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123456Wannasail654321 05-06-2011 04:26 PM

how often is it that...
Here is is in NC its a beautiful sunny Friday. A day perfect to drive to the boat in New Bern jump on a just go.

How often is that possible in a sail boat. I mean pull up to it on the slip crank the engine and go. how much work is there normally in using a sailboat. in general.

I had a friend who sold his sail boat because the work hours far out weighed the sailing hours. by the time he got to new bern and did the work required there was not much sailing time left in the weekend.

is this common?

for the record I would love to get to a boat (if I had one) on fri-night set out, anchor out, and just enjoy as much as I couls until Sunday whe I'd have to motor back

so what is the work/ sailing ratio in general?

TQA 05-06-2011 09:27 PM

Depends Maintain your boat like this one

<table style="width:auto;"><tr><td><a href=""><img src="" height="97" width="144" /></a></td></tr><tr><td style="font-family:arial,sans-serif; font-size:11px; text-align:right">From <a href="">Hoot Mon</a></td></tr></table>

and you won't sail that often unless you have a ton of money and access to a top quality yard.

Others let the teak weather, don't obsess about the odd topside scuff or rust stain and go sailing.

PaulinVictoria 05-07-2011 12:48 AM

I wash mine down maybe once a month, I spent a few days with her out on the hard doing some work too earlier in the year. Aside from that, I go sailing. In fact I can get to the boat, fire up the motor and as we're on the way out of the marina my sail buddy is getting the sails sorted out, total time spent from leaving the car in the carpark to casting off, about 10 minutes.
My work/sail ratio is probably 1 hour of maintenance per 30 or 40 hours of sailing.

Tim R. 05-07-2011 06:54 AM

Get a boat that is capable of sailing right now. Then sail it to a nice destination, drop the hook and do some work there.

I always try to do at least a little work every time I am on the boat. That was with my previous boat. Now that I live aboard projects are much easier to get done. No competing time for house maint.

waterdog52 05-07-2011 09:52 AM

Me...about 50%/50% actually at the boat. But, I am almost always alone. I may get to the dock and be content to wash her, sit below eat lunch, listen to music and watch the show or I may be underway in 15 minutes.

The extra work comes in 'overtime" in home maintance, family functions and working late so I can have time to go to the boat. However the Admiral sometimes packs enough stuff for a 3 day cruise when we are just out for afternoon.

I think going to a professional sports show, such as NFL,NBA or MLBA, is to much "work' and is not worth the effort. One a year is about all I can stand.

So, I suppose "work" is relative.

Sublime 05-07-2011 10:21 AM


Originally Posted by waterdog52 (Post 728011)
So, I suppose "work" is relative.


The actual sailing is a little more work than driving a power boat, so my powerboat friends say. You have to look up the mast occasionally, make course adjustments and then there's tacks and making your guests move to windward if needed.

But to me that's less work than to put up with "RAAAAAAAAAAWWWWWRRRR" of the motor the entire time you're out. Gives me a headache. You can have a conversation with other sailors until you're out of earshot while sailing. Hard to do on a powerboat. And being out 1 hour or 6 hours, it costs the same in a sailboat. Not so in a power boat.
But sometimes the weather isn't cooperating though so that one day off you have this week might not be a good day to go sailing. And there's a bigger learning curve than with a power boat.

The rigging lasts longer than motors. You check it to make sure lines aren't chafed, nothing's corroding, etc but that doesn't take too long. Friends I have with power boats are always having to mess with the motors. Occasional use is really hard on motors.

One of my boats hasn't required any work other than a wash and wax for three seasons. Her sail is ~35 years old and could use replacing. She'll still get up on a plane though.
Miss Muffet was behind on maintenance so I'm upside down in maintenance vs sailing hours, but I don't think she's a demanding boat once all of that is done. We're still getting to know each other. In less than an hour I tensioned the shrouds, figured out some unfamiliar rigging, and was casting off.

Penelope...holy s***. She's been a regular diva. :rolleyes: She requires bribes in teak oil, elbow grease and money before I can even think about getting her out. But she was stored under a tree for six years before I got her, so I guess that's why she's a bit grumpy. Otherwise, some teak oil and spar urethane once a season is all she's supposed to need for routine maintenance. I need to clean the carb on the's a bit pissy at low rpms.

Faster 05-07-2011 11:07 AM

We spend 6-8 weeks each summer cruising BC waters so that lump of time rarely involves major maintenance and skews our ratio heavily towards sailing time.

In Spring I'd say we spend half the good weekends getting rid of the winter grime, doing the routine annual maintenance chores and often an annual 'upgrade' of some sort. Last year it was a new autopilot, this year a new GPS and a Max prop, a few years back all new standing rigging etc.. seems there's always something.

Of course those 'beautiful sailing days' are equally fine for waxing, varnishing, washing, or doing any of the outside jobs that come up so you're always going to have to sacrifice some fine sailing weather to those duties.

Omatako 05-07-2011 03:03 PM

I never mix sailing with work.

When there is maintenance to do I go to the boat and do the maintenance and then go home. And I take a lot of maintenance stuff home and do it in the week.

When I go sailing I do no maintenance unless it's something that stops me from managing the boat properly. Then it's step on board, ten minutes to prepare the boat (sail covers, engine checks) and we're gone.

Yorksailor 05-07-2011 03:40 PM

I have friend's who never stop working on their boats...but that is a conscious they never sail.

I just spent 2 hours cleaning the bottom of the boat and tomorrow I will spend an hour changing the oil. That is the first work on the boat in the last 3 weeks during which I sailed from Miami to St Thomas a distance of 1200 miles.

Phil who loves sailing and hates working on boats.

Sabreman 05-07-2011 03:50 PM


I never mix sailing with work.

When there is maintenance to do I go to the boat and do the maintenance and then go home. And I take a lot of maintenance stuff home and do it in the week.

When I go sailing I do no maintenance unless it's something that stops me from managing the boat properly. Then it's step on board, ten minutes to prepare the boat (sail covers, engine checks) and we're gone.
This is very similar to how I approach sailing. I will do work at the dock while the family is around, but it's usually limited to small chores while I'm inevitably waiting on them prior to leaving the dock.

I don't begrudge the work at all. If I did, then I wouldn't have a boat because I love a boat that looks nearly pristine. To me, it's a floating sculpture and I'm ok with the work to get it and keep it that way.

With this said, I'm still not in the water due to a lot of rain in VA and an unexpected problem with the centerboard. We should be in next weekend and cruising by Memorial day.

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