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  #1  
Old 07-01-2013
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New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Hi, everybody,

I haven't been as active on SailNet as I used to be. We sold our boat last September bought a house and moved ashore after 15 years living on our boat and cruising. (I may have mentioned this in an earlier post - don't remember.)

However, I haven't abandoned my Frugal Mariner website and I have recently been working on a page called "Buying a Cruising Boat - Some Tips"

Well, it turned out to be a larger project than I had anticipated. I remembered back when we bought our cruising boat, a beat up 1977 41' Morgan Out Island center cockpit ketch. And I remembered how much of a neophyte I was. My idea then was to help those with the cruising dream in their purchase of a new boat so maybe others wouldn't make the same dumb mistakes I made.

I, of course, am just a guy, not the god-like expert that I would like to appear to be. And I would not want to give some unsuspecting newbie any misinformation - or leave out any information that he should really be aware of.

So I am asking a favor of any of you who have the time and inclination to take a look at the link above and tell me what you think. I realize that we all have opinions based on our own personal experience, and I have tried not to slant anything toward my own prejudices - though I realize it is probably inevitable.

So any comments, good, bad or indifferent; anything that should be corrected, deleted, added will be carefully considered. You can leave your comments here - for the Sailnet world to see - or on the comment section at the bottom of the "Buying a Cruising Boat" page.

Thank you all very much. And a thank you to Sailnet which has always been a big asset to me over our cruising years.

Larry
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  #2  
Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Hey, guys and gals - no comments at all? 171 of you have read this post so far. As of 6:00 AM today, 74 of you have looked at Frugal Mariner's 'Buying a cruising boat' page.

I can only conclude one of two things - either it was so bad or boring that no one wanted to embarrass me by commenting, or it was so incredibly good that there were no comments to be made to help. And I can't believe the second.

C'mon, Sailnetter's what did you think?
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Larry,
while i did not read through all the details, you seems to have covered the major points.

Only addition would be on where to buy boat stuff and on certain topics that sailors/boater should be aware.

There are many places to buy from both on-line and brick & mortar stores but if you tackle a major re-fit that you know will take several years, you should be cautious... It may not pay off to get something "on sale" in advance in you know that you will not tackle that project for some time... I purchased a $400.00 transducer during a "Tent Sale" a big Marine Outfitter was having in CT, back in March. Now that I'm ready to install it, i find out it wont work...
Advice is worth what you pay for, be very careful when buying electronics and related items... While you may pay a few dollars more for the same item purchased from a Electronics Shop, their knowledge base is better than the big discounters and you may be happier with your purchase...
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

MZW

Thanks - good point. I worked off and on over the years at a marina and got everything wholesale - including a new engine for the boat - so buying stuff was easy for me and never crossed my mind to include any advice on it.

Both Suzi and I worked now and then at West Marine - employee discounts are unbelievable. If you're re-fitting a boat, it would be great if you could get a part time job at West Marine. The pay is awful - $7 or 8 dollars an hour. But when you can buy an item that retails for $40 or $50. for $8. or $10. it's well worth it. You don't save as much on electronics because their markup isn't as high as other types of merchandise - but other than that it can be a really good deal.
Thanks - I'll do some research and see if I can add a page on where to buy good stuff for reasonable prices. Your advice on talking to the experts is always good advice.

Larry
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

One tiny little thing: When opening the links for the boat laws for each state, I couldn't re-size the new window. May just be my browser.

Otherwise, it looks like a good over-view. Maybe in the additional reading, include links to Beth Leonard's and Nigel Calder's books on the same subject.
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Barquito,

Interesting on the new window resize. I'm using Mozilla Firefox and it worked okay. What browser do you use?

In re.: Books - I stuck a couple in - but I'll have to spend some more time inserting.

Thanks for your comments.
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Have bought/sold many boats over the years before my "last boat". Would say it's very informative to speak to long term owners of the type of boat you're looking at and learn a huge amount from talking to the yard monkeys and wrenches. Spent tons of hours going through boat yards with my Admiral. When we got down to the short list went back to the yards without the broker with beer in hand to share to talk with the yard crew. Worth the exercise. Suggest that and any internet owner's web site.
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Old 07-02-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Very good post! A few items you might consider adding:
  • Anchor handling and storage. Small boats usually don't have windlasses and sometimes don't have bow rollers and chain lockers. With a larger boat you may have little choice but to have an electric windlass to raise the size anchor you need.
  • Watermakers. More and more cruisers seem to consider these "essential", even justifying them financially on the basis of "saving" you the per gallon charges you sometimes face outside the US.
  • Water/Fuel Tankage. Dependent on the size of the boat. Can be hard to add tanks to an existing boat. Can get away with smaller water tanks with a watermaker, but then you need bigger batteries or a genset.
  • Showers. Daily high volume showers probably aren't happening on a smaller boat as you don't have the tankage and probably don't have the power generation for a watermaker. However some are OK with showering in the rain or using a garden sprayer left out in the sun.
It might also be useful to make the point that it's often easier/cheaper in the long run to buy a boat that has what you want than to buy one that doesn't where you have to spend lots of time and money upgrading. Upgrades that involve changing the fundamental design of the boat such as enlarging an anchor locker or rearranging galley cabinetry can be difficult, costly, and could ultimately hurt the resale value of the boat if not done carefully.
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Old 07-03-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

4arch: some good points worth adding.

Though my boat wasn't small - 41 feet, 28,000 lbs - we had a 45 lb CQR as a primary anchor with 80 ' of 3/8" chain + 3/4" line, and I managed to pull it up by hand on a regular basis for many years. Though I agree that a windlass would have been nice and I would have installed one if I came across one at the right price - always keep looking, never found one.

The subject of watermakers could stand a whole page by itself - I'll put that on my list of things to add to the Frugal Mariner. We had purchased one - left it for the new owners of Kanau - we never got it installed. When we built the hard bimini, we made accommodations for water catchment system. During a hard rain, we could easily get 40 or 50 gallons added to our water supply.

When we were traveling, 'sailor showers' worked for us as they do for many cruisers - though we appreciated the luxury of having a regular shower when we needed. In case some of you aren't familiar with sailor showers, you jump into the water, climb back out and soap up, head to toe, jump back in and rinse, then back out and a quick rinse with fresh water to get the saltwater off your skin - use maybe a quart or two if you're careful. Also, taking advantage of an afternoon rain worked. Secluded anchorages = modesty.

These are all good things to add to Frugal Mariner as many new cruisers - which this article is really aimed at - aren't familiar with them.

Thanks! 4arch. If you're cruising on a 30' boat, you know of what you speak. I applaud you!
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Old 07-03-2013
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Re: New Pages on Frugal Mariner

Quote:
Interesting on the new window resize. I'm using Mozilla Firefox and it worked okay. What browser do you use?
This was on Internet Explorer.
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