Advice on 1st boat for College student - SailNet Community

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  #1  
Old 08-03-2006
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Advice on 1st boat for College student

Hello-
I'm looking into buying a boat- it's a 2 man racing boat that's older (30 years or so) that's always been dry sailed. it's ugly, but i've been told by the guys in the yard it's a pretty solid boat.

It's $1200 w/trailer (needs work to be road legal). I can probably afford it in payments over time, and i get a free slip for 6 months or so- but then i have to pay for a slip.

my question is, is it wise to buy a boat in college? does anyone have experience owning a boat while in school? i always seem to be lacking money while in school(although, a recent job offer- that i'm taking- will virtually double my income). i dunno what to think- on the one hand- it's a pretty good deal in the short-medium term, but long term is a huge question mark with dry slip fees, maintenance costs, etc. etc.

any advice???
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Old 08-03-2006
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During my undergraduate years, I owned a plywood OK dinghy (essentially an Olympic Finn class trainer), which I bought cheap, restored and raced. They were a popular class at that time and place. A lot of yacht clubs had really cheap 'student memberships' and so I joined a club that had cheap dues and storage rates. I sold the OK Dinghy for what I had in her when I took up messing with racing motorcyles.

I also found that I could get free, almost unlimited use of the University's boats when I joined the sailing team. The only trouble was that I couldn't use the boats anywhere other than at the University sailing center.

I owned several boats during the couple years between my undergrad degree and my masters, but none while I was in grad school. There wasn't enough spare time to mess with boats in grad school.

Jeff

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Old 08-03-2006
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What's the boat... It would help if you said that... as the options will vary depending on what kind of boat it is. If it is a Laser, it can often be left on a trailer and stored that way, avoiding slip fees....etc.

Maintenance costs aren't all that high on a boat that is in good shape, particularly if you sail on freshwater and keep the boat on the trailer, rather than in the water. Much of the maintenance is also stuff you can do yourself.

Also, what is your living situation. It becomes more difficult if you live in a dormitory or apartment. If you live in a house, then the storage issue might be easily solved, if the landlord/zoning restrictions will allow you to store the boat in your yard.

Jeff's point about the University's boats is also a good one... and in some schools, you may be able to store your boat with at the university boat house, if you're a student and/or on the sailing team.
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Old 08-04-2006
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yeah-

the boat is a local chesapeke boat- called a hampton. it's 18ft, large sail area, pretty damn fast, with one trapeeze, and built for light air. the boat i'm thinking of is ugly, but workable, and i really really would like to have her. money, on the other hand, is in short supply (the sailor's reality).

i figure the make-or-break deal about this boat where to keep it- i live smack dab downtown in a major metro area- i ride a bike, have no car, and my apartment would barely fit this boat on a trailer.

i contacted my school's sailing program- they do have a dry slip area with some FJ's (which i imagine are crap). they do offer competitive and rec sailing with their boats (all five of 'em) which i imagine are not in great shape- i'm waiting to find out if i could store a boat there if i open it up to the club... which is doubtful.

whatever, it'll work out- unless i get a free place to keep it on the water (or really really cheap- like $300 a season dry slip) it's a no-go.
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Old 08-04-2006
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Cool First college sailboat

Sounds like your eyes are bigger than your wallet. Why not get a used Laser, Zuma or another car-top style racer that does not require moorage or a trailer.
First thing might be to get a sailing partner that has wheels to transport
a small racing boat to the lakes. This should cut your sailing expenses in half.
Worry about getting out of college B4 you worry about buying a boat you cannot afford by yourself. What are your priorities? Get 'er done!!
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Old 08-05-2006
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as someone said, look for the sailing club. it was 45 a semester and you could take them out when ever you pleased, after you passed the test. It was not really that hard.
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Old 08-05-2006
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Go smaller

Go smaller, unless you KNOW it is the boat for you and you KNOW it has good resale value and you KNOW that it will be a useable boat (class exists) where ever you happen to move to after graduating. A laser can be cartopped and is high performance fun.
Amazing how the trailer and rigging of aging 18' sailboat can strain the time and dollar budget. A laser is quick and easy and simple. Find an old beater and go sailing.
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