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  #1  
Old 03-16-2007
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info on how to buy a crusin sailboat

I don't know how to best purchase a sailboat... but I ran across some info... that might help... tell me what you think!

http://www.mahina.com/cruise.html
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  #2  
Old 03-16-2007
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That's a good site, but remember, when you are ready to buy a larger boat, you're buying it to fit you, not anyone else. There will be plenty of opinions, and you have to sort through and find what works for your situation. For myself, I spent 3 winters living on yachtworld.com and reading, reading, and more reading, as well as inquiring on here about various boats, before I bought mine last year.
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Old 03-16-2007
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You'll know you're doing your research well when after you've decided that 16 different boats at 16 different times were the right boat for you and end up buyin none of em.

Don
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Old 03-16-2007
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Ditto PB. His site is quite helpful and his listing is quite incomplete and out of date for newer boats. It is ONE part of the learning process and one guys opinions though quite a knowledgeable guy. JeffH here is also quite knowlegeable about a lot of different vessels but there's hardly a boat he likes for ocean passagemaking that I do...since we value different things. I don't have his breadth of boat knowledge (or depth!!) but I know what I like and what is right for my needs. That is the point you need to get to before you get your "leave it all behind" boat Jody. Takes lots of Mahina type reading...and time on the water in different type boats. It will become clear what is right for you over time!
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Old 03-16-2007
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One other point... especially when buying your first boat. Don Casey mentions that no matter how much research and planning you do, the first boat you buy will teach you what you really want in a boat, and generally isn't the perfect boat for you. He also notes that in most cases, the second boat is the one that you end up keeping for years...

I wouldn't worry all that much about getting the perfect boat the first time out of the gate... get a boat that will work for you, and then once you've owned it a while, figure out what you would like to change about it, what you like about, and what you hate... and how it fits the kind of sailing you do. Then, after a few years, sell it and buy a boat that is better suited to you, your sailing and what you like, dislike and want in a boat...
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
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—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Practical Sailor's Used Boat Buyer's Guide is a great place to start finding out what the issues are (with a LOT of boats) and what you might be looking for.
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Old 03-17-2007
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I just thought of something for you, kansas. After I bought my boat and was at the marina for a while, I started to meet other boat owners at the docks. I would walk by a boat and stop and say, "I almost bought one of those, she's a beauty. Can I come aboard and take a look?" You won't believe how many sailors love to show off their boats. So, do you have friends now that have a boat? Start cruising the docks at the marina, they do have those in Kansas, eh? That way you can find out a lot of real info, and not the broker BS.
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Quote:
Spurr's Guide to Upgrading Your Cruising Sailboat
by Daniel Spurr
This book has good information on 'improving your boat's strength, comfort, performance, and versatility' as well 'prepare your sailboat for offshore cruising'.

Eventually you are going to find yourself pondering the choice between a heavier boat with a comfortable ride in a seaway but not the fastest boat against a lighter, more spacious, get me there faster boat. There are boats in between and maybe you will find yourself trying to find one without sacrificing build quality for safety. If your budget leaves you with few choices of high quality boats and many choices with marginal quality boats, the book I mentioned above may help you choose a boat that's reasonable and fairly easily upgraded to a worthy offshore boat. If your travel plans don't take you offshore more than say, the Bahamas, there will be a large assortment of boats around that fit the slow, faster, and fastest categories to choose from. As Cam stated in his previous post, research is great but the realities of what fits you best may not be your findings in the research.

I am in automobile sales and the following (true) story is good analogy of what I just mentioned. A woman once told me that car salesman would be a thing of the past in a few years because the internet allows a person to spec out the perfect car for them. You can buy cars already without leaving your home, and finance them as well, she said. I responded by saying, that's all well and good, you find the perfect car with everything you want, work out your best deal, get it financed and someone even delivers it to your door. It finally arrives and you run outside and get in it only to find out that your ass doesn't fit in the seat. That was 5 years ago, I'm still waitin on people at the dealership to sell them a car.

Don
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Some other good books to read prior to buying your first boat are:

John Vigor's The Seaworthy Offshore Sailboat.
Johh Vigor's Twenty Small Sailboats to Take You Anywhere.
Dave Gerr's The Nature of Boats.
Don Casey's This Old Boat.
Bill Seifert's Offshore Sailing: 200 Essential Passagemaking Tips.

The Practical Sailor Buying Guide two-volume set is also very good to look at.

Also, just remember, get a boat that you love...if you don't love the boat, don't buy it. An unloved boat isn't as much fun to sail, and you won't care for it the same way you would a boat you love.

Last point I'll make in this post: Get a boat that is suited for the type of sailing you do... If you're not going to go making bluewater passages...don't buy a heavy displacement, full-keel bluewater cruiser...
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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Old 03-17-2007
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Jody,
One of things to do is to keep a list of all the things you like and don't like about your current boat. It's amazing how that will help you when you start to inspect other boats.

Over time you will come to realise what you want in hull and rig. Many cruisers like heavy for the reason DonR suggests but as many also like fast. I don't necessarily mean full tilt racing fast but the rationale is that with a fast boat you have a chance to outrun that bad weather and make it into port. The heavy brigade work on the basis that you will inevitably get whomped some day so you need something that can outlive a storm. Sadly some heavy boats have all the hydrodynamic qualities of a brick.

Some folk will stress the importance of upwind performance while others will stress that when cruising avoiding having to go hard on the wind is a major objective.

Lightweight can be fantastic but you will need to remember that the lighter the boat the less you can load her up before performance starts to suffer. A heavy boat may be slow to start with but fully loaded won't get any slower.

Head down below, check out the galley for size and sea keeping qualities, is the head large enough to satisfy your need, do you need two heads or is one enough ? Berths, you'd be amazed how many boats have berths that only a midget could get comfortable in. Privacy, you have kids right ? Is it feasable to lock 'em away when you and your partner want a bit of privacy.

Also very important , can you get confortable when seated down below ?
Our current boat is 34' and while we may well go cruising in her next year we realise that in fact she is a bit small for us if we go permanent live aboard. Twenty years ago that would not have been the case but aging joints need a bit more room to move. So we are looking at 40 odd footers and will eventually move up in size. One of my favourite designs comes in two very different interior layouts. One (A) has longitudinal galley to starboard with dinette to port. The other (B) has L-Galley and smaller dinette to port with sette berth to starboard. I've just passed up on buying a quite beautiful example simply because she was interior A and I know that long term that layout would not suit me and Madam Wombat. Why ? We like cruising in winter, we like colder climates at times so will inevitably spend more time below deck. That extra settee berth makes for stretch out comfort for the two of us to lie down which is the way we like it. The people who have A reckon they prefer sitting. At sea I find sitting a nuisance. On the other hand if you plan on spending a lot time at rest a longitudinal galley usually has more work space while a U or L is better to wedge yourself into when cooking at sea. Some centre cockpit boats have a longitudinal galley in the passage to the aft cabin and this is perhaps the perfect arrangement.

Which brings us to Aft or Centre cockpit or even single or multi hull ? You think Global Warming is a hot topic (no pun intended), well wait until the proponents of boats with or without training wheels get started. Whooo Wheee !

You see ? There is no such thing as the perfect boat for all people. Experiencing all the different variations will enable you to figure what is best for you and your family.

Cheers
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Last edited by tdw; 03-17-2007 at 11:08 PM.
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