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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks!
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Thread: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks! Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
04-22-2013 02:29 AM
Graywolf77
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

A Navy vet myself and looked at things pretty much the same way you are now. I found the boat and am in the middle of my final phase of refit. I do not live in the US and have not for some time, so I do have as good an idea as anyone regarding the where.

Your basic idea is sound. The Carib does offer a lot. I have lived and worked in the region for many years. A smaller boat offers some advantages, though it is an ongoing debate about what the "right" boat size would be.

I would love to keep up with your progress and offer any assistance if needed. Just let me know. It is a big change going from war ships to sailing ships. They do not dock the same way

Artie
04-21-2013 11:49 AM
MarkofSeaLife
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Reid Stowes boat must be for sale.

That perfect for this sort of job. And probably still have an art easel or two lying about.


But please, please, don't do whale tracks mid ocean for the blogs GPS reports.

As for rowing the dinghy in.....Hmmmmm, I think you can safely say the USA has a 12 nm territorial zone (not economic) so that's not far to paddle.


Mark
04-21-2013 11:12 AM
c. breeze
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Make sure you get a passport. Other countries get cranky when you row a raft ashore from your boat without documents.


It almost sounds like your plan is to sail out 300 miles, and hang out til the groceries are gone- and then sail back not quite 300 miles to row ashore to get more groceries.

Lots of bugs in bird seed- you'll want to be sure not to infest your own boat with ants roaches beetles etc. you'll never see the end of it.
04-21-2013 07:45 AM
smurphny
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

As mentioned above, an SSB will get you free communications. If you can afford it, satellite phone and internet are possible. Without some sort of destination, I would think just bobbing around 200 miles out would get pretty old after a while. Perhaps plan a never-ending circumnavigation. Destinations give purpose. There is SO much to learn about sailing, route planning, navigation, heavy weather tactics, equipment, customs/immigration in foreign countries, provisioning, maintenance and equipment, etc. There are plenty of good reading sources. I suggest taking a look at Jimmy Cornell's World Cruising Routes to get a feel for where to be and when. More importantly, where NOT to be.

Boat suggestion: Alberg 37 (or 35 like mine) or similar older designs from the 60s. A P40 would also be a good choice. They are proven, solid boats, capable of going anywhere and can be bought at a reasonable price. Figure on spending around 30k to get one capable of going offshore (if you do the work).
04-21-2013 07:19 AM
killarney_sailor
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Not to start a keel type discussion - not quite as much fun as guns or anchors of course, but there are lots of suitable boats that are not full-keelers. As I suggested before, you are a long way away from the boat choosing part of the exercise.
04-21-2013 01:49 AM
kunkwriter
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Great topic. I'm a Navy vet myself and am preparing to disappear with my wife for a bit as well. Having said that, I've been sailing for 15 years now and, like much in life, the more I learn about it, the more I realize how little I know. My advice is to get a boat, 35'ish with a full keel. Most those will have the weight and name to be a decent boat. Then, take a weekend sail, then a week sail, then longer. So on and so on. The important stuff will come to you. For internet, ham radio is as close as you'll get unless you're wealthy. You'll need to think about electricity--figure how much you'll need and whether solar will handle it, or if you need more. Good deep cycle batteries are like gold. Good book called: Sensible Cruising: the Thoreau Approach. Good book, and keeps it simple. Best of Luck.
04-21-2013 12:44 AM
capta
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Why? Because of sharks? There are just as many sharks around the shorelines as there are far out to sea. If you would be willing to go for a swim in 20 feet of water in Tampa Bay, then going for a swim in 5,000 feet of water in the middle of the Atlantic is really no different.
It's called imagination, Don! A lot bigger (and hungrier) things can be in water 5000 feet deep than 20, or so one's mind would have us believe. And let me tell you, from first hand experience, that really huge shadow below, at the edge of visibility, you when you are swimming around in a calm half way to Hawaii, can be a powerful incentive to get back on board rather quickly, even if it ends up being the boat's shadow! But for a few seconds........
04-20-2013 08:34 PM
JimMcGee
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

I did a quick search on YachtWorld.com for boats from 36' to 42' with a price range of $40K to $65K and came up with 247 boats on the east coast. Some would make good long term cruisers depending on their real condition (I don't trust boat ads). Expect to put a fair bit of work into any older boat.

You mentioned sailing up and down the East Coast first. As others have pointed out, staying at sea in a small boat may not be what you want to do. But if you're looking to try living off the grid for a while why not try the Bahamas?

You're close to civilization if you need it but there are places where you can be completely unplugged and remote from the rest of the world.

Best of luck pursuing your dream.
04-20-2013 06:08 PM
killarney_sailor
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

Swimming in the middle of the ocean is odd. The first time I stood at the top of the ladder thinking, 'what happens if I just keep going down?'. The water was 13,000 feet deep and intellectually I knew is was no different than 13', but still ...

BTW, we kept someone on board to make sure there were no sharks and boat didn't decide to sail away. In terms of danger, going on the shore of Australia is much more dangerous with sharks, saltwater crocodiles, and poisonous jellyfish.
04-20-2013 05:13 PM
JimsCAL
Re: US Navy Veteran_New to Sailboats_Need your Honest Knowledge and Experience_Thanks

A couple of comments. As a former merchant mariner with over 700 days at sea, I can tell you that going to sea on a large ship and going in a small sailboat are two very different things. Spending some time coastal cruising and getting some experience would be high on my priority list. With your limited budget, a boat on the lower size end of your range would make sense. It will still need work, but you should be able to find something that is basically solid but can be updated bit by bit. As to communications at sea, SSB with a ham license is the lowest cost way to go. You can send email with SSB, but its SLOW, even compared to dialup service.
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