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Old 01-06-2011, 07:54   #1546
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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Originally Posted by tgzzzz View Post
Ha ha.

I've got to get off this computer right now! Gonna try and get the Yanmar running. I've procrastinated for much too long. Wonder how much fuel it would take to circumnavigate by hugging the shoreline? More or less than $500 mo?
well if you don't get the engine running,very little fuel indeed............
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Old 01-06-2011, 11:00   #1547
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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yes a very interesting anchor set up,i do like the sturdy bow rollers,ideal for a bowsprit setup like that.
And a parking spot for 2 push bikes.
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Old 01-06-2011, 11:20   #1548
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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June 1, 2012 is the date of departure.
Good on ya
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Old 01-06-2011, 19:18   #1549
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pirate Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

Yep. "When you're commited, the universe moves too."
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Old 01-06-2011, 19:34   #1550
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pirate Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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I reached a major milestone today -- exactly one more year before I leave to see the world from the deck of a small sailboat. June 1, 2012...regardless of what I think the boat still needs; regardless of how much money I've managed to save from now until then.

I bought my 1962 28' Pearson Triton for $500.00 in 1999 and spent 1.5 years and about $7,000 on a major refit, including new and used sails, a 9 HP outboard, new standing rigging, etc. I'm finishing up a second refit to prepare her for crossing oceans -- reduced cockpit volume, extra fresh water storage, watertight compartments, servo-pendulum self-steering wind vane. Electronics and electrical: 80 watt solar panel, deep cycle 12 volt battery, all LED lights (cabin and navigation; retrofitted existing fixtures with LED bulbs), handheld VHF, 2 handheld GPSs). No engine (have sculling oar). Cooking and heating: single-burner gimballed kerosene stove and three kerosene lamps (will mostly be cruising temperate climates).

I'm going simple and small, but I'm going. And it'll be on a little less than 500.00 a month, because that's all I'll have. I've waited 30 years to do this, and June 1, 2012 is the date of departure.

P.S. On a positive note, I'm pretty sure I'm finally going to lose this extra 20 pounds I've been carrying around for the last ten years!
Good on yer mate....
one thing tho'... a H/H VHF is only gonna reach stuff thats in view...
if you can get a fixed unit or an extension ariel for the H/H it'd serve you better...
But apart from that you've got it covered it seems... small dinghy...?
flares (proper) not the silly toy pistol things...?
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Old 01-06-2011, 19:58   #1551
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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Originally Posted by tgzzzz View Post
Ha ha.

I've got to get off this computer right now! Gonna try and get the Yanmar running. I've procrastinated for much too long. Wonder how much fuel it would take to circumnavigate by hugging the shoreline? More or less than $500 mo?
Depends.... not with US$

Maybe Aussie$
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Old 02-06-2011, 11:52   #1552
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

or less...?

some real world numbers.

We have been living on the hook in La Paz/BCS Mexico for two months and for the purpose of this thread I've kept track of our food expenses. As a side note, we haven't had any other expenses here.

for the two of us it adds up to 100/148 USD a month. Not too bad!

so what do we eat? -the short answer is: we eat very well thanks.

a bit additional info on that.

we typically drink 1-2 glasses of wine every night with dinner and an occassional shot of tequila (the good ones,not the cheap stuff)

lots of fresh veggies and fruit
rice and pasta- mostly whole grain

beaf/pork around 3 days a week. (MX beef is GOOD, ranched cattle, very tasty, but sometimes not very tenderized, so we do that ourselves)

fresh fish around 3 days a week, mostly bought at the open market, we will fish ourselves when we sail north for the summer for added pleasure and saitisfaction and lower cost too...

beans or other vegetarian dish the 7th day.


We by basic ingredients and cook , very rarely manufactured food. This is tastier, healthier AND cheaper but takes a couple hours a day typically.

that's about it. On shore, we'll have a beer or two a couple times a week in a bar, mostly for the ambience, and a cup of coffee at an internet caf once or twice a week.

Add cost for boat maintenance and you've got a budget. since we've owned this boat for just 6 months, I cannot yet provide real world numbers here, and it also greatly vary with type of boat, equipment and the skill level of the crew. We do pretty much ALL wotk ourselves and scheduled haul-outs would be every third year or so. In two years of full time cruising we spent 10-15 nights in marinas. Only for the purpose of travelling inland to visit friends.
We did one haul-out, for a week for a bottom-job.

A check up and cleaning with a local dentist was 30USD for me.

I had a medical check up for 10 USD, medicine is a LOT cheaper than Europe/US etcetera.

Sunshine and not a drop of rain in 6 months, no theft makes this place close to a paradise for micro-budget folks and others too.

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Old 02-06-2011, 13:19   #1553
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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Good on yer mate....
one thing tho'... a H/H VHF is only gonna reach stuff thats in view...
if you can get a fixed unit or an extension ariel for the H/H it'd serve you better...
But apart from that you've got it covered it seems... small dinghy...?
flares (proper) not the silly toy pistol things...?
Good idea about the VHF -- thanks. I'm going to sell the 8' Walker Bay I have and use the money to build a D4 stitch-and-glue pram, using free plans, that will fit atop my cabin better. I didn't list everything, but yeah, I'll have some proper flares, along with a radar reflector, storm trysail, parachute storm anchor, etc., etc.

I've come to the conclusion recently that a person could pretty easily become "paralyzed" and never go if he or she reads too much and plans too much. For example, I was planning to install a five to eight gallon tank for kerosene that you could fill from the deck and use gravity to fill kerosene lamps and the stove. Well...that is now WAY down on the list and guess what? If it doesn't get done, I'm leaving anyway, on June 1, 2012, and I'll have a 5-gallon container of kerosene stowed securely below somewhere!
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Old 02-06-2011, 13:55   #1554
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pirate Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

Hey Triton, that gravity fed kerosene idea eliminates spills and I've read it in a couple of how-we-did-it books. I'd move it up the priority list.

The D4 swap is a great idea and will be fine if just you. Should you get lucky however, you might want more dink. The Chameleon plans and patterns are about $50. And the Catspaw line about the same. These are nesting dinks. I have a big glass dink with a 3hp ob that I can tow but I'm taking along a Chameleon all cut out but not assembled for when the goblins steal my locked up dink. Except when underway, you can't have too much dinghy.
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Old 02-06-2011, 13:56   #1555
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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Good idea about the VHF -- thanks. I'm going to sell the 8' Walker Bay I have and use the money to build a D4 stitch-and-glue pram, using free plans, that will fit atop my cabin better. I didn't list everything, but yeah, I'll have some proper flares, along with a radar reflector, storm trysail, parachute storm anchor, etc., etc.

I've come to the conclusion recently that a person could pretty easily become "paralyzed" and never go if he or she reads too much and plans too much. For example, I was planning to install a five to eight gallon tank for kerosene that you could fill from the deck and use gravity to fill kerosene lamps and the stove. Well...that is now WAY down on the list and guess what? If it doesn't get done, I'm leaving anyway, on June 1, 2012, and I'll have a 5-gallon container of kerosene stowed securely below somewhere!
Atta boy; You've got the right idea. I have sailed with less than you have and have had many great times cruising. My first boat did not even have a radio or an electrical system. Nor did I have flares. The thing is you can't depend on any help when done this way. The only reason I now have a radio is to call CG on bar conditions here in the Northwest. That's something you can't see from seaward. I really don't want the CG involved in my life. If my vessel goes down, I don't want to float around in the Pacific waiting to die. Maybe it's best to go below an close the hatch, nice coffin. But, that's my decision, my life. I have sailed with this mentality for over forty years. leaving this july for another five year voyage, heading south, but no planned destination,just going. Good Luck with your voyage. Learn as much as you can and you'll be just fine. ..Michael..
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Old 02-06-2011, 19:07   #1556
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pirate Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

S/V Rodeorm,

Thanks for the great post re your expenses.

I particularly liked the note about buying basic ingredients and cooking and that it takes a lot of time.

So on the hook in La Paz. No fees at all to land your dinghy? What do you do for water? Are you acclimated enough to drink the local water? How long did that take?

Rubyjean, great post as well...telling it just like it is. That's my endgame as well if it comes to it although I prefer to be shot to death by an angry husband.

Atoll, I'm still saving the planet from CO2 immissions.
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Old 02-06-2011, 21:38   #1557
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

I don't know all the costs of my cruising, but I do know the costs of my *not* crusiing. Marina, mini-storage, cell, internet, transportation, and preping my boat for cruising all eat up about $700/month (more than 70% of my income is "land ties'"). I do not include such things as food, entertainment, medical insurance etc. as they will still exist one way or another.
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Old 03-06-2011, 05:04   #1558
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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Originally Posted by Triton318 View Post
I've come to the conclusion recently that a person could pretty easily become "paralyzed" and never go ... For example, I was planning to install a five to eight gallon tank for kerosene that you could fill from the deck and use gravity to fill kerosene lamps and the stove. Well...that is now WAY down on the list and guess what? If it doesn't get done, I'm leaving anyway, on June 1, 2012, and I'll have a 5-gallon container of kerosene stowed securely below somewhere!
I have forgotten where you are heading to for the first 6 months... somewhere you wrote that your cruise would all be outside the USA. Which makes me kinda think you must be going to Europe, but the exit date is wrong.

Anyway, if you are heading through the US first (ICW etc) and/or into the Caribbean then there's ample oportunity to keep fixing your boat on the way.
A benifit would be to see if you really need the thing you are dreaming about.

Perhaps you may well find a gravity fed lamp fueler is as useful as tits on a bull. As you say, a small bottle decanted from the 5 gal may be far the easiest in a practical sense.

I know we didn't star putting stuff on Sea Life till we had been away for a year. (We couldn't afford to!) By then we knew exaclty what we really, really needed.






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Old 03-06-2011, 07:12   #1559
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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S/V Rodeorm,

Thanks for the great post re your expenses.

I particularly liked the note about buying basic ingredients and cooking and that it takes a lot of time.

So on the hook in La Paz. No fees at all to land your dinghy? What do you do for water? Are you acclimated enough to drink the local water? How long did that take?

Rubyjean, great post as well...telling it just like it is. That's my endgame as well if it comes to it although I prefer to be shot to death by an angry husband.

Atoll, I'm still saving the planet from CO2 immissions.
Regarding drinking the water... I have always used my tank water for drinking as well as washing, and at the same time consider a really good water supply to be one of the few long term health benefits that we can give ourselves, even while cruising... (Right up there with a bimini top to prevent skin cancer).

For this reason we went with a Seagull filter at the tap, and this necessitated a pressure water system rather than foot pump. (Sometimes complexity wins out.)

In many places, the local water will make you SICK, and the harbor is too nasty to use a watermaker. In these areas, ALL of the cruisers around us, bought their water in 5 gal bottles. Our NOT having to do this, payed for the more complex systems many times over. The supplying of our electrical needs 100% with solar panels, more than payed for themselves because of the diesel that we didn't have to burn to make power.

Our pressure water system has been 100% reliable for over 15 years now, but I felt it prudent to carry a spare pump, just in case.

In some cases the local water was SO bad that I didn't even want to put it in my tanks. In this case, I have a small, Katadyne "bacteriastatic" ceramic filter in a portable housing, with a garden hose fitting fill hose, and plain exit hose. I dink ashore and fill my jugs at a tap with this filter, which makes potable water from down right "dangerous" water.

It seemed like "problem solved", but in these places the water taps often had insufficient pressure to push water through the HIGHLY restrictive filter. I solved this by taking that extra pressure pump I was carrying, and mounting it to a 12" X 10" piece of Starboard. I had a garden hose fitting "out", regular hose "in", and a flexible cord with 12V plug as a power supply to this portable pump.

NOW... I went ashore and got jugs of "unsafe" water, dinked it to the boat, and used the Katadyne filter WITH the portable pump to transfer the now purified water into the tanks. It might take 20 minutes per jug, but required very little monitoring, so I went about another project.

I was now utilizing an extra pump that constituted a "spare" to the main pump, and the Katadyne filter's element lasts indefinitely! When it clogs, I remove the ceramic element and just brush it off under a water flow. It is now 23 years old and still fine. The watermaker BTW, is now 23 years old and still works on the same element! It has not only payed for itself, it has saved a bundle in many places, "like the Bahamas", by making fresh water rather than buying it. Sometimes more expenditure on the front end, like in building and/or equipping the boat, will result in far less expenditure over the long haul.

It is certainly useful to go small and simple, but that can go too far. It all depends on your personality, weather or not you're single, how old, etc. My first cruising boat in the 70s, was a Wharram 23, and I didn't even have a dinghy. (I used a LONG set of fins)! It was TOO small, (once it started getting cool), anchored out in Key West. If your boat is "too" small, or "two" simple, in order to save money at first, you may well spend WAY more time on shore, usually requiring money... OR, you may be broke and sitting on your boat, bored out of your mind! Once the novelty of cruising wears off, and it just becomes "how you live your life", most of us still need stimulation on a daily basis.

Next I built a Seaclipper 28 trimaran, and it was "just right", until I met my now wife, @ 35 years old. OOPS!

After tying the knot, we co built our Searunner 34. It is fine for an ageing couple, but I wouldn't want to go smaller. We have found that by paying the up front price, (and everything has one), and by equipping the boat "relatively" simply but comfortably, we can still be happy with the same boat 15 years later, and we live anchored out far less expensively. We find that snorkeling all day and then having other folks come over for dinner, is less expensive than the landside attractions. Having said that, our few "expensive" inland trips in exotic ports, are the highlight of our cruising memories. I wouldn't have wanted to save money there.

Point being... It is a complex and personal choice how small a boat, how complex the systems, how much money spent, etc. When cruising, we are among the least funded 1% of cruisers, but that was our predicament, rather than the point. For us, "the point", and what I consider a worthy goal, was to have a rich and varied life experience, on the amount of money that we had. This can be accomplished in a number of ways, on boats of very different descriptions. The object is simply to enjoy your "habit" without going broke. Being "cheep", as a personality trait, is no more a bragging point than being a "big spender".

The way we have done it worked well for us, and I see that many different approaches have worked for others just as well. I do, however, feel that trying to limit how much you spend, IF taken to the extreme, beyond your limited financial needs, is also limiting the rich life experiences that cruising has to offer. (Many, if not MOST, of the wonderful sights in these countries, do not lie along the coast. It cost a bit of money to get to see them! If it meant we started cruising our 34'er a couple of years later, that was the "up front price". I'm now glad we payed it.

Best regards to all,
Mark

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Old 03-06-2011, 07:57   #1560
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Re: Cruising on $500 per Month . . .

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I have forgotten where you are heading to for the first 6 months...
Virginia --> Azores --> Portugal --> Morocco --> Canary Islands --> Cape Verde Islands --> Gambia --> Bissagos Islands, Guinea-Bissau --> lha de Fernando de Noronha, Brazil --> Ilha Grande, Brazil --> Rio de la Plata --> Namibia --> South Africa (arriving around mid-February, 2013)

The idea of waiting until I've been out there for a while to decide whether or not I really need it is a great one -- thanks!
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