My parents live on a protected piece of saltwater on the coast of Maine (Eggemoggin Reach). They kayak some, but want to be able to walk down to the water, hop in a small boat, maybe with 2-3 other people, and tool around the area. 90% of the time, trips would be 2-3 ppl, less than 6 miles round trip, less than 3 hours, never out of protected areas. Being able to carry 5-6 ppl total would be a bonus. They are not adventurous risk takers, and will chose their days (they like it FLAT). They've got some tough parameters though:
- They have no dock, and won't build a dock
- There is a big tidal range
- They aren't going to trailer it to a ramp someplace else for regular use.
- They'd like to leave it in the water or be able to pull it up on the shore (but they are in their early 70s, so muscling something big and heavy over the seaweed and rocks isn't great)
- They prefer electric engines (and aren't speed demons) but this isn't a hard and fast
- Ideally they only have to put it in and take it out at start and end of season
- They will do best if it is relatively trouble/maintenance free.
- $5k budget
- Hull: Used aluminum V or semi V hull boat. Either 12', w/ 55thrust trolling motor, and limit to 3 ppl, or 16' w an outboard, and possibly a trolling motor as backup for more ppl
- Mooring: Set up an outhall/clothesline mooring to keep it in safe water at dead low, but be able to pull to shore to get in and out.
- Bildge pump on a battery w/ solar panel and battery tender (i set these up for electric fence on my farm all the time, so this feels easy to me). Possibly use the same battery for the trolling motor.
- Possibly one of those nifty wave activated bilge pumps (drainman) as backup.
- If 12', keep it upside down all winter, w/ trolling motor and battery in the basement, and pull it in by hand at end of season. If 16', ask a friend w/ a truck to trailer it to a nearby ramp in the spring, and then pull it in the fall.
- Will aluminum be ok sitting in the water all summer? Anode mounted to hull a good idea?
- Are the bilge pumps a good enough way to keep it from filling up while sitting there?
- Issues w/ bird poop? Would we need to tarp it between uses, or put something on it to keep the birds off? Doesn't need to be pristine, but we don't want it to become a guano mine.
- Is there a better way to do this? Anything else I'm not thinking of? Thanks all!