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About PeterCr

  • Birthday 09/09/1956

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  1. Hi Ken, sorry it's a bit late, away on holidays. And I hope those fires aren't coming too close to you too. We've done exactly what you're planning, and have no regrets. We're country Vic. We bought a boat in about May of last year and spent about 5 months on it, and already have our tickets booked for this year. We arrive in April and my wife is spending 5 months on board and me 6 months. You asked about keeping the boat there. We've done what Ditchcrawler mentioned. Our boat is currently on hardstanding at Debdale. As already observed one advantage of this is that you don't need to pay licence fees when the boat is out of the water. Though I had been warned that hardstanding can accelerate rusting, especially if the bottom of the boat isn't blacked, so I had it taken out beforehand and blacked it, including the bottom. Better to be sure. We hired for a number of years. I figured that for about a month a year hiring made sense. The costs of hiring for a month were roughly what I thought it would cost to have a boat sitting over there, and there's no maintenance responsibility to go with it. But for 6 months hiring becomes a little less attractive if you plan to use a boat for a few years. There's a few advantages to hiring too. You get to learn more about boaty type things, from both the boat you hire and ones you see along the way. So what type of layout suits you for example. Reverse layout? Traditional layout? What type of stern, trad, semi trad or cruiser? All of these things are useful to know before you buy so you can narrow down what you're wanting. Whilst Roland (Hi Roland) seems to have had a bad experience with HSBC we've been happy with them. I did quite a bit of research on opening a bank account in the UK, but everything we heard said forget it nowadays, even with a British wife. They now require clear evidence of a local address and without that it's almost impossible to open an account from what I hear. Things like gas bills, water bills etc to prove you live there. It's all about anti money laundering legislation apparently. We ended up getting a Global account from HSBC. You can add Aus$ to it then change the money into pounds (and other currencies) when you want to take advantage of a better exchange rate. And you get a card that you can use in the UK to spend your pounds when you want. I had opened other accounts here in pounds but none of them allowed me to spend the pounds in the UK, so all except the HSBC account were effectively useless. But the HSBC card worked just fine, though strangely I always had to sign rather than use a pin, no idea why. But it worked every time. I originally looked at the option that HarleyJ spoke of, getting some HSBC guy in India to open an account, paying $200 and then having minimum transaction requirements. The Global account does away with all that and can be opened online in 10 minutes, we did it last week to get an account for my daughter who is going to the US. No fees. Buying from Oz isn't easy though, there's some obvious problems, for example it's not all that easy inspecting a boat when you're half a world away. If the market is anything like when we bought it's difficult as a buyer, and doubly so from here. Boats were selling very fast. You've got a number of options for buying. You could move there for a while and then be there to look at boats for sale. The problem with this for me was that it would be expensive on accommodation and car hire and you have no idea how long it will take so hard to know when to book your return ticket. Some people have bought a boat from here without ever setting foot on it, just on photos. I did it roughly like that. I fixed a price from here and paid a deposit then flew over there for the survey. Lucky as it was roughly at the time we'd get cruising anyway, so I just stayed and started cruising. Also it was a relatively new boat so shouldn't have had any real problems, as the surveyor confirmed. So you'll have to find a way of buying that suits you, not easy. Some have suggested hiring and cruising and stopping along the way to hire a car to look at boats for sale. Others have friends over there who can look at a boat for you. It's whatever works for you. And browse here as much as you can, there's plenty of stuff to learn. Good luck buying, it's not easy but well worth it once you have your boat.
  2. Now I like the idea of the magnetic hooks, I hadn't thought of that. Off to eBay to do a little searching for magnetic hooks. Where did you get yours? I love the red and green thing. But buckets isn't a bad idea either, I might in fact be able to use buckets in the extra space I find by using the hooks along the side. The idea is taking shape, thanks all. Edit: Found the magnetic hooks already, an inexpensive and useful suggestion, thanks, got some on order now.
  3. We have a semitrad with the usual lockers either side of the cockpit. In one of those lockers I have nappy pins, windlasses, stakes, hammer etc etc. They all sit on the bottom and usually to get one out I have to drag it out from under the others, which is annoying. It also means that most of the space in the locker isn't used well, with only about the bottom 10% utilised. I have thought of getting a piece of timber and putting some hooks on it for hanging these implements and sticking it on the side of the locker. That way the space is used better and I don't have to drag everything out from the bottom. However I thought with the accumulated experience here someone is likely to have a better idea. All suggestions gratefully received. Thanks
  4. Last season, on a nice flight the name of which I can't remember, we were talking to the volunteer lockie. There was a windlass there for sale for 5 quid, which we bought, and I asked him why he had a windlass for sale. It was one of those with the rotating handle, which my wife finds easier on her hands. He said it happens all the time, boaters leave the windlass behind at the lock so he collects them and sells them and uses the money to smarten up the lock with flower plantings and so on. After reading that I wonder if maybe he should be a little more careful about selling windlasses he finds at the lock. And I wonder if we are accessories to theft or receivers of stolen goods having bought a "stolen" windlass 😊
  5. Yes I did read that and found it encouraging, lead acid batteries had relatively low self discharge rates when cold. As you say, not a problem in winter. Thanks for that. And yes 7 batteries.
  6. The idea at the moment is in, (or at) a marina, I'm currently at Debdale and considering hardstanding for the winter. I've had this recommended to me by some other Australians who did the same thing for many years and were very happy with it. It also avoids problems with bilge pumps and pitting.
  7. But I assume that for those 5 years you didn't have any solar? You were just fully disconnected from the power over winter?
  8. The only people we really know over here are my inlaws who are quite elderly and a little past that unfortunately. We've lived in Australia for the last 25 years so really don't know anyone local. It sounds pretty clear, from the replies, that leaving the batteries off power for that length of time will be pretty much the end of them. Will have to come up with another option. Maybe Roland's option is the best.
  9. Not a bad effort I thought either.
  10. Too late she's on the plane as we speak/type. The only upside is that she's going home to work!
  11. I'm a little stuck with being here more than for the 5 months or so cruising. Whilst I'm Australian my wife is English, so technically we could stay here all year. But if you've ever looked at the extraordinary cost and hassle of getting the visa that I need to stay here all year! So I only get visitor visas, so can't stay any longer. Call when you're there, would be nice to catch up.
  12. We'll be in Australia for the summer/winter, it's expensive to fly back, so won't be coming back till May or thereabouts for 4 or 5 months over the summer here cruising. I've got Vetus 105 ah lead acid batteries. Sadly I'm no expert on batteries hence wondering what I should be doing for the 7 or 8 months the boat is laid up. I've got 7 batteries (bow thruster, starter and 5 domestic) so buying a new lot isn't cheap. They seem fine so far, relatively new.
  13. No sadly I live in Australia. The weight limit on the flight might be an issue!
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