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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Update

Well, nothing has happened in the way of the "big boat." I did, however, get my hands on a old Laser and have been having a blast with that. It's getting me hooked into the sailing scene here in NC, and I don't need to talk one of my less-than-enthusiastic teens into crewing in order to go out.

I figured if I can't get a big boat for a couple more years any way, I might as well get one I can sail on the lakes nearby. Truth is though, I am an open-water sailor and have been VERY frustrated on the little puddles -- as I like to call the lakes around here. So, I trailered the Laser out to the coast last weekend. Went to New Bern, Oriental and Beaufort this past weekend. Had lots of BIG wind and FUN, got beat up out there and met some fellow Laser and big boat sailors in Oriental, which was by far my favorite place to put in.

I also took a systems maintenence calss through the local power squadron, which was helpful.

As far as the decision-making process on the big boats goes, I have time and have been looking at other models like Tartans and Bristols. I like the classic lines and reputation of these -- and I might be able to afford an older one. I will look at the Dehler as suggested.

Hey, has anyone really started a singles sailnet site? I'd rather not be a single hander if I can help it. :) Any other reluctant single handers out there?

Susan
 

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Susan-

Welcome back to Sailnet. Glad to hear you've gotten a boat, even a little Laser is better than being boatless. Keep us posted on your plans and when you're ready to purchase, we'll give you whatever advice we can.

SD.
 

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Yes, my good friend SD contributes more than anyone on this board and always (well almost always) has good ideas. Just write the question on a bone and throw it out there and he will bring you back an answer. Sailing dog is a retreiver for sure.
pigslo
 

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Susan:

I remember you thread from last yer, as it was about the time that I too decided to explore the possibility of voyaging. I too have 2 children - I guess the same age as your, as my youngest started high school this past fall.

I had not had any experience in reall sailing prior to that time, and have very little now - a bit of crewing in a race series here, and I do own a bluejay. I too have taken advantage of the power squadron's courses and research as much on the web as I can.

My plan is to be in a poistion to go when my youngest goes to college, and I certainly believe that I can get there. I am pretty handy, self-sufficient and I have a great desire particularly to explore other cultures. So much about the voyaging lifestyle appeals to me that I cannot imagine this not coming to realization for me.

Anyway, I just thought that you could use the encouragement. I too am in the boat of being a singlehander.

Rick
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
Hi Susan, I am just down the road from you... in Raleigh. I will be buying my first boat this winter/spring. I am a complete newbie, I will be taking my first lessons in a few weeks actually.

I will be starting out with a small boat, a 22'-26' probably, sailing it a few years and then moving up to a bigger boat. I am sure I would love to have someone experienced to sail with me just to point out how many mistakes I am making!! :confused: So, if you are interested..... shoot me a line sometime between now and then!
 

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Susan - As I suggested the Ontario 32, I can also offer you an up close look at one anytime over the next few weeks. Including a sail, if you would like. I'm currently at Belhaven, but will be coming back to the Oriental area sometime next week for some work at Deatons the week of the 23rd. If you'd care to have a look and/or sail, just let me know.
 

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Starter boat vs final boat

Hats off to you Susan. I wish I could get my daughters as interested in sailing as you are.

Since you've been out of the sailing scene for a while my suggestion would be to start smaller and use this smaller boat as an assessment tool for your final choice.

I've owned a Morgan 30//2 since 1979 and like it but if I could rewind I should have bought a Catalina. A Catalina 30 would have been a good choice for a couple of reasons.

1. There's a lot of them around so picking up a used one would be easy.
2. They still are very popular and the company is still in business, getting replacement parts should be reasonable.
3. THey are good sailing boat and with the right equipment decent racers. Our local across Lake Michigan race (Queen's Cup www.ssyc.org) was won some years ago by a Catalina 30 (Rag Doll). I believe that the shortest boat to ever win...most of the winners have been 40'+ in length.
4. With a lot of them around there are a lot of information sources avaiable via the owners and you know all sailors are helpful.
5. Because they are popular, resale is easier.

If I had to pick one for you to start with I would recommend a 27' or 30' Catalina.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 ·
I know some local folks that are racing Lasers (low key unnoficial races) at Jordan. PM if you want more info...

Well, nothing has happened in the way of the "big boat." I did, however, get my hands on a old Laser and have been having a blast with that. It's getting me hooked into the sailing scene here in NC, and I don't need to talk one of my less-than-enthusiastic teens into crewing in order to go out.

I figured if I can't get a big boat for a couple more years any way, I might as well get one I can sail on the lakes nearby. Truth is though, I am an open-water sailor and have been VERY frustrated on the little puddles -- as I like to call the lakes around here. So, I trailered the Laser out to the coast last weekend. Went to New Bern, Oriental and Beaufort this past weekend. Had lots of BIG wind and FUN, got beat up out there and met some fellow Laser and big boat sailors in Oriental, which was by far my favorite place to put in.

I also took a systems maintenence calss through the local power squadron, which was helpful.

As far as the decision-making process on the big boats goes, I have time and have been looking at other models like Tartans and Bristols. I like the classic lines and reputation of these -- and I might be able to afford an older one. I will look at the Dehler as suggested.

Hey, has anyone really started a singles sailnet site? I'd rather not be a single hander if I can help it. :) Any other reluctant single handers out there?

Susan
 

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Good to see you sticking with the dream. If you like open water, as in coastal salty open water, I would recommend a different boat than if you wished to go offshore. If you want to voyage...I'd have one range of suggestions, but if you wish to merely club race or weekend gunkhole or even liveaboard, I'd have others.

PBZeer's suggestion of an Ontario 32 is one of the few boats I would recommend that is good for all of the above for a single-hander. I personally think that 32-33 feet is around the sweet spot for single-handing, because it's big enough to take the real sea, but small enough to work without getting hurt or overwhelmed. A Niagara 35 is good, but they can get pricey because Canadians are huge fans of them and our dollar parity now means we can scoop up American-owned boats at lower-than-local prices.

A Bristol or a Pearson or a Tartan are all good choices for coastal, up to "rough, near-gale coastal". But if you are going offshore, check out the Contessa 32 or even the dreaded Westsail 32...dreaded because they are frankly pokey boats in light air, but they are very difficult to kill (see "A Perfect Storm"...the real story!) and they are "get you home" boats.
 

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Okay. I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. My daughter is a senior in H.S. and my son just started. That means only 4 years left of having to live in the high-rent (good school) district. Which leads me to my next address: boat.

I have a good bit of sailing experience (though admittedly I am a bit rusty). I sailed before I walked, cruised New England each summer on my parents' boats (Allied Luders 33 sloop and Frank Kinney Pipe Dream 37 sloop) and did the whole dinghy racing curcuit thing on Blue Jays, Fire Balls, Lightnings, etc.

That was then This is now: I haven't sailed in the past ten or so years and never really had experience skippering or maintaining a larger boat. I am currently taking Power Squadron courses to get beck into the swing of things, brush up pn navigation and learn about boat systems and am researching which boats would make good coastal and possibly off-shore cruisers.

Here are some of my requirements:
-I have to be able to single hand it.
-I don't have a ton of money to spend.
-I want a good, solid boat that can see me through a storm.

Here are some boats I am considering:
Allied Luders 33
Niagara 35
Rival 34
Sabre 34
Wauquiez Pretorian 35
Dickerson 37

Any thoughts, tips, suggestions?

-Susan
Hmm, you really want a boat that large for single handing? I have a beautiful Islander 36 that I am selling precisely because it is difficult to single hand- unless I am to put in a lot of $$ to set her up for single handing. I am choosing a heavier small cruiser in the 20' range.

Regards,
Heidi
 

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Hmm, you really want a boat that large for single handing? I have a beautiful Islander 36 that I am selling precisely because it is difficult to single hand- unless I am to put in a lot of $$ to set her up for single handing. I am choosing a heavier small cruiser in the 20' range.

Regards,
Heidi
If you take a peek at the date on the posts, you will see that the OP hasn't been here in 4 years.

It would be interesting to know if she ever followed through.
 

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Peoples perception of what size sailboat can be efficiently sailed by ones self really differs a lot.

I now sail a 38' by myself and don't find it at all difficult, but according to some folks its way to big.

Ain't individuality grand?
 

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Heidi, really? Sad you have to sell her. Seems to me you can single hand her if you have some logically applied skills that will offset the need for muscle.
 

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I've been following this thread because I too plan to move up from my 25 footer someday and will be looking for all the boat I can handle alone.

What I don't understand is, just what in particular is so strenuous that it would be the determining factor, or breaking point? Is it the winching of the jibs? Because I have never used my winch handles for mine (granted my boats not large). I do winch the halyards up hard with a handle, but the head sails I prefer to luff and after taking in what I want quickly by hand (with a few turns around the winch), I veer off to refill them. If I'm beating to windward, I just tuck the jib inside the stanchions and steer to trim, getting me as close to the wind as possible. The only reason I can think of to winch in a full sail, would be to be able to stay on course, while someone else is at the helm. But it's a matter of seconds to steer into the wind and back, so it really doesn't slow me down much at all. There must be something I'm missing here.

I love the idea of a yawl or ketch set up for a larger boat, keeping the sails smaller and allowing so much balance control. Of course in that case, I would have to do the "handleless" winching twice! Maybe at that point self steering would be a better option?
 

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It's more about timing with the head sail Charlie, but you will need winches on a larger boat. Pulling on the jib sheets is a quick way to get tired and sore. (this I know)
Raising the main on my boat isn't that difficult but I have a LARGE turning block at the mast base which seems to help.. small wheeled blocks really add effort instead of reducing it (imho)

A wheel or tiller lock is a big help! auto pilot is a real big plus too!
 

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"Pulling on the jib sheets is a quick way to get tired and sore."

Even when luffing?

Now the tiller lock idea I like and I should get that going next year. But what would you say is the main reason a boat would be too large to single hand? That's the part I just can't get my head around. I've often thought anything over forty feet would be too much, but why? If I could handle a forty footer, why not a forty five? I know eventually the sail size alone would be overwhelming, but I just don't know how to figure the breaking point.
 

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A 32 I can manhandle, like if the main and boom are disagreeing with me and they want to go port while I want them to go starboard while we're flaking the sail and a gust zips it off.

A 36 or 38....I'd have to be faster and smarter than the boat, because I'm just not strong enough to use brute force on it anymore. Sometimes, sure, but sometimes, not. Wouldn't stop me from taking one out if that's what I wanted to do, but sometimes you just want to know that if all else fails, you can pick the damn thing up and carry it home.

Rigging, cockpit layout, balance, reliable engine, all would affect the choice. Kinda reminds me of punching out the horse in "Blazing Saddles" though.<G>
 

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The loads are higher on everything, that's the limiting factor. I went from 26' to 38' and there is no throwing the boom over on a jibe, or NOT using winches on jib sheets anymore.

Not letting the boat get ahead of you is key. Having a good rigging layout is another, as is an autopilot or lashing the tiller if you must. It IS a tad different but you can definitely compensate if you do it on a mid twenties boat. There's a learning curve, but not to bad.

I'm not sure what the ultimate barrier limiting factor is or would be. I guess if you had the money just about anything is possible.


John
 
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