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post #11 of 62 Old 08-27-2016
Learning the HARD way...
 
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Great first, and subsequent, post. There are a few instructors here, and we are all happy to help.

Suggest that you may want to take an ASA 104, or 106, somewhere away from your frequent sailing area. You'll still learn a ton, and you'll have an instructor to guide you in the highlights of new area.
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post #12 of 62 Old 08-27-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

My advice for a first boat is don't break the bank and don't over think it. I can almost guarantee it will NOT end up being the "right" boat for somebody so new to sailing. Everybody has been there unless they are lucky enough to have been on/around boats their entire life.
Find something you can fit in down below, has good bones and newer sails. Everybody is different and what you discover you need down the road will probably not be what you think you need now. That's what the next boat is really for. You learn about so much more than just sailing from your first boat.

That is a horse head in the box. Not an alien!
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post #13 of 62 Old 08-27-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Quote:
Originally Posted by eherlihy View Post
Suggest that you may want to take an ASA 104, or 106, somewhere away from your frequent sailing area. You'll still learn a ton, and you'll have an instructor to guide you in the highlights of new area.
Yeah, the current longish-term plan (that I haven't told my wife about yet...) is to take ASA 103 next year here in Portland (at South Portland Sailing Center, which was linked earlier), hopefully after getting our own boat so that the lessons can be on our boat... and then find somewhere to take ASA 104 in a year or two once we have the basic experience (and funds) under our belt. SPSC is very small and only currently offers 101 and 103, anyway.

So whenever we do take ASA 104, we'll definitely be taking it somewhere other than our frequent sailing area. I just need to first get a frequent sailing area!

@Stumble That's a great idea, and one I hadn't even considered because I didn't know it was a thing that existed (see "Don't know what we don't know," above). That's the kind of thing I came here to get told. I just asked Google about it, and it looks like there's a sailing club in Portland (Sail Maine) that has seasonal memberships and a number of classes that all might fit our bill, as well as racing opportunities. It's probably too late in the season this year to justify signing up for the 420 series races, but it'll definitely be on the table next year (especially as long as we don't have a boat of our own).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tanski
My advice for a first boat is don't break the bank and don't over think it.
I think that between the two of us we'll be able to cover any sanity gaps (if not knowledge gaps) that might crop up in the course of boat-shopping, so we should be able to get through the process without breaking the bank (assuming we actually get through the process at all).

No promises about not overthinking it, though. We're outstanding overthinkers.

Current Boat: TBD
Currently Crewing: 22' Pearson Ensign (Wednesday Night Fall Racing)
Sailing Area: Casco Bay, Maine, USA
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post #14 of 62 Old 08-27-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Whatever you do, make sure you do not burn out the sailing interest in your wife. You will need her support or things could get complicated and unpleasant.
Sailing does not need to be an expensive hobby, but once you buy a boat, it kind of snowballs. And that is why what I said earlier is so important.
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Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
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post #15 of 62 Old 08-27-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

I really hate recommending the C420. It's really a high school trainer, even by college finding the right mix of crew weight can be difficult. If you are over 6' unless your wife is under 5' you will probably be far too big combined for the boat. On the other hand if there is a big fleet, there is a huge advantage to having other people with the same boat close by, even if you don't race much.

I would take a look and see what other small boats are sailed locally though.

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post #16 of 62 Old 08-29-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Well, our plans to get out on the water this weekend via some private lessons from SPSC fell through due to the staff there going on a cruise of their own during the weekend (and I can't blame them for that, but that doesn't make it a bummer). So now my wife and I are looking at a couple (and there are, as far as we can tell, literally only a couple) of options for renting a boat for the day and going out to tool around Casco Bay. A couple of questions for those with more experience (i.e. "XP > 0") than ourselves:

  1. Neither Allie nor I have ever docked a sailboat, and this is one of our bigger reservations about going out alone. Obviously we're not stupid enough to try to dock under sail at this point, so the question then becomes "Well how hard can it be for two scaredy-cats to dock a powered boat, anyway?" Assuming we're too chicken to do anything quickly and carelessly, is this something we should be able to pull off without causing vast amounts of property damage?

  2. I don't know whether or not SPSC will be able to rent us their Pearson 22 while they're away on Staff Cruise, but assuming they are, here are our three options:
    • The Pearson 22 that we took our ASA 101 lessons on. Huge cockpit (and we're hoping to have a couple of friends join us), full keeled, and we're as familiar with it as it's possible for us to be with a sailboat. Downsides are the limited availability of a head, the fact that it's docked in a somewhat precarious (to us) tight spot, and (depending on your perspective) the fact that we're already sort-of-a-little-familiar with it and so might not be getting broader boat exposure. Cost would be approximately $37/hour.

    • Pearson 26 (Portland Yacht Services) — The largest (and probably most expensive) of the three options. Definitely has a head. Outboard cutout on the transom. Cockpit is smaller but not stupid tiny. My main concerns about this are lack of familiarity, cost ($225 for the day—the breakeven point between the 22 and 26 is right around 6 hours of rental use time), and the fin keel / spade rudder arrangement (which might not even matter, but it just seems like it would be more susceptible to lobster trap lines than the full keeled Pearson 22).

    • Yngling 21 (Portland Yacht Services) — The smallest, cheapest option. $75 for half a day, $150 for a full day. Small cockpit, so it would only be the two of us and no friends. Can't actually see an outboard in the picture provided, which would be an automatic disqualifier (see "We are not docking under sail.") Seems like it would be the most difficult option for us due to its lightness / racing-ness / quasi-dinghy-ness. Does not appear to have any room for a head. Fin keel makes me nervous about lobster traps.

So, given those three options, what are folks thoughts about them as day rentals for two wannabe sailors with about 12 hours on the water each? Cost notwithstanding (and actively irrelevant if we spend at least 6 hours out, which I would like to anyway), my knee-jerk is to give the Pearson 26 a try, but I also don't want to spend all day focused on dodging lobster traps if the fin keel / spade rudder is going to cause any issues with those.

Current Boat: TBD
Currently Crewing: 22' Pearson Ensign (Wednesday Night Fall Racing)
Sailing Area: Casco Bay, Maine, USA
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post #17 of 62 Old 08-29-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Hey Landwalker, I just joined this site as well and have not really introduced myself. Perhaps I will do so in a thread.

For now, one new guy to another, welcome to sailing!

Although I am not sure if congratulations or condolences are in order.

My always Wife, some days First Mate/Admiral (dependent on the day) and I entered the sailing world exactly as you did 3 years ago.

We did a Cruise and Learn ASA 101 - 103 for a week.

We are now moving onto our first live aboard.

So be careful what you wish for!!

l had no idea what we were getting into or that we would be so hopelessly stricken by the affliction called sailing but,,,,, here we are.

Enjoy every second and every challenge!

As for boats,,, I have to agree with all the guys recommending a longer learning curve.

There is not a sail club out there not looking for rail meat so,

Just show up and have some fun. You will be exposed to so many different ideas on and thoughts about boats its crazy.

Personally, as a first boat we bought a 2009 Macgregor 26M (You can almost hear the collective dismay from the Nay Sayers lol)

That boat took a lot of punishment and, brought our rookie selves back intact every time! Absolutely fantastic first boat (for us).

Forgiving and solid! And when a wind comes up that your not ready for, you can get out of there quick!

Congrats on your new job. I'm sure the CPA thing will be a handy hobby to help raise cruising budget.
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post #18 of 62 Old 08-29-2016 Thread Starter
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Quote:
Originally Posted by Justa View Post
Hey Landwalker, I just joined this site as well and have not really introduced myself. Perhaps I will do so in a thread.

For now, one new guy to another, welcome to sailing!

Although I am not sure if congratulations or condolences are in order.

My always Wife, some days First Mate/Admiral (dependent on the day) and I entered the sailing world exactly as you did 3 years ago.

We did a Cruise and Learn ASA 101 - 103 for a week.

We are now moving onto our first live aboard.

So be careful what you wish for!!

l had no idea what we were getting into or that we would be so hopelessly stricken by the affliction called sailing but,,,,, here we are.
I secretly (well, "secretly") hope for this long-term outcome. My wife has so far not been warm to the live-aboard idea, but obviously that's not a short-term goal anyway. Time will tell!

(Today we were out walking around during lunch, looking through the gates surrounding the handful of docking piers downtown in Portland. After looking at one place, she asked "Where do you want to go next?" So I pointed out towards the mouth of Casco Bay and said "That way, then turn right [south] and go about four months.")

Quote:
Originally Posted by Justa
As for boats,,, I have to agree with all the guys recommending a longer learning curve.

There is not a sail club out there not looking for rail meat so,

Just show up and have some fun. You will be exposed to so many different ideas on and thoughts about boats its crazy.
I'm looking into it, but there just aren't many sailing clubs in our area. A number of fancy-schmancy yacht clubs, but Sail Maine (which I mentioned above) was the only "sailing club" I could find, assuming I'm even using the right definition of that term, and they pretty much just traffic in J/22s. Which still is probably not the worst thing, of course.

I threw my name into a hat to crew in a race on Wednesday this week, but haven't heard anything back regarding that yet. In the interim, I think we're leaning towards renting the Pearson 26 for the day this Saturday or (probably) Sunday and tooling around Casco Bay all day. Hopefully in a manner that won't result in us running into any ground or other boats. Or docks. Or countless other things...

(Edit: Just to clarify, the CPA thing isn't new... I've been in accounting for about six years now. The sailing thing is new, though! And it hopefully will finally give my CPA thing something worthwhile to subsidize...)

Current Boat: TBD
Currently Crewing: 22' Pearson Ensign (Wednesday Night Fall Racing)
Sailing Area: Casco Bay, Maine, USA
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post #19 of 62 Old 08-29-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

Don't get discouraged by the Grey Poupon crowd at the marinas and clubs.

Most of those guys are a bunch of blow hards anyway.

Bloody nice boats though!

If you keep poking around asking increasingly intelligent questions, the real sailors will eventually take pity on you and start inviting you out to play.
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post #20 of 62 Old 08-29-2016
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Re: It Doesn't Get Any Noob-er Than This

IF you rent or buy a sailboat with an outboard motor, the easiest way to dock the the boat is to pull her in stern-first with the motor in reverse. Do everything very slowly. Account for wind and current. Coast the last few boatlengths using the motor just for steering. If you need braking force, reverse the motor aggressively.

If you are worried about what other sailors think of that maneuver:

1) Get over it or don't get into sailing;
2) Understand that other sailors will appreciate that you are coming in a controlled manner that is not threatening their boats.

Last edited by jwing; 08-29-2016 at 04:28 PM.
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