I'm sorry but it's going to take some more convincing to get me on board. My dad loves boats and even more than his love for boats, he loves people who own them or want to own them. He's owned a boat yard for 25 years and is in the business of repairing ocean going boats. Ocean going boats need a lot of maintenance after spending a lot of time at sea and when things go wrong they often go very wrong (these repairs have made him a very rich man). Most of the boats he works on need to be dry docked to perform the work and finding that kind of capability is going to be tough at a time of crisis. I also spent time (two summers) on a fishing vessel (scallops) and I've seen some pretty rough sea's during the summer months, I wouldn't want to see the same sea's during the winter months. If something goes terribly wrong with this BOV it's not like you can abandon it and walk out.
I also have my mind made up that a family needs a butt wad of prep's if things go south as bad as some predict, and it would take a pretty large vessel that could pack it all. I can't see myself gardening on the deck for more food and I predict that bartering at ports could be tough unless I have the right things to barter with, which could run dry too. I suppose I could take time now and start stashing stuff around the world, but that would take some rare resources too.
What about fuel? Is that always going to be available and will I always be able to afford to buy it. Sails work great, but what if a storm takes out my mast, days from any port, with pirates sailing about? I'm also at the mercy of bigger and faster vessels running me down and taking what I got. Or lets say someone gets sick and I'm in the middle of the ocean with no time to find a port with a capable doctor, if I even knew where to find one.
I can keep going, but what's the point. I respect all that at least have a plan, especially one that is thought out and in line with there expertise, but I don't think I could do it. No, I'm pretty darn sure I couldn't do it.
I'm not interested in "selling you on the idea". It would be dangerous for me to do that.
I had a long message typed up where I addressed each of your concerns. Something happened to my browser and I lost it.
But the bottom line is this. I'm part of a long line of mariners. My forefathers were crossing oceans before America was America. They did it in boats smaller than mine, and with none of the support you listed as a requirement.
Most boat owners are not mariners. They do not have the skills to live at sea. They do it as a hobby. Me and my kind, the adventure mariner community, that's not how we do it.
When I was growing up, my dad drydocked our boat for three weeks, total, out of the entire time I was on it. And we never did it in North America. We did our repairs ourselves, usually while in the water.
As for medical care and the like - I cut myself bad with a filet knife once when I was 12 or 13. My dad informed me that I was old enough to do my own sutures. No novacaine. I healed up just fine.
Am I making my point here? Mariners and boaters are not the same thing.
As for barterable goods, I'm going to have a boat. I can pick up bananas in Puerto Rico and bring them to Texas or Florida or Lousiana. It's called commerce. Seafarers have made a living this way since the beginning of time. I know a banana is not a necessity, but it might make life a little better, and there will be a market for them.
If can transport oranges or strawberries from Florida to New York or Maine.
I can bring cigars from Honduras.
I may even be able to get you some good Japanese porn for the right price.
I could list a thousand possibilities. In a nutshell, the way seafaring commerce works is that I ship stuff from here to there safely, and make money, or trade for food, or whatever the going currency is. The Phonecians were doing this before the time of Christ. Shipping goods from here to there - that's a valuable service, and one that people will trade, or barter, or pay for.
Now you and I differ as to what we think the rest of the world will look like after a collapse in the US, and that difference is just going to be the way of things. I'm done trying to convince you that the US is going to take everything down in total ruin when it falls.
What we really need to do is sit down and figure out how our particular skills can help each other and our respective communities, not lay into each other's plans. Because the bottom line is that we have more in common than not. We're all survivors. What we should be doing, rather than picking at each other, is trying to figure out what we can do to help/benefit each other if need be.
I don't want to sell you on the boat idea. Becoming a true mariner takes a lifetime. Not weeks or months or even years, but a lifetime of training and experience alone at sea. I could 't make you a sea captain if we started now and went at it full bore for five years. What I was hoping would pop up here on this forum was a few people who might be interested in staying in touch and figuring out how to hook up in the aftermath of a crisis so we can work together to make life better.
That is, if things are stable enough in North America to merit me staying here. That remains to be seen.