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  #1  
Old 03-20-2011
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Thoughts and Recommendations please..

I grew sailing in buzzards bay on cape cod.. but haven't done and substantial sailing in 20 years.. some day sailing here and there but thats really it.
(that being said.. with either boat i buy i will be sailing with an instructor or someone knowledgeable until i feel comfortable single handling it in the bay)
I'm now considering purchasing a used Beneteau and getting back into it. Take my Dad out a few times a year -who taught me sailing.. as well as other friends. i'm considering 2 options now. Buy a boat already in the BVI and get down there when i can.. probably 1 week there every 6-8 weeks. Or buy a boat and keep it about 4 1/2 hours away in Charleston SC. -sail it this spring, summer and then have it moved to BVI in the late fall and keep it there from then on out. I would be paying to have it delivered there.. (anyone have solid estimate on that? both time frame and $)
for that price.. am i just better off buying something already there? or does the extra time being able to sail out of Charleston make up for it. (i'd be making payments, insurance, slip fees to have it on the hard for hurricane season in bvi)

and as a final side note.. here are links to a few of the boats i'm currently considering.. so feel free to weigh in those as well.

1992 Beneteau 445 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

1997 Beneteau Moorings 382 Power Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

1998 Beneteau Oceanis 411 3-cabin Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

thanks in advance for your replies..
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Old 03-20-2011
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Getting a boat from Charleston SC to the BVI is quite a serious undertaking. See the Passages South by Van Sant for more info.

If I was buying something of that size I would look for a 2 cabin version. The 3 cabin jobs are mostly charter boats and the cabins are a bit tight esp. the those with two cabins across the rear.
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Old 03-20-2011
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It's been done before, and very well documented for you. Everything from purchase, to charter contracts, yearly financial statements and eventual sale, has been written up for you by Rob Charuk about his Beneteau Oceanis 400.

I HIGHLY recommend that you check out this site (before it goes away). I found it extremely well written, and fascinating.
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Old 03-20-2011
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Why don't you do a sailing school first, charter their boats, and then when you visit BVI charter boats while you are there and save yourself the expense of a long distance relationship with your boat? You know, LDR's never work out in the end...
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Old 03-21-2011
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When buying a larger, more complex boat, I find it takes the better part of a season before feeling like you really know the boat. A week at a time would be torture, IMHO. You will absolutely require a local captain or boat manager to deal with 'things' when you leave. I would keep her as close to home as possible for the first season.

Then, if you are set on keeping her year-round in the BVIs, hire a delivery crew to get her there (my rough estimate would be $10k for pay and provisions and that assumes the boat doesn't need upgrades for an ocean passage). It would even be a great learning experience to go along.

If you really have the time to spend a week every month and a half in the BVIs, you may be the first legitimate candidate for the Moorings (or other) charter/ownership program. Drop a downpayment and sail for free with zero maintenance or management worries.
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Old 03-21-2011
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i'm an airline pilot.. (fly free) and even a regular month without vacation or dropping a trip i have about 16-17 days off. fly 3 days on 4 off or 4 days on 3 off. when you drop something, have a week vacation or move 2 trips next to each other you can open up some good blocks of days. for example i took a week vacation in february.. gave me 19 days off in a row to go on vacation in brazil for 2 weeks.-thats why i don't think its that unrealistic to actually keep something there. one of the boats i looked at is already owned by a pilot in europe who does similar thing. and has a local there do day charters on it. that way its washed and ready to go each day. if someone wants to go out he will take them. sure in order to do that you cant compete with the big companies.. have to do it for pretty cheap. but i'm not doing it to make money.. just keeps boat checked on.. in operating condition and any $ made just goes to pay for some of those expenses. and that gives me a well qualified person very familiar with the boat to rely on to teach me what i need along the way.
i do like the idea of 3 cabins.. so can bring other guys down and not have them have to sleep on top of each other.. but 2 cabins could work too. (about a 10k difference in price) in the 2 boats i had listed in OP.
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Old 03-21-2011
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Sounds like you have the lifestyle to pull it off. Still, I would not want to shake down a new boat from that far away and have to wait another 6 weeks to pick up where I left off. I would consider keeping her close to you so that you can spend more time on her for the first season, then ship her down.

You should also look into the rules about leaving a boat in the BVIs year-round, unless you are a BVI citizen.
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Old 03-21-2011
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Also, you might want to talk with some charter companies down there and find out what type of boat they want. Usually they want something new when it enters charter so their maintenance expenses are minimal. For most charter companies a 90's era boat would either be exiting charter or overdue to be retired.

Did not know you had so much time to be aboard your boat and free travel, your plan sounds good but you might consider buying a boat already in the Caribbean or in Florida and then sailing it down to BVI yourself. That would save you the transport expenses and you would be getting more acquainted with your boat in the tropics.
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