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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Crew Wanted/Available
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  #1  
Old 10-07-2008
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How to Find Good Crew

I would appreciate captains or owners to give me some ideas on how to go about finding good crews for long coastal cruising (maine to florida, etc).
How do you evaluate them? Are there inherent problems? Clues to weeding out the nightmare crewmemember?

Thanks.
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Old 10-07-2008
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Maddock,

First of all, let me say that I am neither an owner, nor captain. I am a member of a sailing club that strives to connect boat owners with crew (.http://www.pelagicsailingclub.org/).

If you are looking for good crew for coastal cruising, I would suggest that a great way is to sail with prospective crew members on shorter voyages. A club such as the one I mention above is a good source for potential crew applicants. The club has a crew evaluation form, and solicits reviews and reccomendations from other members. Realize that not only are you evaluating them, but the prospective crew is also evaluating you, and your boat.

Good luck!

Ed
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Old 10-07-2008
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Steve at the carib 1500 web site maintains a crew list not only for his rallies but also for deliveries and such. Contact him (steve@carib1500.com). The list gives info on the crew candidates, experience, age, etc. He may be able to help.
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Old 10-07-2008
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Depends on your needs....

I think the best crew are ones that fit in personality wise with the skipper. If there isn't that "fit", all other things are not important. Example if the skipper (you) and crew member just don't get along, having someone crew for you that is the most skilled sailor isn't worth the aggravation.

If you are a competent sailor/captain, there should be no reason not to take on a green crew member for your voyage if you have the patience to help teach them the finer aspects of handling your boat. That being said, you really should not take on anyone that hasn't at least been sailing or boating a few times so that they are at least familiar with going out in coastal waters for hours.

If you are a newbie skipper, you should look for folks that maybe have more experience sailing than you do and then learn from them.

Several skippers that I have crewed for had a 1/2 h or so phone screen before I was invited on their boat. Basic questions like sailing experience, type of work I did, hobbies, etc., would give them clues into whether I would fit into their "organization" that would include other crew members.

If the potential match was there, I would be invited out for a sail and "evaluated". Also, I would evaluate whether I wanted to remain a crew member after the trial sail. At the end of the sail, if I was interested, I'd asked to be invited back. It would be pretty apparent to both parties if the "chemistry" just wasn't there, and this has happened to me also.

So my advice is to do the following:
  • Advertise for crew and with details of what would be expected and what you would provide in return.
  • Once you get names and contact info, do a phone screen and talk to the potential crew folks about what you are looking for and ask them what they are looking for, hobbies, interests, sailing/boating experience, etc. Solicit information that may help you ascertain whether or not the individual will "fit".
  • Of those that you think are worth a second look, arrange for a great-n-meet sail for a few hours to get a better feel of the skills and personalities. Not only do the crew have to get along with you, they have to get along or at least work tolerably with the others.

Once you have had your meet-n-great sail, invite only those that you think will good.

You could ask for sailing references for their sailing skills, but unless you're paying them, I think that is not really the best foot forward with building relationships.

DrB
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Old 10-09-2008
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Couldn't agree more with DrB

As a relative newbie to racing I recently spent a fair amount of time this summer looking for crew with little success.

Admittedly I was a little late getting my act together. I did not start looking for crew until mid-June. By that time most crew had already made commitments tfor the season.

My advice would be to start looking as soon as possible after the New Year to start lining up potential crew for interviews - maybe even get a little help with Spring time preparations to guage REAL interest!

For the record I am still looking 3 or 4 crew interested in racing/cruising NEXT Summer (2009) in the Mass, Cape Cod and Buzzards Bay Area.

I skipper a PDQ36 Capella LRC cruising catamaran out of Beverly Harbor.

I have limited experience racing so we are not likely to win any trophies but I guarantee we'll have some fun and hopefully sharpen our sailing skills! My long term goal is to participate in the longer distance/overnight races on a regular basis.

If interested please reply on this thread and I'll get back to you.
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How to find good, responsible crew?

Easy! Call me!

Seriously, I ask for then check references. I also like to speak to prospective crew over the phone to get a glimpse of their personality.
After that, a couple days working around the boat should tell you plenty about them.

Good luck!
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Old 10-28-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddock631 View Post
I would appreciate captains or owners to give me some ideas on how to go about finding good crews for long coastal cruising (maine to florida, etc).
How do you evaluate them? Are there inherent problems? Clues to weeding out the nightmare crewmemember?

Thanks.
If your are looking for an experinced crew then look at the UK the minmum requirement is RYA Competent Crew certificate , also look for ex-service men and woman that are looking for the hours to sail.

Hope this helps

I am available for the summer in the atlantic and /or carib , or med.
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Old 11-10-2008
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I find it best to get people who are compatible in terms of personality and worry about sailing skills later -- unless they just have no boat sense, which is another issue.

After someone showed up onboard for a 3 day sail toting a blueberry cobbler (I mean, where do you store a blueberry cobbler?) I decided to post a set of crew instructions. They cover what to bring, what not to bring, some basic expectations, a little safety info, and so on. Some of them are a bit tongue-in-cheek but in general they provide useful info.

They can be found at weathergage.com under "crew and guest instructions."
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