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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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View Poll Results: How did you get your start in sailing!
No formal instruction, just bought a boat and went for it 140 33.10%
No formal instruction, grew up sailing with family/friends 104 24.59%
No formal instruction, sailed with friends/family as an adult 54 12.77%
Formal instruction, US Sailing 22 5.20%
Formal instruction, ASA 55 13.00%
Military service lead to sailing 19 4.49%
Just crewed around randomly 8 1.89%
The boom hit my head on an accidental gybe, I can't remember 9 2.13%
Got in through racing for the most part 12 2.84%
Voters: 423. You may not vote on this poll

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  #41  
Old 04-05-2008
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Hobie Cats on the beach in Ocean City , NJ where I lived for 18 years before moving to the Chesapeake. Was a simpler life, just hitching the wheels to the Hobie in front of the house, dragging her down to the waters edge, setting her up in 15 minutes and then flying along at 15 knots.

I then got an Islander 28 for 8 years and then mov

Moved to the Chesapeake and have a 35 C&C, more time and more money...
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“Sailing is just the bottom line, like adding up the score in bridge. My real interest is in the tremendous game of life.”- Dennis Conner
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  #42  
Old 04-05-2008
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Big Mick is on a distinguished road
Got asked by a buddy to join him on a sail on Lake Erie. He had a 24' Quick Step. Would sail with him and our families several times a summer. He moved up to a 28' Caliber and then we would sail to Canada for a weekend of perch and Molson. He recently sold the boat (Thought that was damn rude of him) so now all I have is the desire. You folks provide much vicarious pleasure.
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Old 04-05-2008
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Got asked by a buddy to join him on a sail on Lake Erie. He had a 24' Quick Step. Would sail with him and our families several times a summer. He moved up to a 28' Caliber and then we would sail to Canada for a weekend of perch and Molson. He recently sold the boat (Thought that was damn rude of him) so now all I have is the desire. You folks provide much vicarious pleasure.
Oh, how I remember those weekends. I did the same thing with a buddy of mine , lake Michigan, but on the US side it was smelt and Budweiser. lol
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Side, like size, probably doesn't matter. Its the buddy, fish and beer. Not necessarily in that order
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Old 04-05-2008
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Side, like size, probably doesn't matter. Its the buddy, fish and beer. Not necessarily in that order
You are right about that one! It is about sailing.
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Old 04-05-2008
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I refurbished a wooden sailboat my uncle gave me for work i did for him. The mice ate holes in the Dacron sails I had stored in bags in the garage. Sold the boat and bought a wooden 14' Flying Junior with trailer. I had a ball learning to sail it buying a spinnaker and making a trapeze for it. I put a two horse outboard on it and varnished sand on the floor for traction. it was a slippery little sucker. Got me ready for moving on up. Now own a 24 C@C and use all the tricks I learned on that first boat.
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Old 04-06-2008
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I was exploited teen labor at a summer daycamp in Illinois for little monsters. However they had what I'm pretty sure from looking at the other thread were Sailfish.

I just remember a big sail and sitting on it, not in it.

Had no clue what I was doing, kept messing with it. Staff was allowed open access to the grounds and no one locked the boat house. One night, I had a perfect broad reach across the whole length of the little lake. I still remember the reflection of the moon on the water, and the sound of the water running against her hull...I was hooked. Made up for the $164 grand total I got paid for 3 months of my summer.

Mike
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Old 04-06-2008
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Dad bought a 8 foot, single sail, swing keel row boat. He filled the mast with foam so it would float. It was a mix and pour concotion. He poured in too much and it over shot the top of the mast. Raw product fell on my sister and cured in her hair. I just took the boat out. Had a lot of fun fishing under sail too. Years later it was sailboards.

Now I singlehand a daysailer. Sailboats are one out of hundreds in this neck of the woods. My next boat will be blue water capable.

Short answer: Just did it. No instruction. Just work it until it works.

p.s. Thanks for all the good information here at sailnet, and to all the informative posts.
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Old 04-14-2008
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I was given a windsurfer and told to shove off, by an experienced instructor...
No formal education. No clue. Sail or paddle back...Wind was offshore, so I was immediately faced with a dilemma of how to get back. Instructor sat on the shore and watched. I was 15. There and then I got the basic premise of staying up wind at all costs... That time I did have to paddle back. I could not figure out how to sail upwind. I was cold and tired. I sat on the beach and watched others... Then tried again...and was able to sail back. It was the tacking that did it...
Oh well, looking back, that was a right way to teach me. Sailing requires attention and resourcefulness, preparation and effort and is inherently dangerous in a sense that one deals with unpredictable elements. One has to experience them first hand to appreciate the ultimate power that nature has over us....
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Old 04-25-2008
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I first took out a small sailboat on the Charles River in Boston a couple of times, then 10 years later took up scuba, discovered my love of the sea, particularly after taking a 7 day dive trip to the Bahamas on a beamy 40' sailboat, and decided that I'd like to live aboard a boat someday. Then 15 years later, I had the opportunity to do so, and took the money from my half of the house and bought my Corsair 36 trimaran. I did do a lot of reading, talking to sailors and research prior to taking the leap, but I do not regret it and wish I did it sooner. That said, I have a lot to learn (this site is a great resource) and I am still discovering the full implications of the saying, "Boating is hours of enjoyment mixed with moments of sheer terror," particularly in regard to docking.
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