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TiredParent 10-07-2010 08:36 PM

Where to start?
Yes, that is the question. One might ask why I am here, posting on a forum for people involved with sailboats when I've only been sailing a half dozen times, and currently don't even own a boat, much less a sail. :rolleyes:

Sailing is one of those things that I've wanted to really get into since I was young... my first time was in 6th grade, some 40-odd years ago. My dad almost got a sailboat when I was a teen, but couldn't work a deal, and ended up with a power boat. I took sailing lessons quite a bit later, and almost ended up with a small sailboat myself one time. But something always ended up getting in the way... a job change, a move that precluded boating, or family issues. :confused:

Now however, the kids are getting older, and I'm getting closer to retirement, and I'm thinking about that sailboat again. Not the little one... the big one. Oh, its still a few years off... but I've figured its time to start working in that direction. ;)

I've always enjoyed building things, and I've convinced myself that I can build a boat too. Of course, one doesn't just jump into such things (or at least, I don't). I figure this will be a three step process.

First, I plan to build a small sailing dinghy. I've already selected some plans (Glen-L "Eight Ball"), which I expect to complete over the winter. Not that I really need a dinghy, but I figure its a relatively inexpensive way to see if I really want to build a boat. :p

Assuming that it turns out I like boat building, I plan to move on to an over-nighter in the 20 foot range, which is as large as will fit in my garage (the back yard not being much larger, nor level, and the HOA not favoring outside projects). This will easily fit on a trailer, and will allow me to visit local lakes, while still having enough heft to handle coastal sailing. :)

I figure this will have to keep me busy until I can retire, sometime in the next 8 - 15 years. That is the point I figure that I can relocate closer the the Atlantic, and find room to build my dream boat. I am thinking something big enough to live aboard part time, or do some serious cruising. My current thoughts lead me to believe that 40-45 feet is the right range for me and my wife. However, I've got several years to think about this, and I'm sure that these forums will provide me plenty of information to base any decision on. :D

Matvolver 10-07-2010 09:03 PM

welkome aboard, mate! Will be interested in how those boats turn out :)

CalebD 10-07-2010 09:40 PM

By all means build the sailing dinghy first. Hopefully it will be both fun and rewarding. Then consider your options and try to get aboard as many different sailboats as you can, both keel boats and dinghies.

WanderingStar 10-08-2010 06:53 AM

I built my first boat, an 11' Glen-L sailing dink. Launching was one of the best days of my life. Have fun. By the way, you might find an eight foot boat small for even one grown man.

TiredParent 10-08-2010 07:07 AM

Small for me... not for kids

Originally Posted by WanderingStar (Post 652370)
I built my first boat, an 11' Glen-L sailing dink. Launching was one of the best days of my life. Have fun. By the way, you might find an eight foot boat small for even one grown man.

I fully expect this dinghy to be too small to be very useful. As I said in my initial posting, I am mainly doing this to practice the building skills. The actual boat will probably end up being donated to my son's Boy Scout troop (at least, after I finish the next one. :D ).

Although I'm in a lot better position, financially, than I was the last time I started to build a boat, I'm still not in a great rush to get going on my second vessel. I figure that one is going to cost in the neighborhood of $15k, and my wife isn't going to want me to spend that money all at once. I think that trying out various other boats before jumping into a specific design is a real good idea.

cmendoza 10-09-2010 12:48 PM

Welcome Mike!

A couple of books I have in my collection that you might like...
How to Build a Wooden Boat - David C. "Bud" McIntosh
Buehler's Backyard Boatbuilding - George Buehler
Devlin's Boat Building - Samual Devlin

Carlos & Maria
S/V Rocinante

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