Posted by: gjurrens | March 23, 2011

Sojourn is Indeed SOLD !

It was a bittersweet day for us today, as we officially transferred ownership of our beloved Sojourn to her new owners from Southern Illinois.

We told them when they flew in two weeks ago to put the ship through her paces on Charlotte Harbor, with one of the most thorough marine surveyors we’ve ever met, that we were auditioning for just the right kind of new owners. They passed with flying colors.

I know that sounds a tad arrogant, but if you’re a long-time follower of this blog, or have read one or both books I’ve published about our love affair with this ship, or are one of the many ‘friends of Sojourn’, you know Kay and I have treated this grand auld lady like a blessed member of our family for the last rather eventful one-and-a-half decades.

We bid her adieu, and we wish her new Captain and Admiral all the best with their ‘new’ ship. Mac & KC, you already know that you’ve acquired the embodiment of an inestimable piece of history (at least for us). I guarantee she will change your lives with her substance and grace, as she has changed ours.

So long, Sojourn. And thanks for the countless memories.

Signing off as we turn the page,

Cap’n Geno and Admiral Kay

Posted by: gjurrens | March 13, 2011

Sojourn is Sold but Not Yet Closed

Well, kids, we’ve met a delightful couple who passed our “audition” to determine if they would lovingly provide our little ship the care she deserves.

We’re pleased that we’re proceeding toward the closing, and if all goes well, should be concluded within the next ten days or so.

If you’re interested, please do watch this space to learn what direction Sojourn will be headed next, hopefully under the steady hand of her new Captain and Admiral..

For all of you who have shown an interest in her purchase (more than fifty of you!), thanks so much for your interest.

Fair winds to us all ! Gene

Posted by: gjurrens | March 4, 2011

Sale Pending on Sojourn as of Today, March 4, 2011

Well, gang, there is a purchase agreement on the table as of 230PM EST today.

We’ll know by next Wednesday, March 9, 2011 after Tuesday’s sea trial and survey, whether Sojourn will have new owners or not.

Nothing is over til it’s over, folks, so her official status at this point is not sold, but merely “sale pending”.

If you’re one of the many folks who have expressed interest in this beautiful vessel, watch this space.

Thanks again to all of you for your interest and kind words. More photos…

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Captain Gene

Posted by: gjurrens | February 24, 2011

Sojourn Still Available For Sale by Owner

Several of you have asked, so here ‘tis. Sojourn is still available, but if you’re interested, you might not want to wait too long. Lots of lookers, and one of them (you?) is going to end up with a beautiful yacht for a great price.

But if I can’t sell her myself, I’ll need to list her with a broker (not yet, folks!), and  I can absolutely guarantee that you won’t get her for under a hundred thousand then!

The boat’s listing summary, as well as more detail than you could possibly want is listed below. Scroll down to view price, photos & description of boat & equipment.

I’ve also edited this post to include answers to questions some of you have asked concerning recent surveys, liens and the condition of her sexy bottom. See below…

On a lighter note, last week, we spent an outstanding day on the water aboard Sojourn with six lovely ladies and one distinguished officer & gentleman. No wind? No problem! What a wonderful day! Girls, you made this a great day (Captain Doug, you were fun too)!

View February 23rd in Florida on the Water!

 

Recent surveys, her bottom and liens…

The last survey was performed in May 2008 for insurance purposes. So, for example, this insurance survey (unlike a pre-purchase survey that you’ll certainly want to have performed) did not include a test of her mechanical and electrical systems.
 
This 2008 insurance survey was performed out of the water while the boat was in storage in Minnesota. I contacted the surveyor and asked his policy about providing copies of that survey to perspective buyers. He considers this protected intellectual property (how he feeds his kids) and that report is meant to only be between him and me, his client (for a fee – this one was $560). Additionally, that’s only a boat’s condition at a point in time (a week after a survey, you could run her on the rocks, and now you’re talking a different boat with a different value). As Sojourn’s purchaser, you’ll likely want your own pre-purchase survey in any event. Having said that, he had no problem with me sharing informally his findings (rather like describing a movie instead of illegally copying and distributing it).
 
His assessment was that the boat was in “Good” overall condition at that time which is a formal definition of the Society of Accredited Marine Surveyors (SAMS). To them, “Good” means, “Ready for sale requiring little additional work and normally equipped for her size.” In spite of that very acceptable assessment, since then, as noted elsewhere I have spent over $50,000 to achieve what SAMS would almost certainly now consider “Excellent” condition (“maintained in mint condition – usually better than factory new–and loaded with extras.”).  This investment addressed what SAMS considered relatively minor issues for a boat of this size and age in this condition, but does impact overall value. And even if I’m not completely objective in my assessment of her current condition, even SAMS’ “Very Good” condition is still, “Has had above average care and equipped with additional options, electrical and electronic gear.” at an absolute minimum. Even that assessment would more than justify her asking price, even if you added a 10% brokerage fee (which I have not – yet).
 
Net: she’s in great shape, and is a great value at my (firm) asking price of $99,900.
 
Her bottom was inspected at that time and found to be in excellent condition. Irregardless, subsequent to that survey, I had her bottom completely stripped and redone, anticipating that she would no longer be out of the water every winter for maintenance once I took her south. I also refreshed the bottom paint again when I had her out of the water down here in September 2009. A big boat bottom should be a critical purchasing factor for anyone, folks, even though it seldom is. A bottom (hull) that is good and dry is a big deal, in case you don’t know that. Repairing a bad bottom, which is wet, or in poor shape (lots of growth, paint too old to be effective, or having blisters that must be repaired before further eroding hull quality or even its waterproof integrity, etc.) can easily cost $10,000-20,000 or much more to repair, potentially including months to dry out – that means loss of use. Sojourn’s bottom is dry.
 
She sat out of the water for 6 months a year during winters from 1995 to 2008 – that’s a great history for a boat’s bottom to have. She enjoys top quality coatings, including a 10 mil West System epoxy moisture barrier topped with aNOTHER 10 mil (generous) Interlux 2000/3000 micro-platelet (VERY moisture-proof) technology, topped with Interlux Micron CSC-Extra copper-based (the best) multi-season anti-fouling paint that was new in August 2008 and refreshed again September 2009 while I had her out of the water, even though it wasn’t really necessary (again, prevention!). The bottom has been (and continues to be) maintained by a professional diver monthly while in the water since 2008, and all underwater running gear (shaft, propeller, etc.) is protected by zinc anodes and a first-rate bonding system (guards against electrolysis) that are also inspected monthly and replaced by the diver if needed. She also has an integrated galvanic isolator (think “zinc saver”, which minimizes electrolysis, and the insidious damage that form of corrosion can cause). Net: she has a beautiful well-protected bottom. Bottoms on a boat are often neglected and underrated in importance because you can’t see them. Not on Sojourn!
 
One item found during that 2008 survey that I found unacceptable was some moisture in the foredeck core just forward of the pilothouse (on either side of the mast tabernacle) and in the side decks. While her hull is of solid fiberglass construction, her decks and superstructure comprise a stout outer fiberglass shell and inner shell with thicker structural stringers (think ‘beams’), which sandwich a mahogany plywood core, a common larger boat construction (and ship-building) technique–very strong indeed. This moisture largely came from two leaky pilothouse windows. Also subsquent to that survey, I have addressed that moisture problem in no uncertain terms. Between May and September of 2009, Sojourn was out of the water, her outer shell on the foredeck, side decks and pilothouse bulkheads were cut off, the moist pieces of core removed, and replaced with new dense high tech closed-cell structural foam core. Her outer skin was then expertly glassed back into place, and I stress professionally & beautifully (you absolutely can’t tell). I had seven high-end custom pilothouse windows manufactured by Freeman Marine, Inc. (from the Northwest, near Seattle, I believe), also professionally installed, all the chain plates inspected and rebedded, all (the oversized) rigging inspected and found to be sound, and essentially the entire boat’s exterior repainted (AwlGrip and AwlCraft premium yacht finish).
 
Also subsequent to that 2008 survey, even though all of this was purely preventative since we were about to start a long voyage, I had a mechanic go through the engine and the generator, replacing everything that might become problematic in the next several years, including all belts, hoses, fuel lines, jump tubes, oil and transmission coolers, heat exchangers, zincs, valves adjusted, transmission inspected and engine oil analyzed with excellent results, etc. I then put 2,100 trouble-free nautical miles (over 2,400 statute miles) on the vessel, mostly under power on Mid-America’s river systems. All ship’s systems performed flawlessly as we moved the boat from Minnesota to SW Florida. We also cruised the Florida Keys for almost two months earlier in 2010 under sail or power. Again, flawless functionally, and now also cosmetically drawing compliments by everyone who gets close to her (“Beautiful! Is she new?” – oh yeah–almost!). Even so, the engine still has less than 1,300 hours on it – very low hours for what many would consider a 25,000 hour engine before the need for a rebuild, but not so low hours that it has suffered from lack of use, a common problem in used boats as you all likely well know. Same with the generator – used it regularly, but still only just over 300 hours (the break-in tune up was performed at 50 hours).
 
Sadly, we’ve used her little since the Spring of 2010, and is the reason we’re now selling her. I still run the engine and generator for at least 30 minutes once a month, as well as the outboard motor on the dinghy. I run water through the sinks and flush the toilet weekly to prevent seals from drying out. And of course, the diver keeps diving on her bottom monthly.
 
Now to the other question on liens. While I will tell you the boat is indeed free and clear, no liens, etc (we used my wife’s small pension to pay her off many years ago), this would be confirmed for you in the most unambiguous terms possible. This is because the boat is federally documented with the US Coast Guard. If you’re not familiar with this form of “registration”, there is an unbroken chain of ownership and ownership status on such a vessel from the time she was new. Not unlike a ‘deed search’ on a piece of real estate. If you want assurances of the legitimacy of title on a yacht, this is the type you want to purchase (my humble opinion). It is the ultimate legitimate proof of ownership in the United States. She’s also registered with the state of Florida, and there is a rigorous transfer of ownership process that makes transfer of a vehicle title simple by comparison. So buying such a vessel ensures you know exactly what her indebtedness status is.

Later, ‘gators! Gene

Posted by: gjurrens | December 29, 2010

It’s True – Sojourn is Finally For Sale

The Boat

  • For Sale:  1982 Island Trader 40 Pilothouse Motorsailer Sloop with All Roller Furling Sails & Ultra-Reliable Trawler Engine, Mostly a Fresh Water Boat. Lightly Cruised.  Fully Cruise-Ready. Latest Extensive Upgrades in 2008-2009. This is one comfortable & capable cruising and/or liveaboard yacht.
  • Current Southwest Florida Location: Burnt Store Marina, Punta Gorda, Florida in a Fresh Water Fed Tidal Estuary (Charlotte Harbor).

Her Condition

  • Bristol, i.e., better than new shiny, solid, strong & ultra-reliable, under power and/or sail… one beautiful yacht that is likely to sell fast
  • Constantly Upgraded & Impeccably Maintained between Major Upgrades in 1987 ($25,000); 1993-4 ($55,000); 2003-4 ($6,000); 2008-9 ($49,000)… all upgrade & maintenance records & voyaging log included with the yacht
  • History: Fresh Water Boat for 15 Years, Brackish for 13 Years, Salt less than 3 Months. She’s literally in complete sail-away & cruise-ready condition.

Price & Contact Info

  • Reasonably priced for sale by owner at just $99,900 USD 
  •  No low ball offers, no brokers, please. All serious offers considered.
  • Comment to this post, and I’ll get back with you, but do it soon as there is lots of interest…

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Her Documentation

  • Flag: United States (Federally Documented)
  • Detailed documentation on her extensive systems upgrades and maintenance since she was new & contemporary cruising logs – all convey with purchase
  • Central Character of Two Published Books:
    • “Moving a Boat & Her Crew” (A unique 2,100 nautical mile voyage)
    • “Restoring a Boat & Her Crew”  (A detailed photographic account of her complete restoration)
    •   See below for book ordering information 

Major Specifications:

  • Material: Fiberglass (including decks except for teak cockpit benches)
  • Length: 40 Feet on Deck (51 Feet LOA)
  • Beam: 14 Feet
  • Draft: 4 Feet 9 Inches (slightly more with full tankage & cruising staples)
  • Engine: Ford Lehman 120 (Less Than 1,300 original hours, all new belts, hoses, coolers, tuning,  etc 2008)
  • Accommodations: Sleeps Two in Master Stateroom on Walk-Around Queen with Custom Pillow-Top Mattress, Plus Two in Pilot Berth (Sleeper Sofa)
  • High Output Alternator (120A) with External Smart Regulator (Can Vary Alternator Output on Demand Either Manually or Automatically)
  • Drive Train: 24” 3-bladed 18 Pitch Propeller (Reconditioned 2009), Drive Saver, Reliable Paragon Hydraulic Transmission (aligned 2008), Gore-Tex Dripless Shaft Packing, Extra Tight Cutlass Bearing, Shaft Shark Line Cutter
  • Generator: Northern Lights Lugger 6 KW (New 1993 Less Than 400 original hours, new belts, tuning, etc 2008)
  • Fuel System: Fuel Polishing & Fuel Transfer System with Redundant Fuel/Water Separators, Water-in-Fuel Alarms (Strobe & Buzzer) on Each of Two Filters (Racor 500—20 micron—and Gulf Coast Filters F1 (1 micron depth filter) 
  • Cruise Speed: Approximately 6-7 Knots Continuous, 9 Knots Maximum
  • Fuel Capacity: 208 Gallons (Two Aircraft Aluminum Tanks, New 1993)
  • Water Capacity: 325 Gallons in Two Tanks (Fiberglass)
  • Holding Tank: 30 Gallons (new 2004, custom Raritan spin-welded polypropylene, along with all new hoses, water lines, large twin vent lines, siphon break, thru-hull)

Electronics

Exterior

  • Sailing Rig: Sloop – Self-Tacking Roller Furling Jib & Main – New 1987, Sails Reconditioned & Like-New 2010, Main Traveler New 2009, Oversized (5/16” 1×19 316SS) & Redundant Rigging in Excellent Condition
  • Helm: Two Stations (One Outside in Cockpit, Or Seated Inside Heated or A/C Pilothouse)
  • Two Exterior Cockpit Seats:  One Helm, One Navigation, Both Adjustable: height & slide forward/back (One New 2006, One New 2008)
  • Bow Thruster: 5 HP Electric (New 1993, Reconditioned 2007) with Controls at Both Helm Stations
  • Custom Color-matched Tinted Pilothouse Windows by Freeman Marine, Inc. – Four Sliding Opening Side Windows 1/4” Tempered Glass with Opening Screens, Two Front Opening Top-Hinged Windows 3/8” Tempered Glass (All New 2009, Professionally Installed)
  • New Bottom (Stripped Bare, Faired & Sealed with West System Epoxy, Interlux 2000/3000 Moisture Barrier, Interlux Micron CSC Anti-Fouling Paint (New 2008)
  • Foredeck & Pilothouse Bulkheads – New Core Material & AwlGrip Paint (New 2009 – Professionally Installed & Applied)
  • Folding Mast Steps, Climbing Harness & Safety Belt
  • 316 Stainless Lifelines & Boarding Gates (New 2009)
  • Oversize Running Lights (New 2010)
  • Stainless Boarding Ladder (Port Side) for Easy Boarding from Dinghy (new 2010)
  • Propane BBQ Grill
  • Teak Swim Platform with Stern Ladder to Cockpit

Interior

  • Queen Walk-around Bed in Master Stateroom (custom 8” Thick Latex Rubber Upholstered Mattress New 2003)
  • La-Z-Boy Recliners in Pilothouse (One Wall-a-Way Recliner, One Rocker-Recliner)
  • Fold-down Sleeper Sofa (New FlexSteel 2000)
  • Manual or Electric Head & Hoses (New 2005)
  • DC Refrigerator / Freezer 8.5 cubic feet (new 2008)
  • Propane 4 Burner Stove with Oven, Remote Shut-off Solenoid, Two 20# Propane Bottles
  • Hot and Cold Pressurized Water with Whole House Carbon Filter
  • Microwave Oven (new 2010)
  • Generous Ventilation Via Ten Heavy Bronze Portholes, Each with Dual Dogs for Watertight Integrity (Five per Side), Large Butterfly Hatch in Master Stateroom, Seven Windows in Pilothouse (Six of Which Open)
  • Diesel Heat (Espar)
  • Electric Heat (Flagship Marine – new 2006)
  • Air Conditioning (18,500 BTU – new 2006)
  • Bilge Pumps (Manual and Automatic)
  • Shower Sump
  • Fresh and Salt Water Wash-downs on Deck

Electrical

  • Precise Tank Monitor for All Tanks (Fuel, Water, Waste)
  • House Batteries (one deep cycle bank of 4 x 6VDC, 450 AH total)
  • Dedicated Engine Starting Battery (new 2009 – 4D)
  • Dedicated Generator Starting Battery (new 2008 – Gel Cell)
  • Dedicated Windlass/Bow Thruster Battery (8D Gel Cell – New 1993, Still Like-New Strong Dekka Dominator) with Dedicated Charger (Guest 50A)
  • Water Heater: Huge 12 Gallon Tank with Engine Heat Exchanger
  • Shore Power (2 x 30A) with 60A Galvanic Isolator (Zinc Saver) & cords (2 x 50’)
  • Inverter (2,500 Watts) & House Charger (100A)
  • Inverter/Smart Regulator Remote Control Panel (Link 2000R)
  • Bonding System Connected to Zincs on Hull; Zincs on Shaft, Rudder & Transom

Ground Tackle

Dinghy

  • 10.5′ AB Rigid Inflatable Boat (RIB) with Hinged Bow Locker, Flat Non-Skid Fiberglass Floor, Anchor, Rode, Fenders, Anti-Fouling Paint on Fiberglass Hull Below Waterline (All New 2005, and Fast at 20+ Knots)
  • 15 hp Yamaha Four Stroke Outboard Motor & Two 6 Gallon Fuel Tanks (New 2005, Professionally Serviced Annually)
  • High Capacity Lightweight Davits (Capacity: 1,200 lbs) by KATO Marine of Annapolis (New 2008) with 6:1 Internal Hoisting Tackle, Color-Matched AwlGrip Paint – Oyster White – Same as Sojourn’s Hull, 316 4-Point Stainless Lift Bridle with Snap Shackles & 2,200 lb capacity. Includes Heavy-Duty 316 SS Spreader Bar.

Miscellaneous

  • Dock Lines and Fenders
  • Spare Parts Kits (Generator, Head, A/C, Heart Interface…)
  • Literally cruise-ready except for staples: Conveys with all dishes, towels (many monogrammed with vessel’s name), lined curtains, sheets, coffee maker, coffee mugs, glasses, pots, pans…

Even though she’s now for sale, she continues to get lots of TLC (monthly hull cleaning & zincs checked/replaced as necessary by professional diver, fuel polished and all engines run, under load, monthly, varnish refreshed as necessary, etc.). You’re going to love this yacht.

 Many more photos, video clips & details follow if you’re interested …

boat with clare hattie 006

Amenities

Sojourn draws less than 5 feet and weighs in on average (depending on tankage) at 38,000 pounds. She’s a full keel boat that tracks well in a sea way.

This extremely capable and comfortable cruising yacht is ready to go whenever and wherever you would like to take her, either under power (she has one helluva power plant) or sail (all sails are easy-to-handle roller furling from the safety of the cockpit).

And with a roller furling main, reefing is as simple as easing the outhaul and pulling the furling line. And oh, the jib. It’s self-tacking also, meaning that it has its own traveler, and there is only one sheet led back to the cockpit. No working sheet to slack for a tack and lazy sheet to grind – just turn the wheel, and the headsail, boom and traveler do the rest. Just like the main. The way it should be.

Currently in her home port on the beautiful west coast of Florida, Sojourn is perfectly located and cruise- or live-aboard ready with a full inventory, including the latest state-of-the-art touch-screen electronics (new 2008).

New Electronics

One of the really distinctive features aboard Sojourn that makes her stand alone in her class, aside from her outstanding condition overall, is also a lot of fun—her navigational electronics. Check this out. Note: chart is zoomed out significantly below to illustrate weather patterns–green, bright yellow, red = precipitation—the chart rescales beautifully when zoomed in or out:

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One feature we are SO thankful for is the ability to receive weather (and satellite radio) from XM’s satellite constellation (http://www.xmwxweather.com/marine/). When we’re in cell range, it is true that we can get weather over the boat’s integrated internet connection (e.g., via www.wunderground.com) down in the pilothouse on our laptop (not included), but having this precise weather info available at the touch of a screen up in the cockpit is a Godsend, especially when far enough offshore out of all cell tower range, this capability is essential. Coverage includes all coastal regions, the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, and as far south as the Virgin Islands, I’m told.

We’ve used this feature extensively to plan the next day’s voyage when departing from one obscure anchorage to another, to adjust our sail plan well in advance of rapidly approaching weather, or to adjust our speed and/or course if what is approaching is better given a wide berth.

What makes this entire system absolutely intuitive to use is how the instrumentation can overlay the following directly on our chart plotter which always displays the exact location of our boat:

  • wind direction and velocity,
  • wave height and period (distance between waves),
  • approaching weather fronts (warm, cold, occluded),
  • weather event locations (squalls, lightening, depressions, storms, hurricanes) & their projected paths,
  • notices to mariners’ weather warnings,
  • precipitation (light, medium, heavy, insane),
  • cloud cover

You name it… all this invaluable weather info relative to our boat’s current precise position, or to any position you want by simply ‘dragging’ the display to another location of interest by dragging your fingers across the display. Really amazing stuff, and an incredibly useful safety feature – especially out in the islands where weather is always an interesting & important real-time tactical topic, and Internet coverage is usually only available when your ensconced securely in a marina somewhere.

For example, in the image below the little key-like symbols represent wind direction and speed, and the diamond-like symbols are informational messages about weather local to that area on the chart. With the latest Blue Chart g2 Vision chart chips installed (and that stay with the boat) you also can display aerial photographs of marinas you’re approaching, lists of thousands of marine services available in each port, etc. etc. etc. This really boosted our confidence when approaching a port for the first time, especially at twilight or later (we tried to avoid this, but sometimes it happens).

We have found all this information to be amazingly accurate in practice out on the water, and you can even advance the weather display 12, 24, 36 48 or 72 hours to see what is being forecasted. Put it in loop mode, and watch fronts, storms and changing wind & wave conditions march across your screen in the cockpit, just like you see on www.weather.com, but all with your boat’s icon, representing your exact location, right  in the center of all the action.

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Below, you see pink zones, which when present, are localized marine weather warnings—not to be taken lightly. The small yellow symbols are weather buoys that report current conditions at those locations. The smaller red & white lined outlined areas are localized thunderstorm warnings (usually near reported lightening strikes denoted by yellow bolts). You can touch the screen of the Garmin 5212, and any of these for details, which results in informative text windows on your screen. The light green, dark green, dark red areas represent areas of light to heavy rain fall, respectively, as reported by NexRad radar – the same stuff meteorologists use as reference.

Notice below the good ship Sojourn was in the midst of a dark green area (moderately heavy rainfall), which we verified by looking out the window while underway. Because we saw dark red/orange areas off the starboard bow of our boat’s icon on the chart, we shortened sail, and started steering from inside the pilothouse before it really got interesting  (meteorologically speaking). While we could actually see the storm approaching off our starboard bow, without the radar images on the screen, we would have had no idea of the severity of this system or how far away it was or how fast it was approaching. It wasn’t too nasty, but knowing that really heavy rain was coming, we could plan accordingly, thanks to this marvelous instrumentation we had at our fingertips.

Additionally, since we also saw that the pink area was marching toward us (a real storm warning with really gusty winds), we then decided to increase speed (motorsailing) and beat feet for port, again, before we got into the thick of it. It actually works, kids!

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And when we zoom this display in to say, to a scale of 150 feet across the display, we literally and confidently steer and navigate by the depth lines on the chart. Amazing.

This ain’t just whiz-bang boat show gadgetry, gang, this stuff really really works, and has proven itself repeatedly over a few thousand miles of cruising.

Additionally, this sophisticated electronics suite, all new on Sojourn in 2008, has regularly benefited from software (firmware) updates, courtesy of Garmin, whenever they become available.

Also new in late 2008 on Sojourn: a new “antenna farm” elevated on a very sturdy high quality Kato Marine stainless radar mast at the stern, bristling with antennas for high definition digital color radar, GPS, satellite weather and high speed internet access (actually an amplified 3G cell connection from the tallest antenna below to your favorite laptop computer safely ensconced in the cozy pilothouse). We chose to mount all the antennas high enough where they’re in “clear air”, but close enough to the deck where they can be easily cleaned and service. Say that about a radome mounted on the front of the main mast where it can be buffeted or even “erased” by a wayward headsail.

By the way, the tallest of these antennas, at almost 14 feet off the water enables fairly high speed Internet access, and powered by a legal-limit amplifier (in the pilothouse) it also significantly boosts the range of cell phones on board. When we’re cruising, we not only use this connection for Internet and email access, but also for using Skype on our computer as a video phone for essentially free calling worldwide.

Also shown below is a wonderfully useful and sophisticated device, even essential when dodging through a dense field of crab pots, for example. This is a wireless RF (not line of sight) remote control & instrument repeater for the autopilot & the RayMarine instrument suite at the upper helm.

This device allows you to steer the boat from anywhere on the ship (up on the bow, for example, or in the pilothouse), while monitoring depth, speed, heading, distance and bearing to the next waypoint, cross-track error, etc., all the while dodging crab pots, or whatever. Even with a very effective line cutter on the shaft, we avoid the pots, just in case, and because we don’t want to impact a fisherman’s livelihood.

antenna mast radar mast autopilot remote

Sojourn is even ready to receive your favorite SSB and/or amateur radio, with a state-of-the-art HF ground (3” copper strapping connected to 2 sintered bronze ground shoes on outside of the hull, to a fully automatic antenna tuner (Icom AH-4) installed in a lazarette, a state-of-the-art backstay insulator is included (you install) and high capacity 12VDC power harness to your favorite rig in the pilothouse.

Below is a view of the AH-4 antenna tuner (tunes the backstay electrically to optimize its “electrical length” for any particular transmitting frequency) on its slide-out weather-proof shelf for ease of maintenance.

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Imagine, sitting in your pilothouse recliner comfortably chatting with your boating or landlocked ham friends who could be most anywhere in the world FROM most anywhere else in the world with your own world-class radio installation. Note that you need an amateur radio license to transmit on the ham bands…

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(note: neither I, nor my amateur radio itself are included, but the operator’s station is ready to receive your own rig, and there’s also plenty of room for a marine SSB and extra accessories such as your Morse code (CW) telegraph keys & bugs, etc.).

Value

This superbly crafted vessel, overall, is in far better than new condition. How much would it cost you to acquire such a lightly-cruised vessel with this compliment of cruise-ready features and this caliber of craftsmanship in this condition today? $500,000? $1,000,000? Look around, my friends.

And yes, there are a lot of boats for sale these days; however, if you’re looking at another similar vessel, save yourself a lifetime of grief and make sure that all the essential upgrades have been made before you buy the boat (e.g., leak-prone black iron fuel tanks that rust from the top down and inside out, leaky pilothouse windows that can cause bulkhead and deck delamination that may be difficult or impossible to see ($!), leaky or poorly-vented holding tank (whew!), etc. All of these have been replaced on Sojourn, and have been cruise-tested. And don’t forget that Sojourn’s diesels (engine, generator) are extremely low hours, very well-maintained and continue to be used (lightly). A boat that sits dormant is a boat that is rotting or molding from the inside out. Also beware of boats that boast no use for any length of time.

The Rig

For a motorsailer that normally wouldn’t excel at their capabilities under sail, Sojourn boasts an impressive high aspect ratio sloop rig, the heart of which is a high quality low maintenance aluminum reef-away mast (we have never experienced a single jam with this rig in fifteen years of sailing). This mast replaced the original much more modest and much lower aspect ratio (shorter) wooden mast which was not only very high maintenance, but extremely difficult to maintain. 

This rig, which is in excellent condition, is all roller furling (main and jib) with club-foot self tacking jib. Total of 620 sq ft sail – all controlled from her generous (10×12 foot) cockpit, either from the captain’s chair or the navigator’s chair (both adjustable and on sliders). Her gorgeous tanbark (burgundy) sails are in excellent like-new condition (cleaned and completed reconditioned 2009/2010). Remember the song, “Red Sails in the Sunset”? That’s Sojourn. Maybe with you at the helm?

The Layout

Check out this cockpit. When you’re not braced into the adjustable helm seats in rough seas, can you envision entertaining a half dozen friends here, either at the dock, at anchor or underway?

Or when it gets a bit cool, would you choose to enclose the cockpit with screens, or with  windows? Or might you simply adjourn to the pilothouse and fire up the diesel furnace when cruising or anchored? Or adjust the thermostat on the electric furnace when fed by shore power at the dock? Yup, life is pretty darn good aboard Sojourn.

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Notice the freshwater wash-down/shower lower right in the photo below. Sojourn’s cockpit offers a great deal of privacy should you choose to bathe al fresco while hanging on the hook. Also handy for rinsing the dinghy after a messy shore-side sortie. There is also a saltwater wash-down up on the bow for rinsing mud from the anchor.

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This boat is a heavy displacement cruising or live-aboard vessel with a very traditional and delightful “shippy” look and feel. Her weight and waterline length are a wonderful balance between sea-kindly motion and speed. She just feels very safe and smooth, but limber enough and powerful enough to climb a big wave and sled safely down the other side, if called upon to do so.

With fiberglass hull and topsides, she is trimmed out with beautiful teak rails. You choose whether to keep some or all of that teak brightly varnished or allow it to naturally weather to a gorgeous silvery sheen. Traditionally, the contrast between some wood brightly varnished, and some wood left unfinished, to serve as world class non-skid, for example, is considered to be quite elegant.

Additionally, her interior is entirely hand crafted with varnished teak joinery that is in excellent shape (refinished in 2008-9).

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On the outside, substantial teak rails on the bulwarks (toe & knee rails) and pilothouse roof add to her charm.

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Lovely sculpted teak rails/scrollwork surround her voluminous cockpit, which can be entirely enclosed with bimini windows or screens.

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Here’s a terrific cruising feature for you. A significant storage hold below the cockpit is ideal for storing long range cruising provisions, and enables complete access to the steering gear including the autopilot, generator, aft through-hulls and scuppers.

Additionally, there are very generous storage compartments in literally every compartment aboard, as well as under the sleeper sofa to starboard and behind the recliners to port.

Simply put, she sports the interior volume of a power boat, which is a sailor’s dream, and yet sails very well in winds above 12-15 knots. Yes, she will ghost along in less wind than that, which is also enjoyable and relaxing. In fact, she sails or motors VERY comfortably in 20 knots of wind or more. In any weather conditions, she powers quietly and smoothly like a fine motor yacht, and will exceed her hull speed of 9 knots if asked to do so. She won’t like it, but she’ll do it in an emergency. And unlike most any other IT40 Pilothouse on the market, she sails or motor-sails to windward surprisingly well thanks to her upgraded high aspect ratio rig.

The Finish

Sojourn’s incredible glassy finish is an attribute of her new AwlGrip finish. If you’re not familiar with AwlGrip, this is an incredible paint that’s tough as nails and doesn’t chalk up, nor does it require tedious waxing like gel coat. All it takes to keep her finish literally better than showroom fresh is just an occasional few capfuls of a polymer sealer (AwlCare) in the rinse water after washing, and applying a thin coat of sealer each season that is easily wiped off (not buffed off). This high-end yacht-finish paint, new in 2009, is amazingly durable and lasts decades. Looks like a million bucks. You could get lost gazing into that finish.

Critically Important Upgrades

One fault with most boats of this vintage is leaky windows, which can wreak havoc with bulkhead and deck core material. So we grabbed the bull by the horns and had all new premium powder-coated heavy aluminum frames with charcoal tinted tempered glass, custom manufactured by Freeman Marine, professionally installed in the pilothouse, including two opening windows on the front of the pilothouse for enhanced ventilation. While we were at it, we had new core material installed in the pilothouse bulkheads and much of the foredeck. Try to find this little ($20,000) combination of features on any other Island Trader 40 Pilothouse. All the side windows slide open with independent sliding (no see’um) screens as well. These windows are top drawer, & they do not leak.

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Aesthetic Form & Function

When you approach Sojourn, you will immediately notice that she boasts a very traditional design that draws constant comment. More than cosmetic, her significant upward sheer toward the bow enables a dry ride in a sea way.

A formidable six foot bow sprit supports an impressive array of ground tackle, including 55 pound Delta and 60 pound CQR anchors, high test chain & nylon rodes and a stout push-button Lofrans electric windlass that shares its own 165 pound 8D gel battery (Dekka Dominator!) & charger with the 5 HP electric bow thruster. This windlass is nestled in the forepeak to make this entire affair imminently practical and effortless.

As you can plainly see below, this sprit is reinforced with heavy stainless rod lateral stays, and the entire length of the sprit itself is further stiffened and capped with heavy welded stainless. This incredibly strong bow stands ready to seriously reckon with most any mild OR extreme anchoring situation you might choose to throw at her.

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Topsides, note the impressive bow pulpit with teak platform, gold (AwlGrip) scrollwork and heavy teak rub rails. In the center of the generous foredeck nests a large brightly finished teak butterfly hatch secured with foot-long cast bronze hinges of traditional design. This ‘doghouse’ bestows the walk-around queen bed with an 8 inch thick custom latex rubber pillow top mattress, in the master stateroom below, with light. This, along with the six portholes in the stateroom alone, creates a light and airy feel. And no leaks!

Below is an oil painting of Sojourn’s forepeak, and the business end of her ground tackle controls. Setting and weighing anchor is a delight up here.

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316 stainless rub strakes everywhere make for worry-free docking:

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There is an amazing expanse of open deck space for working, lounging or entertaining.

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Overall, to put it bluntly, this is one beautiful and well-appointed little ship: cosmetically impeccable, simple sail handling, voluminous pilothouse, two well-equipped steering stations, each with a gorgeous hand-turned wooden ship’s wheel & cast bronze hub, powerful & effortless hydraulic steering, below decks autopilot with integrated helm as well as wireless controls, 6KW diesel generator, A/C, two independent sources of heat (in or out of the water), a massive six cylinder 380 cubic inch 120HP Ford Lehman diesel, bow thruster, terrific ventilation, comfortable & bright pilothouse, state-of-the-art navigation and ship handling electronics…  Ahhhhh.

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See the knob protruding in the autopilot control head below? That’s the power steering knob. Yup, steer this substantial vessel effortlessly with your thumb and forefinger (or from the wireless remote, of course)…

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Notice the inside bow thruster control lower left in the photo below. Just like the one outside. Oh yeah…

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Reliability

The pundits will tell you that ninety percent of the problems with a diesel engine originate with its fuel. And since this is as much a motor yacht as it is a sailing yacht, to keep Sojourn’s three diesels (main, generator, furnace) running smoothly and reliably, she features a custom integrated fuel polishing and fuel transfer system that has kept her running faultlessly for almost a decade since it was installed. See this system depicted in the photo below.

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As you likely know, when a boat sits for periods of time without use, fuel tanks can collect water (condensation from changing temps) or accumulate (grow) algae—especially diesel. Other issues can develop when you take on fuel in places where quality is questionable.

Use of this system virtually eliminates issues from all these sources, and keeps “Big Red” running reliably–indefinitely. Additionally, the system includes two vacuum gauges (one for each fuel/water filter/separator) so you know when it’s time to change each filter element, valves to allow you to transfer fuel from one tank (side of the boat) to another, and shut-offs so you can “quarantine” known bad fuel in one tank from known good fuel in the other tank. I particularly enjoy simply flipping a switch so a continuous-duty electric pump (with fuel-proof nitrile impeller) can purge air from the fuel system after changing fuel filters instead of manually jacking the tiny awkwardly-positioned lift pump handle on the engine for ten minutes of thumb-cramping action. Yes, it’s the little things, really.

In general, Sojourn’s engine room is spacious enough to spend quality time in that “Holy Place”, as the motor “yachties” say, if for no other reason, just to admire the machinery (yup, another ‘man cave’)…

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Experts say Big Red is easily a twenty thousand hour engine before any significant overhaul is required (per Bob Smith, CEO of American Diesel Corporation, and one of the original designers of this engine – he’s been aboard Sojourn, and complimented her captain on a well maintained installation). With a mere thirteen hundred well-maintained hours, and all new belts, hoses, jump tubes, fuel line, zincs, oil and transmission coolers & heat exchanger tank (“radiator”) in 2008-9, and with the ultra-reliable Paragon transmission (if you find a boat with a Borg Warner, be careful), where do you want to go? Bahamas? Mexico?South America? A peaceful anchorage ten miles away?

Buy the boat, plan it and do it! You won’t find a more reliable engine than the Ford Lehman 120, and I challenge you to find a more reliable 120 than this one.

The 6 kilowatt generator is started, controlled and monitored from the pilothouse (note the very low hours on this particular unit):

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whereas, the business end of this stout and well-kept diesel gen-set, which is barely broken in, by the way, and also “gone through” in 2008, is in the hold beneath the cockpit with excellent access for routine maintenance. Below is the “White Brick” with the panels of her very effective sound-proofing enclosure removed for maintenance & inspection. You want access? We have access! When changing oil, filters, etc, I sit comfortably cross-legged in front of this baby and take my sweet time. Can that be said for other vessels in this class? Probably not.

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By the way, have you ever heard of Lugger diesels (that’s what this is)? Same power plants (engines & gen-sets) they install in the venerable high-end world cruising Nordhavn motor yachts. Yup, we’re clearly running with the big dogs here.

Sojourn is not a particularly fast boat under sail, but is very comfortable indeed. She powers easily at eight knots, faster than most sailboats can sail, propelled by a 24 inch 3 blade propeller. Try THAT with your average forty foot sailboat under sail OR power!

And she will easily be the fastest Island Trader 40 motorsailer under sail that you’ll find, especially to windward, due to her upgraded high aspect ratio sailing rig. It’s also comforting to know that when the wind really pipes up, her rigging is very much oversized and redundant for safety, including two heavy 5/16” 7×19 316 stainless backstays that independently connect the masthead to the transom! And with all roller furling sails, new heavy-duty Garhauer mainsail traveler (2009), contemporary rope clutches and self-tending jib, she will also be the easiest IT40 to handle under sail. Bar none.

She sails nicely at 5-6.5 knots, almost never heeling more than five to ten degrees in 15-20 knots of wind. Because of her awesome interior volume, her high freeboard, which is almost 5 feet off the water at cockpit and almost 7 feet at bow, the deck and cockpit remain extremely dry when the waves start to build.

So what does this mean? We have cruised a few thousand miles with both sailboats and motor yachts, with Sojourn holding her own. Yes, we have to back off when with other sailors if we’re motor sailing, and we have to push a bit harder to keep up with the stinkpots, but as they say out in El Caribe, “no problem, Mon!”.

For you serious coastal cruisers & Caribbean island-hoppers occasionally venturing seriously offshore, this vessel’s strength, range & versatility will serve you well. And by the way, fifteen years of experience with this marvelous vessel has shown that her big beautiful transom that contributes to her interior and cockpit comfort and safety really doesn’t present any issues with following seas as she does sweep up above the waterline at the stern, and her rudder is, put simply, huge, which makes for responsive handling at sea or in the marina, her full keel notwithstanding.

After several thousand nautical miles of cruising her (really the only cruising in her twenty-eight year young life have been in the last three years), she performed admirably and draws comments of envy everywhere we go. This includes sailors who wish they had Sojourn’s amenities and power boaters who lust after her stability at sea.

Oh, by the way, fifteen years of her life was spent in fresh water, and all but two short salt water cruises (less than three months total). The remainder of her life beyond that has been in brackish water where salt content in the water was relatively low. Her excellent condition clearly shows evidence of this.

Sojourn’s spacious head is a daily delight. The deluxe Raritan combination manual and electric toilet (you choose), and a separate sit-down tub/shower which keeps the rest of the head compartment wonderfully dry after a shower. Just like home.

The white marble vanity counter is a nice touch, and the waste tank monitor is state-of-the-art (outside-the-tank sensors makes for a very reliable monitoring system).

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The large and airy galley is a joy to cook in. With a full four-burner stove and oven, a full-size refrigerator with a separate freezer in which you can actually make ice & keep ice cream, a high volume hot/cold pressure water system with a large hot water reservoir (heated via engine heat exchanger or shore power or with the generator), and deep dual sinks, its like cooking at home.

Galley:

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Master stateroom:

      

Up to 208 gallons of fuel in two professionally manufactured & installed aircraft aluminum tanks (that replaced the original problematic black iron tanks) feed the engine, generator and a diesel furnace which is guaranteed to make the ship toasty in a matter of minutes on the crispest of mornings.

Up to 325 gallons of water in two fiberglass tanks keeps you cruising away from the dock longer, with plenty of water for showers, drinking, washing dishes or rinsing out the cockpit. A nice thing about these fiberglass water tanks is that when combined with the integrated carbon whole house filter, they actually deliver some of the best tasting drinking water you’ll find anywhere. And without the complexity and maintenance headaches of R.O. (Reverse Osmosis) filtration, and positively without the expensive hassles of a finicky water-maker. We believe water from these tanks rivals the clean taste of costly bottled drinking water. Just one ounce of 5% Hydrogen Peroxide solution for each ten gallons when you take on water keeps the water sweet for weeks, even months, and is gentle on pump seals.

By the way, whenever we’ve taken on water, we always filter it before it comes aboard (keeps crap out of our beloved tanks), as well as before it hits the faucet (to keep it drinkable sweet). The boat also sports a portable bronze water meter, so you always know exactly (to the tenth of a gallon) how much water your taking aboard.

All four of these tanks are also monitored during use by a non-electrical pneumatic (reliable) Tank Tender. Just two quick pumps on the air pump handle while pushing the tank’s knob you wish to monitor, and take the reading. That’s it.

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Electrical

A critical piece of instrumentation for the cruising sailor is that which enables you to run AC appliances, like the all-important coffee maker and microwave, from the DC house battery banks. We have a sizeable 2,500 watt inverter that enables that.

Even more critical is knowing when to charge the battery banks, either from the high output 120A alternator when the engine is running, or from the generator, when at anchor, or from shore power, when at the dock. Enter the Heart Interface control panel in the pilothouse, the nerve center of the ship’s electrical system. With this device, you always know precisely what’s going on with your electrical system and battery banks. It’s also great for determining exactly how much ‘juice’ any particular shipboard component draws individually or collectively. And this remains one of the smartest charger/regulator combinations on the market. One terrific piece of gear. Deceptively simple, but powerful. And there is a complete spare kit of this remote control center aboard.

heart interface panel

Additionally, each member of Sojourn’s electronics suite is separately fused and switched for economic electrical management. You bring on line only that which is needed at any point in time.

For example, since we have two sonar units, we usually only use one at a time, unless we’re looking for a differential reading between the two (narrow channel – which side is deeper, for example?)… The main sonar (depth meter) is on any time the autopilot and wind instruments are powered up as part of the RayMarine suite. The sonar switch depicted on the panel below is the more precise & more visual fish finder type that allows you to see fish, other underwater obstacles, and even the make-up of the bottom (soft or hard returns different type of image). We only turn this port side sonar (Garmin) on as needed.

And before you ask, the port Garmin transducer (dual frequency, 50/200 khz for precision at both deep and shallow depths respectively) and the starboard RayMarine transducer do not conflict with one another, at least not in relatively shallow water where having both on can be useful as they are cleanly segregated by the full keel. Cool, huh?

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Mechanical & Physical

This boat sports a vast amount of storage, including drawers, hanging lockers, shelves, voluminous cockpit lazarettes, under the bed and sofa, dry and usable bilge spaces, engine room and other below-decks spaces.

Additionally, a useful & pragmatic storage hold (room) underneath the cockpit absorbs the generator in its sound-proof enclosure, enables complete & open access to rudder post and below-decks autopilot equipment, as well as lots of room for bins of gear, staples and spare parts.

This hold (cargo ship terminology) even has a substantial epoxy-coated workbench with a moderately large vise permanently affixed. Gotta have a place to pound on, drill through or bend stuff, right? I call this a knee bench since when you stand next to it, it’s only knee high. You sit on the floor of the hold, with your feet hanging down into a dry bilge space underneath the bench, and your work surface is level with your belly. The bench isn’t very large, but has proven extremely useful – repeatedly. Lacking a garage, this is actually another quite comfortable ‘man cave’ (sorry ‘bout the gender reference, ladies – you know what I mean).

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Sojourn’s dinghy is an 10.5 foot AB brand rigid inflatable boat (RIB) which has its own bow locker (http://abinflatables.com/i_producto.asp), and is powered by a scrappy fifteen HP 4 stroke Yamaha outboard (http://www.yamaha-motor.com/outboard/products/subcatspecs/5/specs.aspx). Both new 2005 and will push the two of us along at 20+ knots). By the way, this RIB will actually accept an even larger motor (up to 25HP)!

This exceptional dinghy hangs from high capacity high quality AwlGrip color-matched davits by KATO Marine of Annapolis (http://www.katomarine.com/saildavits-voyager.htm). The internal tackle built into these davits easily drops and hoists this fast dinghy with relative ease.

I’ve owned seven or eight different dinghies over the years, and this is, by far, the best one I’ve ever owned. Hand-glued, inside and out, with triple-layered reinforcements at all the stress points, it’s a great boat, and pretty fast too. And like Sojourn, she has more of a shear (rise) toward the bow than any other brand, which enables a dryer ride when the anchorage raises a serious chop.

As you likely know, a RIB is a rigid and strong fiberglass V-hull below the waterline and inflatable tubes attached to that hull above the waterline. A very stable, high-capacity boat that tracks through the water very well—much better than an inflatable boat with an inflatable keel. A RIB is a deluxe dinghy, and the AB (Artigiana Battelli, hand made Italian) brand is a deluxe RIB. Ask anyone.

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Sojourn was truly designed for the live-aboard couple. Equally comfortable for the weekend cruiser or long range voyager, she motors better than she sails, yet sails quite well for a motorsailer – a true hybrid. And lets get real,folks. When the difference between a fast sailboat and a slow one is maybe three miles per hour, under sail alone, that is, and if that’s critically important to you for the 30% of the time when voyaging you have the right wind to power your boat, get a different boat. If, however, you want comfort 100% the time, speed under power for hundreds of miles at a time at a mere 1.5 gallons per hour at 6.5 to 7 knots, with a monster steadying sail to make that ride smooth and more fuel-efficient, and have the fun of hanging out all the rags on a windy day to sail into the sunset, Sojourn just might be your dream ship like she is for us.

Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. Red sails on your boat, it’s time to gloat!

Aesthetics

You just gotta see the hand-carved woodwork on her drop-dead gorgeous interior doors. Photos don’t do them justice…

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Satin varnish throughout interior with high gloss varnish highlights, from her parquet teak floors,

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to her teak bulkheads,

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to silky joinery work and beamed overheads (forgive the clutter – we’re still cruising until someone else pays the price of owning this wonderful little ship):

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to insulated curtains for keeping the light and heat out as necessary,

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to the walk-around queen bed with custom pillow-top mattress (note that even in the bedroom, there is a ton of storage behind beautiful ‘roll-top’ doors) – even has bedside end tables. Ample storage everywhere.

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They just don’t make them like this any more. Why? Too bloody expensive, that’s why.

This boat is great for short term entertaining too. For example, we’ve easily absorbed more than 20 guests on moonlight cruises. Then we send them to their own boats at night (please!). As we like to say, after analyzing her floor plan and doing the math on her specifications, as well as our own proclivity, “she sleeps 4 (preferably 2), eats 6 to 10, and drinks 37”.

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Motorsailers are always a compromise, as is true for any boat, but this is the best balance we’ve found in this size and price range – by far. No exceptions—at least for us (comfort, reliability, safety, stability).

With our origins as hard-core sailors, we begrudgingly acknowledged long ago that in most areas, we would inevitably be under power sixty to seventy percent of the time, wishful thinking notwithstanding.

With this epiphany in hand, we decided that motoring quietly and comfortably was definitely a priority for us. But we still wanted serious wind power for that 30 to 40% of the time when we had serious wind. Additionally, our trawler (motor yacht) friends, who we can very handily cruise with, look at our steady non-seasick motion in choppy weather. As they are being tossed about, they see us with our beautiful red sails charging steadily through rough waters. Best of the best.

Documentation

As an author and photographer, I’ve dedicated thousands of hours over the years to documenting, through words and pictures, this yacht’s specifications, history, improvements, maintenance, as well as some of cruising experiences with her. I’ve extensively documented her refits, upgrades, and routine maintenance, and this blog is just another example of the rich and well-documented history of this marvelous little ship. Her life and times are literally an open book… two, in fact.

I’ve also authored two books with Sojourn as the central character.

The first book documented our 2,100 nautical mile voyage through North America’s great river system from Minnesota to Florida. Massive flooding of near epochal proportions (at least, for us), made this trip much more than just a boat delivery job. For a free review and ordering information, see http://www.blurb.com/my/book/detail/520278.

The second book documented her detailed $49,000 restoration in 2009. For a free review and ordering information, see http://www.blurb.com/my/book/detail/1433357.

Between the two books, you’ll find these two stories are told via thousands of high quality photos and over five hundred pages of text that I’d like to think you’d find at least mildly droll.

Additionally, the boat comes with a DVD containing thousands of photos and videos, archiving her history as first a wonderful weekender to later a full-time live-aboard for a short time, to a tropical cruising yacht with destinations along the shores of the Gulf of Mexico, the Florida peninsula, and the beautiful tropical Florida Keys.

We’ve relentlessly kept Sojourn up to date with state of the art navigation systems, cosmetic improvements, anal-retentive maintenance and regular use. You will not find a less neglected, nor a more loved yacht than this one.

Having said that, we find that fifteen years on the water in this marvelous yacht has fulfilled our nautical needs, and now it’s time to share her with an equally loving new owner.

At the end of the day, now, more than ever, Sojourn continues to be a real head turner in every port to which we sail, but we’ve also found her to also be an extremely capable cruising yacht – with beauty and brawn. And with her maturity, she seems to become increasingly capable and more beautiful. Too bad we aren’t.

So if you’ve made it all the way to the end of this very long monologue, you might enjoy a few videos taken with my little Canon PowerShot pocket camera – somewhat crude, but you’ll get the idea.

First, the boat underway & some of her equipment…

Now, some clips on why we cruise:

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Do you like what you see? Well, reluctantly, after fifteen years of thoroughly enjoying this little ship, it’s finally the time in our lives where we must move on, for reasons not related to the vessel.

This boat is now for sale. I know several of you have been waiting for this moment, so if you’re interested, I suggest you contact me soonest. Post a comment to this blog, and I’ll get back with you (assuming we’re not out for one or more final cruises).

Later, ‘gators…

Posted by: gjurrens | December 7, 2010

Yet Another Journey – Sojourn Soon to be Sold?

Kay’s cousin Susan from Chicago is visiting, and while it’s plunging into the 40’s at night here in Paradise, we still took Sojourn on an overnight sortie to watch the lighted boat parade at the northern end of Charlotte Harbor. It was less than twenty miles up, and I definitely needed to ensure our diesel furnace was operational before we left just before high tide early afternoon last Saturday.

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Yes, for you northerners, we saw lots of dolphins like we usually do, and they rode our bow for a good bit of the trip. Still fascinating to watch. This time, we watched as they’d open their blow hole just before surfacing, and as they’d close it again just before diving. Cool beans, kids.

Later, staying out of the wind by hiding behind the pilothouse this chilly afternoon was one agenda:

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But we had heard on the news a forecast that Minneapolis was going to be blanketed by almost six inches of new snow overnight, and Buffalo was to get nearly sixty inches! So I guess we have nothing to bitch about.

Quite a few boats hunkered down in the same anchorage hoping for a good view of the boat parade:

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If you’re interested in a clumsy video I created of the boat parade as it thoughtfully passed within a hundred yards of our bow, check it out:

 

After the parade, we bundled up for the chilly evening. Susan scored the down comforter…

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Well, faithful readers, some of you may be shocked to learn that we are actually considering selling Sojourn.

This marvelous little ship has been such a major part of almost every aspect of our lives, but after fifteen years with her, spending time maintaining her systems and her marvelous appearance has lost some of its luster. There is a reason this boat shines like a new boat instead of the twenty-eight year young yacht that she is.

Right now, she’s in the best shape she has ever been. In fact, she’s far better than new, and far better than when we bought her fifteen years ago. So now, after a major refit, it seems the right time to think about sharing her with her next owner.

Jeez, this is killin’ me, but it’s the right thing to do (I guess).

At least initially, we’re going to list her ourselves instead of employing a broker. This will allow us to price her more competitively. After all, we’re in no real hurry to be deprived of her as a member of our family. Almost like giving her up for adoption.

In fact, I’ll probably use this blog for some initial marketing, so if any of you are interested, watch this space. Lots of photos and description to follow. If any of you are interested, we’d obviously give y’all first consideration. We do need to find a good home for her, and we’re not in any hurry to do so.

I’m reminded that this is a normal thing, but somehow it seems perverse to us, particularly for me personally. Maybe we’re just so accustomed to using her, or just to have her available to us on a whimsical day sail or for a major voyage. Looking at the expense of just having her and enjoying a few spectacular voyages annually, however, plus maybe half a dozen shorter day sails and week-long (or less) anchorages each year, it is becoming increasingly difficult to justify hoarding her all for ourselves. Seems selfish and wasteful, does it not?

But more significantly, if I’m completely honest with myself, I’m reaching the point where working on her isn’t as much fun for me as it used to be.

I guess we’re also subliminally deciding to spend more time on other stuff, including travel, and that’s helping us decide that maybe it’s time to allow someone else to enjoy her as much as we have for so long.

Maybe, as Yoda might mumble, “Restless, I’ve become…”

For my part, I’m now enamored of all aspects of photography more than ever, in addition to a hundred other diversions that retirement has enabled, including a resurgence in my interest in skydiving.

So now I’m diving (no pun intended) into the aspects of actually creating and running a small photography business. No longer having a staff to hammer all the myriad details for me like I had at IBM finds me uncharacteristically spending a great deal of time learning about accounting methods and business software, registering my new business at the federal, state and local level, seeking out a trustworthy CPA/QuickBooks accounting software expert, etc. The list seems endless, but I find it exciting, so what the hell, right? A reminder that my web site can be found at www.GeneJurrensPhotography.com. Note that most of the images on this site are not fine art images (intended to wow the viewer). Rather, most of the images are geared toward marketability with photo buyers at book & mag publishing houses. Great quality, yes, but more aimed at day-to-day photojournalism than post card perfect landscapes, for example.

I’m still carving out time to continue learning this craft, and that’s enjoyable as well.

I will miss that deck moving beneath my feet though. As recently as yesterday, negotiating a 25 knot squall, you can’t get that kind of excitement from reading a book or taking a picture. So if it takes a year or two to sell the old girl for a reasonable price, that would not break my heart (at least, not as quickly).

Watch this space, friends and neighbors.

Later, ‘gators…

Posted by: gjurrens | November 14, 2010

Kay’s New Land Dinghy

After selling Kay’s old car on Craig’s List, with an elapsed time from posting the listing to counting four thousand dollars in twenties on the hood in the dark, she made it a whole three weeks before she simply had to have another car. Who am I to disagree?

Enter another gold car into the family yesterday, in addition to my gold Murano and our gold golf cart…  I guess we have a gold standard…

kay's new lexus es350 20101113

This morning I made it my mission to pair my Bluetooth phone to the car’s ‘in-house’ hands free phone system, as well as figuring out seat/mirror/steering wheel memory system and it’s six speed transmission – selectable for full auto or ‘slap-shifting’ (can’t wait to put that little feature through its paces), etc. etc. etc.

We’re not yet sure how we feel about this push button start/stop thing yet. Not putting a key into a slot is reminiscent of losing the foot switch on the floor to start a car in the thirties (and forties?), and now regaining it, but about three feet higher on the dash. But the remote has to be in the immediate vicinity, or the car won’t start.

I do like the intuitive way you unlock and lock the car – just get anywhere near it with the ‘remote’ (key fob) in your pocket or hand, and the car does the rest. Plus the position of the driver’s seat, steering column, outside mirrors and foot pedals automatically adjust to whomever’s remote is closest. So once you get in the car, after the steering column descends from its ease-of-entry position, everything is just as you left it, even though another driver may have made changes.

I also like the feature we also have on the Murano – especially during SW Florida summers – hold the unlock button down on the remote and the windows roll down to let the heat escape.

Well, we haven’t bought a car in years, so for all we know, all this stuff is pretty much standard on any higher end car. Cool to us right now, though!

Cheers. Gene

Posted by: gjurrens | November 8, 2010

Fun Photo Shoots Add to Inventory

While attending a statewide photographer’s convention (tax-deductible, of course), I enjoyed venturing out on a couple of interesting photo shoots. One at the beach, another of animals from a wildlife preserve. Check it out (some, not all, of these photos on my photography web site):

Pier & beach Images of folks doin’ their thang:

View Naples Pier & Beach

A few wildlife Images:

View Non-People Images

The playful Great Golden Iguana made a stunning model for some photos above, one of which I turned into a vivid oil painting below. Great Iguanas were imported to SW Florida as a domesticated pet. Released into the wild, they have bred and overrun barrier islands such as Sanibel. But this afternoon, a playful ‘golden’ and I had a good time together.

wm great gold iguana hanging head down 2010110740_Painting sig

Have you ever gone fishing and caught a sea gull? Happens frequently ’round these parts:

This particular story has a happy ending:

Ever see a psychopath try to bite the head off a parrot, and gets rewarded with a chunk of his nose chewed off instead? Actually, this was a photo that wasn’t as sharp in focus as I would have liked, so I turned a photo of a guy playing with a parrot it into a photo painting. Use your imagination!

bird pecking mans nose 2010110790_effects

Now you may notice, that most of my images are of people, with only some of ‘non-people’. Most look real (what the eye sees) versus surreal (what the mind can imagine). This is because I’m focusing on a high quality editorial (versus commercial) database (inventory) of marketable photos, and far less focus (right now) on eye-catching art or decor photos. The latter are more fun, but far less marketable. Why?

There are precisely 3.1415 gazillion photographers out there far more talented than yours truly, most of whom make little or no money at their craft. This ole boy is looking to make some bucks by having fun capturing images that specific photo buyers NEED.

Like Rohn Engh, a long-time successful stock photographer and author says, photo buyers hang beautiful eye-catching photos on their office wall that they LIKE, but they write checks for quality marketable photos that they NEED.

Beyond the prerequisite of being a quality image, a marketable composition must contain people, some sort of symbol, a meaningful but un-distracting background, and involvement or engagement. That’s the formula, so that’s my target. Time will tell if I’m whistling in the wind or dancing with the stars. Either way, how can I lose if I’m having a good time?

So after spending a delightful weekend in Naples (Florida) at the Florida Camera Council Convention, it’s back to the minutae of registering my fictitious company name (since “Gene Jurrens Photography” doesn’t include my full legal name, it’s considered legally ‘fictitious’ in the eyes of the Department of State and must be registered for a fee), Federal registration (for an Employer Identification Number, or EIN for filing taxes & deductions with the IRS), state registration (to become a licensed tax dealer with the privilege of collecting and reporting and paying state income tax), county registration (licenses or affidavits for zoning and to conduct, Internet & Photography businesses, as well as county sales, use and surtax collection/reporting). Thank goodness no city licenses are needed since we live outside our city limits.

I’m sure I’m missing something, but most of these require commensurate fees and all require lots of paperwork. And this is only for a sole proprietorship! If and when we incorporate, that’s another whole level of registration, accounting and record-keeping.

I now have a whole new respect for any small business, and what they had to make happen just to declare, “We’re Open!”.

I’m also now prodigiously learning tax law and double-entry accounting, which is clearly taking time away from taking pictures and writing stories, but is an amusing diversion in its own right.

Absurdity is often the most sublime form of comedy.

For example, did you know that the state of Florida, unlike elsewhere, charges a “use tax” on stuff I use to operate my business. So I can (tax) deduct the cost of my camera and lenses (a couple thousand bucks). BUT since I use them in my business (versus reselling them to a customer), I have to pay a use tax to the state of Florida at the end of my first full quarter of doing business, comprising 6% of the asset’s value! But I don’t get to deduct (with the IRS) the expense of buying them until next April 15th. Huh? Is that a hoot, or what? I’m snickering all the way to my checkbook. Since I’m a sole proprietor (owner), the tax bill must come out of my personal checking account, so we pay now for some benefit later… hmmmm… and I thought this was going to be easy…

It really is all fun, though. Like putting together a giant jigsaw puzzle, but hopefully with an occasional payday. I’m also learning new techniques of digital asset management. Imaging taking tens of thousands of digital images, and keeping them organized by image ID, topic, high quality print versions, crunched web versions (for quick downloading), and watermarked versus unwatermarked versions, while allowing quick access to any individual image or version virtually instantaneously. Quite an exercise in data management. Almost there!

Cheers!

Posted by: gjurrens | October 24, 2010

First Photo Shoot: Seven Seas Cruising Association

A tidbit that you “yachties” (a British colloquialism, of course) might find amusing.

Kay and I attended the annual SSCA West Coast (of Florida) rendezvous yesterday at the Isles Yacht Club in Punta Gorda. Interesting, but what makes this a bit of a milestone for me is that yesterday I completed my first photo shoot for the Seven Seas Cruising Association at this event. What do you think? High res, of course…

2010 10 23_0099_edited-5 wm20102391

Aside from having to hurry a bit to keep almost a hundred folks from bolting and scattering, and getting them gathered by cajoling, threatening (jokingly), shouting to be heard, and the banner being a bit crooked, nice effect, don’t you think?

You see, I’m also excited that my cottage industry web site is now live, content is watermarked to protect from illegal copying of images we’ve worked so hard and traveled so far at great expense to acquire, and the shingle is officially hung. Biz cards are here (cool, no?)

Stationery and volume mailers on the way. Life is good, to be sure.

Be sure to check out the new site at www.GeneJurrensPhotography.com. My specialty? “Close to water… always”. My business description for search engines and networking sites: ” We specialize in marine- and boat-oriented images, as well as water-oriented travel destinations.” We’ll see…

As I build my inventory of stock photos, I hope to be selling more and more of them to photo buyers at some of the large (mag and book) publishing houses. That will be my primary marketing thrust. I’ll also be advertising, at a minimum, on FB, Twitter and Google.

Watch this space and please do wish me luck. Cheers.

Posted by: gjurrens | October 10, 2010

Greek Islands Sailing Video & New Business

OK, gang, a few new developments that might interest you…

First, we just finished a glorious three day two night anchorage at one of our favorite new haunts here in SW Florida – west of Useppa Island, just across the ICW from Cabbage Key.

 

Perfect weather, great food, never went ashore, just relaxed. We were planning on staying a bit longer, but Kay decided she wanted to enjoy our weekly “date night” ashore. Five dolphin sightings, one so close that I got misted by one of his/her blows! Wonderfully weird to see one of their eyes checking us out when right alongside the boat, and then get blown upon by warm salty mist. Yup, wonderfully weird.

Second, I’ve decided to turn one of my retirement passions into a business. Enter “Vivid Images by Gene Jurrens”, also known as VIP, or Vivid Image Productions, for video production. I plan to focus mostly on what’s known as editorial stock photography, which means I take a lot of pictures of people in their workaday lives, including in some exotic locations, and submit them to hundreds, and ultimately thousands of photo buyers for publishing houses. Each house may publish several to dozens of magazines, hundreds to thousands of books, etc. These buyers source specialized stock (acquired photo “inventory”) images from freelance editorial stock photographers like me.

For example, after shooting over four thousand images in Greece, below are two of my favorites. The first captures a veteran fisherman at sunrise  working his nets on the island of Paros in the Greek Cyclades Islands. Note how he stretches the section he’s repairing with his right big toe. This image will be a moneymaker some day.

Another favorite – a mountaintop hotel called Leostasi on Ios, also in the Cyclades. A beautiful place overlooking the Aegean Sea. That night was almost mystical, and I think I captured that mood with this multiple exposure image:

When I have thousands of images of this caliber in circulation with a few hundred photo buyers instead of a handful, I’ll either be a successful editorial stock photographer, or I’ll be dead

A secondary branch of this business, less lucrative, but more fun, will aim at producing photo art, comprising both stills and videos, paintings from photos, even on canvas for very special images. I especially enjoy seamlessly stitching together many images to create dramatic panoramas. High dynamic range photography, by overlaying and aligning multiple different exposures of the same image presents challenges in producing spectacular images, but the results can seem larger than life. I’d like to think that ultimately, a few of my images might even be collectibles (humility is not one of my character faults, obviously).

Third, I’ve just finished producing my first video production of our sailing trip to the Greek Islands. It’s basically a half hour show, if you were to inject a few commercials. Actual run time of twenty-one minutes. Check out the four+ minute trailer (preview) at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fy9nEgP7EZg. I’m told it’s not a bad effort for my first production using a hand held video camera in some pretty elemental conditions. 

So why the heck am I doing this? First, I love photography, as well as writing. Some of these same photo buyers are also copy (writing) editors for their publishing houses, and this seems like an ideal opportunity to get wired backstage into the publishing world for two of my retirement passions – photography and writing.

Second, our savings are dissipating at an alarming rate, and a bit of supplementary income, on my own timetable, doing things we enjoy anyway, seems to make a great deal of sense to us.

But the real reason that looms largest for us right now is making my investment in photography hardware, software and books, as well as our recent sailing trip to Greece all tax deductible.

Yes, kids, this fixed income thing is a brand new bag, to be sure, so why not earn a few bucks while we play? Maybe even immortalize some wonderful memories we’re collecting at no small expense?

So, if you’re interested in becoming a patron of the arts, check out my style and some images at www.flickr.com/photos/genoflicks, and leave a comment for me here and there. I’ll be adding many more images of our trips to the Midwest, the Florida Keys, Greece, and a few reprocessed vintage shots from our sailing adventures in the British Virgin Islands, Leewards and Windward Islands. So check back once in awhile. You can subscribe to observe new stuff that gets uploaded if you wish. I look forward to hearing from you!

Also, just one more plug. If you have digital photos that you’d like retouched (“youngified”, for example) or repaired, I’m developing a pretty skilled hand at that too.

Or if you have a photo, perhaps of your family, or your boat) that you’d like turned into a painting (watercolor, oil, pen and ink, colored pencil or chalks, etc.), and sent back to you digitally, or enlarged and printed on fine art paper or canvas, I’d be delighted to work with you on such projects at very competitive rates (yes, you can afford me).

So let me know if you’re interested, and leave an email address. I’ll be setting up a dedicated web site soon. Thanks in advance for your business.

By the way, just for fun, I’d remind you that I also keep a writing blog at www.genowrites.wordpress.com (“With Pen in Hand”). Obscure stuff that might wiggle your weird-o-meter.

Later y’all…

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