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Narrowboat Saxa

Cruiser or Traditional Stern

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Hello there,

I'm looking to get a second hand narrowboat for myself, I will be a continuous cruiser (even through winter), my dog Beldie will be with, he is a Welsh Springer Spaniel and he likes to stay with me most of the time. I have 2 sterns I like, the trad and the cruiser, which one do you guys think would be the best option. Also, I will be a solo boater

Thnaks

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Can of worms here. My preference having owned and lived aboard each type for many years is the cruiser is better hands down, no contest.

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5 minutes ago, Narrowboat Saxa said:

Hello there,

I'm looking to get a second hand narrowboat for myself, I will be a continuous cruiser (even through winter), my dog Beldie will be with, he is a Welsh Springer Spaniel and he likes to stay with me most of the time. I have 2 sterns I like, the trad and the cruiser, which one do you guys think would be the best option. Also, I will be a solo boater

Thnaks

That is one of the very divisive questions, but is regularly asked - there are folks who will argue for one design and give a host of reasons, and folks who will say the other is the only type to have and give a host of reasons.

 

With a 'Trad' the dog can sit/lie on the roof just in front of you, on a Cruiser stern he can sit at your feet.

 

It can only be your choice - you are going to have to live with it.

 

(But - I've had both types - get a cruiser stern, far better)

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Just now, mrsmelly said:

Can of worms here. My preference having owned and lived aboard each type for many years is the cruiser is better hands down, no contest.

okay, thankyou. Would you get a pram cover?

1 minute ago, Alan de Enfield said:

That is one of the very divisive questions, but is regularly asked - there are folks who will argue for one design and give a host of reasons, and folks who will say the other is the only type to have and give a host of reasons.

 

With a 'Trad' the dog can sit/lie on the roof just in front of you, on a Cruiser stern he can sit at your feet.

 

It can only be your choice - you are going to have to live with it.

 

(But - I've had both types - get a cruiser stern, far better)

Okay, Thank you

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Just now, Narrowboat Saxa said:

okay, thankyou. Would you get a pram cover?

 

Again divisive but for me YES. It is an extra room for wet dogs and damp clothes in the Winter.

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My preference is for the trad stern as a cruiser stern, although giving you a lot of space, means that you are exposed to the weather when steering. With a trad stern, you are more protected and can shut the doors behind you and slide the hatch so that only your top half is exposed.  Although a trad stern is not so safe for dogs as they can fall/be pushed off, ours tend to lie in the engine area below our feet.

 

haggis

Edited by haggis
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If you have not made that basic decision about what sort of boat you want, you need to do a lot more research before you go looking at boats.

 

Trad stern allows comfortable cruising in winter and bad weather. Cruiser is OK if you want a bike on it, but leaves you out in the elements.

TD'

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Another of those questions that no one will agree on, I would always have a trad back end as I love my back cabin and can get out of the weather with the stove at my feet. My border collie used to love lying at my feet watching the water go by. Surprised no one has mentioned semi trad yet?

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Any form on tent be it a cratch or pram hood are things of the devil. Buy a whole boat and no need for a bit of extra storage.

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So a Semi-Trad is not in the running's? - best of both worlds.... ?

Edited by robtheplod

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Can you try each type to see what you think? anyone you know with a boat or have you hired in the past etc?  as has been said before its very much a personal taste. We only considered semi's when looking due to cruisers being too open and trads not having enough room, but others will state their preference for other reasons...

 

One other point is ability to get into engine bay to service your engine.... make sure you can access everything easily.... space will alter dramatically depending on what layout you go for..

Edited by robtheplod

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My input: Unless you want a boatman's cabin and mid engine room the location of the engine can make getting into and out of a trad back cabin difficult, especially if you are old enough to consider the onset of stiffening up. I also find the very small back deck on a trad feels less safe for getting on and off. because of the hull shape you have a larger gap to step across then with a cruiser stern. The rails that surround most cruiser sterns also  help those that are less able get safely aboard and off again. Boarding at the front into the well deck I find far more difficult than just  stepping onto the cruiser stern with a hand grip on the roof rail and cockpit rail. Typically weed hatch access is far easier on a cruiser stern as is engine access for servicing etc. in many cases. In the enmd its personal choice and aesthetics.

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Here are some criteria. As others have said you need to arrive at your own balance and choice

 

1.  Do you want to cruise in bad weather?

2. Do you regard steering as a solitary (we do) or social activity?  

3. Pets

4. Young children

5. Does keeping your engine bilge matter to you (easier with a trad)

6. Access to weed hatch

7. Access to engine for maintenance etc

8. Aesthetics (though others will look at your boat more than you do)

9. Ease of boarding from the bank

10. Ease of access from deck to interior

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6 minutes ago, robtheplod said:

Can you try each type to see what you think? anyone you know with a boat or have you hired in the past etc?  as has been said before its very much a personal taste. We only considered semi's when looking due to cruisers being too open and trads not having enough room, but others will state their preference for other reasons...

 

One other point is ability to get into engine bay to service your engine.... make sure you can access everything easily.... space will alter dramatically depending on what layout you go for..

I have hired a cruiser and a semitrad before, I didnt really like the semitrad, but I think I should consider it a bit more

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1 minute ago, Narrowboat Saxa said:

I have hired a cruiser and a semitrad before, I didnt really like the semitrad, but I think I should consider it a bit more

My present boat is a semi trad as the missus wanted to try one for a change. Weve had it just over five years. Verdict is not as good as a cruiser but still better tan a trad.  As others have said u need access to engine whatever u buy. Not very often though if you buy Japanese.

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5 minutes ago, Narrowboat Saxa said:

I have hired a cruiser and a semitrad before, I didnt really like the semitrad, but I think I should consider it a bit more

Just be aware that the term 'Trad' can be confusing.

 

A 'Traditional' Trad has a small rear boatman's cabin with fold out bed / fold down table and a small coal fire stove, forward of that is the engine, (not boxed-in and loads of polishing) then forward to the rest of the boat.

 

A 'Modern' Trad has the engine under the rear deck and running forward into the cabin and is normally boxed-in  making access to the boat a bit of a 'wriggle'.

Edited by Alan de Enfield
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Mine's got a big cruiser stern and a big front deck, which cuts down the internal space. Most of it is a waste as I cruise mostly solo, though the space at the back is nice for socialising on the rare occasions I'm not alone. The front is handy for the bike, diesel cans and coal.

I would have thought for living on you need to maximise the internal space and that should be the main consideration, especially if expecting to be on your tod. The open areas on mine reduce a 40 foot boat to a 23 foot cabin, which is just about OK to live on, but only just.

Especially if you play the trombone...

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