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Old 09-12-2010, 10:23   #1
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Dear Abby . . .

I need some nautical Dear Abby advice.

Just for some background, I have been sailing for two years and it has been a crash course. I have restored the interior of a 38ft. sloop, removed and reinstalled a 30hp Yanmar due to rotten logs, reworked some plumbing, installed a new fuel tank and removed so much crap off the boat that the waterline came up 3 inches...I'm not kidding. My wife and I are co-owners of the boat and slowly buying out my mother-in-law's life partner. The four of us are the crew and have a great time sailing together.

Here's the problem. My mother-in-law's aging life partner will not take anything off the boat because we might need them. Things like 20 year old emergency flares have to be removed while he is away. Bung cutting tools have to stay on board. There are tools on board that are three and four times redundant. Eight to ten rain coats for four people. Enough plumbing supplies to rebuild the entire system twice. Spare hoses in the event the other ten spares break. No less than 100 hose clamps. The list is endless.

While I feel we need enough things on board to handle any emergency while sailing and safety is always number one on my list, this is too much. The fact is that we never get more than maybe 15 miles from shore. I don't even have room for clothes much less some fun stuff like a fishing rod or snorkeling gear.

Can someone offer some advice or am I on my own with this one?

Dear Abby, please help!
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:37   #2
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I keep a lot of spares on board also, good luck.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:37   #3
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I don't how old the life partner is but hopefully is memory isn't what it used to be. Sneak the stuff of the boat a little at a time and he probably won't notice. He sounds like a hoarder so he may have a mental issue. You could open a floating chandlery.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:44   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by easterly38 View Post
and removed so much crap off the boat that the waterline came up 3 inches...I'm not kidding. My wife and I are co-owners of the boat and slowly buying out my mother-in-law's life partner.



Dear Abby, please help!
3 inches? Sounds like you have done pretty well so far.

Who actually owns the boat?
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:45   #5
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How old is your mother-in-law's partner? At the present rate, how long will it take to complete buying-out his interest in the vessel?

You do realize, I hope, that even when the vessel is 100% your property, he will always consider it "his" boat, and you will never convince him that his way of preparing for disaster is overkill. For the sake of keeping the peace in the family, you probably shouldn't even try to educate him - he'll probably resent it and will question your common sense.

You just can't win.

Even if you complete the transaction, equip the vessel as you see fit, circumnavigate with it that way and get together with the family for a celebration of your achievement, he will probably say you were just lucky that nothing tragic occurred where you would have needed his redundant spares.

It might be better to leave it all on board until there's no possibility that he will be on the vessel to check, then dispose of the excess quietly and just let him believe it's all still there. What he doesn't know won't hurt him, of course, but can your wife keep the information from her mother?

Family dynamics can be some of the toughest navigating you'll ever do. Good luck!

TaoJones
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:51   #6
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Keep sneaking off the stuff, sell it at swap meets and buy him out faster !!!
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:53   #7
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we are full time cruisers and have limited space -- our rule is something comes on something goes off -- space is at a premium -- see if he will accept that

chuck patty and svsoulmates
on a mooring ball miami for the christmas season
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:58   #8
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Dominance!

The down fall of a partnership is control. And with a partner being the original owner you have stepped into a situation that can only be resolved by a full ownership.

To become Captain of the vessel you'll have to gain full ownership otherwise you'll just have to relinquish dominance and be satisfied with being the first mate.
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:00   #9
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Tao, he is 70 and has health issues. He is a very accomplished life-long mariner and a great guy. He is known as the King of the Pier in our marina. Not sure when we will completely buy him out, but it will always be his boat. It's just part of his identity.

Perchance, his memory gets a little iffy sometimes.

Capt Bill, it's not just the boat. He has three full dock boxes plus stuff in other folks' boxes as well. Probably 1/4 of the dock box stuff is unusable because it went under in Katrina.
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:03   #10
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OMG, Pardon me LOL......Your talking about my boat when I bought it. It took three months to off load all the crap and another several days to inventory and store/dispose all of it. I nearly doubled my tool inventory and lube and filter inventory. Not to mention paint and varnish.

Take all that crap off and inventory it.....there is always ebay.

Todd
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:07   #11
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I just tell my wife whenever she tells me I have to much junk on the boat that "I'm the skipper and it's my boat, See I've got the Captains hat". I feel however that the problem is that I have had stuff break and have been able to fix them BECAUSE I keep so much crap on the boat and she hasn't. If she continues to sail with me she will begin to understand the reasons since we WILL have minor mechanical problems. And if she doesn't get it then. IT"S MY BOAT, SEE I'VE GOT THE CAPTAINS HAT...........some how typing that makes it sound so much more childish......m
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:25   #12
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cantxsailor, I don't think you're seeing the whole picture. It's not just spare parts, it's spare parts to replace spare parts to replace spare parts to replace spare parts. Then we have the old broken parts to pull pieces off of in the event that all the spares break while on a daysail.

If we ever had a serious emergency, the boat would sink while we dug through hundreds of loose duplicate parts looking for what we needed. LOL

It's like an Easter Egg Hunt..."Oh, there that is! I've been looking for that since 1989!"

What do you do? Guess I may have to live with this one for a while.
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:25   #13
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Just as a point of reference, 3" of waterline in my former 38' cutter equates to 4,500 lb. Assuming your 38' sloop is similar, that's a lot of spares!
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:28   #14
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take off 80% and if he notices anything missing, just act surprised

plan B would be to blame Pirates
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:34   #15
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Having to fit all the equipment necessary for a long trip will clear out that space. Not only is it all the equipment and provisions, but the fact that *everything* needs to be mounted in such a way that it doesn't break loose and smash into something else.

The plug-in power tools will be of little or no use depending on your electrical profile.

Every time we rig our home for sailing it takes two days to go from home mode to underway mode. The more time I spend underway at not at the slip (especially conditions that beat the crap out of the boat) the less stuff I have on board. All that junk takes a back seat to the gear you do need, and when you're bouncing around underway it's really frustrating to have to wade through a bunch of old blocks and rigging that was taken off for a good reason.
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