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post #21 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

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Budget: Up to $150,000 with and additional $25,000 for repairs re-rigging. Would obviously like to spend less but this is the upper limit. My research leads me to believe a roller furling headsail and roller furling beam and mainsail are the most forgiving.
You could probably swap those two numbers and end up happier.

And, TBH, many people find that boats over 35-38 REALLY need more than single-handed sailing. There are exceptional sailors that can handle 45 foot boats on their own, but they're exceptional for reasons that have a lot more to do with them than the boat. You'll have plenty of room for visitors on a 35, probably 4-5 more people for a short while and at least two more for weeks. (V-berth, settee, and quarter-berth are a typical minimum accommodations for 35, and you'll often get an aft cabin instead of just the quarter.)
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post #22 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

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Here's an example (I don't know this company, just showing what I'd be looking for): ASA 101/103 Stay & Learn
Great Lakes Sailing has a rather good reputation in the upper Midwest. It's recommendable at first glance, and I think I've found my summer holiday for next year.
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post #23 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

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I think she's the only other survivor from the cast. 5 years younger than Ginger. You go for the young ones do you.......

Concur, Mary Ann without a doubt.
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post #24 of 32 Old 03-05-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

The conversation has went as expected when I mentioned zero sailing experience. Don't get me wrong your advice on thinking this through and trying before you leap is ROCK solid and will be adhered to. This is however not yesterdays idea... been percolating for years. Your advice so far is the same advice I've been giving for the last ten years on a Jaguar (auto) forum when somebody wants to buy their first Jag and they are looking at 15 to 20+ year old cars. Unless you have a good maintenance budget you might want to think this through and move on to another brand or idea as you will not be happy trying to keep up with the electronics. I am able to give this advice from experience as my collection consists of ten 20 year old Jags.

So the original query still needs to be addressed. Lets assume everything has been thought through and WE are a go. As I look for possible boats I am overwhelmed by the selections available. My biggest fear is to end up buying something like a fresh water Bayliners which is allot of boat for the money but not allot of boat. I see the two most common are Hunters and Beneteuaus. Looking through the ads I see Hunter had a delamination problem in the early 90's ??? this is exactly what my query is trying to avoid. What other brands if any should I be considering and in them brands are there models/years to avoid. Thank you so much for taking the time to advise your impute is greatly appreciated.
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post #25 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

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So the original query still needs to be addressed. Lets assume everything has been thought through and WE are a go. As I look for possible boats I am overwhelmed by the selections available. My biggest fear is to end up buying something like a fresh water Bayliners which is allot of boat for the money but not allot of boat. I see the two most common are Hunters and Beneteuaus. Looking through the ads I see Hunter had a delamination problem in the early 90's ??? this is exactly what my query is trying to avoid. What other brands if any should I be considering and in them brands are there models/years to avoid. Thank you so much for taking the time to advise your impute is greatly appreciated.
Honestly, there are a ton of boats out there that will do what you want. It's like asking for the best mid-sized family sedan for a moderate commute, except the production numbers are so much lower.

It comes down to what you want to use it for:
- How many people? Guests? How many? How often? This will decide between 2 & 3 cabin layouts.
- How far will you realistically sail? Do you want to move to a new anchorage every few days, weeks, or months? What islands/areas do you want to visit? I'd recommend a very different boat for wintering in the Bahamas vs trying to see the whole Caribbean in a few years.
- 1 bathroom or 2 (or 3)? Shower inside or out (probably both). Showers in both bathrooms? Where does the "main" bathroom go? Near the entryway or near the bedroom (if it's in the front).
- What kind of bed do you want? Big aft cabin vs v berth as the master bedroom.
- Food: what do you cook, will you want to keep lots of meat on hand when you're somewhere far from grocery stores (e.g., Bahamas) or hang out somewhere you can shop daily if you want (e.g., Martinique). How much ice will you use for drinks?
- Will you be going back & forth to the US or just staying south? How will the boat get to the Caribbean? Will you buy it there or get it there somehow?

There are some generalizations about manufacturers that often spark off arguments here. It's the same as if I said bad things about Ford on an auto forum (and you'd still have to figure out if I'm actually complaining about Pintos since boats that old are still in use). If you give us some details on you & your plans, you'll probably get some decent recommendations for specific boats. Even just the number of cabins you need and an estimate of how old you expect your boat to be would probably trigger that.
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post #26 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

Pretty well all models have had issues from time to time.. Bene had a spell where 'blisters' were epidemic, the recognized Carroll Marine had a spate of delamination issues at one time, Hunters have had a bit of a bad rep, IMO not all deserved and for me is mostly a stylistic objection with their latest lines. Really early Hunters (of the Cherubini era - pre '83 or so) generally have a better overall reputation but are, of course, much older, sedate designs as a rule. As with all brands, relying on any owner to be objective about the brand of boat they own is a bit of a losing bet.

For your intentions and desires the first boat that pops up in my mind is the Passport 40. Available in a variety of layouts, construction is rock solid, like any Perry design the row-away factor is high, very comfortable cockpit ergonomics and probably the best galley in a production boat of that size anywhere. We have friends who took theirs to Mexico from BC and spent three seasons down south.. the boat gave them no issues beyond normal maintenance. Could be at the top of your budget range though.

Find a Tatoosh (rare) or other related Perry designs will probably do you well too.

The Venerable Valiant 40 is another, earlier Perry effort with a strong following - but the Passport IMO is a much more liveable boat. (no offense, Newt et al)

That's not to say that a Bene like a 411 or 393 won't do the job for you either, or a Catalina 42 MKI/MKII, 400, 380 - it's going to come down to equipment, condition, perhaps location, and availability. But if all those boats were lined up in a row, all things being equal for simple coastal sailing/summers/weekends, I'd choose the Cat 42MKII or maybe a J40... if I had aspirations to go further, deep sea/extended passages the Passport 40 would be my first choice.

Other quality candidates would include Sabres, HR, etc but as you say, there are so many it does become confusing. Assume you've done all the Yachtworld searches within your price/length range?

Ron

1984 Fast/Nicholson 345 "FastForward"

".. there is much you could do at sea with common sense.. and very little you could do without it.."
Capt G E Ericson (from "The Cruel Sea" by Nicholas Monsarrat)
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post #27 of 32 Old 03-05-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

This ^^^^^

More questions:

Traditional style or modern/Euro style?
How about really roomy, cruising cats, or are you like me and don't feel like your sailing if you stand up straight?
Speed vs. comfort? Which one is more important or in the middle?
Easy sailing handling or speed at any cost? Roller furling everything vs let's put on the new Kevlar blade?
You going to sit at anchor, or sail everyday? Doing overnights a lot or day passages between islands? Tradeoff between at anchor comfort and underway cooking/sleeping/eating...etc.

Your detailed intended use will help you get advice on if you should buy a sports car, sedan, performance sedan, SUV, etc.

PS - If you like Jag's, we know you are used to fixing stuff. Another good indication that you'll like sailboats!!!!
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post #28 of 32 Old 03-06-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

Doing your learning in the Caribbean sounds like good advice. But, given your proximity to the Great Lakes, it makes a lot of sense to do it there. That's what I'd suggest, and you can always get a few days in the salty stuff before you make your big move.

Your question of which boat to buy is a bit off the mark. There are simply too many appropriate boats out there to name them all. Or to name the best. Sure, you'll get a smattering of results from the sailors on this forum, but practically speaking, what do you do with that information?

A Hunter or a Bene would be fine. Ditto for Catalina. And many others. Any of the mainstream makers has made a boat that would be good for your purposes. I can't point to one of the mainstream brands and say, "stay away from xxxx, they're nothing but crap". Sure, some are made better than others, and some are at the upper end of the scale, and may be semi-custom or custom with prices that will be out of your range.

A better approach?:
While you're learning to sail, you can also be looking at boats in Michigan. Because you're really just kicking tires, it's not entirely fair to the sellers, but if you can stop by the larger brokers and look at what they have on hand, you're going to soak up some good information. You'll also be bewildered, but keep looking and keep reading. You WILL end up with a much better sense of what sort of boat you want.

When you're really ready to make your purchase, you have some knowledge you couldn't have gotten otherwise. At that point, look at the listings where you want to buy (could be a large area...even a Great Lakes freshwater vessel) and find a boat you like with the layout you like, etc.. Wow, this 12 year old Catalina 42 is well equipped, looks really good and I like the layout. Then, do your research on the Catalina 42. After your own research, come back to this forum and inquire about it. If you like the boat, and there are no known issues, or the known issues have either been addressed or can be easily addressed, then you've found a boat. Get a survey and either walk away or buy it.

In the meantime, do plenty of trial boating buys. Let's say you find a nice Bene xxxxx in Traverse City, Michigan in really nice shape for a good price. Go online and find out all you can about it. Maybe there's an owner's forum where you can get some good info. When you're ready for your actual buy, you're already have experience with vetting.
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post #29 of 32 Old 03-06-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

Whether you can learn to sail on a 40-45' boat depends entirely on you. I have a good friend who did it successfully, but it was a slow process, and I think you'll need help, not just from sailing instructors, but also from an experienced sailor who will take some time to sail with you on your boat, and help you figure out how it is rigged, and find the flaws in it that need to be repaired. If you buy a used boat, it will have hardware that doesn't work properly anymore, and will need to be replaced. Without experience, you might not recognize those flaws.

You will need to develop certain basic skills. You'll need to know how to sail the boat in all conditions of wind and sea, and to develop the discipline to stow everything not being used, so that it doesn't roll around the cabin floor in rough weather. You'll need to learn how to maneuver a fixed, single screw sailboat under power in a marina, and how to get in and out of a slip, and alongside a dock when the wind and/or current is either favorable or contrary. You'll need to know how to navigate along a coast or at sea, how to anchor securely in all conditions, and how to provision for an extended cruise, and prepare meals underway. You'll need to understand all the boat's systems well enough so that you can repair them youreself, while under way. If you have the desire and discipline to learn those skills and more, you can do it. After you have developed your basic skills, you should test them with an extended cruise of 200-300 miles.

Taking sailing classes in the Carib would be helpful, but much of the expense involved is the cost of flying there and back. If expense is a concern for you, I'd suggest that you'd benefit more by spending that money to take more advanced sailing courses on the Great Lakes or the Chesapeake Bay. The US Power Squadron offers many inexpensive courses in navigation and electronics and other subjects that would be valuable. Joining the Cruising Club of America would be helpful.
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post #30 of 32 Old 03-06-2016
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Re: Newbie looking for advice.

I can only tell you what worked for us. We had never been on a sailboat until Dec 2000 when we took asa 101 together - we liked it so much we took 2 more in 2001 and chartered a couple of times - we bought a new 40' Jeanneau DS 40 - our first and only boat. We lived in Miami at the time and sailed a lot. At age 62 I took off and did the east coast of the USA - the admiral thought I was having to much fun and joined me - our goal was to sail the Bahamas and back and we did that a couple of times then things got out of hand and we sailed both sides of the Caribbean and did a 2 person crossing of the Atlantic in 2013 and now getting ready for our 4 year in the Med. By the way I turned 70 this year and the Admiral is 68.
as suggestions
1 sail the great lakes -- there is an old saying that if you can sail the great lakes you can sail anywhere
2 40' is a great size - especially if you are going to live on for a long time
3 do not limit your horizons by saying I am only going to sail such and such so my boat does not need to be that great - we only wanted to go to the Bahamas but wow did things get out of hand in a hurry - you never know what you may do or where you may end up
4 keep asking questions - lots of support here
5 if there is an admiral get her involved asap and make it a team -- we are a team
good luck
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Just our thoughts and opinion
Chuck, Patty and SVSoulMates
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