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My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

I hope to retire from working construction in the next 3-4 years and plan to retire on a sailboat in the NW .. and cruise when possible .. Mexico, Hawaii, Alaska. After visiting friends in the Olympia, Tacoma, Bremerton areas I am again in love with the Boat life. I lived aboard in South Fla in the 90's for about 6 years w/ my dog, before being transferred to VA, and loved it. Was a power boat then, 34' Silverton, and popping out to John PennyCamp for diving on a regular basis was awesome. Now I'm in CO and though I love it, can see no way to retire here as the cost is insane. I do love mountaineering so being near Rainier, Hood, etc is another bonus for the NW. Yea, it rains, I know.

Unfortunately my budget is small and last winter got smaller. We had no work at all here and I burned through $5000 in savings (boat money) sitting in sub freezing temps just waiting .. really sucked. Do not want to repeat that this winter. I want to be ready to move as soon as work dies, probably Dec/Jan. I'd like to go out now/soon and get my boat setup in a marina ready for me when I go. There were job openings in that area all winter last year, I just wasn't prepared to move at the time. I'm a Tinner by trade (HVAC) and with 30+ yrs exp can always find work if there is work.

I have a $10,000 budget and need something I can live on, in a marina, full time with my dog (lab). A decent galley is a must. I am looking as small as 27', though really would like to stay in the 30'-33' range. I need to be able to singlehand her. I'll eventually want to cruise to Mex and Hawaii. If I can find something now that will meet my current needs and those future needs, great, though I may just have to upgrade sometime down the road for that.

Your thoughts on these prospects, all things being equal ...
'69 Ericson 32 Atomic 4 - $9000
'74 cal 29 Atomic 4 - $10000
'75 Islander 30 II Beta 14 - $10000
'68 Mercator Volvo md2a - $10000
'74 Cal 3-30 Westerbeke 15hp - $10000
'79 Islander Bahama 30 ??? - $10000
?? Newport 30 Atomic 4 - $10500
'71 Ta Chiao Ketch $12000 (had to add it for the 'cool' factor)

Some have Atomic 4 Gas engines so not as practical for going long distance or for resale but my budget may require some compromise. I guess a liveaboard that I can -really- learn to sail on is my priority.

I'm very capable fixing/repairing/upgrading things, though won't hesitate to farm it out when needed. I make good money, when working and can do a lot of upgrading as I go .. but don't want to start w/ a junker of course.

Thanks! Steve
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

Don't know the Mercator, but all the boats on your list are pretty similar conceptually. There may be differences in design and build quality but they are all mass production, coastal cruisers. The Ta Chiao is a completely different beast and I would eliminate it from consideration. If each of the other boats is a money pit (all boats are) then the TC is two+ money pits (I assume it is quite a bit bigger than the others, so lets say 3 money pits.
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

I live in Olympia and I'm new to sailing but dreaming of owning a boat. My plan is to buy a 27' next spring. Until then I surf craigslist and dream.

This Catalina boat has been on there for about a month and would probably make a good live-aboard while you get settled in and earn some money to buy your dream boat. They've been dropping the price every few days and I have a feeling they'd take $5000-$6000 for it if you offered cash.

Whoops. I don't have enough posts to post a link, but if you go to the Seattle Craigslist and do a Catalina search you'll find it. It's currently listed for $6500.

I don't have any ties to it. I sail on club boats out of the marina it's in and took a look at it while walking the docks last week. Needs exterior paint and a clean, but looked good otherwise.

Drop a note when you get to the Pacific Northwest.

MWK
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

Hi Tinman55 , first of all get yourself a pair of board shorts . Keep saving money . The Islander Bahama is a good boat , but if you are going to retire on a boat , bite the bullet and look for something bigger . And I know this last part will hurt ( sorry tough love ) wait till the dog is gone . Good luck !
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Westsailforever View Post
Hi Tinman55 , first of all get yourself a pair of board shorts . Keep saving money . The Islander Bahama is a good boat , but if you are going to retire on a boat , bite the bullet and look for something bigger . And I know this last part will hurt ( sorry tough love ) wait till the dog is gone . Good luck !
Board shorts? uhmmmm ....
Naaa .. lived aboard 6 yrs w/ a dog with no problem .. you must not like animals.

Thanks, that was helpful
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

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Originally Posted by mwk1973 View Post
I live in Olympia and I'm new to sailing but dreaming of owning a boat. My plan is to buy a 27' next spring. Until then I surf craigslist and dream.

This Catalina boat has been on there for about a month and would probably make a good live-aboard while you get settled in and earn some money to buy your dream boat. They've been dropping the price every few days and I have a feeling they'd take $5000-$6000 for it if you offered cash.

Drop a note when you get to the Pacific Northwest.

MWK
Thanks .. I've been checkin' Craigs too .. is that the one w/ the electric motor? Not sure about that. I'm really looking at Inboards. From what I've read and a friend who sails in the area the outboards can be problematic in rougher conditions or strong currents. There's a nice, or so it appears, Hunter 27 in Oly for $4800 .. could be worth looking at.

I may end up in Olympia when I move .. have friends there .. will drop a line.

Steve
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

Here is my suggestion 1967 islander 29' sailboat with 10' Livingston dingy
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

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Here is my suggestion --1967 islander 29' sailboat with 10' Livingston dingy[/url]
Yours? I did see that one .. it was listed for a while then seemed to disappear for a while and now is back. Don't really want to go 'outboard' but the inboard may be repairable. It's a good price and doesn't break my bank, so to speak. I might be in the Bremerton area in a few weeks. If so I'll look it up. Like the upgrades they've done.

Thanks!
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

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Originally Posted by Tinman55 View Post
Yours? I did see that one .. it was listed for a while then seemed to disappear for a while and now is back. Don't really want to go 'outboard' but the inboard may be repairable. It's a good price and doesn't break my bank, so to speak. I might be in the Bremerton area in a few weeks. If so I'll look it up. Like the upgrades they've done.

Thanks!
Actually not my boat I sail an islander Bahama 24 flush deck. The usual issue with the atomic and no spark actually is corroded electrical connections or bad points just like any engine with points and condenser all parts are readily available to fix it also.
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Re: My Retirement Plan - Finding the Right Boat

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These are cool boats there are 3-4 in my marina 2 of them are close to me ,so I talk to the owners . One of them has a bow sprit I asked about that and the guy said the factory did that to correct for weather helm, they also shortened the boom . I didn't know these boats had the option for out board . That I think that would be a good choice , out boards you can pick up reasonable $, also it can double as your tender motor .

Last edited by Westsailforever; 3 Weeks Ago at 01:17 PM.
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