Help Choosing Caribbean Cruiser for 2
I have had some help from emails, but I wanted to get some "group" help. After a few weeks of frustration and feeling like I have not gained much ground on my goal, I am trying to rethink.
I want to purchase my first (above 16'') sailboat to accomedate a couple for extended Caribbean cruising. 2 Months this year in the Bahamas. Summer on the Chesapeake (weekend use) and then 12-16 months the following year in the Caribbean.
I am not sure where I came up with my budget but I had original put a number of 30k on the idea. Changes in my life have allowed me to start this dream sooner than expected. Some how I got the idea that was enough money. Now I am not certain.
I have only begun to realize how difficult it is to choose a quality affordable boat when you lack knowledge of both sailing and boats in general. All the available information and boats are majorly overwhelming. I wish I had a trusted friend to pick his brain but I dont.
More toward the point:
I was looking at 34-36'' boats. Mostly low quality boats intended for bay cruising. Lured in by the wider, eye candy interiors.
After some outside help, It seemed to get a better built boat in my price range I needed to think smaller. After being on a Pearson 323 today, I don''t think anyboat that small is going to make it. There is just not enough storage. I want to bring scuba gear, tanks, compressor, a bike, heck maybe even a change of clothes. It seemed to small.
My questions are:
What budget should I look toward for a solid cruiser for 2 with some ammenities?
My budget can change, especially since I have a whole season of work between the Bahamas cruise and the departure for the year+ cruise.
If the budget changes, do people have recommendations for makes/models to search in a given range, and how much more should I anticipate for an outfit above initial cost?