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  #1  
Old 06-06-2006
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First Boat

Hi all,
First time buyer, not very experienced sailor yet -but ASA certified - , but looking for something mine to put more hours on.
Looking for an easy to handle, *new*, sailboat in the 27-29 range (would go higher if budget would allow).
Based on budget restrains and above requirments, my online research points to :
Hunter 27
Precision 28
Catalina 270
Annapolis 30 (Only saw very limited information for this one)

Any comments on which NEW model you would choose? I know there are dozen more options within the LOA I am looking at, but most out of my budget.
Initially sailing several miles close to the shore, but eventually would like to sail from Long Island sound (NY) north to Rhode Island,Massachusetts and Main or south to NJ shore, for weeklong (or more) coastial trips.

Appreciate any comments and advice.
Thanks
--Mike
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Old 06-06-2006
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My wife and I are also newbies to sailing, however we chose to focus on finding an older boat for our first. Our thinking was we'll probably want to either move up, if we decided sailing was for us, or out if we didnt'. Therefore, it seem like the best course of action to buy new knowing we'd have the heaviest depreciation in the first few years.

Lastly, we felt that as we learned more about sailing, we'd learn more about what we did and did not want in a boat. We're real happy with our O'day 322 and look forward to a few years learning to sail her and getting used to manuvering a good sized boat into her berth. That said, I like knowing I will be able to sell it for very close to what I have in it.
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Old 06-06-2006
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Thanks midlifesailor, up until now I have been sailing with rented/school owned boats. I never had to deal with maintenance issues and that kind of scares me, specially since I am planning to have loved ones on board.

Regarding this issue, I am thinking a used sailboat as a used car purchase. It will require more maintenance, will probably need to fix things on day 1 (which will increase the original cost) and she may need to be docked while repairs are scheduled.

Am I wrong on those assumptions? If I have some sailing experience, I have no experience whatsoever in maintaining a boat.
I am thinking of getting a couple of 'almost maintenance free' years of sailing eperience (assuming the marine will performe basic maintenance for small fee) instead of jumping right into 'issues' and expences from day one, and in the process to get more involved.

How old can a sailboat be, to be considered 'almost like new'? Is there a 'unscientific' metric I can pay attention to, while searching for used boats (for example on used cars 'no more than 60K miles on a 4cyl car, preferably highway miles, etc....)


Thanks for any further comments.
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Old 06-06-2006
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It would help if you stated your rough budget. Please remember that you'll still need to spend a fair chunk to get all the things that make a sailboat USCG legal and the things that make the time spent on the boat more enjoyable.

Also, by *new*, do you mean from the dealer/manufacturer/broker? There are no real metrics for the age of a boat. A lot depends on how well it was maintained, how much it was used, and how it was used. A boat that was heavily raced for a season may have more wear on it than one that was sailed just on weekends for five years.

I've found that a lot of the maintenance on a sailboat is relatively simple to handle, and a lot of it is just common sense.

How many people would you normally sail with? How many of them would be able to help you sail the boat or would you be effectively single-handing the boat most of the time.

What kind of boats have you looked at besides the ones you have listed? Have you looked at multihulls (trimarans and catamarans)? There are several trimarans that might be suitable for what you want to do as well. Not too many cats in that size, and none new that I can think of.
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Old 06-06-2006
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Typically, buying and commissioning a new boat takes a lot more skill and experience than buying a used boat. New boats come pretty bare these days and so every decision must be made and paid for by the first owner. You would be amazed at the amount of stuff that needs to be purchased and installed. It makes maintenance look easy. And after the first year of ownership, you are pretty much into the normal short-term maintenance cycle of any boat in good used condition.

Depending on the make, model, venue where the boat is sailed and maintenance regime and use patterns of the prior owner, a boat can feel new as long as 5 to 10 years into its lifespan.

As I have said here before, I strongly believe that new boats should only be purchased by experienced sailors with specific and unusual goals, enough money not to care about the high depreciation of the first couple years, and who have checked the market and what they want cannot be found. For the rest of us, the nice thing about a used boat is that you can tell if she is a lemon and if the previous owner made bad choices in what he bought and where he put it aboard.

Your list contains boats of a pretty diverse nature and so I would suggest that you continue to do your homework so that you can continue to refine your goals and priorities. (From what I am hearing the Annapolis 30 will be a giant step better boat in terms of build quaility and sailing ability relative to the other boats on your list.)

Jeff
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Old 06-06-2006
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olechka
Thanks midlifesailor, up until now I have been sailing with rented/school owned boats. I never had to deal with maintenance issues and that kind of scares me, specially since I am planning to have loved ones on board.

Regarding this issue, I am thinking a used sailboat as a used car purchase. It will require more maintenance, will probably need to fix things on day 1 (which will increase the original cost) and she may need to be docked while repairs are scheduled.

Am I wrong on those assumptions? ...snip....
First, since you know something about sailing you'll have a leg up on me from when I started looking at boats. I started at ground zero but reading several books on sailing and sailboating and researching boats on the web, it didn't take long to start seeing the desireable and undesirable traits of a used boat. I think there are always going to be trade offs and you need to focus on the boat that fits most of your needs.

I'd say a better anaology of buying a used boat is buying a house. You look at a lot of boats, flip the switches look at all the equipment and determine what models interest you. Then you find the best equipped example and pay an expert to tell you what's wrong with it. From that list you either negotiate further with the seller or walk away having spent a few hundred buck but avoiding buying a problem barge. If the you and the seller come to terms, you'll have a list of items to fix and will have negotiated the cost of fixing the ones that impact safety or seaworthiness before you take the boat.

Fact is, even if you buy a new boat you'll bee dealing with maintence issues soon enough.

Good Luck
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Old 06-08-2006
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Go used. If you are concerned about maintenance buy a 3 or 4 year old boat. As stated before, eventually you will be faced with "older" boat issues no matter what you do. New boats are like cars - drive them around the block and you lose an awful lot of money. Let someone else solve all the problems and then move in and take over. Personally, I like the Catalina from your short list. Decent performer, good resale, reasonably
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Old 06-08-2006
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well constructed. I hit the wrong key on my last post .
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