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Old 23-04-2009, 20:41   #16
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Update...

Thanks for everyone's opinions and suggestions. Its been very helpful. I'm now talking to brokers. I think the buy-sell plan is the only one that flies.
I've found a couple of nice Catalina built S&S 38's in the price range. This is a very popular design back here in Aus - or at least it was in the 80's. A nice boat to sail, although the interior fit outs are probably not the best.
At 6'9" draft I'm a bit concerned about the ICW, what does anyone think about this? Also will this be too prohibitive for the Bahamas?

I know the 'which boat' thing is problematic, but I'm putting the following boats out of contention given my research, not so much on quality as for 3 months this isn't really a big problem, but on the basis of not being great to sail: Irvin, Morgan, Gulfstar.

As usual all comments gladly accepted.
thanks
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Old 23-04-2009, 21:20   #17
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Draft of 6'9" will definitely limit you in the Bahamas, and it may be a problem in some sections of the ICW as well.
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Old 23-04-2009, 21:33   #18
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Strange plan, but so what..?

I know a pretty roomy 32 foot boat you can guy for around $20,000.
Sail it and sell it for almost the same and you are ahead of the game.

I inspected this boat myself and found it well equipped and in fairly good shape, just in need of some TLC.

Here is a link:

32
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Old 24-04-2009, 04:38   #19
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Don't spend time in the "south" in the summer. Try to start your cruise as far north as you can. More to see, better weather, and sailing. Forget motoring up the ditch. It's a bad idea an enormous waste of time.

Even the Chesapeake is very steamy hot in the summer. If you buy in FL consider trucking the boat to a yard up north and starting there.
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Old 24-04-2009, 05:36   #20
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Strange plan, but so what..?
OK! This is what I need.

The constraints are: July to Sept, two adults, two kids, east coast US. Budget $15k in differential between buy and sell, including buying costs, not including travel etc. Have to be in NYC at some point. My wife likes to swim, I don't want to scare her. I'd like it at the end of 3 months if she was up for buying something bigger and doing some more cruising.

What would you do? Please give me any opinions - there's no wrong answer here.

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James
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Old 24-04-2009, 06:25   #21
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I would find a broker and tell him you want to buy and sell the boat for the 15K difference. It might not matter HOW big the boat is if he can agree to the "deal". of course there is no guaranty that he could resell at the end of 3 months for the 15K differential, BUT it would seem that this may in fact be the case, especially if the boat is returned for sale in the same or better shape then when you bought her.

If swimming is part of the deal, ME is not advisable as the water is too cold for swimming. The water in Southern NE are from the Cape down through the Chesapeake.

There's lots of great sailing from NYC to the Cape and the Elizabeth Islands. You could spend 3 months here and not see half. And lots of great sailing, tourist sights, beaches, harbors and so forth. The destinations can be as close as a few miles apart or you can do sails of 100 or so and even a taste of offshore if you pop in to the popular Block Island.

I suggest you find a broker who would accept the deal and get a cruising guide from NYC to Nantucket and see if it appeals to you.

Narrow your goals.
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Old 24-04-2009, 12:20   #22
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<snip>
Narrow your goals.
With those three words, defjef has offered you the best advice so far, tackdriver.

From your posts I gather that you intend to fly your family from Australia to the US at the hottest time of year, find and buy a deep-draft vessel in Florida, hop over the Gulf Stream and cruise the Bahamas for awhile, return to Florida, head north up the ICW, cruise the Chesapeake, continue north to NYC for some planned appointment, continue north to New England for the best cruising during the hottest months of the year, do all that in three months and all with the hope and expectation that this whirlwind adventure is going to convince your wife that cruising is such a tranquil, endless holiday that it would then make sense to take a $15k beating on a vessel you've owned for less than three months in order to buy an even bigger, more expensive vessel so that the family could spend the rest of their lives re-living an endless succession of days just like the previous three months. Do I have that about right?

Well then, good luck with that.

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Old 24-04-2009, 23:00   #23
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Do I have that about right?
Ha Ha. As a friend of mine says - "I resemble that accusation".

Yes, which is why I'm trying to pry loose some insight from you guys! I am given to overblowing things - although not all together unsuccessfully in the past.

Dropping $15k on the deal is not a big issue, if I get the planning right, and the family enjoy themselves, then I expect to have more time on my hands and so I'll be able to do the upgrade at my leisure, and should be able to minimise the changeover costs, so the 15k is (I hope) a worst case scenario, and no more expensive than hotels and transport for 3 months.

I'm thinking the Bahamas is just too hard at this point. I like the huge range of boats in Florida, so unless I get one from left field further North, I'm likely to start there. I may start with a sailing buddy before the family arrives and get somewhere north first, a couple of mates who have good experience have shown interest.

Also my wife loves to swim, so although Maine looks great, I've checked the sea temp up there and its worse than here. I think the main thing is flat water. The wife and kids are not going to be up for any rough stuff at least for the first month, so that's why I've been talking about taking the ditch - plenty of things to see, places to stop and no waves.

I think a sense of travel is going to engage the new 'crew', and if we were just poking around one cruising ground they would get bored. Actually I know this for a fact, as we've been sailing together in the Whitsunday's here in Aus and in the Gulf of Thailand. They were OK with the style of living, but didn't get the 'messing around in boats' part. I think that takes a little while.
The higher-level agenda is on the table, we have discussed that I want to stay doing it longer. I just don't want to be one of those people with the big blue water boat, all kitted out and up for sale because the wife can't stand it.

Another mate of mine with a big FP cat asked when I told him of this plan 'But you want them to get off, don't you?'

Anyway keep the brickbats coming! Its exactly what I need.
cheers
James
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Old 25-04-2009, 02:29   #24
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I am curious, who and how many are advising you to spend a month motoring up the ditch? That's not sailing... that's motoring and you can barely use the autopilot in much of it so you are tied to the helm. Not a great idea. Have I said that before?

Right now boats are not selling anywhere so FL is less attractive as a place to buy. There are loads of boats in the Chesapeake and that might be a good place to start.

If you are being "creative" find a nice comfy yacht that's been on the market and offer the seller a deal to but it and sell it back for 15K less or something like that. If he's insured to "bareboat charter" his boat he might just use it to make some income rather than have it sit there depreciating with only the odd person making a very low offer. Otherwise you have to buy and get insured and then sell back. Kind of messy, but legally cleaner perhaps. Spring is the best time to sell a boat so by mid summer the above "deal" may seem attractive. Go for something with large comfy cockpit, bimini top and an aft cabin and of course autopilot.

The bit from the Chesapeake to LIS involves passing NJ offshore which can be anything from flat calm right through nasty, but there's really no place to duck in.

You won't find consistant flat water in any place where you can actually sail, ie there is some fetch. But unless it's been blowing over 20 for days on end the seas are manageable by any well found yacht.

Concentrate the 3 months in a good crusing area like Chesapeake of LIS to Nantucket. So much to see, and great sailing and lots of harbors to duck into. Prevailing winds of SW so crusing in a eastward direction is usually an easy and pleasant down wind sail. You will get some easterlies and if you do you can go west on them! Also lots of current to deal with.
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Old 14-05-2009, 01:47   #25
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Update..

Hi all, just a quick update. I've located the boat and its currently being surveyed. I won't say what, where or how much until the deal's complete - I'm superstitious.

The plan is now to go from Florida to LIS in a delivery cruise with some buddies, and then meet the family there and spend 1-2 months around the north before heading back down. Not sure how far we'll get, or really how the plan ends. Probably with me putting the boat up for sale back down in FL around the end of the year.

Thanks to all your advice, particularly Skipmac who put me onto a great surveyor.

cheers
James
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Old 14-05-2009, 04:01   #26
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Good luck. Give me a shout when you pass through the end of LIS. I'd like to hear how the delivery went.
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Old 20-05-2009, 19:37   #27
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Need everyone to send positive waves!

The survey is tomorrow... think positive thoughts for me!
cheers
James
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Old 20-05-2009, 21:18   #28
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Just a thought, but you might want to look at the for sale ads, and contact some of the larger brokers, and say "Look, I want to LEASE a sailboat for three months and am willing to pay $15k for it. If you have someone who really doesn't want to sell but needs some money...let's talk it over."

You could probably work out a lease, or a buy-back arrangement, where you buy the boat for $15K with a balloon note due at 90 days. Either you pay the full price or return the boat at that time, and while you've got it--you might be the legal owner and carry your own insurance, with the lessor made out as the loss payee, so they've got no worries even if you lose the boat.

A little creativity can go a long way in the current market.
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Old 21-05-2009, 20:51   #29
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Survey went well, on the home straight.

hellosailor,
the suggestion is a good one - I did some early poking around in that direction, but without being on the ground, it was a hard thing to put that deal together. In the end I chose to buy as all the parties were used to that transaction and the only odd part was me being in Australia.

On the bright side... the survey is done! There's nothing fatally wrong with the boat, just the usual mile long list of stuff to-do and replace.

I've now got 5 people who want to come on the delivery.

So the plan seems to be coming together.

cheers
James
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Old 12-06-2009, 06:44   #30
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About to blink off the air

Hey all,
I'm about to blink off the air for a bit. On Monday morning I'm going to climb onto a big A380 and fly to Florida to pick up 'The Office' from Key Largo. My delivery crew of two arrive a couple of days later. There are still a few loose ends but I've got most of the issues sorted out. I bought the Australian Red Ensign this morning, and that's about the last thing I'll buy here.

I would like to say that I've found this forum incredibly helpful through the process. I haven't been posting much since I found the Google site search. Most of my questions have been dealt with in the past.

The whole experience was made possible by the lead to a decent surveyor from Skipmac very early in the piece. I will also recommend him to anyone who PM's me. He is a terrific bloke, a fountain of knowledge (even if he is a little laconic), and as straight as a die.

I've cut down the ambitious nature of the itinerary, as per your collective recommendations, the only silly bit is the first leg from FL to LIS, but I should be pretty familiar with all the systems by the end of that.

I have also set up a blog - the company I sold was in web development, and it will be obvious I was commercial and not creative! Anyway its here if anyone is interested: The Office ‎(sailing)‎

Lets pray for 15kt southerlies for the next 3 weeks! I hope to bump into some of you along the way.

cheers
James
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