opposed to vinylester) - do you know?
In reality, none of these questions matter a great deal, unless it’s an old boat that you don’t care that much about. DON’T DO IT!!! You can get a mooring that will hold, you can swim or dinghy to your boat (not much more convenient than trailering I would think), and you can save some money over a slip (ok, ALOT of money) up front that is. But in the long run, you’ll be losing value on your boat at a rapid rate if you let it sit out there bobbing around in the sunshine with who knows what banging into it. A slip is mildly better, but you’re still going to be getting mucho growth on the bottom, potential blistering of the hull, corrosion (slow, but it’ll happen) of your outboards, and especially if it’s saltwater, degradation of your wiring, electronics, upholstery, fittings, plumbing, and your fuzzy dice will get all crusty and faded too!
It’s a $100,000 boat! If you had a $100k Ferrari, you wouldn’t leave it sitting in the busiest section of a Wal-Mart parking lot for days and weeks on end would you?
Probably even more expensive, but a nice Boatel is the nicest thing you could do for the boat, and it’s extremely convenient. Until you can swing that or a slip, I’d stick with the towing, though I agree it’s a pain in the ass. Look into private dockage at someone’s house maybe? It’s usually cheaper than a marina, but may not be available in your area.
More tomorrow if you’re interested, but I go catch the Metro.

[slight hijack] Last year I was sailing Lake Superior when gale force winds hit (which meant I ended up sailing Madeline Island Marina) We had a grand time watching a new 28’ fixed keel sloop bobbing furiously up and down on her mooring. There was a problem though. They had neglected to leave enough play in the rode to handle the swells she was getting hit with. We watched helplessly as wave after waved crested over her stern, along her gunwales, and into the cockpit. In a few minutes she was sitting low in the water. A few minutes later, only her mast was visible. Her mast fought the good fight, standing up to the onslaught for a good 15 minutes. [/sh]

GOOD GOD!! ALMIGHTY!!! Gee thanks Nurse
Uh yeah, I’ll keep putting her in the water with my truck…

Peewee - now that I got your interest, here are some answer’s to your Q’s.

First off thanks, it is a nice boat, our first over 25 feet. She’s a 2002 model Bought last year from a Boat Show deal in Newport Rhode Island. We live in Connecticut. Yes, she’s in Salt water. Yes, we have a small Zodiac that would bring us out to a moor. The Zodiac folds up if we are going on a long haul. We usually stow it in the cabin afore deck. It’s a Polyester resin, not a vinylester in the layup.

I was thinking about getting one of those Boat-Elevator’s for a slip. The ones where you pull in and jack your vessel up and leave it up. But the initial cost is close to 4k for that, and that is not including the slip fees. I think mooring is out of the question.

Private dockage is tough in southeastern connecticut. Most is taken up, and if it’s not it’s outrageously priced.

I have a lot of experience with boating on Eastern Long Island Sound and Block Island Sound, and with Grady Whites in particular. They’re great boats.

I wouldn’t take NurseCarmen’s example as a reason not to moor your Grady, but rather as a reason to make sure you do it right.

First of all, it depends where you want to moor it. I wouldn’t recommend mooring it out in the open sound, but there are plenty of harbors in Southeastern Connecticut with great mooring areas. In fact, you have to moor it in a designated mooring area (usually outlined in purple on your chart) if you don’t want to keep an anchor light burning every night. Most of the mooring areas are regulated by the towns, so you should check to see what the rules are for the areas you want to use.

As to the mooring itself, I would get local knowledge as to the ground tackle, length and type of rode, mooring bouys and other issues. The people who sink moorings usually have a good deal of experience with what is appropriate for a 30 foot outboard in your area, though I would recommend going up at least one size for everything. This is not the place to scrimp.

A fiberglass boat will take being moored just fine, and Gradys are some of the best built boats of their class out there. When you leave it out, you should tilt your engines as far out of the water as you can. There should be no problem leaving them out. That’s what they are built for. One thing that you should do religiously is check and maintain your zincs to avoid electrostatic corrosion, which can be a serious problem. Also, you should make sure your bottom paint is in good shape, and realize that you will get some growth.

Obviously, it will face more weather than if it is hauled every use, but it shouldn’t be too much of a problem, particularly if you can pull up to a dock and hose it off every once in a while.

One thing that some people who row out their moorings do sometimes is leave the dinghy on the mooring while they are taking a day trip.

Good luck, and fair winds.

There are many variables and only you can weigh them all and decide. Apart from what has been said I would add:

Security: how safe from thieves is your boat out there? They can steal the boat or they can steal gear. I have had some electronics stolen. It gave me a laugh more than anything else because they were kind of old anyway and not worth much. If they had stolen a couple of winches they would have got ten times more value.

Shit happens. Boats end up in the bottom for the most unforeseen reasons. People forget to close seacocks, cockpit scuppers clog, etc. Odds are low if you are careful but I know what it is like to be thousands of miles away from my boat wondering if it is still afloat. Not a nice feeling.

Fouling: This wil make a huge difference. I wish I could pull my boat every time but it is a sailboat with a deep keel and it is out of the question. No matter the antifouling paint at the end of the season you should see what the hull looks like. Hauling out prevents this. Those lifts look great but they are expensive.

So, you have to weigh cost, convenience and safety and see how you feel.

I’m not much of a stink-boat aficionado, but I’ll give a small word of caution against relying on the safety of moorings.

My friends and I have a Dragon class sail boat. It’s about the same length as your boat. Our Dragon is a classic wood model, so it must be left on a mooring or pen at all times. The mooring we use is a submerged engine block, which is a pretty darn substantial weight. It’s also located at a fairly well-protected part of the river. Even still, last winter the wind and waves managed to drag the mooring several metres across the river bed. Other boats on moorings nearby experienced similar movement, so that several boats in the mooring area ended up colliding after a storm.

If you do consider a mooring, I’d be very careful to monitor the position of the boats surrounding your mooring, and take into account your local weather conditions. In periods of bad weather, you’ll probably have to check on your boat every so often to monitor its position.

Oh, and I second what sailor said about fouling. Slipping our boat each year, cleaning it and reapplying anti-foul is a hell of a job. The amount of organic junk we accumulate on the hull is truly astonishing.

One final thing to consider is the local wildlife. Boats on moorings accumulate a lot of bird poop. Be prepared to erect a bird-scaring system or fork out for a set of all-encompassing covers… or get ready to roll your sleeves up and scrub shit off your boat each weekend. :smiley:

Beautiful boat, BTW. Great size.

And ANOTHER thing… :wink:
If you’re at a mooring, you have no continuous source of power, unless you want to now add a big mount for a solar panel to trickle charge your batteries. So, when the leaves clog up your scuppers, and the rain and wind and waves start filling up that cockpit, your boat is going to go blurb, blurb, blurb. And without the solar panel, unless you’re using the boat weekly, your batteries will be slowing draining (while they’re pumping that bilge) and it will shorten their life significantly. Sounds like we’ve already talked you out of it though. :slight_smile:
Clearly, you just need to buy a house on the water, and then all your problems will go away!

Actually, Grady’s come with a battery charging Solar panel. :slight_smile: So that’s not a worry. It is actually an option, they do not come stock. I put it up when we go to Block Island because we moor off Dead Eye Dicks (restaurant/bar). It’s really just for peace of mind.

Narrad - Nice boat. We are having an antique and Classic boat show coming up soon where I live, it ought to be pretty fun. But you wouldn’t catch those guys with the wooden boats mooring near other boats… I’ve seen waaaay too many accidents where boats ram other ones, or come off their moor, and beach… I’d hate to see that happen. And yes I think you guys have talked me out of it. I just do not like putting it in, taking it out all the damn time. I’ve heard there are time share type slips, where if someone with a bigger boat is going to be gone for a while, you can sub-let it. or something along those lines.

Oh and I’ve never had too much bird poop on the boat because when I’m not using it, it’s resting in our barn covered. And in the winter it’s shrink-wrapped.

I do, like clock work. If we’re out for more than a week I always clean’em. And as for the underside, I’m not going to moor it I guess. I’m on the 50 yard line the more I think about it. But when I was a kid, I used to charge 20 bucks an hour at the end of the season to clean the underside of boats… I could hold my breath nearly 3 minutes when I was 15. Then my dad bought me the diving gear and it was much easier. Now at 33 I just dive for the fun… (saw a shark last weekend off Latimer Light, small 3’ macko feeding off the plentiful black fish…) still a little nerve wracking…