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TOPIC: The Best Configuration for European Waterways

The Best Configuration for European Waterways 05 Sep 2017 13:45 #94863

Hi Paul

I have seen hundreds of "Dutch Steel Cruisers" of varying makes.
Dito the comments of Nigel re twin props.
Insulation - only ever seen one insulated (to winter standards) cruiser, and that was retro fitted by the owner, with an oil fired drip feed heater.
I find that the gunwale height of most cruisers is too high for ease on the canals of France.
The build isn't really robust enough for the pounding in locks, masses of fenders required to stop damage.
Sorry to be a wet blanket.
Dutch Cruisers are built for Dutch waters, but can with care be enjoyed in France.
See my recent post - list for live aboard to see my thinking.
Paul Hayes

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The Best Configuration for European Waterways 05 Sep 2017 13:00 #94861

We have a 17year old Aqunaut, 12.4X3.9x1.1, airdraft from 3.90, everything up and @ 2.90 everything down. 4lt 110bhp Yanmar
Minimal insulation, no double glazing, diesel heating by Webasto.
Fine for May-October but I wouldn't use it in winter.
My fuel consumption engine hours/fuel used (that's main engine, generator, heating all drawing from the same tanks) comes to less than 2lt/hr
Twin engines can be a handicap on French canals, due to prop/bottom innterface.

I would suggest a 'wide beam' would suit better, as it'll have a wood burner and proper insulation

I'm perplexed about your comment that a Pedro boat would have limitations in the Netherlands

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Cheers 'n' Beers

Nigel Crompton
Meander in Belgium

The Best Configuration for European Waterways 05 Sep 2017 11:14 #94858

  • Paul Smith
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We're currently in the Netherlands, close to Gouda, enjoying our last four weeks on the waterways before we put our little Super Favorite Dutch cruiser to bed and head south in our motorhome for the winter. The problem is, we don't want to go.

Cynthia and I have fourteen years of living afloat between us. Cynthia lived on a sailboat in San Diego for seven years. I spent a similar amount of time on the UK canals in my 62' narrowboat. We want to move back onto the water full time, so we're searching for the perfect live aboard boat for us.

We will wander along all the appropriate European waterways, so we want a boat which is both affordable and fit for purpose. I need a little advice from you good folk. Answers to the following questions would be appreciated.

1. We are seriously considering a Pedro Bora 41. I am concerned about the 3.5m air draught and the 1.2m draught. What are the maximum sizes for the majority of the waterways in France. We understand the limitations that the Pedro Bora would present in the Netherlands.
2. The Pedro Bora has twin 106hp Mercedes engines. I can't get any information on fuel consumption. Does anyone have any idea how to work it out?
3. A live aboard boat has to be insulated of course, but most of the boats that we've looked at don't mention insulation. We're particularly interested in Dutch motor cruisers. Are any of these boats insulated?
4. Is there a type of boat on the market which is affordable, economical to run and suitable for living on board during the winter months? Of course, this being the DBA, you're likely to tell me that Dutch barges are perfect but, for someone like me with a wallet more likely to be filled with moths than money, what is the alternative?

As ever, I look forward to your helpful replies.

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