Excellent post. I could not agree with you more about taking your time and being realistic about what you will be doing with the boat. It was my first time buying a boat (other than Hobies) and I should have taken longer, but sometimes you just don't know what you will need until you take the leap and learn along the way, spend time with the boat. So, yes, it is crucial to sail on many boats as much as you can, make friends and spend time on their boats, tell the broker to leave you alone in the boat for a half hour (it helps). Sail in some local One Design races on types of boats you are considering. Lots of clubs have raft ups during the season and you can look at all the different variations of the same boat. I think I was very lucky to pick such a good boat after only six months, with my limited sailing experience. But already, my criteria has changed, and my next boat will be different in several ways. For a first boat owner, I have one piece of advice. If you are only daysailing, lean more towards performance, if you are going to be doing a lot of overnights, lean more towards livability. Be more comfortable while you learn, you won't notice the performance difference in the beginning. Live and learn, at least I am happy to be sailing my own boat!
Great men always have too much sail up. - Christopher Buckley
Vaya con Dios
Last edited by bestfriend; 02-26-2007 at 04:42 PM.