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buying a boat 2

i asked the question a couple of weeks ago about buying a 70 ft - 12ft 6 inch widebeam (narrow boat) the most useful answer came from Rupert Smedley thank-you. i have been looking in to this for a few years now and a couple of years ago i subscribed to this magazine and one other but found they were of little use to me for the advice i was looking for. in no way is this a criticism i realise you must cater for the majority of your readers.i realise the size of boat will restrict me to only a few rivers or canals in the uk that is not a problem as most cruising will be in France. i have looked at dutch barges but prefer the look and closeness to the water of the narrow boat plus i would not want to dismantle the roof every time i went under a low bridge. so when i sit down with a few chosen builders i would like to know what i need built into the boat. i learnt from my father many years ago not to take advice from the person you are buying from. so any advice on the following would be appreciated. hydraulic steering by wheel while sitting, with all controls in front of me on the stern, hydraulic bow and stern thrusters. what size batteries/ generator/ inverter would i need to be totally self sufficient, the boat would have air conditioning to both bedroom and lounge plus all the other home comforts without having to turn something of when using something else what is the maximum sizes without adding up all the watts then dividing by some number and dividing by another, can self efficiency be achieved? could a remote control be installed for steering so i could pass through locks without holding other boats up, as i will be solo cruising for part of the year. would a flat bottom with a chine be any help with handling. i would want to use the roof for sitting and eating when stationary so what thickness of steel for skeleton and skin would the boat need to allow four or five people to be on roof also i cannot believe the same thickness of steel for a 58ft - 7ft boat is adequate for the size of boat i am talking about as the longer something is the weaker it becomes and the more bendable. i like under floor heating but Reading these pages on advice Waterways World are not so keen on it. what is the best way of keeping the engine and generator as quiet as possible. the list goes on i will save the others for another day. i would appreciate as much advice as possible. thank-you for listening. p.s cost is not the most important consideration

Asked by: Mr Vernon Whitehair  | 5.52pm, Monday 18 July

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