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Old 03-20-2008, 10:07 PM   #1
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My general plan is to liquidate the entire contents of my house, buy a boat and live aboard. Once established, I would take weekend / week-long cruises and then see where things go as far as more extensive cruising.

As I clean things up and put them up for sale, I'm giving a lot of thought to what I should keep. I think most household I'll keep will be kitchen items so this post should be in the right place...

Here's what I'm thinking of so far:
  • Selection of pots and pans. I'm thinking nothing larger than a medium pan / 1-gallon pot.
  • Selection of spatulas, whisks and other stuff that I use most frequently from the junk drawer.
  • Selection of tupperware
  • Dishes and flatware. While I'm sure a full set of dishes is not practical, I think I ought to have some regular plates, cups and bowls. I think there should be a balance between avoiding the excess garbage from throw-away dishes all the time and the hassle of washing regular dishes in the galley sink. Should regular dishes be plastic to avoid the risk of breakage?
  • I have a large Igloo 70-quart cooler that holds ice for up to 5 days in 90-degree heat. Is this something I should bring on board? Is it too big?
  • Pressure cooker - I've seen rave reviews about how great it is to have a pressure cooker onboard. Is my current 2-gallon pressure cooker too big for a galley stove?
Non-kitchen stuff:
  • Selection of mechanical tools
  • Several light blankets (I plan on sticking to warmer climates)
  • Several bath towels
  • Several beach towels
Anyone have any experience with having an acoustic and/or electric guitar onboard? Any special considerations? My thoughts are to keep it in the case at all times, wipe down thoroughly after every use, plan on more frequent string changes. Perhaps find some silica dessicant packets for the guitar cases to absorb moisture?

I welcome responses. Please remember the jist of this post is to figure out what items I / a typical household ALREADY HAVE that should be kept for use onboard.

Looking forward to joining everyone on the water in a couple of months!
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Old 03-21-2008, 08:57 AM   #2
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I'm sure that others will be along with ideas and advice.

My advice would be - at this early stage, have a look at a number of boats to get a feeling of size and available space. Also, what sort of equipment is often included in the sale of a vessel.

You will then get an idea of the sort of "stuff" you will want to keep from your home. Definitely keep the pressure cooker (if it fits on a gas cooker).

Good luck.
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Old 03-21-2008, 02:43 PM   #3
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My advice would be - at this early stage, have a look at a number of boats to get a feeling of size and available space. Also, what sort of equipment is often included in the sale of a vessel.
Thanks for this feedback, Lighthouse. I originally thought I would deal with getting rid of everything first and then, once freed, find a boat. You've given me the idea that I should do some boat shopping without buy sooner rather than later.
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Old 03-21-2008, 11:04 PM   #4
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One thing I learned from moving aboard is that we take too many things....by far! We had three 'chuck-outs' before we reached a level where we had a pleasant balance of things we needed and things we truly wanted.

It is amazing how many things I thought I wanted which I now rate as junk. If you can afford to, buy your boat then populate it with things as you need them.

If you really want to determine your 'must have' list before you set off, try keeping a note book of things you actually use at home and rate each item on a scale of 1:5 according to your personal requirements.

Best of luck

David.
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Old 03-22-2008, 11:40 AM   #5
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When we were on our final countdown to moving on board, Peter came into our house's kitchen to find me loading several boxes with kitchen gear. I had an oven on board, and had TONS of pots, pans, and gear packed.

To Peter's credit, he didn't walk in and start yelling "noo-o-o-o-o-o-o!" However, even his mild, low key suggestion that the boat might sink if we took it all elicited my statement "they come with me or I don't go!"

Peter suggested that I take the absolute necessities with me one weekend, stow them where I wanted to, and reconsider what else I would take along. Just stowing what I considered the bare necessities was a challenge, and my needs quickly ratcheted down. My pressure cooker was then, and remains, one of the most important pots on the boat. For the long distance, off the milk run destinations we chose, being able to can our meats made a significant difference in our cruising.

Every boat is different, and what is right for one might be 'way too much for another.

What made my choice a bit easier, though, was that I had a set of very good waterless cookware that stacked on top of each other, so that I could cook in two pots on one burner.

Take the time to learn your boat well before making choices, and as difficult as it may be to embrace the philosophy, keep repeating, "less is more."

Fair winds,

Jeanne
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Old 03-22-2008, 03:27 PM   #6
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Hi...

Try and get a copy of "Sell Up and Sail" by Bill and Laurel Cooper. It is in the 4th edition fromAdlard Coles Nautical printed in 2000.

To run a search use ISBN 0-7136-6086-4 as a reference number.

It has many helpfull bits and a whole chapter on Galley.

A good read for me as we are in the same boat ...

Cheers

Dow
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Old 05-15-2008, 11:53 PM   #7
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We are currently stocking the boat and spend 4-7 days on it at a time to try the things we think we need. It didn't take long to realize that we often take more things home at the end of the week than we take aboard at the weeks start. Try to find things that will do double duty!

It gets interesting to live on the boat as we are refitting and upgrading because it takes up far more room than when all is organized, and it seems to be far more normal to have things apart in some state of repair than to have all in order. We sometimes think of our boat as a glorified place to store backpacks that hold all we need for long hiking trips and store more food to restock the packs from. This has helped us to keep what we have aboard to a minimum. Anything that will help with food storage is always welcome as long as it fits. Nesting pots and pans are great if you can find them of quality. You will probably not need more place settings than the amount of people you could entertain aboard at one time.

You will really have to find out what works for you in the galley as people are so different, but one theme you will always hear is praise for the pressure-cooker... They are efficient and indispensable!

David

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Old 05-16-2008, 02:12 AM   #8
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Regarding cooking stuff--

When we sold the house and stored a bunch of stuff in August 06, we moved from east coast to a west coast teeny-tiny studio apartment while we worked on rebuilding our cruising boat (of course it would have to be located 2500 miles from where we lived, right...) It was hard to leave a huge kitchen with 6 burner stove and 34 cubic foot frig/freezer; baking center, three food prep areas. Ah, hard to leave. We routinely had dinner parties for 8 to 18 people and barbecues for 60. So, I really had to scale back on the size and quantity of things to bring along. We did have the luxury of placing many things into longterm storage for the future and that made it much easier for me to go "minimal" with what we took west for the boat.

I've lived a couple times with tiny kitchens (in particular, 2 years in Japan) or even no kitchen at all and know you can do alot with very little.

We only brought along the things that we thought we'd use on board the boat. I selected flatware, knives, and jumble drawer items that would fit in a 18"x12"x5" cardboard box (that some bit of computer equipment had come in). I selected favorite pots and just a few plates and cups. I think we could serve 6 and that's it. And that's with nothing matching. We didn't have a good small pressure cooker, so left ours to charity and plan to purchase another once we've re-launched the boat later this summer.

Regarding tools--

We've not even started paring down that stuff--since we're in the middle of a rebuild. However, I suspect we'll take along far too many specialized tools "just in case" and I'll have to figure out a way of getting hubby to give up a few at a time.

Best of luck to you.
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Old 05-16-2008, 07:46 AM   #9
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One kitchen tool I would never sail without is a corkscrew!

To quote J.K. Chesterton, "Some damned scoundral has stolen the corkscrew to my lunch". I never want to be in that situation.

Otherwise, it is horses for courses. You like pasta then you might want to take a pasta making machine along with you. If you like oysters then an oyster opening knife is essential. I try to cut back on the items I have on board and yet still find that I have too much. If things haver not been used during the last few voyages then they are taken ashore.

Aye // Stephen
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Old 05-17-2008, 02:07 AM   #10
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What a great thread! I'm not quite to the par down stage yet, but I'm gearing up. A few stints in the merchant marines taught me how little I really can do without. I brought my usual 3 week holiday kit with me when I first went for training at the Union hall and ended up sending all but 3 personal outfits home (for shore leave) on my first tour. On the upside I was one of the only people in my class that didn't need to be issued cold weather gear, and was also one of the lightest packed. One woman actually brought 20 pairs of shoes... and when I was doing security screening for a new class, I found an urn of ashes in some body's luggage. In the days before MP3 I used to carry a folder with about 100 cds, now I just have a 60 Gb Ipod. What a lifesaver!

But I do have a few questions of my own to run by Y'all. I was recently on board a friend's 60' trawler MV Catalyst. In the galley they had rows of gallon jars filled with lentils, split peas etc. I was really impressed, but was wondering why they weren't square? The cook thought that round was more space efficient. From storage on the inside, I can see that, but from the outside, wouldn't more square jars fit together?

My start up plan is to stick around here on SJI for my first little while until fitted out, but then to start cruising up to Alaska and down to Hawaii seasonally. After a few years, I may start long hauls from Gulf of Alaska to Chile. Is it reasonable to ship a bicycle from Alaska to Hawaii or would it be better to bring it on board. Also, here on SJ Island I see all kinds of people with kayaks on board. I have folding kayaks. Is it ridiculous to use the double open cockpit as a tender and keep the single folded away while under way?

-Andreas
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Old 05-17-2008, 04:20 AM   #11
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Hi,

jars--

The round jars are free from restaurants, cafeterias, etc. It is more difficult to find the square ones. These days many things that once came in those glass jars now come in similarly sized plastic jars, btw.

Kayaks--

Skene (well known author of Elements of Yacht Design) used a one person kayak as his tender. He could actually take it below (non folding) which I find impressive. We actually have an open canoe (grand surfing into many beaches of Mexico with that thing...getting out over the surf a bit more challenging, but equally fun) and a 12' Tinker Traveler inflatable dingy (with sail-kit, btw). Canoe on deck, but takes up precious space and risks being damaged, of course. The inflatable folds up easily for storage on deck or below.

Making the 'rounds AK, HI, Chile...these are familiar sounding plans to us as well. We plan to go from San Diego to Alaska (via HI) then down to the NW US, then down to Patagonia /Chile...then...well, who knows.

Good luck! Andreas, with your travels.
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Old 05-17-2008, 05:35 AM   #12
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I'm a sucker for free, that is until my desire for asthetics catches up to my budget...

I really like these jars...

http://www.villagekitchen.com/mfg/bormioli...anning_jar.html

I have a 1 l in my kitchen now (no galley... yet...) They're great, even if they are expensive. No lids to get lost unless you puposefully detach it, nice asthetics, etc.

Well if you ever come into port and see a Tahiti 32* (D32) flying a Chilean flag with a couple Kleppers in tow (one with an S4 sail rig) you'll know it's my boat... Meanwhile, if you get into Roche Harbor or Friday Harbor, you might look me up.

BTW, if Joshua Slocum is any model to follow, all sailors pass through Chile...

-Andreas

*I'm still somewhere in the daydream, investigating, stepping into reality phase, -so class is subject to change and name hasn't been selected.
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Old 05-24-2008, 05:33 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaptain von Klepper View Post
I'm a sucker for free, that is until my desire for asthetics catches up to my budget...

I really like these jars...

http://www.villagekitchen.com/mfg/bormioli...anning_jar.html

I have a 1 l in my kitchen now (no galley... yet...) They're great, even if they are expensive. No lids to get lost unless you puposefully detach it, nice asthetics, etc.
I have a few similar (but not the same) vintage jars like that which I really enjoy. I also have a big collection of the blue-green atlas jars that I've collected over the years. I've only brought about 6 along to use in the galley and asked hubby to build a shelf for keeping them safe and looking pretty up on the bulkhead that makes the aft wall of the galley. Here is a link to a pic of the original galley of the 1931 boat. The placement of stove, sink, etc are the same, but storage around the galley is going in differently since we don't have to store hundreds of pounds of ice and coal as well as to propane cylinders IN the galley

Fair winds

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Old 11-03-2009, 05:24 PM   #14
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My ESSENTIAL is SMALL plastic storage containers. I suspect many of you have front-opening fridges but ours is a classic UK top-opening one which is (despite its vintage) pretty efficient. However it means you always get things jumbled up however hard you try. And I would think the same would apply to a front-opening fridge if things get a bit bumpy.

I would add this attitude might have been influenced by Sir who is a keen fisherman and once stored live ragworm wrapped in newspaper in our fridge - then forgot for a while. So newspaper got soggy ... ragworm escaped ... ooh you don't want to know !

So now I decant almost everything into tightly sealed plastic containers and the smaller the better - you would be amazed at how small a container you need for the bacon, the cheese, butter, left-overs etc. And I always use small screw-topped plastic containers for cream, yoghurt etc. So much better than emptying it all out and then clearing the ensuing mess.

Ragworm, suitably encapsulated in plastic, is permitted - or I don't get any fish !
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