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post #1 of Old 11-03-2006 Thread Starter
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I've been reading here for a while now and finally figured I may as well register and introduce myself.

It all started a couple years ago when I was living in BFE Maryland (eastern shore) I got this wild idea that I could buy a sailboat and liveaboard to save some money on rent.

So, I did! ....sorta... I picked up an old 24' Columbia Challenger. Nice boat. Ugly interior, but all the parts were there and it was solid. I owned it for all of 3 weeks, when the maintenance guy at the marina talked me into his grand scheme of crewing to central america. On his boat...

So, I ended up quitting my job, selling the Columbia again (which I never got to actually sail) and headed down the Chesapeake with this guy in his 30' Kaufmann? ...I think. He was a retired tugboat captain, but neither of us knew the slightest thing about sailing. Needless to say, we didn't get very far, and I decided to move out west after that.

Fast forward to last spring. I still kinda had the sailing bug, so I decided to take a basic keelboat class at a nearby lake. It felt a little rushed, and I wish it were longer than 4 days, but I passed and had my certificate in hand.

So now what? They had a 30' Catalina up there that you could rent out for 200 bucks a day, so I did that once. Kinda pricey (I'm a cheap bastage) so I started looking for something smaller that I could tow behind my pickup. But I still wanted something that I could overnight in if the mood took me, so daysailors were out.

Last week I finally found it. I picked up a 1982 Balboa 16, and it's just about exactly what I was looking for, trailer and all. (link here if you're curious) I've spent the last week or so fixing up a few minor things here and there (stripped screw on a cleat, epoxied some split teak, bought a couple missing hanks for the jib, ,etc.) I've also come across something else that I'm not sure what to do about. (You all knew a question was coming, didn't you?) There's a half a dozen scratches/chips in the gelcoat just below the rubrail on one side. Mostly cosmetic, but one or two dime-sized chips go all the way through the gelcoat exposing the fiberglass underneath. Is this something I need to be worried about on a boat thats only going to be in the water on weekends? Would a repair job be the same procedure I've read about for repairing blisters? My first instinct is to just fill them with marine epoxy and forget about it, but there's a little voice that tells me that could be a horrible mistake in the long run.

I thank you for any input in the matter, and likely many more to come.
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