I wanted to ask advice about what boat I might think of buying. I have sailed a bit - lasers, 420s, and have foredecked on J30s, J105s, and a Morgan 27. I've been out on a 505 once, too. I have not had a chance to sail in about 5 years as I have a very young family. I weigh in at 175 lbs. I live near the Potomac River and about 1.5 hours from the Chesapeake Bay.
So, I've been pondering buying a boat. I investigates what fleets were at the nearest marina (Washington Sailing Marina). This narrowed my search down to the Buccaneer, Lightning and Albacore. (The laser, another fleet at the local marina, bores me to tears. I like a much more complex sailplan with lots of lines to fiddle with. And doodads. I like doodads, too.)
My MO goes something like this. My family is too young to sail with
me at present. My wife has a bad stomach (
) and is out of the picture
although she is willing to let me buy something. (If I could get her over this with one of those electronic wrist gizmos I would love to sail with her.) My first child should be ready in a couple of years. I'm an awfully, awfully busy
guy and don't expect to live at the marina so don't have heaps of time
to cultivate a standing crew. I was hoping for a boat I could sail
alone until I can scrape a few friends together or get a kid to help.
I also have the idea that I may just actually want to sail alone
I also have this idea of taking a long daysail with some camping gear packed into the front of a boat... okay, well, maybe that is putting too much on this first boat purchase. But I could see working my way up the Chesapeake or the Patuxent River stopping at B&Bs each night. That would be a fun adventure!
I read on the Albacore website that the boat tends to
turn turtle pretty quickly and needs 1.5 crew to right. I also read
about a guy that sailed all the way up the Patuxent in an Albacore by
himself in one. Sort of a puzzling contradiction there. The jury is still out on the Albacore.
I read on the Lightning website that it can be raced by 2 people ....
ah ha! I'm trying to put all of this together to
see if it could fit my needs, see. I think it may. I weigh in at
175 lbs. Could I do it? Could I sail this alone?
Another item is - how important is having a fleet? I *think* I want to occasionally race - nothing too serious though. Should I consider other boats like an O'day Daysailer? Given that I would like to maybe do gunk-hole cruising with my kid? What about a Lightning for such an expedition?
One thing that sort of worries me is if I get a Bucc, say, and get it up and running. I then take my kid out for his first ride and dump it. Will I inoculate him against sailing forever? Me, I don't mind swimming a bit - but what of my wife or kids?
Well, what do you think? I need some advise. In particular, what
have you seen of single sailors sailing the Lightning? the Bucc? Etc. Can it be done in
light airs? What about taking down the headsail and reefing the main? Could I then sail the Lightning, say, alone? What about family sailing? What about righting these boats? Can it be done by one man with a little kid floating nearby laughing at him... or do I need a standing crew of five swarthy, heavy-set, tattooed men to be ready every time I want to sail?
Thanks in advance!!