Re: Newbe with no experience buys big boat
In hindsight I should have bought a medium-displacement boat, something like a Catalina 36, instead of the Downeast. I had read in books that heavy displacement boats would lie ahull much better than fin keels, and since I fully expected to round the Cape of Good Hope and sail the Roaring Forties single-handed, I figured I'd better go for a heavy displacement full keel!
If I could establish some kind of income stream writing (novels, non-fiction, anything) I will consider living aboard a large, comfortable boat, maybe something like a Catalina 46 or a sailboat in that range. I don't have a house or dependents, so this would be relatively simple to do if I could just generate a reliable income to replace the darn job!
I would seasonaly sail between California, Mexico, Hawaii, and maybe Puget Sound. I'd be wiser with respect to crew, as people you don't know might mean well but they can be highly unreliable with respect to actually going (detailed in the book). I've got maybe 15 or so friends and family who swear up and down they would help me sail from the west coast of the US or Mexico to Hawaii, even after I told them they would need to set aside at least a month. In reality, it would be amazing if even two or three out of the 15 or so actually do a voyage like that, with all the sudden reasons that crop up that lock people into their routine ("Well, I really want to, but now is not a good time . . .").
One thing is for sure: after several years of recession, there are incredible deals to be had in boats from good, solid manufacturers, 34-48 feet, in the 10 year-old range. Lots of previous high-rollers are now cash strapped and they want to get out, but there aren't that many serious buyers relative to the supply of boats for sale.