Friday, July 22, 2011

#10 Heavy Selene Trawler Traffic in Alaska

So far we have passed 11 Selene Trawlers cruising Alaska this summer, more than any other builder.  It's as though there's another Selene in every port and anchorage.  Perhaps the fleet should organize an Alaskan Selene Rendezvous?  I've probably left someone out, but here's the list so far:

1. Z-Worthy, a Selene 48, Z-Worthy Blog
2. Tranquility. a Selene 53
3. Raindancer, a Selene 59
4. Peregrine, a Selene 53
5. Morning Star, a Selene 53
6. Spirit, a Selene 55, Spirit Blog
7. Elipsis, a Selene 59
8. Porosity, a Selene 59
9. Maritime, a Selene 47
10. Oriana, a Selene 53
11. Kononia, a Selene 59 *

There are two other Selenes we've heard are in Alaska (see the Spirit Blog) but we haven't yet run across.  They are:

12. Sojourn, a Selene 53
13. Moonstar, a Selene 62

So including the Wild Blue, there are 14 Selene Trawlers (owners) presently cruising.  That is pretty amazing!

* Note: Just like in sports, some records have an asterisk for special situations.  We ran into the crew of Kononia on a Juneau street last month.  We wondered just where their boat was moored. After several beers among the screaming people inside the Red Dog Saloon, the Kononia crew finally admitted to cruising to Juneau in a jet plane, instead of their beautiful Selene.  Oh well.


  1. thanks again for your blog and photos. Quite a list of the Selenes--I noticed all but two of the 14 trawlers are 53 or greater. What are the considerations between the 47 and say the 53 or 59?

    Alan Muskett

  2. Hi Alan: I think the main difference between the 47-49 models versus the 53-60 models is the 3rd stateroom. The 53 model is by far the most popular Selene. All the boats are ocean crossing capable and a Selene 48 is currently doing a world cruise. Best to take a look at the builder's website where all the specifications are posted. Also you can read owners experiences at Good luck.

  3. Alex I was wondering what your thoughts are on the blue hull which I love. How much of an added hassle is it? Also, I have looked at a Selene 55 wide body--do you think the loss of the port walkaround would be a problem for you? Thanks so much.

    Alan Muskett blog fan

  4. Hi Alan: I too think the blue hull looks great. It does show the salt spray when it drys, so you tend to want to rinse it after a day of big seas. After 6 years, the blue is starting to dull where the fenders rub between hull and dock. This is reduced by placing fenders fixed to the dock so that they contact the hull on the rub rail. We do that now but didn't for the first 5 years. Since the colored Selene hulls are painted, small scratches are repaired with touch-up paint which we've needed to do a couple times. So all-in-all not a lot of extra upkeep and I would go with a painted hull again. Regarding the walk-around, we just find it easier to dock the boat. Line handling is easier especially when single handing. Also, to me, the symmetric cabin looks better aesthetically, but I'm an old time boater. There are hundreds of good looking Nordhavns and Selenes with wide-body styling.

  5. Hello Alex:

    Would you compare your Selene 53 against a Sea Ray 55 Sedan? We are going to retire in less than 3 years and would like to travel the Alaskan islands. If the prices were the same, would you trade?

    Thank you in advance for your thoughts.


  6. Hi Michael: The Sea Ray 55 and Selene 53-55 are two different style boats. The Sea Ray is lighter, faster and much more costly to operate. The Selene is heavy, slow and less costly to operate. The Sea Ray at 23 knots cruise burns 50 gph ($200/hr) and goes 320 miles but gets there 3 times faster. The Selene at 8 knots cruise burns 5 gph ($32/hr) and goes 1700 miles. Alaska cruising above 10 knots or so becomes a bit hazardous due to the debris (logs) in the water. I like a boat like Selene that provides easy walk around access as this helps in docking, etc. So as you've probably guessed, I won't be willing to trade. Hope this helps in your purchasing decision. Alex

  7. Hello Alex:

    Thanks for the information. I did not realize the cost of ownership for the Sea Ray per hour was that costly but I could assume throttling down the Sea Ray may help in the fuel burn.

    Not to wear out my welcome but would you provide your insights into a comparable Nordhavn 43 or 46. Would they be comparable to your Selene? They seem pricer but are comparable as trawlers.

    Thanks again,


  8. Hi Michael: Yes the Nordhavn line is a well-built, ocean capable boat. You do see many Nordhavns cruising in Alaska. Both the 43 and 46 are excellent choices IMO. I only have two issues with these boats: the high cost and asymmetrical cabin house. The Nordhavn cabin house is built all the way to the port side. This loses the port side walk-around near to water level. This makes it more difficult to tie up on the port side and Selene and Nordhavn folks I know with asymmetrical boats are always asking dockmasters for a starboard tie up, or backing the boat in the slip. When the weight is not centered, the boat tends to list, so the manufacturers tend to offset below decks machinery and add lead to compensate. However you do get more interior volume and, for sure, neither of these issues has dampened the sales of Nordhavns. But, sorry, I still wouldn't trade for one unless it was built symmetrical. Cheers, Alex

  9. Hello

    I am a development TV producer always on the hunt for new shows and larger than life characters. Currently, I am working for a large cable network and developing a show called, Life on the Hook - which would follower sea-steaders, live aboards and house boaters alike who live mostly self sufficient lives at sea for extended periods of time. Now we just need to find our self- sustainable boaters who live life on the hook! Think Life Below Zero or Mountain Men but on a boat. Salty old sea dogs wanted. Ha! Know anybody that fits the bill?

    So if catching rain water and filtering it, fishing and growing vegetables on your boat, using composting toilets is your thing - I would love to speak with you and hear more! IF this isn’t you, but you know who would be perfect - please send them to me as well. Thanks and look forward to hearing from you.

    Bryan Severance
    c: 732.673.2456

  10. Hello Alex

    We are thinking about purchasing a boat in the next year or two and just starting to do our homework. We have bare boat chartered in the San Juans and gulf islands the last 10 years mainly on a Grand Banks 52. We like the boat but we also like the looks and interior of the Selene 53. I'm trying to better understand the maintenance cost for the Selene 53 but I'm having difficulty finding specific information. Can you share your experience? Thanks for the help.

  11. Hi Charlie:

    First the GB 52 is a fine boat. We chartered several GB 42s and a 46 during our charter years and the GB is a proven, quality builder. And of course we think the Selene line is of similar quality. I would say the maintenance cost is probably similar as well, once the boat is set up with the systems you like. We've had our Selene for 9 years with almost 5000 hours on the main engine, and once we had the systems installed the way we liked, the maintenance cost has been minimal.

    We do the main and generator engine servicing ourselves. Oil, fluids and various filters cost about $350 each change and we do this 3 times a year. We spend about $200 on water maker filters per year. Transmission oil is changed every 2 years at $100 for oil. For the GB 52 with twins the main engine and transmission costs would be doubled.

    We've had a few repairs over the years: engine sensor failure at $50 self-installed; turbocharger clean out self-disassembled, self-cleaned and self-assembled needed $100 cleaning product and core press; main engine valve lifter adjustment 2 @ $300 for mechanic; main raw water pump replacement $800 self-installed; generator raw water pump replacement $250 self-installed; generator fuel injection pump replacement $1000 self-installed, mascerator pump replacement 3 X $150 per pump self-installed; various impellers replaced 5 x $50; 12 X 200 ah AGM batteries replaced at 8 years $6000 professionally installed;

    We do the bottom paint every 2 years at $4000; underwater zincs every 6 months at $400 diver installed; topside washing 2 times a month in winter $1500; varnish 4 coats per year self-applied $100 materials; polish and wax professionally completed once per year at $2500; diesel heater serviced by professional $1000 every 3 years; replaced all waste hoses at 7 years $3000 professionally installed;

    Our boat was a new build and there were a number of problems with the systems from various vendors including the builder, but not any more than other new boat builds. These costs are not included. We've had two sailboats built before this

    Of course with our boat we have too much time and are always improving by adding and replacing equipment and these costs are not included. Moorage, insurance, fuel and cruising costs are also not included.

    Hopefully this should give you an idea. I'll let you add then up as I don't really want to know the total. Good luck and hope you get your own boat soon. Alex

  12. Hi Alex

    Thanks very much for the detailed information, it's very much appreciated! I've added up the total cost and the good news it's much less than some articles I've read that assume 10% of the value of the boat annually. I've never been able to make that math wortk assuming the boat is dialed in. I've read through a lot of your blog and assume you are very happy with the reliability of your Selene?

    Our plan is to keep the boat in Portland Oregon where we live and then travel north for the cruising season. I'm trying to figure out do we want a full displacement hull that has better sea worthy characteristics or a semi planning hull GB that's going to give us a bit more speed. If you ever make it to Portland please let me know IOU a drink or two.....happy holidays . Charlie