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Hi, I have sailed small boats done a little bit of power boating but I am far from a serious sailor. A couple years ago an injury forced me into retirement. lucky for me I made okay financial decisions so I can survive. I have spent the last few years doing travel photography as a hobby, Africa, Japan, london Cuba a few times. I have always wanted to have a boat I could stay the weekends on and do some coastal sailing. Cruising the Caribbean would be great. There really is nothing stopping me. one kid in med school, #2 just graduated college and #3 has two years left to finish college. My point is I can leave for periods of time without problems. So now would be the time, my father gave me some advice the other day when I said I was thinking about doing some sailing. His advice don't wait do it now! After getting injured I have for the most part been doing just that, not waiting to do things I want to do or see.
So my long winded question is how do I go about finding the right boat? where do I find information about boats? i do not know anyone who sails seriously enough to ask. I really need to find someone who has sailed on longer trips who knows what will work and what won't. Is there anyone here that has time to answer questions and would not mind passing on some wisdom?
I have been looking thru the adds at boats, and at Marina's . So far I know I want something between 30 and 40 feet. I need to find a marina fairly close to home. is there a good book I can read ? I am not in a huge hurry my plan is to get a boat do some sailing in Montery bay... i have surfed there a bit so I am confident I can judge the weather and not get into trouble the first time out. Anyone have time to help me ?
 

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Hi David. Welcome to SailNet.

Where are you located? Google your area for sailing clubs. Join one or two (they're usually inexpensive), get on other people's boats and sail and learn. Maybe take an ASA weekend course to get you on a boat and get some instruction.

I would also suggest poking around the Learning to Sail section of this forum. Lots of newcomers' questions similar to yours. Ask questions here. Lots of experience.

If you're not in a hurry, before you buy just any 30-40 foot boat, it will be a better use of your money to learn what you do and don't want in a boat first. The only way to do that is to get on as many boasts as possible. Sailing clubs are perfect for that.

Good luck and take advantage of SailNet.
 
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Sailnet forums is an excellent resource. Go back through this thread, gear & maintenance, boat review & purchases, destination and general discussion threads and read as much as possible.

There is no teacher better than experience. So get on a boat as soon as possible and as much as possible. Charter a boat for a week or two and see what you like. Think about where you want to go, that will determine the type of boat you should buy. For example if your going to restrict yourself to the ICW a sailboat makes little sense.
 
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