Experience report 20 -Yachtline-: North Sea coast

  • Boat model: 20 -YACHTLINE-
  • Engine: HONDA BF 100 LRTU
  • cruising area: North Sea Coast
  • crew: 2 persons
  • crew experience: little experienced

Interest and purchase (and oh yes, the “driver´s license sea”)

Originally from the Rhineland, me and my brother-in-law got the sport boat license inland on the Rhine in Cologne 20 years ago. The idea was chartering boats and navigating the inland areas in Germany and the Netherlands. At that time a boat on my own has never been on the plan.

Due to lack of time and other interests (suddenly motorcycling was again the “one and only”), the idea then turned into a single boat charter of a 12 meter boat together with my brother-in-law’s family for 14 days along the inland canals of the Dutch North Sea coast. However, we liked this very much and we´ve always had fond memories of this tour.

Due to my profession we moved to Lower Bavaria and then I remembered this one tour in 2018 and my interest was awakened again. With the prospect of an imminent professional change in the direction of the German North Sea coast, the idea soon became more concrete and the interest in owning a boat increased. Because what could be more natural than having a boat on your own when living directly near the coast.

We started looking for a trailerable boat and found what we were looking for at Öchsner´s.

So my wife and I started to be interested in trailerable boats with small cabins and a length of 5-7 meters. Here the internet offers a lot of different manufacturers and models. So here and there we configured and saved several boats. We then compared these offers with one another in terms of equipment, price but also ratings and excluded some manufacturers / models in advance and considered others, which we then also visited at local dealers. In fact, as the last dealer on our list, probably also because of the long journey, we visited the Öchsner Boats shipyard in Kürnach and inspected the 20 -Yachtline-.

After the friendly explanations of Mr. Küffner (and unfortunately this was actually the only time that the respective seller took its time for us from the moment of greeting and that we were advised immediately and according to my impression very competently. At other dealers we were alone with brochures in hand to “look at the exhibition”) we had as long time for an extensive tour of an exhibition boat as we wanted, also here (and unfortunately again for the only time) with competent advice and answers to all of our many questions.

Back in the sales office, we had time again for further questions, which we made good use of. After a short consultation with my wife and the comparison with all previous offers and “advice” from other manufacturers / sellers, we decided to buy a 20 -Yachtline- on site. Not only because of the better experience described during the consultation, but also and mainly because of the obvious qualitative differences to the models we have seen so far. The somewhat higher price in comparison was, in my opinion, clearly exceeded by the given advantages and thus gladly accepted. Actually we chose the smallest motor on offer (60 HP), but we were urgently advised the largest motor on offer (100 HP) when used in coastal waters. In retrospect I´m very grateful, you fail to recognize the forces of the tides. Thus, after signing, Mr. Küffner congratulated us as the new boat owner. Who would have thought that early in the morning!

Now everything was perfect – only the driver’s license was missing

Well, now we had a boat that we want to use on the North Sea coast in the future, but we didn’t have the appropriate driver’s license. At the end of 2019, having just arrived at our new home on the coast, I thought it was time to do the “driver´s license Sea” and applied for a course in the immediate vicinity at the beginning of March 2020 (before the planned pick-up of the new boat, so early in my eyes enough).

Due to corona, a lot has shifted and taking part in a driver’s license course was not that easy.

When it was possible again, I immediately booked a “driver´s license sea” course 10 km away from our home and then passed it directly.

We were finally able to pick up our Juna in Kürnach

In July 2020 the time had come, the first watering of our Juna after the briefing in Kürnach was imminent. Based on our limited experience (20 years ago), we chose the Hooksmeer, an inland sea separated from the North Sea by a lock. We were a bit worried about slipping the boat and unfortunately this was confirmed, but after a few conversations with experienced water sports enthusiasts on site, this was actually due to the unfortunately much too flat ramp, so the boat could not float up enough and that made it difficult just slipping. Here we were probably not the only ones with corresponding problems. Nevertheless, this unfortunately took away a bit of the desire to slip.

Once in the water, however, the pleasure of boating set in immediately. We explored the entire area in the Hooksmeer and also the old harbor in Hooksiel. Our Juna stayed there in the marina for the rest of the 2020 season (until the end of September) and due to the proximity to our place of residence, we were able to take advantage of any good weather. We just went on the boat after work, into one of the bays, anchoring and bathing there. That´s really great!

The season of 2020 – unfortunatel far too short – ended with craning our boat out of the water at the Hooksiel shipyard. The shipyard also cleaned the boat at high pressure, because at that time there was a tube worm plague in the Hooksmeer, these worms were brought in by container ships and feel comfortable in the inland sea / brackish water and are a nuisance for all boat owners. This was also the reason why we had the underwater hull treated with anti fouling in order to reduce such contamination in the next year.

What I still have to say: We had a manual windlass installed at a later date in the shipyard, as lifting the anchor with pure physical strength in the Wadden Sea causes some problems. I recommend this purchase to every potential boat buyer from the start, because in my opinion the extra expenses are clearly worth it.

Our Juna then overwintered “dry and warm” in a rented hall near where we live.

Kind regards, family K.

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