Project Boats -- Where Do You Find Them?
Ok, as I am completing my latest project, I am an expert <g> on boat restoration!!! I don''t think my experience with my project necessarily qualifies me for any advice. However, you do seem to gravitate towards individuals similarly bound to such projects. It is here that the big lessons occur.
Watch for people who are really gaining on their projects and adopt their techniques, especially the liveaboards. Liveaboards not only have to live amongst the debris and materials stockpiling, but, once a system or structure is renovated or installed, it begins to decay immediately from the liveaboard usage. And sailboats despite their seeming economy and simplicity compared to powerboats are deceptively complex and expensive to maintain and upgrade concurrent with living aboard. I have seen very few people capable of getting ahead of the eightball. Many stare longingly at the erected mast and rigging structures, acheing to slip the dock lines for an afternoon or weekend sail, knowing full well they are not seaworthy because of some intermediate project is incomplete.
For that reason,bite my tongue, but don''t look askance at a stinkpot. Many dated cruisers exist with fully functional onboard systems, and low time propulsion units. An interior decor changeout, LP paint, and some stainless and the value appreciates and you have a decent chance of maintaining seaworthiness in the process. With a sailing vessel, you must get the auxillary operational, as well as the sail elements, concurrently, to maintain seaworthiness.
Surprisingly, I have seen more people succeed with this ploy than rehabbing sailing vessels. With the time demands of school you will need to limit your manhour demands in some way.
My project came courtesy of E-Bay and Boat US''s insurance clearance auctions, now run by USAuction.com. They seem to concentrate in the Southeast, and, when vessels come up out of that area, they seem to go for reasonable sums. Sail and power are auctioned.
My .0002% of a boating unit of advice!!!