Saturday, February 12, 2011

What we've got

After a year of looking, this is what we ended up with.

Taiko is a 45-foot steel cutter, one of two hulls built to a design by Gary Noble Curtis.  She has a bit of a history - hull completed in 1989, but the boat not launched until 2005, she's only done one round trip from California to Mexico but has managed to acquire five owners in her brief career (we're owner pair #5).

As expected, we ended up compromising on about half of our boat-buying criteria.  For one thing, she's steel (though corrosion-resistant corten, and well done), rather than the aluminum that I would have preferred.  For another thing she's big - 42 feet was really as big as we wanted to go.  And her engine is quite undersized and, because she hasn't cruised, there's all sorts of gear to add to her (more on that later!).  And (there seem to be a lot of compromises), she is not a production boat.  This means she will be more difficult to sell when the time comes, and she is also a bit of a mystery as far as the design's virtues and vices are concerned.

But, there was a lot of good that came with the package.  We didn't get her for a song, but the price was probably "reasonable" for what she is.  The mast, standing and running rig, mainsail and staysail are all brand new.  Much of the other gear is from 2005.  She has a very non-yacht interior, which is something that Alisa and I always wanted - boat builders put a huge amount of money into making sailboats look like floating bordellos, and we were always keen to skip paying for that sort of nonsense.  Another huge plus is that she appears to fit the bill as an "expedition" yacht - with some modifications, I think she'll take us to whatever icy corner of the globe we care to explore.  And, with all that length, some good things do come...
The "makes me feel like singing" galley.

The "I'm just going to go work on my project" engine room.

The "it's all mine until Eric is out of the crib" forward cabin, complete with roll-away desk for homework.

   The "how long can we get away with living like this?" aft cabin.

So that's the new ride.  Of course, the only point of having any sailboat is to sail, a lot.  We've cooked up a plan for doing just that - details to follow soon.


  1. Beautiful boat! Congratulations on your new home!

  2. Hope you're enjoying the great weather out here right now. Where's the boat? Looks like maybe Marina Village or somewhere in Alameda?

    (friend of a friend)

  3. Big hugs and huge kudos for a plan well executed. All the best for your next adventure, and you can be sure that we'll keenly follow your tales... only another two (or possibly four) major projects and we'll be back on the water ourselves.

  4. Hey Kristen - That's right, Marina Village - good eye. We're hauling out at Svendsen's tomorrow, should be there for a week or so, then back to Marina Village - come by and say Hi some time!


  5. A question about your exhaust system if I may. It looks like a dry exhaust leading from the block, but then enters what I believe to be a wet exhaust system? I inquire as I have been pondering the advantages of a dry exhaust but can't figure out how one would do so on a sailboat.

  6. well done guys! sure taiko will take you far. and apparently in style! a stand up engine room? that's awesome! and that galley. wow!

  7. Hi Captain Haddock - Nope, it's a wet exhaust...


  8. Hello,
    I am currently looking at buying the (possibly only..?) OTHER Gary Noble Curtis designed yacht - this one, a 48 ft. Cutter of the same overall design, *including the rearward windows of aft cabin - was completed in 1991. I am wondering if you have had any issues with your vessel over the years now, and if there are any other pieces of advice you would have to share w/ me.

    - you are welcome to contact me direct through email or phone, if you would?
    Email: phone:(208)320 -6497. Thank you and hope to hear back!