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Old 09-04-2010
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I'd point out that practicing some things in a dinghy will not help a whole lot in a 35' LOA, 10,000 lb. boat. For instance, motoring, docking under power, dealing with propwalk, setting/retrieving an anchor, etc., are all things that it TAKES ACTUAL EXPERIENCE to deal with to any degree of proficiency.

The skills and techniques needed for a keelboat are a bit different than those required for a sailing dinghy. If you haven't spent any time on a cruising keelboat, I would highly recommend you arrange to have some time on one before thinking of tackling the standards.

Book knowledge is nice, but no substitute for hands-on, in-the-boat experience, and a sailing dinghy won't really suffice to give you the skills you need for a cruising boat IMHO.
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Telstar 28
New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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