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Old 04-04-2007, 14:48   #1
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In over my head

I would just like to come out and say that I have officially become that guy that bought the fixer upper and thought it would be fun to learn to fix boats but now am endlessly frustrated at the long list of jobs that doesn't seem to be getting any shorter. I am two days into the sailing season in the Northeast and it doesn't look like my little project will be taking flight for some time. The next boat I buy will be ready to sail before the check clears.
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Old 04-04-2007, 14:57   #2
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The next boat I buy will be ready to sail before the check clears.
Nice idea but very few come that way. New boats come with different problems you don't know yet and older boats come with all those plus the ones you do know about. Having a list down to "no items" is more of a state of mind, instantaneous point in time, or an imaginary idea.

If you have a boat you always have a list to work now or a list you thought you just finished. The list items are always there just not always discovered and written down.
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Old 04-04-2007, 14:59   #3
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Unbusted - Don't lose heart - we've all been where you are and some of us still are - like me - but if we dcan help with advice or reassurance, maybe your 'little' project boat will be sailable sooner - " Use The Force" at Cruisers Forum - Real Answers
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Old 04-04-2007, 17:06   #4
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Thanks guys. I'll get right to it just as soon as I can shovel the newly fallen snow from my cockpit. and cut a hole in the seat to drain the foam and sludge from the closed off compartment, and buy all new rigging and fix the lights on the trailer...
and...
and...
and...
and...
and...
and...
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Old 04-04-2007, 17:11   #5
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Originally Posted by unbusted67
........I am two days into the sailing season in the Northeast ........
Two days into what sailing season. I hear the sleet bouncing off my windows as I write this. I can't believe that it is sunny and balmy enough for sailing on the Vinyard. I think the sailing season on the Cape starts on July 4th and ends on July 30th .......... then again, it may not be that long.
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Old 04-04-2007, 17:56   #6
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Welcome to the club. I couldn't begin to count the the number of times I've said no masyet prevailed in the end. Stick to it. Experience will be worth the effort.

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Old 04-04-2007, 18:07   #7
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I'll get right to it just as soon as I can shovel the newly fallen snow from my cockpit.
They never promised it would be easy! Snow in the cockpit is going above and beyond. You get extra credit for that!
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Old 04-04-2007, 19:03   #8
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Don't get discouraged

Unbusted:

I have to echo everyone else's posts. There aren't any boats that don't come without a list. Plus, the lists are usually several pages long on every boat. I have had a lot of time to complete my lists. I thought I was all done last week (except the seasonal waxing, buffing, changing zincs, etc...) when I found out my anchor light housing was missing and the light was no longer functional. Missing! Gone! So it was time to buy a bosun's chair for that, etc...

Point is... you will always have a list. Just don't look at it as a list you need to finish. Prioritize. Put the ones that are absolutely essential to your safety at the top, the "nice to haves" in another category, and the "maybe I should do this" ones at the end. This way you are looking at a much smaller list and won't get so discouraged.

I mean for one: Do you really need to replace all the rigging this year? Are there parts you can replace and other parts you can do next season?

Anyway, if you want to hear bad news... I bought the boat we have now a couple years ago. Last winter I put something like $23K into a massive refit and everything is just about perfect. (Lists are complete other than routine stuff and missing anchor light) This is no small feat and took me working FULL TIME on the boat for 9 months.

Well guess what? We still can't afford our loan AND to go cruising, so i have to give this boat up. We've been around it again and again... flip flopping back and forth.. saying "if we work very hard...", but the reality is I have to choose between a boat I have finished all the projects on and being able to go cruising. That's pretty rough, since the boats we can afford to buy in cash are in the $30K and under (WAY under) range. Guess how long my new lists are going to be??

It can't be any worse than that, can it?
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Old 04-04-2007, 20:06   #9
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Regarding snow, (slightly OT)

After an overnight snowfall at anchor, we sailed off the hook. As we approached the shoreline, I called for a tack and almost immediately after that I really hollered for an ICEPICK! I couldn't insert the winch handle in the winch socket until I chipped out the ice.

The wind was light enough for me to sheet the genoa on the opposite winch before running aground.

Whew!

Steve B.
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Old 04-04-2007, 22:25   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by senormechanico
Regarding snow, (slightly OT)

After an overnight snowfall at anchor, we sailed off the hook. As we approached the shoreline, I called for a tack and almost immediately after that I really hollered for an ICEPICK! I couldn't insert the winch handle in the winch socket until I chipped out the ice.

The wind was light enough for me to sheet the genoa on the opposite winch before running aground.

Whew!

Steve B.

BRRRRrrrrRRrRrRRRR - That is WAY too damn cold!!!!
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Old 04-04-2007, 23:23   #11
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Originally Posted by ssullivan
Unbusted:


Anyway, if you want to hear bad news... I bought the boat we have now a couple years ago. Last winter I put something like $23K into a massive refit and everything is just about perfect. (Lists are complete other than routine stuff and missing anchor light) This is no small feat and took me working FULL TIME on the boat for 9 months.

Well guess what? We still can't afford our loan AND to go cruising, so i have to give this boat up. We've been around it again and again... flip flopping back and forth.. saying "if we work very hard...", but the reality is I have to choose between a boat I have finished all the projects on and being able to go cruising. That's pretty rough, since the boats we can afford to buy in cash are in the $30K and under (WAY under) range. Guess how long my new lists are going to be??

It can't be any worse than that, can it?
No it can not be any worse than that. You are breaking my heart man. I'm sorry to hear about your situation. What's worse is that I am sure you are not the only person on this forum that is facing a similar conundrum.
It is too bad that a medium like sailing that can facilitate so much freedom is in the end so financially binding.
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Old 04-04-2007, 23:29   #12
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Originally Posted by Jentine
Two days into what sailing season. I hear the sleet bouncing off my windows as I write this. I can't believe that it is sunny and balmy enough for sailing on the Vinyard. I think the sailing season on the Cape starts on July 4th and ends on July 30th .......... then again, it may not be that long.
I think you are referring to the maine sailing season. Regardless it was the same sleet and snow that drove me inside from working on my boat to post this thread. I did hear it was 50 on the vineyard today but I too am in Boston.

I can basically walk a block and jelously watch the college students row and sail on the Charles. Jerks.

I'll stop complaining now I am just excited to get out on the water...and also a little embarrassed at having bought a bit of a lemon. Come May though I'll be makin' friggin' lemonade though.
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Old 05-04-2007, 03:51   #13
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We purchased a beautiful clipper bowed ketch, 30 years old with many many many things to complete. New engine, wiring, deck work, etc etc. We completed the things we had to to get her in the water, finally got her in the water after 2 years last Oct. and pulled her in Nov! This year we are only doing what has to be complete to get her in the water again, we are hoping for mid June. Hull painted, bob stay work, new sail track and ladder to get on and off at the mooring. Once she is in the water the work we have to do does not seem so bad, we can still take her out overnight, the main thing is we are on the water. We just keep plugging along, I believe it will be a never ending project....But one day soon we will have enough completed that we can go on our dream cruise, but without a doubt there will always be work to do, even on our cruise. bottom line for us, I would not have done it any other way, I like knowing every little thing about the boat. Have fun and fair winds...
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Old 05-04-2007, 06:35   #14
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Unbusted - good to read you are moving forward with a good attitude - good luck.

Sean - really sorry to hear your plight mate - I know that it's because of business problems that were out of your control but at least you will get a top dollar for your existing boat and I'm sure you will work out your future cruising plans successfully.

I think that sometimes we are prone to making things as perfect and 'bristol' as much as possible on our boats that we trade intended sailing time for refurbishing time. I have done this all my life. Only sailed three times last year but got alot done on the boat. Some of it could have waited till she was hauled out and I would have spent more time sailing. Now I am of the opinion and this year the practise of doing the necessary items for launching her, upgrading as much as possible before launch and then completing other items with her in the water - or not. I also moved her to a marina that is over an hour drive away instead of 10 minutes - that way we commit on Friday night to go for the weekend instead of having to do household or land based items related to other things beside sailing. We are telling our friends that for the summer, sailing is the priority and if they want to visit they will have to come down to the boat. This way, we will enjoy as much sailing as possible which is what it's all about - isn't it.

For you southern sailors and live aboard cruisers, you get to keep your boat in most of the year if not several years in a row before hauling for maintenance - I'm jealous but you have other conditions to deal with that I don't - hurricanes, lack of parts in foreign ports, corrupt officials, etc.

So my philosophy is now enjoy sailing whenever and wherever you can, don't be a slave to working on the boat and enjoy each day as best you can - you never know how many you have got left.
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Old 05-04-2007, 08:35   #15
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The definition of cruising is:

"Working on your boat in exotic locales."

Getting it going long enough to get to an exotic locale is the trick. Hang in there.

Others have said there are no boats that don't need work but it sounds like you bought a project boat instead of one "ready to sail." While many people do project boats or even build their own from scratch I think you are wise to go with a so called ready to sail next time. It worked for us.

George
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