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ardsranger 05-07-2013 09:20 PM

Which Boat .. What to do
Hi guys
I will be moving to Jacksonville FL area soon,
I have some sailing experience. Sail a Nacra 19' and loved it and helps my friends learn to sail prindle 20 and hobbie 20's and 16's.( about 17-20 years on CATS and I also Windsurf, Never sailed a monohull and ZERO BLUE WATER TIME

Im looking for a the right first Monohull.
It will be sailed in Jacksonville area. I was planning on using it on St. Johns River mainly ( Scared of Blue water never did it) River is about 1.5 to 4 miles wide and it is VERY LONG, current is not strong.

Which boat is the question of the day

A boat that i could take family on 3 adults 1 kiddo.
Head would be nice
Prep to sail including stepping mast under 2 and half hours. Would prefer to not have to pay slip fees. I have a big truck to move a fairly heavy boat.
I would love the advice of experienced Monohull Sailors
Budget is 25k May be able to get up to 30 ( if wife loves it)

thanks so much
God Bless

theonecalledtom 05-07-2013 11:22 PM

Re: Monohull What to do
I'd be more concerned of the river with its shifty bottoms and constrained distances (1mi = 8minutes on a fast reach) than the ocean - but each to that they know right...

ardsranger 05-08-2013 02:16 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
thanks Tom,
I am looking for a MONO HULL and have not had experience with these so looking for input.

I am working on moving to the JAX FL area.
I have done some chatting and about decided on a 28 to 30 foot and just slip the boat.
Considering A C28 c30 possible 31 at moment. There is alot of research to do.

jimgo 05-08-2013 10:55 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
With a kid, I think a slip makes a lot of sense. A Catalina 27 or Catalina 30 would be a good first monohull. They may not sail as well as some others, but you'll have a great support network and the boats are comfortable. If you really want something that's still trailerable, a C25 is a nice boat, too. 4 is about the max that I'd sail on a 25 regularly, but it's comfortable at that level of occupancy. The 27's cockpit isn't much bigger than the 25's, but the cabin is bigger and a little more comfortable. The 30 has a much bigger cabin and cockpit. You also transition from an outboard with the C25 to an inboard with the C30 (the 27's go both ways, depending on the boat). The C30 is going to be very heavy compared to what you're used to.

Catalinas are what they are - they are decent boats that are built to a certain price point. Some don't like them, some love them, for that reason. I don't know that I'd want to take an older, stock Catalina from the US to England, but for day/weekend sailing in comfortable conditions, they should be OK. The trick will be to find one that is in good shape - at your budget you'll be looking at older boats, and the temperment of the previous owner(s) will have more to do with how the boat behaves, and how reliable it is.

All that being said, might I suggest that you sit down and define what you want from the boat? There may be other brands out there that would fit your needs and still fall in the same price range. Things to consider include:

* Depth in your local sailing area
* Tidal swing
* Number of bridges in your area and their height
* Primary intended use: day sailing, weekending or longer cruising?
* Typical number of expected people aboard?
* Engine type preference (inboard/outboard)?
* Maximum length you'd consider?
* Minimum length you'd consider?
* Sleeping arrangements/cabin layout preference (e.g. dinette vs settee)?

Once you have that set out, I'd suggest perusing Craigslist and Yachworld to get a sense for what's available in that market. Then spend some time on SailboatData and SailingTexas getting a sense for what the boats look like, inside and out, and decide what you think will work for you. You may wind up back at the Catalina (I was really surprised/impressed with the C30 the first time I was aboard one), but at least you'll have done your research and can feel confident that you haven't missed much.

ardsranger 05-08-2013 11:25 PM

Re: Monohull What to do
Jim thanks for the post
As it is apparent i know very little about Monohulls
but to answer a few question

I am not locked in to any manufacture Catalina is one i have started to research some.
Wife likes the looks of hunters below the deck
and have very little knowledge of these boats.
My Basic Sailing skills are fairly solid. May years on Cat's and Windsurfing. Im not starting form completely Newbee but I have had enough time on water to know ( if you not been on that craft, you have a lot to learn)
Wife will let me have "some Wiggle room" on a boat to get a nice cabin, I ask how much her reply was maybe 40 to 45, if SHE loves it. But still planing on 35-38k ish when time to write the check

of your this list i can answer a few things

* Depth in your local sailing area
i have contacted a couple guys that sail on the river, I think they are in 28 and 31 foot boots, do not know keel on thier boats I forgot to ask. But they told me there is quite a bit of sailing traffic on the river, Actually it is to busy at times.
I am not sure of how low all the bridges are to the ocean but, for now I plan on staying inland until i get a very good feel of the boat and my skill limits, understanding her(boat) and the way she talks to me. Then, I can always slip her on the Ocean side. ( IF I EVER DECIDE THAT'S WHAT I WANT TO DO) If i have to step the mast to get her out on a One time trip to a ocean side slip thats ok. I need more info, but from the club said they have several regattas and many entries of boats 30 +, I assume they can sail them into the river for the regatta

I know my answers or vague but best i can do at moment
thanks bob

* Tidal swing
* Number of bridges in your area and their height, I think i can avoid most,
there are a few, Most are 65+, the first 3 i would have to pass are 120+ or draw bridge
To learn the boat I think that would work ok
* Primary intended use: day sailing, weekending or longer cruising?
Day Sailing Maybe a few over nights. The longest would be maybe down the coast line of FL MAYBE. but not till i have had the boat awhile and can feel the love from her reaction to various sailing. I like to know the feel of the boat. Be very proactive in sailing and less reactive.
* Typical number of expected people aboard?
2 adults 1 kiddo 11
* Engine type preference (inboard/outboard)?
I think I would like Inboard Prefer the lines of boat without it hanging off back
* Maximum length you'd consider?
Max is about 32 or 33 foot
* Minimum length you'd consider?
* Sleeping arrangements/cabin layout preference (e.g. dinette vs settee)?
all the boats I have researched are ok on cabins, Catalina and hunter and a few others
Just a place for 3 to sleep maybe 4 with a kiddo friend.
Dinette/ Settee dont care just want my coffee in morning( for me) and place to set a plate.

jimgo 05-09-2013 01:24 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
If you haven't already, sign up for and check out the charts for that area. It looks to me like the river is easily 8-10' deep at low tide, which is great, because that gets you enough depth that most keel boats won't be much of a problem. According to NOAA, the tidal swing in your area is about 2', depending on exactly where you'll be on the river (I picked the Ortega River at random). You've got a lot of bridges in your way, though many of them are fixed and high enough that you shouldn't have an issue. But there are a few lift bridges and bascule bridges, so getting out to the ocean may not be the easiest thing if you decide to do it more regularly.

So, the next thing I'd consider if I were in your shoes is whether this is your "it" boat, or your "for now" boat. If you're looking to learn to sail a bigger boat on bigger waters, you might want to go with a $20K boat in the 27' range and see what you like/dislike, with the intention of moving "up" in a few years. Up may not be accurate - a 27 may be perfectly fine for you, but perhaps not the one you have. You may decide that it's time to start going up and down the coast, so a shoal draft or wing is better. Or maybe your kid gets bitten by the sailing bug and you start racing, and decide a 30' fixed keel racer is better. Or...

Given the changes you're about to make, and the fact that your kid will be getting to his/her teen years and may love boating, or may hate boating (especially with you - no offense intended, I'm a parent, too), I'd hate to see you invest too much in a boat just to have life pass you by. We came close to putting in an offer on a Hunter 28.5, and that's probably where I'd start if I were in your shoes. They can be had for very reasonable prices (well within your budget), and they have a reputation for being decent boats (don't confuse them with the Hunter 28, which has been roundly panned as a horrible boat). Not great (you'll hear good and bad things about Hunters), but decent, and perfectly adequate for their intended purposes. That boat should be great for the river, and would probably get you up and down the coast provided you watch your weather windows and didn't push things. MAYBE even a hop from Miami to the Bahamas. But I suspect that, if/when the time comes to make trips like that, the 28 will be too small for you. Even a 30-32 might be too small, especially as your kid gets older.

Just my two cents!

jimgo 05-09-2013 01:28 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
Actually, another boat to consider is the Islander 28. They are reported to sail exceptionally well, and they are BEAUTIFUL inside (at least to my eye). The salon converts to a double on the starboard side and has a single on the other, though I suspect you could make an insert that would turn that into something about the size of a queen. There's a nice quarterberth, too, plus the traditional vee berth. They can also be had for very reasonable prices, and there's a shoal draft model that would be perfect if you decided to keep her for trips to the Keys. Even the Islander 30 wouldn't be bad, though they start to get more expensive.

ardsranger 05-09-2013 03:00 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
At moment my son loves the time with me, I have 27 year old daughter i understand what you are saying. But I do boy scouts with him, Teaching him Sax, We ride motocross together, fish, and We do Rock climbing..... I hope he does not change to OOOH dad thing and too cool for daddy, but Its not his personality at MOMENT.
Wife is ok with spending more maybe (up to 60k if she LOVED IT) , but a 30+ would be a nice boat, I don't ever see us doing more than the keys(you know how that goes). so for Now lets call it a "For NOW". Ill check out the boats you suggested.
I love the idea of a 30 foot racer for me. but mamma want a potty and bed.

jimgo 05-09-2013 10:22 AM

Re: Monohull What to do
Here's an example of the Islander 28, and it's in Florida:
1977 Islander Sail Boat For Sale -

ardsranger 05-09-2013 03:55 PM

Re: Monohull What to do
The Islander Boats is a lovely lady and Hunter28.5 is nice as well. I think we will try to find a 27 to 28 footer for now. Saves a boat load of money "bad pund".
I have been thinking about the previous reply of "IT" boat , or "For Now" and the points posted are to be considered.
We may rethink this for a "For Now" with the 27 to maybe 30. and save pennies for a 34+ for a one day "IT" boat.
I like the aspect of a boat like the Island i can get a very good return on moneys when she sells.
I will continue to research the 27 to 30 boats see what pops up i have time.

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