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Guest TMAC

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Planning a trip on the Broads for the first time,could anyone please assist me on picking a boat for two + 1 small dog from Richardsons.I,ve chosen Richardsons because friends have been with them in the past,but i am open to suggestions.

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Hi TMAC

Welcome to the forum.

Are you going for a short break or a week?

I am of the opinion the best way is not too plan to much, just see how you feel, what the weathers like and how far you feel like going when you wake up and how long you want to stay at the places as you encounter them. I personally find it more relaxing & enjoyable this way. If you are going for a short break I would suggest at some point the key places that I enjoy visiting are Horning, Wroxham and, if your boat will pass under Wroxham bridge (use the bridge pilot based at Faircraft Loynes) then the cruise from Wroxham to Coltishall is a really nice stretch that I dont like to miss. If you have time left over Womack Water and Potter Heigham too maybe.

Have a great time,

Dan

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Sorreee.. re-reading I see its help with the boat you wanted! Doh! :grin:

There's a lot of choice. Do you have any thoughts or preferences at this stage - when do you want to go (especially this year or next if exact dates not known) space, outside steering, luxury or value etc as a few possibles that might help someone make a more informed/useful reccomendation for yourselves

Dan

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Calypso & Salerno have both been refitted fully within the last few years so are very good for the money. Both also have the benefit of forward and rear acess doors, this can make mooring easier and their single floor level is quite a spacious design and also gives a low air draft so you can get under most bridges most of the time (Potter Heigham is very subject to tide and occasionally Wroxham can be too but you would normally get under thelatter unless there are unusually high tides). Both those bridges need a pilot so they would advise on that front.

The differences between the two boats are that Salerno is a fraction longer and a fraction wider so will feel slightly bigger inside as a result of both factors. Salerno also has a seperate rear cabin whereas Calypso's cabin is all open plan.

The other design styles to the single level you have considered so far would be aft cockpit (like Crown Gem for example). These would be good if you have scorching weather as you are out there to enjoy it all, however if less brilliant weather you have a canopy to put up, which I dont think is then as cosy as the single level arrangement where you are inside. You do have a sunroof on the single level designs and can open the forward door but this is not quite as good as being outside if sunny. On the plus side you do not have a canopy to mess on with (lower/raise) on the single levels as this can be a nuisance at bridges, especially if its raining etc, and access out of the canopy for mooring is more awkward if the canopy is up.

Another style would be a sedan (like "Siesta" for example). These have similar benefits to the single steer (sunroof, cosy protection if weather not so great, but in the case of Siesta do not have the saloon/interior accommodation integral with the steering position/wheelhouse, though do have a two seats in the wheelhouse and as a plus have a higher steering position so you may see a bit more scenery/visibility for being higher up. They dont have the forward door or forward well that the single steer has and the interior will feel slightly less spacious than a single steer (also true of the aft cockpit design) through the boat being more shapely and less caravan like in its accommodation setout as a result. You will get under some bridges with a sedan but not all as they are taller and have no facility to lower sections etc!

Everyone likes slightly different and part of the fun is trying different designs to find those you like best but hopefully the above helps to explain some of the different pros and cons that may help you assess which you think you'd like for you?

All the best

Dan

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Guest DAYTONA-BILL

Just to back up Dans remarks on "Siesta", One of my brothers colleague`s had her a few weeks ago, and were very impressed indeed, and is an EXCELLENT boat for a couple. The down side to Sieasta is her high top which rules out passing under some of the bridges, which in turn rules out some very beautiful and less populated stretches of rivers. I would recommend ANY boat that is able to pass under ALL the bridges at suitable tides, and Richardsons have a vast selection to chose from. One of my favourites is the Barbados class, but if you`re on a tight budget, why not look at boats such as Little gem, Mermaid, and others like them. They are a little smaller, but still very comfortable just for two. Also, considering it`s your fist time, a smaller boat may not "seem" quite so daunting. I hope this helps. Regards ....................... Neil. PS, if you have ANY specific questions about any specific boats, then Dan is most deffinately "THE MAN".

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Guest DAYTONA-BILL

Hi TMAC, if you look through the "Restoration projects" section in the "Technical area", you`ll find a thread all about the re-fit of Barbados, which was fully re-fitted for this year. It also has quite a few pictures and shows how good she looks now. Regards ............... Neil. :wave:wave

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  • 3 weeks later...

Well thats it then, all booked up for May next year on the Barbados god help us.The missus is a bag of nerves.I think its got something to do with what happened on holiday a couple of years ago in Mexico on a sailing dingy.Ithought she would have forgot about that by now.

Thanks Dan & Bill for the info

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Hi and welcome,you have indeed been given some sound advice by Daytona Bill and Dan.

Dan is our resident expert on boats what he do not know has not been written as yet,a wealth of knowledge,he probably knows more about my boat than I do.

Enjoy you trip to the broads,you will be back again soon after.

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Guest DAYTONA-BILL

Hi TMAC, Glad to hear you`ve booked Barbados for next May. SWMBO (my wife Karen) and i love to go on the Broads in May, but next year we`re going in June for the fishing, and have a boat called Swallow from Maffett cruisers for the first week, followed by a cottage almost on the banks of Barton Broad for the second week. Barbados is a great boat for two, as you can keep your living and sleeping accomodation completely seperate. Also, you`ve made a wise choice starting from Richardsons at Stalham, as they are based on the river Ant which is probably the prettiest of all the rivers (well, in my humble opinion), and being on the Northern Broads, the tides will be far less noticeable, which will make getting used to the boats handling much easier. Don`t make any plans, just take the holiday as it comes and relax, just point the boat up or down river and see where you end up. And at 3-4mph, there`s no rush. Have a great time. Regards ................. Neil.

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cheers Neil,can.t wait the missus is getting really wound up already.Ithink its got something to do with me winding her up about her having to tie the boat up when mooring etc.Itried to get her practising throwing a line in the garden the other day,she was having none of it.

She asked me to ring the boat yard to see if we could have extra "balloons" on the boat i think she meant fenders.i,m getting my own back for all those years on holiday doing nothing but baking in the hot sun.Quality.

p.s its knot practise tonight

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