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Old 26-03-2010, 12:37   #16
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Do it....but do it safe!! Dont push it when you are gonna be on prob not the best boat.

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Old 26-03-2010, 12:55   #17
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I think the "just get out there!" thing is a little played out to be honest. You should "just get out there!" when the boat and the sailor(s) are ready to do so. You need to ask yourself if you feel comfortable. Someone that doesn't have enough experience to take a vessel to sea, or to take a vessel poorly suited for the journey, are both foolish and increase your chances of having a very serious problem.

The price of the boat is somewhat besides the point; my neighbor bought a boat for $80K and the keel fell off when he hauled it out of the water six months later, so there's nothing saying that spending more promises you more security, although it can.

Likewise there is really no way you'll become a great sailor until you go cruising. Your plan of hitting up the Channel Islands is a good one, as you'll increase your experience and specifically your experience with your particular boat, which a lot of people over look.

Hopping in a VW Bus and driving across the country when you're 19 is the sort of thing you should "just get out there!" and go do, because the risks are pretty minimal. Hopping on a sailboat to cross an ocean (and investing $5K-$15K to do so) is a much different affair, and honestly one that can cost you your life. You won't die quickly either. It will be cold, lonely, and utterly horrible.

Honestly I think you can do it, but I'd spend more time on your boat first. You want to know sailing (and your boat) like the back of your hand. I got a nice little 1978 Ericson 32' for ~10K or so (two boats ago in 2000 or so), and that would have been great for such a trip.

If you can pick something up over the spring, and then sail the entire summer, you could leave with the Baja-Haha guys and headed down to PV in October.

And in regards to some of the other comments I've read on here (from someone who has earned a distinguished place on my ignore list now), waiting a little bit isn't the end of the world. My wife and I started with a 6 year plan, which is now a 3 year plan, and closing rapidly. Pretty much everything has gone accordingly, and we've done some things (like dropping our mast and rerigging) that has not only corrected problems that would have dismasted us (that we didn't even know about), but it also increased our confidence as sailors because we know our ship that much better now.

Furthermore we have a child on the way, and can't wait to explore the world and let our daughter have a childhood that we could only have dreamed for.

Sincerely, good luck. Sailing is all about studying your options and making your decision. Good sailors make good decisions armed with the same information that bad sailors have that make bad decisions.

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Old 26-03-2010, 13:52   #18
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Originally Posted by jbosborn View Post
Everyone's thoughts and ideas...
I see only 2 problems with your plan. Insufficient money and experiance..........but you already knew that . One or the other would be very useful.

On paper / in theory probably possible with a large dollop of good fortune and the sea gods smiling on you..........but in practice I think more likely that you will eat your $15k budget up long before arriving in distant shores - indeed if you buy badly (optimistically) could quite easily have the budget dissapear before setting sail on the big adventure.

Having said that..............

..........if you drop the trans ocean / RTW ambition and instead aim for an extended cruise within a single area where the voyaging can mostly consist of day or weekend sails and fairly predictable weather then IMO more doable (how long will depend on your lifestyle and a degree of luck on unforseen expenses).

The slight fly in the ointment I guess may be your current location - but no reason why you can't start your voyage by jumbo jet

Indeed, why not stay in your local area for your entire voyage? - you will still have the opportunity to learn as much as anywhere else depending on what you choose to do, with the advantage of having resources ashore in an environment you understand with freinds / family to call on if / when things break or you simply want a hot bath Possibly sounds a bit dull / tame for a "great adventure", but remember that wherever your home is in the world likely that someone has struggled to sail half way around the world to get there - for me sailing to (or simply in) the west coast of California would be regarded as exotic and challenging. and Kool

But returning to the Jumbo Jet theme why not head to Europe? for a really cheap extended boat based vacation go up the mainland european canals - big plus is that the boat doesn't need to be seaworthy - which equals cheaper, especially if you are prepared to rough it in less than perfection.........and going inland means you get to see the "real" countries not simply the more touristy bits on the coast. Lingo is it's own challenge, but immersion a great way to learn. or pointing at things

Alternatively, why not buy a small yacht in Europe that could (with the right mods and with experiance) sail back to the states (either then keep stored ashore on the east coast for your next adventure - down to the Carribean? or truck accross to California - no rules that a RTW can't also be by road , indeed a few folk have done that).........I am thinking something both cheap enuf and fundamentally sound / desirable that could instead be easily sold in Europe (we've got Ebay too!) if you don't fancy a sail home or simply decide not to spend the money on her to do so.........wouldn't bet on getting all your money back, but with a $5k or so boat losing 50% ain't a complete disaster if you've got your moneys worth from her in the meantime.

The sort of thing I am thinking of is one of these:-

Boat Register « The Unified Corribee Website

I used to have one - at 21 foot ain't gonna be spacious but a well eqiupped one in good order with an experianced skipper will go many places. Someone around here even has one for sale in Portugal - he might even throw in a couple of lessons if you cross his palm with enough beer

Alternatively, you could do what I did for my burnout time - spent pretty much that money on a grand tour of the bars and knocking shops (just looking ) of South East Asia for a year or so. I could have instead spent the money on a boat. Glad I didn't

But the good news is that you can always prove folk (me ) wrong - and I would be happy if you did.........just would be a shame to let $15k slip through your fingers unneccesarily without acheiving the goal from over enthusiasm / optimism.
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Old 26-03-2010, 14:13   #19
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You know if you don't like any of the answers to "doing it", you probably didn't want options anyway. So if you want to do it, just do so! If you want to ask about it, well...
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Old 26-03-2010, 14:41   #20
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Originally Posted by jbosborn View Post
The main goal is to cruise for a year on $15k (including boat purchase). If I circumnavigate the globe, that is icing on the cake (very appetizing icing).
Can it be done? With some luck, sure. And it would be really cool to be able to say "I sailed around the world." But, I think you need to think a little more about whether you just want to do something really cool or have fun doing it. They’re not necessarily mutually exclusive, and it kind of depends on your idea of fun, but most people wouldn’t find long solo ocean passages to be much fun - they tend to be either safe and boring or dangerous and exciting. It’s one thing if the goal is to go places and spend some time in them, but that kind of leisurely circumnavigation usually takes 3 or 4 years. To do it it one year, you would have to spend most of your time at sea. Probably, it’s not quite as cool to just be able to say "I lived on a sailboat and sailed around the Bahamas for year." But, it’s still pretty cool; it doesn’t require much of a boat; and it’s probably a lot more fun.
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Old 26-03-2010, 14:43   #21
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Old 26-03-2010, 15:00   #22
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Here are a couple of links to a fellow who was much like you. A young teacher from Southern California. His name is Greg Tieman. He sailed around Asia living for $1 to $3 a day on a home built 26' catamaran that cost $3k. He has upgraded to a new 38' Catamaran that he built for $14k. It is possible to cruise on the cheap but I don't know that it could be done in first world countries. Latitude 38 - 'Lectronic Latitude

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Old 26-03-2010, 15:27   #23
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Start making your rounds at the local marinas and see if they have any abandoned boats they are "giving away". Thats how I got my first Coronado 27. They will be happy to give away something abandoned if you start paying the slip fee or at least pay off what might be owed. In my case, it was $600 and I wound up with a sailboat that only needed an outboard and had no new major expenses for 2 years. Yeah, that was lucky, but they are out there.
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Old 26-03-2010, 15:57   #24
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Some good points there from the "GOAT"...
Maybe spend the spring/summer getting experience crewing on boats and talking/learning from Skippers with a few miles behind them.. at the same time keep looking for a boat but on the East Coast or on the Lakes... there seems to be a bigger selection across that side, and in your price range less knackered than what I've been able to see on the West Coast from this side of the Pond...
Come Autumn with a bit of luck you'll have found a nice little 25/27ftr within your budget with minimal urgent work... take her down the ICW with occasional hops outside in good weather till you get to Oriental NC.
By then you should have identified weaknesses/possible future problems that need resolving...
Haul into Oriental and have a chat at SailCraft Boatyard.. they're always looking for staff (more Retirees than fit smart young guys there), gain some experience.. you can be earning some cash and learning more about boats and repair work.. at the same time in a place with everything you need to fix your boat way beyond anything you could do alone...
The boss is a really nice guy who helped me out in many ways... just treat him with a bit of respect.. he's a big guy... I'm 6'2" and he looked down on me lol.
Fit out done you can move on South.. explore the Bahama's, Caribbean and then decide whether to call it a day.. or carry on.
You'll see and experience (and thats what it should be about) a lot more of the world that way than going down the West Coast... and if your still set on your origonal Kon Tiki plan... do your Panama bit from East to West instead...
I do agree that 1 year is a no no... took 10mths for the 1st Solo non Stop boats to get round.. plus you'd miss a lot of good stuff.. unless your going for glory and plan to write a book IF you make it and hope to earn lotsa dosh from it...
Once you start out you'll find your perspectives change..
“I do not exist to impress the world.
I exist to live my life in a way that will make me happy. ”

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Old 26-03-2010, 18:32   #25

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You might be able to strike up a priceless correspondence with some of the folks who have gone solo around the world on a small boat or small budget. I'd suggest chasing down some contacts for the Pardeys or Tanya Abbe and reading some of their stuff, then asking them some questions about how they did it and if they think it could be done in your situation.

Most of us probably would say light experience, light budget...real bad odds. But some folks have incredible luck and aptitude and Do live the dream. I expect that a number of them would be willing to follow up with some correspondence to anyone trying to follow in their footsteps.
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Old 26-03-2010, 19:26   #26
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Noting that around the world would be the icing on the cake I'd say the cake could be pretty sweet. Mexico is cheap and beautiful and a wonderful place to sail. I'm sure a year spent sailing there wouldn't be time you'd regret.
“We are the universe contemplating itself” - Carl Sagan

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Old 26-03-2010, 20:12   #27
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I like the crewing for a while deal and you will find a cheap boat. Heaps here in Mexico.
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Old 27-03-2010, 00:16   #28
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Circumnavigating on $15k incl boat purchase


Pull the other one. It plays Jingle Bells.

The cost of Panama Canal, Suez, and clearing in/out of countries and food + water is more than $10k.
There are only a couple of tropical circumnavigation 'windows' one is 18 months, then 2 1/2 years, 3 1/2 years etc. So you budget has to go for at least 18 months.
In your $5k boat you wouldnt have an EPIRB... that for starters is over $500 so you are immediately down to $9,500... spare oil and filters....

Doing a non-stop circumnavigation by way of the 3 great capes is possible... but not in a $5k boat

Sorry to be a negative post but there are some things that really can not be done.

Also consider this: Our circumnavigation has included a stop in Egypt. Now we are on a bit of a tight budget cos we have to haul out in a few weeks (cost about $2k with paint. Ooops, your budget is now down to $7.5k!), but when in Egypt you would be a goose not to see those big pointy things and those old dead buggers graves and their mummies. So we did it on the cheap on the public busses, staying in budget hotels.... our 10 day trip we did for $800. Thats bargain basement costs and we are feeling pretty pleased with ourselves.
But that $800 is 10% of your total cruise budget, but how could you miss the pyramids? Or miss Cappadocia in Turkey? The Coliseum in Rome? The Great Wall of China? The Rock in Gibraltar? Cheese and wine on the waterfront in France? The donkey up Santorini? Eating with locals at some favorite, non touristy Taverna? Or even a fresh breakfast Croissant from a bakery?

Sure people can sail a long way till their 'boat' sinks, but is it worth it when you are the lonely dick that can't afford the $10 museum ticket to the only display on earth of some artifact thats so important to humanity?

When you work for a few years so you can actually afford it then its great fun! Its still financially challenging, but fun.

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Notes on a Circumnavigation.

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
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Old 27-03-2010, 00:49   #29
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Originally Posted by matrix View Post
why not go to one of the places known for lots of shattered cruising dreams and pick up a boat cheaply? Make crazy low offers? I almost purchased a very sound Ericson 27 already in P.V. for 5k but someone beat me to it! You could crew your way down there easily in the fall from san diego.
Where are these places? Any in my hemisphere?

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Old 27-03-2010, 03:14   #30
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I just want to add another theme to all these" lets do a cruise with no money" threads...

Economists (and I am not one! But there may be one on this forum who can discuss) have a thing called Cost Benefit Analysis.

I think in principle is pretty basic: whats the cost of something compared to the benifit you receive from that cost?

The cost is normally money or time to make that money.

Perhaps it is that one must determine if 1 extra year at work saving hard (a Cost) will give you enough money to substantially increase the enjoyment of your cruise (a Benifit).

So if one is looking to cruise with a kitty of $10,000 one would think that by staying at work (or getting off one's butt and getting a job) for one year, you'd think that person could save $10,000 if they didn't drink it or go to flash restaurants.
Therefore at the end of that year they would have doubled their cruising kitty.

To double the cruising kitty (not our annual one, but the total cruising kitty) would be well worth doing an uninteresting, even boring job for one year. Sure as hell it might be better to bite the bullet and work for 2 more years saving money like a squirrel does nuts..... whilst, of course, learning, researching, planning, provisioning etc, etc....

How one works out their Cost Benifit Anaylis is beyond me.... Is it personal or can an Economist or Accountant give us a formulea?



Notes on a Circumnavigation.

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
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