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Old 09-27-2013
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Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

Hello All,

I am looking to get back into sailing on a hobby basis.
I am 25 and learned originally to sail a small boat (14'-18') when I was 13 or 14, but due to location I didn't have the opportunity to sail for many years. Now I live in LA area and am close enough to the water to get into it again.

I know that I need to re-certify and plan to take some classes (though I don't yet know where) but I am also looking at buying a small boat.

I know I like the Sloop rigging but I would be alright with Catboat rigging.
I need the boat small enough to fit on top of my jeep ('99 classic) and store inside an apartment.
I have to be able to carry it by myself.

I would greatly appreciate any recommendations on boats to look for and/or where to look.

I really want to get a small sloop (~16') and a trailer, but I need to wait until I have the money for storage or a slip. For now I just want to get my feet wet and get experience so when I am ready to buy a large boat I have the knowledge and a better idea of what I am purchasing.

Thank you in advance for any help or advice you can give,
-- Rhett
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

Rhett,

1st, welcome to Sailnut!

There must be some sailing clubs around the greater LA area.
Sailing clubs can be a great way to get out on the water, usually in a few different boat designs/sizes. Once you get to try a few different boats out you will know better what appeals to you and what does not. Use this knowledge to buy a boat that fits your needs best.

There really are very few, if any, sailboats that are "car toppers"; eg., <= 100 lbs. A wind surfer comes to mind but I have put a Sunfish on top of a car with 2 people.

Hopefully someone more local will chime in...
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

Thank you for you kind and timely reply!

I will look into sailing clubs in the LA Area. I think that sounds like a great place to start as they may also be able to recommend places for re-certification.

Yeah, while typing my size requirements, I started to think they were not so likely. That is ok, getting out on the water is all that is important for now and if a sailing club will help me to do this then that is where I will start.

Thank you
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

This is the kind of club I'm talking about but it is in Santa Barbara:
FAQ - Santa Barbara Sailing Club

Costs $400 for first year, $225 thereafter. Web page does not indicate that the club owns it's own boats but it's members do. You would get time on other people's boats (OPB's) mostly during races.

Mind you, sailboat racing is bit different than just noodling around for a day sail.

I don't think you really need re-certification per se, but taking any intro/101 course should help boost your confidence tremendously as would any time just spent sailing.

If it floats, fornicates or flies, rent it. Boats, women & airplanes are expensive to "own".
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

My advice has always been to just go down to the marina when they are having the weekly beer can races and be crew for free. It's the best way or someone with some sailing experience to learn so much.

Are you close to long beach, Redondo or marina del ray?

Do you have a driveway? I'm also surprised at how cheap you can get a small boat with a trailer and park in your driveway for free. If I had known earlier what I do now about the relative ease of trailer sailing, I would have a ranger 23 sitting in my driveway waiting to be driven to baja. However I thought no way but it really is an option. Of course I don't know about launching in LA. That may be a problem. But if it worked you could have a Catalina 22 on a trailer in your driveway for $2000. Weekend trips to Avalon? It's not called the Catalina for nothing.

But just go on races for starts. You'll probably eventually meet someone selling a good cheap boat that way. Plus friends and advice from some great sailors.
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

So in the long run you will be wanting a boat to cruse up and down the coast maybe even to Baja or Alaska. Find a boat cheap and small that has the same feel as the dream you would sail when you become rich, and it the dream lasts or grows trade up.
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Old 09-27-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

Yeah, head down to Dana Point on a Wednesday night. I know there is a club down there, too, but I don't know the name.
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Old 10-04-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

Cal 20
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Old 10-04-2013
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Re: Boat recommendations (new to sailing)

I belong to a sailing club and I think in your situation it's a good way to go. It gets you on the water and also connects you with other people that sail which can lead to some nice opportunities. Like you I really got into sailing when I was younger (on a Laser). After college I wasn't in a position to keep a sailboat so I started windsurfing.

Last year I wanted to get back into sailing but I don't have room for a traditional boat. I joined a club and later that same day bought this from ebay. I just couldn't help myself:



It's a hoot in a strong wind (in spite of what my son's expression might tell you). He'd probably be happier if the trapeze were adjusted right.



It packs up into two 50 lb bags that are about 6 ft long. Would work great for your apartment but they're pretty spendy when new so that might disqualify it right there.




Inflatables are much more popular in Europe then they are here. Aside from the SmartKat there are a few other similar options like the "Minicat" and the various "Ducky" models. Duckies are pretty sophisticated and are very well made. I always had trouble getting past the name though. I think there's a dealer in California someplace.

Last edited by unimacs; 10-05-2013 at 12:20 AM.
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