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post #1 of Old 05-14-2011 Thread Starter
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First time boat buyer seeking advice

Hi Forums,

My wife and I have been day-sailing for some time now on smaller boats (15'-19') in the Chesapeake and we're considering taking the plunge and getting a boat of our own.

Our budget is modest, 10-15k, luckily we live near Annapolis so there are lots of options to be found in our area.

Our primary use will be day / weekend sailing around the Chesapeake, so we definitely need a boat that sails well in light wind. In the medium-long term we'd like to cruise around the Caribbean, so it would be ideal if we could find something sturdy enough for the voyage, or that could be made sturdy enough with some work on our part over a year or two.

This will also be a learning boat for me in terms of doing maintenance and repairs, so it would be great if it was laid out in such a way as to provide easy access to the electrical systems, motor, bilge etc.

We're not overly concerned with cabin size as it will just be the two of us, maybe another couple for some day sailing. Although we are both tall, so boat with a bit of headroom would be a bonus.

I'm gearing up to starting kicking the hulls of ~30ft cruisers in late 70's early 80's vintage, and I was hoping to get some advice regarding the type of boat that would be a good fit for us.

Given what meager knowledge I have been able to collect on the internet, I've been focusing my search on Sabres, Tartans, and C&C's in the 28-30ft range, which seem to be available in our price range.

So a few questions:

1. Do these boats have the characteristics I've laid out above, or am i totally missing the mark?

2. Are there any other boat's you'd recommend given our needs and goals?

3. I'll definitely get a surveyor before I buy anything, but are there any common maintenance issues I should be looking for in boats with these vintages while I'm doing my own shopping around?
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