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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Historically have used friends or friends of friends as crew. Have had the opportunity to have dinner or a long chat before offering crew slot so had some idea being stuck with them for days in a small boat in a big ocean would not be an issue, Would take them on at least a over night so had some idea of their skill set and they would learn the boat. Typically, even for a Bermuda race boat would end up where it started so transport issues (except for some crew exchange) were moot.
Now a days none of that holds. Still been getting by with known people through networking our cruising friends but they have their own boats and plans. The idea of paid crew is not appealing both due to expense and lack of camaraderie. Crew lists seem a crap shoot. I'm scared of going to sleep turning my boat and life over to someone I don't really know. Seems that a prior dinner and test sail is out now a days.
Wonder how other folks think about this and deal with it?
 

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It is indeed, difficult.

The best thing I can suggest, is to request a resume and then take them sailing off the coast on a 2 day/2 night shakedown trip. As far as pay goes, that's a separate discussion that a lot of people feel passionately about, and I won't address it here.

I've only ever used crew for racing, but I raced overnight so I have at least a passing familiarity with your fears.

Because I'm a new skipper with an old boat, I don't attract experienced rock stars. I cast a wide net and drew in a couple of flops along with some really good crew. I always try to give people the benefit of the doubt and work with them, so I held onto the flops far, far longer than I should have. It caused a lot of angst and bad feelings.

If I had been more dispassionate, and dispatched them sooner, it would have avoided a lot of heartache. The moral of the story is, don't hesitate to fire someone if your internal alarm bells are clamoring. It's not a Navy ship, personal dynamics matter as much as competency.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Local cruises are no issue. Problem is the big hops. Any body care offer opinions about the various crew listing services including this one?
 

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Is it at all ironic that this same individual who was espousing his "lazy and hedonistic" lifestyle aboard his very large boat in the "Sailing Big Boats" thread, is now lamenting a lack of reliable crew?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Gee Bubble-
Its the smallest boat on my finger pier
I single it sometimes but need to sleep on occasion.
It's unsafe and poor seamanship to not have some one standing watch.
I have a sense of humor and like to make fun of myself, don't think I walk on the water, am humbled nearly every day by those with greater skills or better attitudes. How about you?
 

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Gee Bubble-
Its the smallest boat on my finger pier
I single it sometimes but need to sleep on occasion.
It's unsafe and poor seamanship to not have some one standing watch.
I have a sense of humor and like to make fun of myself, don't think I walk on the water, am humbled nearly every day by those with greater skills or better attitudes. How about you?
Sure, I'm humbled all the time. I started sailing late in life and no matter how steep I make the learning curve, I'm still way behind.

I just saw the humor in the irony, that's all.
 

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Interesting point BBhead.

Good crew is hard to come by (experienced good crew is almost impossible to come by). Experienced skippers know this and that's why there's a market for paid crew. My suggestion is to find good crew, make it worth their wild. That might be free room and board, an interesting destination, paid travel expenses, or a trip without a jerk for a skipper. If you think you're picky, just imagine what it would be like if you had to listen to some rich guy on a big boat that thought he knew it all. I wouldn't sign up for that. Certainly not for free.
(I'm in no way insinuating that outbound is a jerk, I don't know him, just playing devil's advocate here).

Everyone is busy these days, do they want to spend their free time with you, or with someone else? Make it enjoyable for them. They're not your employee, remember, you're not paying them.

We've all had bad experiences trying to get good people to sail with us. It requires a pretty big commitment on both sides of wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
J- thanks of the idea but thinking differently. Did beercan/PHRF for years. Great fun but think not a very productive source for crew. Skill set is quite different. Critical issue is being able to totally turn the boat over to someone else. Issue is getting sleep or being able to fix a problem while someone else is running the boat. For example need folks who can read weather, discuss the girbs/500mb, figure out how to interpret points of closest approach in shipping lanes and dance between ships, tows, fish boats, run a boat and know when to wake me. There are a thousand things not needed to be a great buoy racer that are important to a cruiser. Need folks who will keep their head when things go bad and know how to prioritize to fix them. Need a different personality traits ( altho some beer can racers are wonderful passagemakers) - pleasant with endurance who understands all boats are small on a big ocean.
 

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I found a nutcase on Sailnet, I wonder how it will work out.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Had a boat with deck material made up of grounded up nut cases. Seem to recall they used walnuts. Believe produce was treadmaster. Never slipped and went good. Enjoy your nutcase and fair winds.
 
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