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· Bombay Explorer 44
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If are not prepared or willing to drop another $5-6k on repairs, keep looking and spend more money on another boat. After you pull her from the water, have a survey done and start fixing things you'll be into it for another $5k, easy...
 

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Teacherman,

Take this for what it's worth. We started like you 25 years ago, and now 5 boats later...we've got strong opinions on stuff...but everyone is different, so do a lot of listening to everyone.

4 of our boats were used, one we built new. One of used boats had sat on dry for a year. Boats that have had little use are often in worse shape than those used regularly. Boats need constant attention. Stuff breaks, deck fitting leak, pumps fail, hoses get old an rotten, wood dries out, through hull fittings freeze up, diesels like to run...not sit, winch lubrication dries out.....etc.

As a first used boat, I'd recommend you buy one if you can from someone who is knowledgable, proud of their boat, and sailing a lot. I'd recommend if larger boats don't meet your budget constraints, go smaller to start and find one like I'm talking about.

Our first boat we bought from friends was an old 22 Pearson. It was a blast to sail, easy to keep fixed, and the previous owners helped us out quite a bit.

If sailing becomes a lifetime passion, which I hope it does, your first boat won't be your last.

Good luck, and definitely do it! Life goes by pretty fast, and a Ferris Bueller said, "if you're not careful, you might miss it!"
 

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Farr 11.6 (Farr 38)
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"Try and find a boat pre 1973......gelcoat blisters...."
As much as I hate to contradict anyone's father's advise to their son, I am afraid that I will have to in this case. While your father is partially right, in that the worst of the blister era was between the mid-1970's through the mid to late 1980's, his advice is somewhat short sighted. Boats built as early as the 1960's can have bad blister problems as well as can have other far more serious issues with their fiberglass lay-up. There were also many boats built in the heart of the worst blister era that never had any blisters (mine for instance).

Your father's advise should be taken to mean, "Don't buy a boat with blisters." and no more than that. By limiting yourself to boats built before 1973 you are also limiting yourself to a period that produced designs which were not necessarily as good for the type of sailing that you are likely to do on the Chesapeake Bay.

At the heart of it, I suggest that you not set firm rules other than your goal should be to find a boat which began as a good design for your purposes, and which has been well maintained and upgraded. The rest becomes secondary.

Jeff
 

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Welcome to Sailnet! You have a LOT of great things going for you. Both of you enjoy sailing, you are convenient to an awesome sailing locale, and you are level-headed about the buying experience. The folks here are awesome, from helping with gear and maintenance to helping improve your sailing skills. You will never outgrow this site.
I can vouch for the number 2 item on your list. IF you can get that pedestal apart enough to get the cable out (which I could not), you should be able to order a new one. I ended up getting a mechanic.
If you are serious about the boat, a lot of folks on here would advise a survey with the offer. Any problems that turn up can be used to haggle the price down, or if a serious problem is found you can walk away from the deal. Surveys are also often necessary for insurance purposes, although Progressive didn't require one from me.
Here is another link for more Catalina 30 info: International Catalina 30 Association The Catalina 30 is mansion-sized compared to my boat. Plenty of room on deck to go forward, and plenty of room below.
I agree with your point that waiting to Spring might be a good idea. That is 5 or 6 less months of slip rental to account for.
Good luck with your search, and enjoy the entire process. The pressure is on the seller, not you.
 
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