Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Narragansett Bay
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Re: What are the main obstacles to going offshore and living the cruising life?
Out, for declaring poor mechanical skills, you list welding, furniture building, carburetor rebuild, etc. I think you certainly have ample mechanical cruiser mind and skill set. I donít think one needs to be fully certified in mechanicals, but needs a basic mechanical understanding and, more importantly, the intellectual curiosity and ingenuity to figure out problems. Otherwise, one needs to stay within towing distance. Most are always within towing distance, but long term cruisers generally need to be more self sufficient. I went to school to learn to protect the country from communists, fly airplanes and then business school. I just R&R my turbo, exhaust and intercooler. I did none of those as a kid, but I did learn the confidence to figure it out, by handing my Dad tools, as a kid. It just seemed like something one did, not scary. Next gen is handicapped, by the increased service culture. Seems no one ever changes the oil in their own car anymore, let alone brakes, exhaust, greasing joints, batteries, distributors, points, etc.
I have a friend who sold his boat, because he got so frustrated that he always had to wait for someone else to fix it, let alone the standard experience of poor or ineffective yard work. He could afford the labor, but everything stood in his way. A stinkpot neighbor, at the marina, has his boat for sale now. He talks around the point, but essentially doesnít have the skills to even recognize that something is wrong. He trashed one motor and both transmissions, over two seasons. Neither needed to happen.
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In the harsh marine environment, something is always in need of repair. Margaritas fix everything.