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  #31  
Old 08-05-2011
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Regarding mooring and the wife in the dinghy. Just go yourself to the mooring then bring the boat back to the docks to pick her up. 95% of the folks here do this. $25 vs $120 a foot, hell I'd row to kingdom come before I'd fork over 5x just for my wife to come on board once on a weekend or so. Whats that 10-12x a year.

As for winter storage, if you store in the marina on the sound thats like $50 a foot, if you find offsite location it can be around $35 if not cheaper.

Like folks mentioned, if its just you 2 with occational kids. A 28-30 footer would suffice. You really don't gain much going 32-34 until you get to the 40-50fts.
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  #32  
Old 08-05-2011
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Another aspect to this is your learning. People learn faster, easier, and more enjoyably on smaller boats. Bigger boats take longer to respond to steering changes, which slows the learning process. Smaller boats respond immediately to rudder changes and sheeting-in or loosening the sails. Smaller boats are also closer to the water and give a better feeling of speed as a result. The ideal vessel to learn on is a sailing dinghy or sunfish sailboat. By going to the relative stratosphere of 40 or more feet, you are shortchanging yourself immensely.

So if you have some time to wait for the big boat, get a sunfish sailboat and sail her together with your wife and kids. They'll love it. Do it in-between sailboat shopping.

The budget-buying decision depends a lot on how many people you have. Is it just you and your wife or are there kids? (How many kids?) If it's just the two of you, SHOP WITH YOUR WIFE and look at 25 footers for awhile. Image yourself in one, think about what-goes-where and how to make it work. Then look at some 28 footers or even a 30 footer. IIRC, somewhere right above 25 feet, you'll get a separate head (bathroom) instead of having to use a port-a-potty. Somewhere right above 28 feet you'll be able to shower. After looking at smaller boats, the increase will feel good. (Don't look at big boats with her first.) And you may even like one of the 25 to 28 foot boats.

We keep the budget down by avoiding per-foot charges. Except for winter storage, we've been fairly successful at it. We bought a dinghy so we don't need a slip. We buy fuel so that we can get water. (We've actually gone about a year since buying fuel, but if we need water - and can't get it for free - then we'll buy fuel and I'll ask my son to fill the water tanks at the same time.) Dinghy-wise, the first year we used an ocean kayak that we already owned, and a small 7' sailing dinghy. You can always get a bigger dinghy, and if ithe first one has no engine then you probably don't have to register it, saving even more money. You could get a sailing dinghy to learn sailing, and then use it as your dinghy.

By the way, I know a 25 year old guy that's spending the summer on a 25 foot boat with a small inflatable dinghy with no engine. He works and surfs during the day and sleeps on the boat at night. After buying her for maybe $4k, his yearly costs are probably below $2K. (Just a guess on that, I could be off.) He uses those backyard solar lights at night, and is looking at getting a solar panel for real lights and a radio. When the surf was flat last weekend he went for a sail. Pretty good lifestyle.

The bottom line is that sailing is wonderful. And compared to what you'd be spending on vacations, it's not that expensive.

Hope that helps. Enjoy!

Regards,
Brad
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Last edited by Bene505; 08-05-2011 at 01:45 PM.
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  #33  
Old 08-05-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeinLA View Post
I do it the easy way. I pay for everything the boat needs, then I worry about stuff like food, clothes and other things.
That sounds a lot like my philosophy - Give me the luxuries and I'll do without the necessities.
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  #34  
Old 08-05-2011
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The full picture!

My 2 kids are teenagers and my wife is the grand-daughter of a real captain (Le capitaine Grard* Harvey [link is in French]. She has sailed and been around boats since she could walk. I am the real novice though we both need actual sailing lessons.

Married for 20 years, I need to thread carefully: there are minimum standards I need to deal with! I can't see getting away with a single cabin for example. I would not mind but I do intend to stay married!

I have taken in everything that was said in this post and here is what I come up with:

1- Talk the wife into mooring and pick her up at dock as mentioned here. Saving of $2-3k depending on location.
2- In year 1-2, berth between Bridgeport/New Haven to keep driving to a minimum. Consider RI and MA if/when ready to stay for weeks on end.
3- Store in Portland CT. Saving: another thousand at least.
4- Buy a non-unique boat (such as Catalina) to lessen maintenance learning curve. I am thinking about vintage 1985 or so in the $30k range, well maintained with electronic gear already installed and new sails/rigging so I don't have to deal with high expenses in year 1. Why? Because in year 1, I need to absorb CT sales tax, down payment, lessons etc...

With all that taken in, I have total COO at about $13,500 and that includes finance charges. I can't be off more than a few thousand either way and that's something I can afford by simply eliminating vacation expenses but leaving intact my wine and beer budget, something I was not ready to part with.
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  #35  
Old 08-05-2011
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Learn to do as much of the maintenance your self. 250 bucks to wax the hull?. A good days work of elbow grease in my book. Also 1800 bucks for a sailing course? How about taking the USCG introductory course "Sailing & Seamanship" for about $100. How about buying a small boat say a 'lazer" and learn yourself? Crewing on other folks boat will give you good sailing experience, a few six packs along the way will make you a welcome crew member. Get a copy of Nigel Calders "Boat Owners Mechanical & Electrical Manual", this covers most things and is my Bible. Since it's getting late in the season, maybe wait until the cold days of Winter to buy a boat at even a better price. Also consider a smaller, less expensive boat for your first purchase. This way you can see if it is really for you, the learning curve will cost you less and the enjoyment level will be higher. Good luck!
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  #36  
Old 08-05-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fredct View Post
My 2 kids are teenagers and my wife is the grand-daughter of a real captain (Le capitaine Grard* Harvey [link is in French]. She has sailed and been around boats since she could walk. I am the real novice though we both need actual sailing lessons.

Married for 20 years, I need to thread carefully: there are minimum standards I need to deal with! I can't see getting away with a single cabin for example. I would not mind but I do intend to stay married!

I have taken in everything that was said in this post and here is what I come up with:

1- Talk the wife into mooring and pick her up at dock as mentioned here. Saving of $2-3k depending on location.
2- In year 1-2, berth between Bridgeport/New Haven to keep driving to a minimum. Consider RI and MA if/when ready to stay for weeks on end.
3- Store in Portland CT. Saving: another thousand at least.
4- Buy a non-unique boat (such as Catalina) to lessen maintenance learning curve. I am thinking about vintage 1985 or so in the $30k range, well maintained with electronic gear already installed and new sails/rigging so I don't have to deal with high expenses in year 1. Why? Because in year 1, I need to absorb CT sales tax, down payment, lessons etc...

With all that taken in, I have total COO at about $13,500 and that includes finance charges. I can't be off more than a few thousand either way and that's something I can afford by simply eliminating vacation expenses but leaving intact my wine and beer budget, something I was not ready to part with.
you said you intend to stay married then ditch the mooring idea right now. the wife waiting on the dock, for you pick her up is fine on a great weather day. but add a little fog, mist in the morning. a liitle windier conditions then she likes and you will only be sailing on the perfect weather days or by yourself. make her sailing experiance the best you can and yours will be great. the money you save is not worth the hassle and you will meet many more people if you are in a marina. freinds at the marina can be very imporant when that unexpected thing brakes and you need help. also you will gain a lot of knowledge from some of those people which can save you the couple of thousand $ a year. also the best way to keep the teenagers interested is to get them a sailing dingy. they will learn how to sail a lot faster and have fun doing it.
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  #37  
Old 08-05-2011
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Get a smaller boat - 25-30 foot keelboat is more than enough to start off with.


You'll leanr how to sail, you will sail more often, and have more fun.
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  #38  
Old 08-05-2011
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Your boat ownership experience will cost what you can comfortably afford. No more, and no less. It's that simple.

You have to decide what you want out of your boat. Do you want to sail a lot and not have to feel that you need to put in extra hours at work to cover your boating jones? Then buy a boat under $10K (There are lots of really, really good ones out there). If you are somebody who likes new and shiny, then prepare to sail less and work more to cover the nut.

The more work you are prepared to do yourself, the lower your maintenance costs will be- the biggest cost in any marine project is labour, and the more of it you do yourself, the less it costs you each time. Case in point:
Our first year, we sanded and bottom painted our boat- we used a gallon of paint and a crapload of cheap sandpaper and lots of fairing epoxy- Material cost: $400 ish.
Year two, better paper better technique, two quarts of paint $120.
Year three, 1.25 quarts of paint. Still $120, because I had to buy 2 quarts.
This year, $10 worth of sandpaper and thinner. Used up the remaining .75 quarts from last year.

I'll still spend the $1500 we allot each year for maintenance and upgrades, but this year it is heavily biased toward upgrades. Do I NEED to make those upgrades? Nope... but I don't play golf or sit in the stands at NASCAR races- my boats are what I do. The gizmos, doo-dads and projects are my greens fees.
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  #39  
Old 08-06-2011
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A few thoughts. I fully reject others trying to set your priorities for you. Only you can decide if the expense is correct in your budget.

We view our boat as our second home and it is. We use it heavily for 6 full months of the year. I don't compare my cost to an older boat on a mooring, I compare them to those of owning a condo down south, which by the way, also turned out to be a very bad investment for all. I also prefer sailing over sitting in a condo with people just waiting to get older.

I scanned the replies and didn't notice this point. You and your wife should go take a bareboat certification course first. I do not agree that all have to start in a dinghy, but do agree that you should get the right habits to start with. It will allow you to know for sure whether this is right for you before you flush the sales tax down the drain, as well as make you competent coastal cruisers on a boat of this size. I will put a plug in for Colgate Offshore Sailing School, which took my wife from zero experience to competent in one week. An intense week, no snorkeling during the day. Highly worth it.

If you are financing the boat, be sure you will qualify for the tax deductibility ofnthe interest. That requires a lien on the boat and the boat must have a permanent head, galley and bunk. It really is just like a second home, whereby, giving you incentive to buy one will absolutely cause you to add money to the economy in all the ways on your budget.

Best of wishes, I suspect you will love it......
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  #40  
Old 08-06-2011
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Couple of comments which I have'nt seen mentioned

I keep track two additional items which I call "additions" and "major maintenance". Additions includes safety gear, decent wet weather gear, upgrading electronics, etc. Some of these items may come with the boat, however a lot will not and can cost thousands.

Major maintenance are things that do not happen evey year but cost a bundle when they do. You already have some of these mentioned with sails & standing rigging replacement. I would add major engine repairs, battery replacements, prop shaft work, etc. On my last boat (45ft) major maintenance and additions represented 30-50% of all other costs, however this was a 25 year old boat which I was upgrading for long trips. A newer boat would probably be cheaper.

Also there is nothing wrong with keeping track of costs, unless your a dreamer and / or have plenty of money to throw away. That said, I recently went from a 45ft yacht to a 34ft yacht which is definitely a lot cheaper to run. Buying the smallest yacht that will comfortably do everything you want does make a lot of sense.

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