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post #1 of 7 Old 10-03-2010 Thread Starter
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First Boat for Puget Sound

Hello all,

I recently moved to Port Townsend with my wife and we are looking to get out on the water. Although our long term goal is to become competent sailors, at this point we just want to enjoy Puget Sound from the water. Maybe do some fishing and exploring. We have no sailing experience. I grew up boating on a small lake, but have never been on a body of water nearly this big.

We are looking to spend less than $2000 and be able to move the boat with my small truck. Either in the bed or on a small trailer. So, what might you recommend as a starter boat. Kayak, canoe, sailing dinghy, rowboat with an outboard??? I hope I hit all the important parts, but please ask if I left out some information that would help.

Thank you,

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post #2 of 7 Old 10-03-2010
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I'm sure you could find a used double kayak, or something like a used Laser or other sailing dinghy in your budget.... if sailing is your goal it'd make more sense to go that route (the sailing dinghy).

I'd check out your local buy/sell rags, sites like craigslist etc and see what's available.

You might also look into sailing clubs, co-ops, or simply see if you can get yourselves on someone else's crew list - try local clubs that have casual off season races on weekends. If you're reliable and willing to accept instructions you'll likely be asked back.. it's a great way to get experience for free...

But in the meantime read all you can, keep an eye out for some kind of way to get yourselves started... it'll work out!


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post #3 of 7 Old 10-03-2010
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Check Craigslist for your area, there are always lot's of boats in that price range available. Whether you go sail or power or ? is really your choice but with no sailing experience you might feel more comfortable with a small (14' or so) aluminum boat and motor until you can crew or take some sailing lessons.
If you really want to get into sailing I would pursue it and hold off on getting a boat until you know what you want. The waters around PT are cold and there are VERY strong currents just off the point so you want to be really careful in any boat, but especially if you are in a small boat.

SV Laurie Anne

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post #4 of 7 Old 10-22-2010
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I think you can find some saling classes there, see what they're using. Check with the woodboat center. They may be able pont you to some good boats for the area
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post #5 of 7 Old 10-22-2010
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You could probably get a small sailing dinghy, like an O'Day Javelin on a trailer, for that budget.


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post #6 of 7 Old 10-23-2010
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Hi Matthew,

Many of the others have given you some good ideas. I'll throw in my 2 cents.

First, what kind of boating do you want to do? If not sailing, this may not be the greatest forum for advice, though the maintenance knowledge of folks like Faster and SD is readily transferable.

However, assuming that you really do want to sail, here's some questions that you may want to ask yourself. Answering these should help you narrow down your choices a bit.
  1. What kind of sailing do you want to do? Cruising or racing? If, as you suggest, you want to enjoy Puget Sound on the water, cruising sounds like the likely answer.
  2. How many people will typically be on the boat? Just you and your wife?
  3. Do you want something for overnights; or just for day sailing?
  4. Are you prepared to spend more than the $2,000 that you are budgeting? If so, how much more? I ask because a trailer alone can cost that much, depending on it's condition

The nice thing about those questions is that they will also serve you quite well even if you want a power boat.

If you want to tow the boat with your truck, trailer sailors are readily available

As for where to find boats on sale, you can start by getting 2 free magazines: 48 North and Northwest Yachting. 48 North is mainly sailboats, but Northwest Yachting is for both power and sail. They won't have everything, but it should be a good start. In Canada, they're available at many marinas and marine stores. Perhaps some of SN folks in Puget Sound can tell you where to pick up copies.

Hope that helps.


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post #7 of 7 Old 10-23-2010
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Here it is

Okay a little more than budgeted but....

Cal 21 with Trailer Great to sail and fun!

This boat will give you a nice day sailor that you could cruise in as well. If you stretch your budget a bit you might find a boat bigger than a dingy to start sailing. One issue is the keel though, it will make it harder to launch but will give you a lot of potential in a cheap package.

48 North is also available online. 48NorthOctober10
It will concentrate on bigger boats. Craigslist would be a better place to look for small boats. If your budget is really only $2000 you might want to stick with a dingy, but if you want to explore the Puget Sounds a boat like the Cal will get you a lot further.

West Wight Potter 14 "Lemon Drop"
Oceanside CA
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Last edited by jephotog; 10-23-2010 at 12:19 AM. Reason: More info
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