What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?

Livaboard cruiser
What does it take to become a liveaboard cruiser?
About 5 years ago my wife and I had an idea of travelling the world on a sailing boat without ever having stepped aboard a sailing boat (familiar theme right). Tried a few local sailing weekends, loved it. Took a couple of courses, loved it. Bare-boat Chartered a couple of times in the med and really loved it. So decided to go whole hog and sell up and go boat shopping. Then life got in the way….wife and I fell pregnant so our plans were put on hold.

2 years of learning to be a parent and 5 years on after that initial spark and my 5 year plan alarm bell has started ringing! So it’s time to pick up where we left.

Back to the original point…. Apart from a boat and being able to sail, what are the most important skills and traits to learn before we jump in? My time and money are limited so I guess I’m trying to prioritized what I need to do to move forward.

All help and advice is greatly appreciated!


See all the forum answers here

You need patience, tenacity, and no fear of hard work.

And cash. The amount will depend on the above.

The rest can be learnt.


Sailing is easy. It’s all the other aspects of owning and living on a cruising-level boat that are hard .

Take the time to learn what you and your crew need and want in a cruising boat. I recommend buying an inexpensive, but sound and fully functional cruising boat, and get out there now. This will teach you what is important, and also start to develop those necessary skills, especially if you are a frugal cruiser with more time than money.

become a liveaboard cruiser?

Westsail 42 – Phuket Thailand


“KUAY” #31
1976 Factory Finished – Document # 568 566
Hull# WSSF 0031 0175
Basic Specifications
LOA 42′-11″
LWL 33′-4″
Draft 5′ 8″
Displacement 32,000 lbs.
Ballast 11,000 lbs.
Sail Area 1000 sq. ft.
Perkins 4-236 d85 HP- diesel
Beam 13′-0″
Fuel capacity: 190 gal
Water capacity: 200 gal

The boat was purchased from the first owner 1976 – 1982 with only 172 hours on the engine. The lubrication oil has been changed religiously every 100 – 150 hours for the past 35 years. Run good, no smoke or excess oil usage.

Realistically 4 – 6

Stainless steel rails 360 around boat. Upgraded windows… both main & aft cabins for all points ventilation, nice!

Shipmate 3-burner propane stove/oven
Adler-Barbour refrigeration with separate Adler-Barbour freezer unit.
Microwave oven
Double S/S sink
11 gallon hot water heater tank.
85 HP Perkins 4.236
Phazor, 3.5 KW generator set

Westsail PLUMBING:
Two heads
Watermaker – Little Wonder makes 200 Gals in 24 hours
Day fuel tank that services both generator set and main engine
Note: All three diesel fuel tanks have just been replaced. Made of 316 stainless steel as of 2016.
New Electrical Panel
Balmar 165Amp Alternator w/Balmar regulator.
Batteries new, 1,000 AH, new in 2016.
Solar Panels 4 each produce up to 24 Amps/Hr. of course depending on Sol.

Decca Radar 48 mile
Simrad… Auto Pilot (with spare)
Wind speed & wind direction indicator
Electronic charts for the world with computer. Also paper charts
Re-furbished & replaced in 2001, painted again in 2016.
By Shatthauer in Seattle in 2000
Full set with spinnaker/drifter
60 lb. CQR and 35 lb. CQR anchors
Two chain & rode… main 250′ and 125′ on deck reel
Spare chain & rode
DBC 6 man life raft
EPIRB G5 406
Hard Dodger
Hydro Vane steering added in 2009
Carib 11′ dinghy with 15 HP Mercury outboard motor
On board tools and spare parts
Smart Find Plus

LOCATION: Phuket, Thailand. Close in Langkawi, (a day and a half sail from Phuket, Thailand). 

PRICE: to sell… $75,000. USD  –  Westsail 42

CONTACT: Anderson -Cell Phone: +1 (808) 989-7674 USA