From Dinghy Sailor to Cruising - Page 4 - SailNet Community
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #31 of 33 Old 04-05-2014
OldEagle's Avatar
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Chesapeake
Posts: 68
Thanks: 26
Thanked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Rep Power: 4
Re: From Dinghy Sailor to Cruising

Well, this is an interesting thread that comes close to answering a similar question that I've been wrestling with--so I hope the original poster doesn't mind if I build on this discussion rather than starting a whole new thread...

I live near the Chesapeake and have been seriously considering buying my first cruising sailboat. Given family size, and planned retirement in 3 years +/-, I've been thinking that a boat in the 30-32 foot range would let me do just about everything I'd like to end up being able to do. The question is--first go for a smaller boat, say 24-27 foot, then move up, or start out at 30-32 feet?
My background--as a teenager/20-something I sailed constantly in LI Sound and the LI harbors with a Sailfish, including trips of 10-20 miles. Haven't sailed since, except once a year ago with my son in a 24 foot Rainbow, which I had no problem at all managing (much to his amazement). I'm a sea kayaking instructor--not sailing I know, but a lot of the coastal seamanship carries over--winds, currents, sea state, coastal piloting, weather, radio communication. I would absolutely plan to obtain formal instruction & achieve ASA 103 level certification before or immediately after purchase. Thoughts?
OldEagle is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
Sponsored Links
post #32 of 33 Old 04-05-2014
Senior Member
deltaten's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Lancaster Co. PA/ North East, MD
Posts: 830
Thanks: 10
Thanked 21 Times in 21 Posts
Rep Power: 5
Send a message via Yahoo to deltaten
Re: From Dinghy Sailor to Cruising


The difference in handling, IMHO, between a 27' and a 30' is inconsequential; except for docking fees!

Remember..costs rise geometrically with increase in footage. I'd goforthe smallesst boat that you'd be comfortable on in most situations AND the largest you can afford the $$ and timefeeding and maintaining..
Even if I didn't need to worry abouit $$ or maint,; I'd *still* have my 27', as it suits mejust fine I spend more time sailing than fixin' and it's so simple that I can fix/mainttain on the cheap and on the go..

Best of luck,
jimgo likes this.

S/V Chrysalis
'80 Watkins 27
North East, MD
deltaten is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
The Following User Says Thank You to deltaten For This Useful Post:
OldEagle (04-05-2014)
post #33 of 33 Old 04-05-2014
Asleep at the wheel
jimgo's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 3,014
Thanks: 71
Thanked 117 Times in 115 Posts
Rep Power: 6
Re: From Dinghy Sailor to Cruising

I generally agree with Delta's comments. However, it is important to point out that you need to clearly define your needs. For example, will you most often be sailing alone or with one, two, or more people? Will you mostly be day sailing, weekending, or going for longer cruises? If you don't know the answer to these questions, you might want to start smaller simply because of the costs.

Starting small can be a great way to see whether you like sailing, and how much you'll use a boat. If you're unsure about getting your feet wet, you can pick up a Catalina 22 for pretty cheap (a few thousand) and if you decide you hate sailing, you can sell her for close to what you paid for her. If you decide you love sailing and want to move up to something bigger, you can sell her for about what you paid for her. And if you decide she's the right boat for you, you can keep her. Some will tell you that you are likely to lose money doing it my way, and I agree with them. Let's say you buy a C22 on a trailer for $4,000 and a year later you and your companions decide it's time for a bigger boat, and you wind up selling her for $3,000. Yes, you've lost $1,000. But that year with her, or however long you'll get her, will help you define and refine your wants and needs. Do you want a big cockpit so you can entertain? Split transom? Wheel or tiller? Do you need a separate shower in the cabin? Do you NEED refrigeration, air conditioning, etc.? What kind of rig do you want? Are you going to be racing at all? These are all issues/questions/etc. that you'll need to answer. Trying to answer them NOW is, with all due respect, probably foolish. I'd be willing to bet that a year or two from now, your answer to a fair number of these questions will probably have changed. If you start with a $20,000+ 30' boat and a year from now you decide to sell her because you want/need something else, I suspect you'll lose significantly more than the $1,000 if you go with the "start small" approach.

For what it's worth, we bought our Catalina 25 for $1,000. We probably put another $1000 into her, not including the new engine, that winter. I used the C22 in my example above, but the same would basically hold true for a 25.

- 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.
jimgo is offline  
Quote Quick Reply Share with Facebook
The Following User Says Thank You to jimgo For This Useful Post:
OldEagle (04-05-2014)

Quick Reply

By choosing to post the reply above you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dinghy sailor seeking some PFD recommendations rocketwench Racing 5 06-04-2010 09:32 PM
Teen Dinghy Sailor! StartedSailing Introduce Yourself 2 07-29-2009 11:20 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome