So, how nuts is my cruising plan? - SailNet Community

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Old 10-29-2009
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So, how nuts is my cruising plan?

Hi all,

So for a while now I have been dreaming of the cruising life. To that end, here is where I am...

1) have been sailing a few times with friends and been crew for a couple Great Lakes races
2) my wife and I did our competent crew week long course down in the Whitsunday Islands in May
3) my wife and I will be doing down for a week in December to take out our own boat - a 38 foot Lagoon catamaran
4) we have sufficient funds such that money isn't really a 'huge' issue - its more a commit to the trade thing (my wife is currently working, I am semi if not totally retired)
5) when she gets tired of the work grind (hopefully in a year or two) we would then look to buy a catamaran (my current best picks from what I can tell would be either an Outremer 45 or 49 or a used Atlantic 48 or 55).

So, in the meantime, I can obviously work on another sailing trip here or there for the two of us (or with friends although amazingly its very hard to recruit people for sailing vacations - go figure). I can continue to read all kind of publications. I can try and get out on boats where I am - although there would be no cats to sail nor would anything be in the 45-55 foot range that I currently know of.

How bad is my plan so far? I figure I am lining up skills/trips and have the interest from both parties (albeit I am currently keener given I am not working). The biggest issue I bet sailing people would have is that my first boat would be so big. That is why I am doing the charter thing to get a feel for larger sized boats. I am not interested in sailing a 10 foot Laser and then a 20 foot xyz and a 30 foot xyz and then a 40 foot xyz over the next 5 years. To me those intermediate steps (assuming one bought) would just burn through huge amounts of money via depreciation not to mention getting stuck with illiquid assets assuming one went with very old boats to save money. I am more of the opinion that if you want a Ferrari, save up and buy one, don't buy a bunch of junk first just because you can afford it. Hence, assuming we decide its doable I would envision my first boat being nothing smaller than a 45 foot catamaran.

That all said, what else can I consider doing to prepare or get things lined up? How bad or nuts is my plan and what I have done thus far to move in the right direction?

Regards.
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Old 10-29-2009
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Do what you wish financially. As far as cruising. Cruising brings into your life all kinds of weather. Not just daysailing. Get in as much sailing as possible. Crew for deliveries etc. etc. Cruising your local waters isw not the same as cruising, and crossing oceans. Of course you folks down under know more about rough seas than most........i2f
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I am wondering about finding out how to be rail meat for any crossing - heck, it would be fine for me to pay for a flight to say South Africa to do an Atlantic (for instance); the cost would just be 'prep' in my mind.
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Old 10-29-2009
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Hmmmm

Quote:
have been sailing a few times with friends and been crew for a couple Great Lakes races
and you are thinking of jumping up to 48 - 55 foot cat. On an Atlantic 55 the main is 933 square feet. That is a lot for two people to handle. The genoa is almost as big. OK if things are going well but if anything goes wrong you will find it pretty daunting.

Why so big? Do you intend to have crew? I am not trying to put you off but the loads on a big cat are scary and stuff breaks so you have to go and wrestle with things from time to time.

I have seen quite a few couples with bigger boats and it is noticeable that they often motor rather than sail and if they do sail they are strangely reluctant to raise the main.
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3) my wife and I will be doing down for a week in December to take out our own boat - a 38 foot Lagoon catamaran

If you own a 38, how is jumping to a 45 such a big deal?
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Old 10-29-2009
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Originally Posted by xort View Post
3) my wife and I will be doing down for a week in December to take out our own boat - a 38 foot Lagoon catamaran

If you own a 38, how is jumping to a 45 such a big deal?

I'm thinking the 38'er is a charter.....OP is in Hong Kong, Whitsundays are Great Barrier Reef islands.........
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Last edited by tdw; 10-30-2009 at 02:45 AM.
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Old 10-29-2009
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I would do it, sounds fun. Biggest issue seems to be getting the wife on the bandwagon.
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Correct, 38 is a charter. I realize a a 48 or 55 would be quite large but anyone buying a cat is looking at 38 as a minimum pretty much. I am also thinking safety here - would you rather be in the middle of the Pacific in a 38 foot boat or a 48 foot boat? I don't know about the rest of you but bigger is better to my mind here. I wouldn't have crew but I don't see myself not sailing or putting up a main - thats just nuts.

I agree, a 55 though is really getting up there; but anything 45-48 is kinda what to me looks like the minimum that would be liveable without feeling like being in a cramped little trailer.
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size is relative.
I read about family of 4, full time livaboard on sub 40' monohulls all the time.
Others need 100' for part time cruising.

We wanted a 45' for livaboard. Couldn't swing the cost so we bought a 42. Plenty of room for all our stuff.

Old adage: Buy the smallest boat you can be comfortable in.
Your charter on the 38 should give you a lot to consider. Enjoy the charter but also make time to "use" the boat as if you were living aboard. Might take some imagination to just sit and think of where things would go and how you would use the boat longer term.

We went from a 26' power boat to our 42' sailboat. Really not too big a deal.
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Old 10-30-2009
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What you are missing is the little bit about becoming a competent sailor and seaman...many manage to do what you plan but most of them scare the hell out of themselves and the wife along the way... There are lots of single men sailing the world after the lady got off the boat...we had one on our boat for dinner last night.

As to size; we have a 55 with a 700 sq ft main, 1100 sq ft genoa and a 2000 sq ft spinnaker and when things go wrong she is a serious handful and that is with over 50,000 sea miles of experience aboard.

The problem is that it all looks easy in good conditions but when things go wrong in bad weather!!!

Last edited by Yorksailor; 10-30-2009 at 07:45 AM.
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