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Old 05-09-2011
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My first boat! Tell me what to Buy!

Hello! I'm seeking advice on what size/type of sailboat to buy. I'll have it at a wet slip on a lake in Texas year round. I'll need to be able to sail it alone. I also hope to spend weekends on the boat, so a comfortable cabin is also a requirement. My budget is $5000 - $8000. Thanks for your suggestions!

Last edited by mojosail; 05-09-2011 at 12:16 AM.
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Old 05-09-2011
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Just off the top of my head, I'd say a Catalina 22. Nice boat, lots of 'em, active class association, good resale value.
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Thank you
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Old 05-09-2011
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At the top of your budget you can do better than a Cat22, though they are good starters.

Today you can probably find a Catalina 25 or 27, A Ranger 26, maybe even a rough 29, and depending on your area there will be other popular boats in similar ranges.

Here in the PNW other good starter/bargain boats would include a Thunderbird 26 (in F/G), a Haida 26, a Cal 25, C&C 25/26/27 and more.
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Old 05-09-2011
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I second the Catalina 27, you will enjoy your weekends aboard MUCH more. Sails great, easy to singlehand, decent room inside, and you can find them cheap......they made, like, a million of those things.

Mike
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Old 05-09-2011
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How comfortable do you need your cabin. Unless you are into camping like conditions 27 foot is where you need to start at. Although I wouldn't want to go bigger than that for a first boat. The Catalina 27 probably is a good choice although with that budget you will probably buy the best boat for the money versus looking for a particular model. C&C, Oday, Hunter all made nice entry level boats of that size.
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Thanks everyone for the suggestions! I was a little worried about getting anything larger than a 22, but I'm glad to hear that I could comfortable sail a 27.
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Old 05-10-2011
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Good luck Mojo. I am sort of in the same price range and size as you. Although I am worried I'll out grow a 22', but am still intimidated by the idea of a 27'.

If you are going to be on a lake, you will have a much easier time than you think. No currents, so you have all the time in the world to get in your slip.
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Old 05-10-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgbenner View Post
Good luck Mojo. I am sort of in the same price range and size as you. Although I am worried I'll out grow a 22', but am still intimidated by the idea of a 27'.
Well, there's 25'.
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mojosail, dgbenner,
You guys need to go sail some boats before you pick a style or size that is right for you. You may find that a larger boat is less intimidating than a smaller one or that you really prefer the lifestyle of a racer to that of a cruiser.

Go down to your local yacht club and volunteer for some races. Get out on some larger boats, smaller boats and maybe even dinghies. You'll quickly find out what you like, what you don't and where your sweet spot is.

In the case of dgbenner, I find that racing my buddies J22 is more 'intimidating' than sailing a J24, Shark or Contessa as they are, to a varying degree, heavier and more stable. You're not going to go plunk around on the bow of a J22 with no lifelines but you might on the others. Racing on a Farr30(Mumm30) is going to be more 'intimidating' than cruising on a typical 30' boat as there is far more happening all at once... In other words, length is not the only deciding factor for meeting your comfort zone.

Only you can decide, and you can only decide after you sail some boats. It's cheaper to find out while sailing other people's boats.
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