dont own a sailboat, here to learn first - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > Welcome to Sailnet > Introduce Yourself
 Not a Member? 

Introduce Yourself Welcome to the Sailnet.com - The world's largest online sailing community! Tell us about yourself so we can get to know you.


Like Tree7Likes
  • 6 Post By Jeff_H
  • 1 Post By Scott McD
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 01-22-2014
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
RightWingAnarchist is on a distinguished road
Talking dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

I know literally almost nothing about sailboats. Never even been on one before. I'm here because I'm sort of what you might call a freedom junkie and like the idea of the freedom that it could bring. I thought maybe this would be a good place to A) start learning whether this is something that I actually want to sink time and money into and B) start learning the best ways to allocate my scarce resources should I decide that this is something i want to get into.

I kind of had this idea for years that this was a hobby for wealthy people only. Then one day, just for the hell of it, I decided to look at the prices of used sailboats on ebay and i was astonished to find how cheap some nice looking sailboats were. There were decent looking 30 ft vessels on there for under 40,000 dollars. This coupled with a savvy investment that I made about a year ago is starting to make this look more and more possible. I dont know if maybe its just that these were vessels that need a lot of work and it would actually be double or triple that cost to get it sea worthy. The descriptions didn't indicate this but who knows how truthful they were being.

So my first priority is going to be to gauge whether or not this is something i will actually be able to afford. To that end my first question would be, about how large of a vessel do you guys feel would be sufficient to allow 2.5 people to travel comfortably and safely from one continent to another while using the vessel its self as quarters while visiting another country. Would you be comfortable doing it in a 30 footer for example or would that be so cramped that it would drive everyone crazy? What about a 40 footer? Ect... If you wanted to take it further about how much disposable income do you think someone would need to have in order to be able to accomplish a goal like this on a budget?

I know its a rather vague and subjective question but any input will be valued.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 01-22-2014
Jeff_H's Avatar
Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
Posts: 6,579
Thanks: 5
Thanked 95 Times in 71 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Welcome to SailNet. To some extent, as I suspect you already figured out, these questions are something of a "how long is a piece of string?" type of question since everyone has different ideas about what constitutes a minimum amount of comfort, a minimum amount of risk, and a reasonable budget to live on.

The broad generality is that you want a minimum of 5,500 lbs of displacement (weight) per person with most folks opting for something closer to 11,000 and up, per person. At some point, you can handle a heavier boat, but you end up with more complex equipment. Typically, that translates into a 38 to 45 footer, but it can be done on a smaller boat.

Budget wise there are lots of good coastal cruisers which can be bought for less than $40K in nice shape but offshore cruisers tend to be more expensive.

In a broader sense your implied question about wanting to voyage long distance, and the learning process comes up often around here. I suggest that you do a search and see what others have done and what their journey has looked like. I apologize that the following was written for another purpose but I hope that it may prove useful as you gather your thoughts.

The dream of voyaging under sail can be a powerful one. There was a period when several times a month I would receive an email from someone who is considering doing just what you are proposing. I have watched literally dozens of folks go through this. Some are successful in getting 'out there', some discover that they really enjoy sailing and find that they really have no need to 'go out there’; some have discovered that the sailing life is just not for them, and others have not even gotten past the dreaming stage.

From what I have seen, the most successful (especially when children are involved) have been the ones who have been somewhat systematic about going. There is a lot to learn before one can safely venture offshore. No one would assume that they could buy a jet airliner take a few lessons and be able to fly around the world. I think most rational people would expect to start with a small plane and work their way up. But for some reason people assume that they can just go out and buy a big boat, take a couple lessons, read a few books, and then go safely cruising.

While there are people who literally taken a few lessons, read a few books and went out cruising, those that were successful following that route are far more rare than those who have done some kind of apprenticeship. Learning to sail and learning to cruise involves a lot of knowledge and no matter how much you know, there will always be more to learn, but I suggest that you at least take the time to learn the basics, and that just about can’t happen if you buy ‘a big sailboat’ and move your family aboard.

I find myself saying this a lot lately but here I go again. We all come to sailing with our own specific needs, our own specific goals and our own specific capabilities. The neat thing about sailing is that we all don’t have to agree that there is only one right way to go sailing. There is no more truth in expecting that there is one universally right answer about many aspects of sailing than there is in trying to prove that vanilla ice cream is universally better than strawberry ice cream. One area of sailing for which there is no one universally right answer involves the amount of knowledge one requires to go sailing.

For some, all they need or want to know about sailing is just enough knowledge to safely leave the slip sail where they want and get back safely. There is nothing inherently wrong with that approach. Lack of knowledge will impact the level of risk, cost, comfort, and performance, but if you want to get out there with minimal knowledge it can be done. But for others, like myself, there is much more to sailing than simply developing a rudimentary knowledge of sailing basics. If you fall into that camp, it is next to impossible to learn to sail really well on a boat as large as the one in question.

While I am in no way suggesting that this makes sense for everyone, for those who really want to learn to sail well, I strongly suggest that they start out owning a used 23 to 27 foot, responsive, light-weight, tiller steered, fin keel/spade rudder (ideally fractionally rigged) sloop (or if they are athletically inclined then a dinghy.) Boats like these provide the kind of feedback that is so necessary to teach a newcomer how to really sail well. Boats like these have small enough loads on lines and the helm that you and your children can all participate and learn together. Being able to learn and participate, the children will be more engaged and less likely to be bored and feel kidnapped.

By sailing well, I mean understanding the nuances of boat handling and sail trim in a way that cannot be learned on a larger boat. Used small boats generally hold their values quite well so that after a year or even few years or so of learning, you should be able to get most of your money out of the small boat and move on to a bigger boat actually knowing something about which specific desirable characteristics of a boat appeal to you as an experienced sailor rather than the preferences of some stranger on some Internet discussion group.

In any event, I think that you have the right idea about taking sailing lessons. If I were in your shoes, I would sit down and put together a list of all of the things that I would want to know before I set off voyaging such as:
- Boat handling
- Sail trim
- Rules of the road
- Weather
- Routing
- Boat husbandry, repair and maintenance
- Diesel/ gas engine maintenance and repair
- First aid
- Heavy weather tactics
- Legal restrictions on leaving and entering foreign countries
- Navigation, (Piloting, Celestial, dead reckoning and electronic)
- Provisioning
- Radio operators license exam requirements
- Safe and dangerous fish to eat
- Terminology
- Survival skills
- Knots, splices and rope handling
- Etc………..

Once I had what I thought was a complete list, I would set up a schedule to try to develop those areas of skill that I was currently lacking. As much as possible I would try to involve all those involved in as many of those aspects as each is capable of understanding. This process could take as little as a year, but more often takes two to three years. The process itself can be very rewarding and can build the kind of bonds that are required to be cast away on that oh so small island that a boat underway represents.

Respectfully,
Jeff
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay and part-time purveyor of marine supplies
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 01-22-2014
sunfish?junior?
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Richmond ky
Posts: 748
Thanks: 47
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Rep Power: 3
Lou452 is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Welcome The good news is you can learn man has been doing sailing for years. Jeff gave you the best intro I have seen.
You need to start with just one step. That is how all journeys happen. I think it would be in your best interest to start with a small sum of money on a step that you can accomplish and then build upon.
Good day, Lou
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 01-22-2014
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
RightWingAnarchist is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

WOW! thankyou so much Jeff_H! What an amazing, helpful and thoughtful response. I think I'm really going to like this community.

Of particular use was how you explained the advantages of starting out with a small boat. I had no idea that smaller vessels could teach you things about sailing that are much more difficult to learn on larger vessels but carry over to larger vessels. In retro-spect though that makes perfect sense. That seems like a very important insight indeed and i promise not to take it lightly.

My grandfather has a house on a very large lake about an hour from where I live. I think I am going to take exactly your advise and buy a small boat to start with.

Last edited by RightWingAnarchist; 01-22-2014 at 08:30 PM.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 01-22-2014
jimgo's Avatar
Asleep at the wheel
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,916
Thanks: 71
Thanked 108 Times in 106 Posts
Rep Power: 4
jimgo is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Where are you located? Are you close to any sailing clubs?
__________________
- Jim
Home: Western Philly 'burbs
1980 Allmand 31
1975 Albacore 15


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #6  
Old 01-22-2014
Jeff_H's Avatar
Moderator
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Annapolis, Md
Posts: 6,579
Thanks: 5
Thanked 95 Times in 71 Posts
Rep Power: 10
Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about Jeff_H has a spectacular aura about
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Quote:
Originally Posted by RightWingAnarchist View Post
WOW! thankyou so much Jeff_H! What an amazing, helpful and thoughtful response. I think I'm really going to like this community.

Of particular use was how you explained the advantages of starting out with a small boat. I had no idea that smaller vessels could teach you things about sailing that are much more difficult to learn on larger vessels but carry over to larger vessels. In retro-spect though that makes perfect sense. That seems like a very important insight indeed and i promise not to take it lightly.

My grandfather has a house on a very large lake about an hour from where I live. I think I am going to take exactly your advise and buy a small boat to start with.
I am glad that you found that useful. There are a lot of knowledgable folks around here who will gladly help with every step along the way, at least as much as we can. We all started out somewhere and have had help from others as we learned and grew in the sport.

Good luck,
Jeff
__________________

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Curmudgeon at Large- and rhinestone in the rough, sailing my Farr 11.6 on the Chesapeake Bay and part-time purveyor of marine supplies
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 01-23-2014
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Location: East Tennessee
Posts: 5
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
Lustyslogger is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

In the words of Small Craft Advisor "The Smaller the Boat, the Bigger the Adventure" Within reason of course.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 01-23-2014
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 14
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 0
Scott McD is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

RWA I'm in the same place as you, I plan on getting my first sailboat this spring. I have read allot of the advice here, and my plan is for a 22 Catalina, or such, learn to sail her and then move up to (hopefully) a cruiser.
There is a wealth of info here.
good luck.

Scott
Lou452 likes this.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 01-23-2014
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 129
Thanks: 8
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 1
Pearson796 is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Quote:
Originally Posted by RightWingAnarchist View Post
I know literally almost nothing about sailboats. Never even been on one before. I'm here because I'm sort of what you might call a freedom junkie and like the idea of the freedom that it could bring. I thought maybe this would be a good place to A) start learning whether this is something that I actually want to sink time and money into and B) start learning the best ways to allocate my scarce resources should I decide that this is something i want to get into.

I kind of had this idea for years that this was a hobby for wealthy people only. Then one day, just for the hell of it, I decided to look at the prices of used sailboats on ebay and i was astonished to find how cheap some nice looking sailboats were. There were decent looking 30 ft vessels on there for under 40,000 dollars. This coupled with a savvy investment that I made about a year ago is starting to make this look more and more possible. I dont know if maybe its just that these were vessels that need a lot of work and it would actually be double or triple that cost to get it sea worthy. The descriptions didn't indicate this but who knows how truthful they were being.

So my first priority is going to be to gauge whether or not this is something i will actually be able to afford. To that end my first question would be, about how large of a vessel do you guys feel would be sufficient to allow 2.5 people to travel comfortably and safely from one continent to another while using the vessel its self as quarters while visiting another country. Would you be comfortable doing it in a 30 footer for example or would that be so cramped that it would drive everyone crazy? What about a 40 footer? Ect... If you wanted to take it further about how much disposable income do you think someone would need to have in order to be able to accomplish a goal like this on a budget?

I know its a rather vague and subjective question but any input will be valued.
I know absolutely nothing about boats, let alone sailing. On Nov 5th, I bought a 30' Sailboat for my family and I to do the loop. There are 4 of us. Two adults, a 17 year old and a 7 year old. To add to that, we have 2 medium sized dogs.

We made our maiden voyage starting shortly before dark out on Lake Michigan starting in Wisconsin and headed down to South Chicago, the Calumet River.

We are "Freedom Junkies" too.

If we can do it, I would say anyone can do it. But you HAVE TO BE DETERMINED!
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #10  
Old 01-23-2014
sunfish?junior?
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Richmond ky
Posts: 748
Thanks: 47
Thanked 11 Times in 11 Posts
Rep Power: 3
Lou452 is on a distinguished road
Re: dont own a sailboat, here to learn first

Scott I like your Catalina -22 plan. I need to give full discloser I own a C-22 I feel they are the right size to learn to learn. They have a very good class and support for the owners. After the sunfish they are the 2nd most popular sailboat. To me this indicates a good product. Anytime you get a sailboat type that keeps appealing to the public it tells you something must be right.
For the OP here to learn.... Pretend you never saw a wheel ever
Nothing is wrong with bigger or smaller. I made the choice to start smaller 13 foot, half the size of the Catalina-22. Smaller boats cost less.
You can go all in, with full determination but this will cost both money and time. This is on the way in and on the way out. It is rare for a boat to sell for more. One needs to know if you are the go for it type personality. If you are the go big or go home proceed and have fun. A few do this starting big and make it work. Please do some research. A small boat and a large blue water boat is like the difference between a pedal bicycle and large 5th wheel camper. You could decide you do not like anything with wheels by starting with one or the other without research and the right introduction. You might be a sports car or jeep person. Right now we do not know. The introduction is so important
A sailing club or a class might be able to let you ride in the 5th wheel, sports car and the jeep before you buy one.
I am still learning.
Kind Regards, Lou
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dont Ever Do This QuickMick Gear & Maintenance 31 01-04-2011 10:48 AM
where would i find a manual on my sailboat to learn how to sail her on my own mk11blue Learning to Sail 26 04-24-2010 01:58 AM
Good Small Sailboat to Learn On questionsquestions herSailNet 8 12-23-2009 09:38 PM
if you dont have it you cant eat it starcresttoo Provisioning 0 08-31-2004 09:31 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:28 AM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.