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post #41 of 46 Old 10-16-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

Originally Posted by gnusailor View Post
My question is this: how many of you sail alone... that is, without a crew? I don't mean alone as in there is no one else aboard, just that they are along for the ride.
Practically every time I went out in my dad's 45 footer that was the case. In time I did manage to get some friends to help but for the most part I was doing the bulk of the work. It wasn't uncommon for me to lock the wheel, dash to the mast, raise the genny, run back, tighten the sheet, adjust the direction, lock the wheel again, trim the genoa sheet, trim the main, check the telltales and when we were sailing smoothly and I was trying to catch my breath, someone would say, "This is really nice!"

It's all about knowing the boat and planning every move. Once out on the water, I believe most people can handle fairly large boats with little help. That is as long as you're not surprised by heavy weather. You have to know how to recognize that coming on too. With enough knowledge and experience the size of the boat really doesn't matter until you bring it into port.
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post #42 of 46 Old 10-16-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

Sailing solo or single handed has many meanings in today's world. Each one has its merit and difficulty.

1. Sailing solo or single-handed in the cockpit with full crews below deck
2. Sailing single-handed with many non sailors on board.
3. Sailing solo across the ocean from port to port with GPS, SSB and Sat Phone, water maker and etc.
4. Sailing solo crossing the ocean non-stop with GPS, SSB and Sat Phone, water maker and the 24/7 sat phone connection with on call experts. Example: Jessica Watson in her Ella.
5. Sailing solo across the oceans without GPS, Sat phone etc. Just like the early days where the psychological well being plays a significant part in the survival of the voyage.

Sailing is getting much safer. The technology allows us to minimize the unknown. I will have a better chance to survive today than in those days of 50 years ago when I sail into the ocean. I choose Number 3 where feel comfortable to go solo since I am not really sailing alone - my family and friends are with me.

Fine Print:
I am old school. Integrity is to do the right thing even when no one is watching.
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post #43 of 46 Old 10-16-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

Most nearly every post focuses on the physical ability to handle a boat. Seems to me that is putting horse before the cart. In order to safely sail solo it is important to be able to plan ahead. In order to do that you have to visualize what you re trying to do, predict how the boat will react to you inputs, and plan your escape route if all goes haywire. All of those things depend upon experience. If no experience, then you should restrict yourself to boats small enough that you can manhandle them if all goes haywire.
I used to single hand a 42' keel boat, from dock to dock. It was always a pleasure. Now we have a 38'cat. Fun sailing, but docking is challenging.
If your SO will allow, buy a simple old board boat or dinghy, sail in swim suits, regularly capsize and laugh about it, learn abut wind, waves, mistakes, etc. Sell the thing (or give it away) after a season, and then look for a real boat. You will be both happier, and a better sailor.
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post #44 of 46 Old 10-17-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

Then there is that great "Canadian" invention , singlehanding around the world.
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post #45 of 46 Old 10-17-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

When i single hand pretty much all the time other then when i bring freinds sailing. But the one thing i do do when i bring friends sailing it i show them how to start the motor and put it in gear and how to use the motor. Also i should them how to let the sails out. and if i or any one else falls over boared let the sails out right away and keep a eye on the person in the water. But when im by my self i leave the cockpit a lot to fix the genny if it gets caught or to reef or raise/ lower the sails. doing it by yourself you just get use to doing it before your in a congested area like a harbor you drop sails before the harbor and motor in exspecaily if im staying in the harbor.
Ive learned a lot about single handing. never fell in and hope to never fall in. Also i suggest that single handers wear life jackets good idea. i usally only wear my in heavy weather.
to the op. 26' if a good size boat and any boat you can get use to single handing making routens.

16' mistral sailboat, And 27' coronado
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post #46 of 46 Old 10-22-2012
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Re: Sailing alone??

Guess im late to reply but I sail my 23' Kells alone, wife does help when shes there but I'm addicted and she just likes weekend cruises. Its a good size in my opinion... I leave her in the slip all season then leave her on the trailer all winter after maintenance is completed.

Oh and I'm a rookie as well...Just take it easy don't rush out to sail the very first day, wait for 5mph winds and such
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