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  #11  
Old 11-23-2008
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Maddie, Welcome to Sailnet. Sailnet is a treasure chest of information-don't hesitate to ask anything! I've lived aboard for 6 out of 12 months for the last nine years. We have a 1983, 37 foot boat we bought 12 years ago. We've replaced standing and running rigging, electronics and have re-powered. I've been very fortunate to have the time to be a hands on owner and feel like I know our boat inside and out. We started with a solid, well built boat that we purchased from the original owners. Take your time shopping. With your budget you will have to shop for an older boat. Get a good boat survey and an engine survey. Be realistic about your budget and what you can spend for improvements and upgrades. You might be better off starting out with a well built boat, but a pretty bare one. And then add something every year. Learn from others, take classes and be prepared to get your nails dirty. The more you can do yourself the more money you can save but more importantly the better you'll know your boat. Shop, shop and shop some more. There are bargains out there, but you have to be patient to find them. Have fun and good luck!
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  #12  
Old 11-24-2008
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Oh, and by the way, Santa, you really are bad!!!
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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
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  #13  
Old 11-24-2008
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Nautical FishWife,
I know all about getting my nails dirty! Helped put in a hot water heater on my friend's boat, mainly since he wasn't small enough to fit down in the cockpit storage to get it fastened in! Have also had my share of calamities, such as no gears coming in to anchor, engine overheating, storms on the ocean, and the list goes on. Thanks for the tips though. I'll keep on looking!
Maddie123
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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
Mark Twain
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  #14  
Old 11-24-2008
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sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice sailingdog is just really nice
Maddie—

Did you have a rough budget in mind???
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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  #15  
Old 11-25-2008
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Really didn't want to spend more than about $50,000 which I know limits me to an older boat. But I'm not afraid of a little hard work and/or learning to fix things myself when possible by research and using this website for tips and suggestions.
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Mark Twain
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  #16  
Old 11-25-2008
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I think in my earlier post I had said $30000 when I meant $50,000. In Yachtworld search seems like boats posted in Florida are usually cheaper. Is that generally true?
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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
Mark Twain
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  #17  
Old 11-25-2008
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Maddie-

Generally, prices on boats go down as you go south. One reason for this is that a twenty year old boat in New England or the Great Lakes may see only half the wear, tear and abuse of a boat further south, since most are hauled out for the winter. The more intense UV also does a number on the gelcoat, paint, sails and other materials used on a boat. Twenty year old sails in New England may still be usable, not great but usable... ten year old sails in Florida are usually shot due to the greater UV exposure.

If your total budget is $50,000, I would recommend you look at boats priced from $35,000-45,000 and leave yourself at least $10,000 for re-fitting, modifying, upgrading and repairing whatever boat you get. Just remember, in most cases, the asking price and the real selling price aren't exactly the same thing, with a 15-20% difference between the two in most cases...

BTW, lots of good boats in that price range. I'd highly recommend you look at James Baldwin's Boat List as well, at least if you're interested in eventually going further away than a week long cruise. LINK
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New England

You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

—Cpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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  #18  
Old 11-25-2008
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I know, sorry. Hey, I was just trying to be friendly and help out a fellow health care worker. I know how hard it is time wise to travel around looking at boats. You must be having bad thoughts. LOL
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  #19  
Old 11-26-2008
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Badsanta, no need to apologize. I was just kidding. Where in Va are you? Do you have to haul your boat out in winter?
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"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
Mark Twain
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  #20  
Old 11-26-2008
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Please recognize that opinions on this subject are rampant. Not everyone agrees. I strongly suggest you spend enough time sailing to learn what is truly important to you before buying your own boat. Racing is the fastest and easiest way (in my opinion ) to gain experience, but it usually isn't very hard to find cruisers to sail with either.

Just as an example, many people (a great number of whom don't single-hand) will tell you to rig lines back to the cockpit. I sail single-handed more often than not and I strongly differ. On my 40' center cockpit, all main sail halyards and reefing gear and spinnaker halyards are at the mast. I really like it that way. I would not begin to suggest that my solution is right for everyone, but I do think you should develop enough experience to come to your own conclusion.

That said, here are my thoughts based on 30 years of sailing, both cruising and racing. I sail a LOT, mostly single-handed, sometimes with a friend, and once in a while with a bigger crew.

1. Sleeping is important. Be sure your berth is comfortable. I include in this area being able to make the bed easily (if that is important to you). This led me to a center cockpit boat with a center island queen aft.

2. Cooking is important. This led me to a boat with a large galley, near-centerline sink, and relatively large amount of counter space.

3. Sailing is important. This led me to a conventional main with full battens, relatively narrow beam, lots of sail control, adjustable backstay, and space for a big sail locker.

4. Entertainment is important. I have a stereo with iPod input, good Internet connectivity, and a couple of TVs.

5. Ground tackle is critical. Get (opinion) a new generation anchor (Rocna, Spade, Raya) and solid ground tackle (HT chain and appropriate windlass).

6. You can't have too much electrical capacity. Fit as many batteries as you can. Make your charging arrangements based on your planned sailing grounds: options include more than one of shore power, generator, solar, and wind.

7. Sanitation is a big deal. Consider a Raritan Electroscan -- learn more than you care to about the associated issues.

8. Laundry is a major issue. Have a plan. Washing in salt water should NOT be part of that plan. It takes more fresh water to rinse the salt out than you save by using salt water in the first place.

9. The patterns you have developed living ashore are likely to be exhibited living afloat. Accommodate. You have to find ways to live with yourself and be happy.

10. Get rid of stuff. Go for a drive or a walk or have a chat with friends. Figure out what stuff is really important to you and get rid of everything else. I spent something like $15k storing stuff I ultimately sold for $3k. Learn from my mistake.

11. Find community. Even if you are a loner it is good to know and stay in touch with the liveaboard/cruising community. Information is power, and these folks (the community, not necessarily Sailnet) have it and mostly are willing to share it. You'll get information about moorings, anchorages, water, fuel, transportation, services, and other very important things.

12. Maintain your standards. Living aboard doesn't have to be camping. Develop a lifestyle that makes you comfortable with who you are and how you live.

If you get to the Annapolis area you are welcome to come sailing with my girlfriend and me. I have lots of facts and opinions to share and I think I'm pretty good at labeling them accordingly.

sail fast, dave
S/V Auspicious
lying City Dock, Annapolis, MD

Last edited by SVAuspicious; 11-26-2008 at 01:37 PM.
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