The beginning of Grampstr's Endeavour

Hello fellow boat lovers! I am a new owner of a 40 foot power catamaran. However, the journey was not one of simply making a decision to buy a boat. Oh no! Like most things in life there is a story, nay a journey that has brought me to owning this boat. It all started back in 1974 when I had to sell my 1972 35 foot pacemaker tunnel drive house boat. Since then I have dreamed of being behind the helm of my own boat. I shared this dream with anybody who would listen, colleagues and friends, family and even my {future} wife, Jennifer. It was on our first date {July 28, 1981} that I originally shared that dream with her. Yep, you read that correctly – I talked about my dreams of owning another boat on my very first date with her.

Fast forward 33 years; years that my dream of owning a boat took the back burner to marriage, kids and a successful career. It was in the spring of 2007 when I started reviving the dream of a boat. All of my children were beginning new chapters in life – careers and finishing college – and it was time that I started a new chapter too. This one had to include a boat.

In an attempt to find the perfect boat and do our due diligence I started reading the Passage Maker magazine. Almost immediately I realized that I was not the only one out there dreaming about owning a boat. I knew I had to tell Jennifer about this new revelation, because she thought I had lost my marbles with these new aspirations of owning a boat in retirement. While I read in Passage Maker magazine that some of these people not only dreamt of owning a boat in retirement, but also sold everything they owned to boat 100% of the time, Jennifer assured me that our path would not be the same.

In case it was not evident, Jennifer keeps me grounded and thinking straight.

Boating magazines provide a great deal of information, especially Passage Maker. For example, one of the editions talked about the Trawler University courses that are offered at each of their TrawlerFests. Figuring this was the best way to experience a boat up close and personal, Jennifer and I signed up for the Mystic Seaport Trawler University that was hosted on July 25th and July 26th 2007. While there I took a course on boat maintenance while Jennifer took a two-day course on boating handling for women. This course was offered by Sea Sense, a company that is a woman only captain charter group!

Best part of the weekend: Jennifer came away hopeful, positive and optimistic that she could handle owning and operating a boat!

Later in September of that same year we experienced another TrawlerFest at Solomon’s Island in Maryland. I thought it was important to have firsthand experience and knowledge of boating if we were ever going to own one. With each of our experiences and my endless research, Jennifer and I began to better recognize what we liked and disliked on each of the boats.

Through these experiences I knew I wanted a boat with a bridge and access points from the inside; and, Jennifer knew she wanted a boat with a bridge that also had a limited amount of unshielded sun, so we knew a hardtop was a requirement. Jennifer also wanted plenty of livability so she had the option of getting away from me. Because of that we knew we had to have at least two state rooms.

Some of the other very important criteria included the following:

  • Diesel twin engines that would not use more than 5 gallons per hour running at trawler speed of 8 knots
  • Low maintenance both internally and externally
  • Boat built in the United States of America
    • Interesting side note: most trawlers are built outside of the United States
    • A boat that would fit our financial plan

It is very important to know exactly what you want in a boat and how that will affect your financial situation. It is critical to have a financial plan in tact before you begin the process of buying a boat. For our financial plan, we expected to buy a boat in the summer of 2012 prior to my 2013 retirement. However, things changed when the financial market took a dive in 2008. We were worried we may not be able to afford our boat because our financial plan would be substantially affected by the economic downturn. Luckily for us, our 401k rebounded and rose to closer to what we needed by 2010. So the search continued.

In our continued search for the perfect boat we did as much research as we could and attempted to narrow our list of potential boat options. Through many lists and conversations about potential boats, the Endeavour Power Cat was never mentioned, but they became the obvious front runner in 2010. The company met all of our requirements, which was a major positive for us. The decision to go with Endeavour Power Cat was a result of a well constructed website that hosted the most information on the manufacturing of their yachts than any other trawler website we had come across. Not only that, the website was loaded with pictures; and, we all know pictures are worth one – thousand words.

Still unwilling to fully commit, I had to take a slight hiatus from the research process of finding a boat when I ended up in Clearwater, Florida for business in April, 2011. However, much to my surprise, I found out Endeavour’s manufacturing facility was 1 mile from my hotel. I could not imagine missing the opportunity to see firsthand what I had recently seeing on their website. So I ventured down the street to take a peek at their luxury yachts. It was everything I had seen on the website and so much more.

I was able to meet the President of Endeavour, Bob Vincent, and we spent several hours together. Bob is an incredibly talented person and very generous; he spent several hours talking with me and answering the slew of questions I had. The detailed conversation and impromptu question & answer session really put be at ease. Bob was not shy about the hard hit the boating industry was taking with the economic tailspin; he told me Endeavour did not have a 48 foot TC on the line, but they did have a 40 foot TC demo that I could take a look at. In addition to the demo, Endeavour Power Cat was in the process of building a 40 ft TC and designer their 44 ft TC. I was able to walk through a 44 ft TC. It was the owners’ boat and they happened to be doing routine maintenance on it! It was absolutely amazing to have the experience!

In addition to talking with Bob and seeing their 44 ft TC, I was able to tour the facility, see the dedicated staff building high quality trawlers, and we even toured the boat yard in St. Petersburg. It was there that I first saw the 40 ft Trawler. It was there that I fell in love. It had everything we were looking for – incredible rooms, blue water capabilities, low maintenance and full efficiency and a total of 3 gallons of gas per hour at 8 knots. I was sold on this boat immediately and knew it was the boat I would buy in 2012.

Stay Tuned!