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  #1  
Old 07-07-2011
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Boat buying advise

Okay, we're new to sailing and looking for advise on a boat/boats to fit our need. Here is a bit about us first that hopefully can shed some light on what we're looking for.

We both just retired. We're 32 and 30 years old. We have a son, 9 years old. We live in the Pacific NW (Portland, OR). We have very little sailing experience, we've spent plenty of time on power boats but have always dreamed of living aboard and sailing to exotic destinations. We've spent so much time on our careers and life on shore that we've neglected our sailing dreams. Now that we are retired we're working on our ASA certification and learning everything we can about sailing and living aboard.

We have two goals. Our big goal is for 9 years from now. In 9 years we want to have acquired enough sailing experience to leave the PNW for good and sail the world. Our goal is not circumventing but to leave the PNW and port hop as we wish. To take our time getting to our next destination then taking our time leaving that destination with no final port in mind.

Our other goal is to spend time building up to that 9 years sailing as much as we can. This will hopefully include time sailing the Columbia, the Oregon cost, then the west coast, and finally a few trips to Hawaii and back with our son. Over the next few years we plan on finishing up our ASA cert and sailing locally to build up our sailing knowledge.

What we are trying to figure out is our first boat and the money involved. We have set aside about $500,000 to spend on purchasing a boat. It sounds like a lot but we're thinking we want to get 2 boats and wanted input on this.

As we're learning we wanted to buy a smaller bought but still get one large enough/tough enough for the trip to Hawaii in the next few years. Then 2 years before our last time leaving Portland we would start shopping for then fitting our long haul boat.

We don't want to spend to much on our first vessel as it will be for only 4 to 5 years of sailing but we want a boat strong enough to handle the PNW. We are trying to find a boat for about $100,000. That would be for the boat plus work needed and refitting it with the gear we want. Then we would have $400,000 left to buy and refit our boat when we leave in 9 years (give and take a little based on investment earnings/losses).

So does this sound logical so far? Recommendations on our first boat? Something small enough to learn in but large enough to sail the Pacific. The female half really wants a pilot house, probably a side effect of living in the rainy and cold PNW. We have looked at Nauticat's and really like them. A Nauticat 42 from the early to mid 90s seams like a great choice for our long term goal. That could change over the next few years but we both like them.

For now we are having a hard time figuring out a good boat for less then a $100,000 to cruise the Pacific. Any thoughts on Tayana 37s? We were considering a mid 80s or newer Tayana for our early sailing.
And advice on a good pacific cruiser to last us for the next 5 years would be great, especially if it has a pilot house.

Shawn and Madeline
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Old 07-07-2011
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I am not going to recommend any boat for your near term as I think you will work it out. I just need to congratulate you. I thought I did well in walking away at 52. 32? Wow! Good luck, I think that you must have the abilities to make it work.
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Old 07-07-2011
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Do you think a third boat might need to be added to the list. Something small cheap and with budget you could consider it disposable. You can find em anywhere. Sail it till you find the right boat then put it on Craigslist and let the first person that shows up with cash take it off your hand. There are a lot of nuances to sailing that can really only be learned on a small boat.
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Old 07-08-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MarkCK View Post
Do you think a third boat might need to be added to the list. Something small cheap and with budget you could consider it disposable. You can find em anywhere. Sail it till you find the right boat then put it on Craigslist and let the first person that shows up with cash take it off your hand. There are a lot of nuances to sailing that can really only be learned on a small boat.
+1

Something like this sail the snot out of it for a year and it is a throwaway on your budget but should resell easily.

26' Sailboat Chrystler '79
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Old 07-08-2011
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Lightbulb Lots of Choices and Options.........

In the Portland area, buy a good used Ranger 20 or Cal 20. Join the active local fleet. Race it at least one evening a week all summer and fall. You can do this for less than the cost of one new head sail on any 35 footer.

You will learn more about boat handling and sailing, in one season, this way than you would pottering about in a big boat for the next nine years.

Then resell your small cruiser in a couple years and get something larger. By then you will know a lot more about sailing and about yourselves.

Get out on the water.... get a bunch of "tiller time."

You'll have a lot of fun, too!


We started out in an R-20, and ended up racing and cruising it for five years. Then a 26 foot boat for a decade, and our present 34 footer for the last 15 years. Sisterships to ours have done many Hawaii trips.

It's good to do your research and spend some time on the WWW, but what matters most is..... time spent under sail on a responsive boat.

My .02 worth,
LB
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Old 07-08-2011
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Your budget is far beyond my wildest dreams. May I suggest a Catalina 30, spend $25k on it, and sail like crazy. Lots of fun, and lots to learn on. Then spend the $400k on something that belongs on sailing calendars and make memories.
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Old 07-12-2011
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Santana 20

Sanatana 525

Santana 22

Would all be good choices - inexpensive well built boats, perfect west coats boats
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Old 07-12-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WDSchock View Post
Santana 20

Sanatana 525

Santana 22

Would all be good choices - inexpensive well built boats, perfect west coats boats
Any other boats not built by you that you think might be suitable?
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These Santanas are good entry level boats, used Santanas are readily available in good condition in the Portland area with excellent local fleet support, plus he'll be able to sell the boat again for what he paid for it.

He could pick up any of the boats I mentioned for much less than $5k, use to learn a lot
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Old 07-13-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WDSchock View Post
These Santanas are good entry level boats, used Santanas are readily available in good condition in the Portland area with excellent local fleet support, plus he'll be able to sell the boat again for what he paid for it.

He could pick up any of the boats I mentioned for much less than $5k, use to learn a lot

How about trying this: "Santana 20 or Cal 20. He could pick up either of these boats for much less than $5k and learn a lot. They might even think about a Thistle and maybe learn even more. Of the three mentioned, yes, I'm partial to the S-20. We build them and they have an active local fleet. "
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