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gnusailor 09-13-2012 11:36 AM

Hi... After 60+ years, I have caught the sailing bug and need some advice. Since I live in the desert with a few small lakes close by, I figgered I'd start small and get some experience. The first problem is that there are few people to take classes from... between a lack of time and travel of 150 miles or so to get any training at all... well it makes it hard. :confused:

Here is what I have thought about: First, which I have already done, is to get an ASA basic sailing course book, read and learn as much as I can. Knowing that I wouldnt want a brain surgeon or pilot that had only read about their skills, I then would need to get some experience... sooo... Second, I would find an inexpensive (say... cheap...) sailboat somewhere in the totally open 15' range or maybe an old 20-26 footer with a day-cabin and then set out to learn (test) my book-learned info. :eek:

I want to keep this under $5k. I have seen some 14-16' daysailers in the $1500 - $2000 range. I am not too concerned other than being sea-worthy if there are many defects... as long as it doesnt cost me my life or a mint. I will only be sailing on small lakes during the day.

If this all works out and I am alive in say... one or two years, I would progress to taking a sailing course on the west coast, and then move to a bigger boat..etc ....etc...etc...

Someone, please help!! Do I need to be committed before I hurt myself?

JBIZZ 09-16-2012 03:16 PM

Re: Noobie
I'm only 33yo but believe that age is in the mind. As long as you're somewhat physically fit I think you'll be fine. I'm legally blind w/out my glasses, have a fused spine w/ steel rods and pins in my back and a Dacron aorta & mechanical heart valve. Sailing is physically challenging but I'm still am able to do it & more so w/ a good crew (people who know about sailing). Catalina 22s & 25s can be found cheaply between $2K-$5K and are trailer-able. I'd recommend a roller furling Genoa sail setup & lazy jack mainsail setup so you can raise and lower the sails from the cockpit. I don't have these on my boat (Sabre 28) but plan on adding them in the future.

gnusailor 09-16-2012 08:49 PM

Re: Noobie
Gee.... hope that didn't happen sailing I am in reasonable condition, a bit of the wind is gone from my sails, but all the pieces still fit and dont rattle... yet. would a catalina 22 turn in s amall lake??? Bluewater Lake in New Mexico is about 1000-1200 acres. Also, are catalinas "beachable"? I'd love sto start with a 19~22 but am afraid it would be too big for the water... and for me too lol.

Donna_F 09-17-2012 03:50 PM

Re: Noobie
Hi gnu.

I started out with a Venture 2-22. $2300 including the trailer. The boat floated, had a complete set of sails and after being cleaned and painted, looked respectable.

My aim was to learn to sail and do basic repairs. The boat did the job and I lived to buy a larger one.

I think you're on the right track. Given your geographic liability :) there's only so much you can do.

You could theoretically "beach" a boat as long as it has a retractable keel. Some of the smaller Catalinas have this, some don't.

I would also add for after you find your boat: make sure that you have the required safety equipment for your state. Their boating website will have a list.

gnusailor 09-17-2012 05:51 PM

Re: Noobie
Thanks DRFerron. I took a drive out to the closest lake to me... Bluewater Lake is 'bout 50 miles... in NM, that is nothing! With all the input I am still torn between getting a 15' open daysailer or going for a 22 with a cabin. I think the small lake would be ok for bigger boat but I am unsure if it would be better to learn (complete noob) on a Capri 14.2 or similar. I have also been looking at Potter15s (on line). I have read that the a dinghy is great to learn because you will catch your mistakes rapidly... Would that be true in a 22 like tha catalina or ventrura?

Donna_F 09-17-2012 06:40 PM

Re: Noobie
Not as much as in an open boat, but yes, you'll get a sense of what's going on in a 22. You'll have a little more time to react and correct mistakes and you won't get wet (theoretically).

Of course, larger boat, more expensive to repair/replace parts. Not so much difference between a 14 and a 22 as far as cost of repairs but a difference, nonetheless.

gnusailor 09-17-2012 06:44 PM

Re: Noobie
lol... wet??? what??? You can get wet sailing????

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