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  #1  
Old 11-26-2010
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Thumbs up The problem is, I don't know how to sail...

...but I will be taking lessons, locally as soon as the weather rolls around to something nicer, and I've already gotten my hands on a library copy of Chapman (66th ed) to read through. (The actual mechanics of sailing so far are flying right over my head—I suspect I'll need the proper demonstrations in person to grasp the principles—but I'm doing fairly well on soaking up the other minutiae so far.)

My interest in sailing came more or less on a whim†, but now that I've started finding out more, it's really grabbed me. The part that's left me googly-eyed the most is that comparing liveaboard costs for loan payments for a budget cruiser, marina fees, and the vague maintenance costs I've been able to pick out of forum threads adds up to not much more than the rent and utilities for my tiny breadbox of an apartment... and as somebody in my early 20s, being able to relocate to a different city as needs or whim dictates seems absolutely invaluable. And you can't put sweat equity into an apartment you're renting and get anything useful out of it...

Anyway, you might see me around here and there in different threads. At the moment, my main preoccupation will probably be in finding boat models to suit me (but I don't immediately plan to do much more than window-shop and familiarize myself with potential models/manufacturers). If you know any sturdy types with a centerboard (thoughts of blue water are a long time away) or otherwise low draft (though cats/tris seem expensive and sometimes questionable compared to monos, so far), a full berth and at least one or two quarter berths (I'd be dumb if I didn't expect family visits), on the cheaper end (early twenties, again, though I do have some reasonable savings)... and a proper separate shower, because that's the single actual amenity that's a must-have for me ... do give me a poke.

Also of interest would be any information about interesting inland routes in the US or even other countries... call it another of those "random interest" things.

My grandfather sailed for a while, but when he broke the fin keel off his boat on a sandbar three days into a cruise up the east coast with his new wife and her relatives, none of whom but him knew anything about sailing at the time, and had to hire somebody to sail it back for him without a keel to then end up only selling it off... well, it put my mind off the subject for a while.

Last edited by icosahedron; 11-26-2010 at 07:32 AM. Reason: (adding more parentheticals)
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Old 11-26-2010
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Welcome aboard! Sounds like a good plan, keep us posted.
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Old 11-26-2010
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welcome where are you located and when do you plan on actually sailing off into the sunset? if several years away you may want to consider an older powerboat to live on. more space per length and cheaper per sq ft living space to purchase and moor in marina. what is your budget for a boat? here in the puget sound there are many liveaboards of both types in marinas and on the hook.
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Old 11-26-2010
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You're asking some of the right questions and reading the right things. But really, learn to sail on a small boat.

Sail Delmarva: The Merits of Learning to Sail on a Small Boat

Buy something small, make mistakes, and the big-boat stuff is easy to learn over time.
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Old 11-26-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
welcome where are you located and when do you plan on actually sailing off into the sunset?
Not at all sure, right now. It's looking like I may be able to get an internet-centric job for a family friends' company soon, at which point I wouldn't be linked to one place anytime in the immediate futureóbut who knows what'll happen.

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if several years away you may want to consider an older powerboat to live on. more space per length and cheaper per sq ft living space to purchase and moor in marina.
It's a line of thought I'll have to think about... what are the fuel costs like for short jaunts, though? Are there any types known for being really economical? I already get around by bicycle because I don't want to spend gas on a car...

The other thing that might worry me is resale value, though that seems to decrease slowly enough on well-maintained boats that I suppose it shouldn't.

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what is your budget for a boat? here in the puget sound there are many liveaboards of both types in marinas and on the hook.
Really, really tentatively, somewhere in the 35k to 40k range at the moment, looking at loan payments combined with other costs. That might well change higher if I can get a better-paying job, though. I don't have a huge amount of income, but I live very frugally by default.

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You're asking some of the right questions and reading the right things. But really, learn to sail on a small boat.

Sail Delmarva: The Merits of Learning to Sail on a Small Boat

Buy something small, make mistakes, and the big-boat stuff is easy to learn over time.
I am the kind of person to "jump in with both feet" with a lot of stuff, but I'm at least smart enough to worry about trying to singlehand anything, or working with a fellow boater I don't know well. So I'm thinking getting a solid single-handable sailing dinghy once I've picked up the fundamentals. There's a local small-boat sailing club that I'll be looking at signing up for events with once I've at least gotten my way through ASA 101 without killing myself .

One tricky thing is that I live on an inland river (a big one, but still inland), not the coast. So I don't have an easy way to pick up skills with coastal weather outside of prearranged jaunts thataways.
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Originally Posted by icosahedron View Post
I am the kind of person to "jump in with both feet" with a lot of stuff, but I'm at least smart enough to worry about trying to singlehand anything, or working with a fellow boater I don't know well. So I'm thinking getting a solid single-handable sailing dinghy once I've picked up the fundamentals. There's a local small-boat sailing club that I'll be looking at signing up for events with once I've at least gotten my way through ASA 101 without killing myself .

One tricky thing is that I live on an inland river (a big one, but still inland), not the coast. So I don't have an easy way to pick up skills with coastal weather outside of prearranged jaunts thataways.
If you think the implication was that small boats are easier to sail, you are incorrect. They are often twitchy and much harder to sail in a breeze. One reason many classes start people on 25' keel boats is because they are typically stable and easy to sail. The reason for starting in small boats is "feel", because that doesn't come in books. Everything in the ASA 101 course is in books.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdqaltair View Post
If you think the implication was that small boats are easier to sail, you are incorrect. They are often twitchy and much harder to sail in a breeze. One reason many classes start people on 25' keel boats is because they are typically stable and easy to sail. The reason for starting in small boats is "feel", because that doesn't come in books. Everything in the ASA 101 course is in books.
Oh, the actual lessons I'll be taking are on 22+' boats.... but I'd be happy to get the chance to do repeated sailing on smaller ones once I have an idea of what I'm doing. Quicker and twitchier sailing seems like a way to get better used to the environment and the "why" of certain things, even if the "how" is different.
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Old 11-27-2010
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35-40k will do if you are prudent, patient, and tolerant of basic living.
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Jumping in with both feet first can be the wrong way to go when it comes to the ocean. More than one sailor has lost his life, or boat with that attitude.

Single-handing you better know your boat very well. Be able to get up in a sleep of the dead to reef when the squall comes through at 3am. Even when you are doing everything right. It only takes a split second to be over the lifelines. I am not typing you can't do it. I am typing that you better be prepared to do it. ........i2f
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Quote:
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35-40k will do if you are prudent, patient, and tolerant of basic living.
That's what I was hoping, after fumbling together numbers from here and there. "Basic living" I can definitely do, hopefully I can manage the rest too. Admittedly it would be nice to have more, but I don't want to tap too much into the young sailor's greatest backup resource... parents with money.

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Originally Posted by imagine2frolic View Post
Jumping in with both feet first can be the wrong way to go when it comes to the ocean. More than one sailor has lost his life, or boat with that attitude.

Single-handing you better know your boat very well. Be able to get up in a sleep of the dead to reef when the squall comes through at 3am. Even when you are doing everything right. It only takes a split second to be over the lifelines. I am not typing you can't do it. I am typing that you better be prepared to do it. ........i2f
Well, I don't plan to really do anything until I actually have some idea of what the hell I'm doing... and a bit in the back of my head insists on getting at minimum another more experienced sailor to work with for anything more than day trips in good weather, which I suspect will be a good instinct to hang onto for quite a while...
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