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Frogwatch 08-18-2013 05:17 PM

Go bigger or go now?
I am 57 yrs old. I own a 28' S2 I have sailed to Marsh Harbor, Abaco and left there for awhile. I want to continue sailing south ( I mean far south)till I get either bored or too scared. HOWEVER, I do think a bigger boat might be a good option for me, not too much bigger, still small enough to single hand.
So, what to do...........
I've sailed the S2 for 22 years and practically rebuilt her and know just about all there is to know about her. She is PERFECT for the shallow bahamas waters (3'10" draft) and capable of handling bigger water by watching conditions. Her actual value is very little and would probably take forever to sell even though she is registered in the Bahamas (a big deal). OTOH, her loss due to a storm or whatever would not cause me any financial problem at all (would actually save me money) but pride (and loyalty to her) makes me do all I can to keep her safe.
28' does not often seem small until you are at sea. However, whenever I pull into a marina full of huge boats and I know I go places they probably never will because they simply owe too much money, I always hear them remark about how small my boat for being able to get where I am. Not sure if this is a remark on my sanity or their frustration that they should have gone cheaper and simpler. I also know my maintenance costs and marina charges are far less than theirs giving me a lot more possibilities.
Do I continue sailing south taking pride in my spartan accomodations and my little boat that does so much? Will age quickly catch up with me making it difficult to deal with her and make me want a nicer berth? I worry that a bigger boat will have bigger problems and be harder to deal with.

I could buy a bigger boat, a bit of a financial stretch but could pay for something I could rework for my own tastes and make her seaworthy for not much. However, this would take probably two-three years or more and would require me to get familiar with another boat. I'd be 60 by then (seems impossible)

What to do, What to do.

xort 08-18-2013 05:20 PM

The only issue I see is the Thorny Path. Especially the Mona Passage where it gets NASTY!

If you can avoid that...

Rutherford just did a nonstop circ of the Americas on a 22' boat!

northoceanbeach 08-18-2013 05:28 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
It sounds to me like you know what you want and what you want is to keep sailing your current boat.

If you could easily buy a bigger better boat and still be able to go far south then do it, but if it makes you have to wait to pay for it than forget it. 28 isn't that small anyways.

manatee 08-18-2013 05:56 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
Go now.

Capt.aaron sails a 28 footer:

Frogwatch 08-18-2013 06:20 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
I'll admit to being somewhat (ok, a lot more than somewhat) chicken and once I am on the open water I get that "What the hell am I doing here when I could be home with a cup of hot coffee and a newspaper" thought. Would a bigger boat help or do you just worry about more stuff then? Is a bigger boat easier to sail or do the larger sails make it more difficult?
I will never live aboard and will rarely spend more'n two or three weeks aboard. Much of my vacationing is spent in tents so even having a berth on the 28' S2 is luxurious by comparison. I guess the only real reason I would like a bigger boat is that feeling of having those big waves pushing my small boat around.

I'd actually like a motorsailor as I find I spend a lot of time motoring anyway but all of them I see have so many complicated systems that I'd spend too much time working on it and not going places. I did install an oversized engine on my S2 just for this reason so I actually do have a "motorsailor" now.

Does "bigger" make for more confidence (at least in sailboats)?

aeventyr60 08-18-2013 06:21 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
Take along a suitcase full of money and enjoy yourself! Bigger is not always better. 3 more years to get ready....

Ajax_MD 08-18-2013 06:32 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?

Originally Posted by xort (Post 1075731)
The only issue I see is the Thorny Path. Especially the Mona Passage where it gets NASTY!

If you can avoid that...

Rutherford just did a nonstop circ of the Americas on a 22' boat!

It was an Albin Vega, at 27 feet. Still, I get your point.

Dauntless Brent 08-18-2013 07:23 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
Go now. My feeling is that 28' or 50', the ocean is always going to be bigger. If you're happy, why change?

JonEisberg 08-18-2013 08:11 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
As another who sails a comparatively small boat, I vote for going with what you've got...

There's absolutely no reason you can't make it out to the Eastern Caribbean in your 28-footer... Don't think about swapping for something bigger, until you actually feel the NEED to do so...

Saw an interesting piece the other morning with the authors of HAPPY MONEY: THE SCIENCE OF SMARTER SPENDING... Two of their recommendations were to invest in EXPERIENCES as opposed to THINGS, and to buy TIME whenever you can... Staying with your current boat, you'll be buying 3 years in your estimation, and can still have essentially the same experiences on your present boat, as one 5 or 10 feet larger...

krisscross 08-18-2013 08:36 PM

Re: Go bigger or go now?
If it is a good boat that you know really well and trust, I would keep it. It would take you a lot of time and money to get to this level of confidence with a new bigger boat. Small and simple is the way to go.

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