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Old 22-09-2014, 05:24   #1
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Starter Boat Suggestions (for try out)

Hi all,
In your opinion/experience: what would be a good starter sailboat to get a taste of the caribbean cruising lifestyle? My pref would be a tough boat that can take a bump, and since I'm 6'4" also much headroom in the salon. Age/model is not important, but no 'project' boat either. Idea is to fly down (with a creditcard and some luggage only), buy the boat locally, and set off for 1-2 years to see what it's all about, before getting a more serious boat.


Thank you,
E.
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Old 22-09-2014, 05:32   #2
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pirate Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

I did exactly that in 2000 when I flew to St Martin and mooched around a coupla weeks before I came across and bought a Beneteau 321.. did it again in 2006 but this time the BVI's where I bought a Beneteau 331..
Solo'd both back to the UK via the Azores.. either of those is a good starter...
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Old 22-09-2014, 06:35   #3
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

different strokes/different folks

I started with a Cal-39, it turned out to be too small

you need to provide more detail and then you will get lots of boat names thrown your way, but if you haven't had a boat before all boats are good starters
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Old 22-09-2014, 06:51   #4
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
different strokes/different folks

I started with a Cal-39, it turned out to be too small

you need to provide more detail and then you will get lots of boat names thrown your way, but if you haven't had a boat before all boats are good starters
I realize I'll have settle with what's around at the time, that's fine.
Beside what I mentioned, boat needs to be suitable for singlehanded sailing, so not more than 34'-35' max.
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Old 22-09-2014, 07:24   #5
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

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Originally Posted by Eurypylus View Post
Beside what I mentioned, boat needs to be suitable for singlehanded sailing, so not more than 34'-35' max.
There isn't any real basis for singlehanded sailing needing no more than 34-35', that is just something people with small boats come up with. Other than my dinghy the smallest boat I've ever even been on was 33'.
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Old 22-09-2014, 08:15   #6
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

If you desire to look for used cruising boats in the Caribbean, there will most certainly be a plethora of charter boats coming out of charter for sale, many the same make, model and year.

Obviously, the Beneteaus and Leopard Cats will be very plentiful. You can take a look at he Mooring's site to see boats x-charter boats from The Moorings, Sunsail and Footloose currently on the market.

I solo sailed by Beneteau 32.5 back to the U.S. after it came out of charter and found it to be more than up for the job, (once a dirt fuel problem was addressed.)
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Old 22-09-2014, 17:11   #7
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

may I suggest you just go down to a marina and look at the boats and talk to the people on them, most like to talk about the good things and drawbacks. You'll get and idea on what is suitable for you. I have met a 6'5" guy who sailed from england to SE asia in a 25' sloop with a wife
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Old 22-09-2014, 17:24   #8
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

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Originally Posted by sailorboy1 View Post
There isn't any real basis for singlehanded sailing needing no more than 34-35', that is just something people with small boats come up with. Other than my dinghy the smallest boat I've ever even been on was 33'.
Totally disagree. Smaller boats are much easier to handle when the weather pipes up. Not saying it cant be done, but simply pulling the main up with a few jerks on my 30 ft cruiser or struggling to winch them up on my 44, 47 monos and 42 cat is completely different. Ditto for the headsail sheets, anchor gear, maintenance. etc etc
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Old 22-09-2014, 17:26   #9
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

"...My pref would be a tough boat that can take a bump ..."

You wont really find that coming out of the charter fleet, but you may sitting in Trinidad awaiting owners that don't want to return.... Then again, you can certainly cruise the Caribe in comfort on an ex charter boat...
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Old 22-09-2014, 17:45   #10
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Re: Starter boat suggestions (for try out)

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Totally disagree. Smaller boats are much easier to handle when the weather pipes up. Not saying it cant be done, but simply pulling the main up with a few jerks on my 30 ft cruiser or struggling to winch them up on my 44, 47 monos and 42 cat is completely different. Ditto for the headsail sheets, anchor gear, maintenance. etc etc
True, but all the pluses other than that

Plus it is good solo cardio!
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Old 25-09-2014, 13:14   #11
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Re: Starter Boat Suggestions (for try out)

Here's a budget I have in mind for my caribbean cruising try-out >
1) local boat purchase: 30K USD, something like this,
1977 Downeaster DE32 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
2) livelyhood: 30K USD p/y
3) reserve: 15K p/y

Would this work you think ??

Salut,
E.
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Old 25-09-2014, 17:58   #12
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Re: Starter Boat Suggestions (for try out)

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Originally Posted by Vronsky View Post
Here's a budget I have in mind for my caribbean cruising try-out >
1) local boat purchase: 30K USD, something like this,
1977 Downeaster DE32 Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
2) livelyhood: 30K USD p/y
3) reserve: 15K p/y

Would this work you think ??

Salut,
E.
Yes. Although a larger reserve would be helpful, at least in the beginning.
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