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Old 09-05-2016, 11:20   #1
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New to Cruising

Hi All,

As a new prospective cruiser, I'm looking for some information on how to educate myself before getting out on the water. If there is already a detailed thread for this, please point me there. Is there any courses, books, blogs anything else I could do to help me get a good understanding of how things work?

Thanks!
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Old 09-05-2016, 13:13   #2
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Re: New to Cruising

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Originally Posted by defiance26 View Post
Hi All,

As a new prospective cruiser, I'm looking for some information on how to educate myself before getting out on the water. If there is already a detailed thread for this, please point me there. Is there any courses, books, blogs anything else I could do to help me get a good understanding of how things work?

Thanks!
all depends on what your idea of cruising is there are tons of books and videos out there just start looking and find the info that best suits your needs.
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Old 09-05-2016, 13:19   #3
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Re: New to Cruising

I think you will get better info if you narrow it down somewhat. What is your sailing/boating experience? Where do you anticipate cruising? What kind of info do you need? Could range from "do I keep my house?" to " What is the best kero stove?", so the more info you put out there the more helpful the recommendations will be.
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Old 09-05-2016, 13:35   #4
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Re: New to Cruising

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Originally Posted by defiance26 View Post
Hi All,

As a new prospective cruiser, I'm looking for some information on how to educate myself before getting out on the water. If there is already a detailed thread for this, please point me there. Is there any courses, books, blogs anything else I could do to help me get a good understanding of how things work?

Thanks!
Where are you? Do you have a boat already? Are you sailing or powerboating? Yes there are courses, look for American Sailing Association classes locally.
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Old 09-05-2016, 13:40   #5
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Re: New to Cruising

I agree with vjm that there's some question as to what you're looking for. If it's basic navigation, piloting and techniques of general boating, then the boating courses offered by the Coast Guard Auxiliary or Power Squadron are excellent and with a nominal cost; however, you did not mention your location. I believe you can find similar instruction in many countries.
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Old 09-05-2016, 13:50   #6
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Re: New to Cruising

Thanks for the answers,

I am currently in the Mass. area. At this point I was looking to see what kind of resources are out there prior to taking a ASA class or getting out on the water is there a "go to" guide of sorts to get a good general overview of everything from buying a boat to general systems understanding?
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Old 09-05-2016, 14:02   #7
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Re: New to Cruising

There are some good books on marine electrical systems and mechanical systems .... search Amazon.

For a quick start try Marine Survey 101. it will give you an idea of what learning curve you are looking at.
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Old 09-05-2016, 14:11   #8
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Re: New to Cruising

One of your best resources would be a community of cruisers that may be meeting regularly at a boating or cruising club. These organizations vary widely. Some are limited to just a social drinking and eating group, some are focused on racing, many might have components of each, but often there will be those focused on cruising.

We belonged to the North Florida Cruising Club back in the 1970's and found that we had resources for a tremendous amount of information and skills. Such a group will be aware of local boats on the market, surveyors, marinas, weekend crew opportunities. maintenance and refit skills.
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Old 09-05-2016, 14:26   #9
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Re: New to Cruising

Look for a local sailing club. There should be plenty in Mass. Sailing for Dummies is a good start as far as reading. Check with your local library. They often have a few sailing books that never get touched.
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Old 09-05-2016, 15:01   #10
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Re: New to Cruising

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Originally Posted by defiance26 View Post
Thanks for the answers,

I am currently in the Mass. area. At this point I was looking to see what kind of resources are out there prior to taking a ASA class or getting out on the water is there a "go to" guide of sorts to get a good general overview of everything from buying a boat to general systems understanding?
There are several books I have found useful. Some are a bit dated but you will get the drift. Beth Evans's "The Voyager's Handbook" is excellent. "The Essentials of Living Aboard a Boat" by Mark Nichols, while basic, is good at getting to consider the liveaboard part (marina based), "The Cost Concious Cruiser" By Lin Pardey is one of my favs, although a bit dated, for sailing "The Annapolis Book of Seamanship" is just great (Also gives you a leg up on class material should you be so inclined), look in the library for "50 Places to Sail Before You Die" (don't buy it, it is just inspiration), Skene's Yacht Design book, and anything by Nigel Calder for mechanical and systems stuff (be warned, this is scary stuff and I find his material very dense, don't be scared you will get it on the 3rd or 4th read through if you are like me).

Hope this helps!
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Old 09-05-2016, 15:13   #11
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Re: New to Cruising

There are many books. Just google some and you will find something you like. Mind the world changes and books date too.

You do not have to do any extra education to go out and cruise some. Just make sure you know how to power / and/or / sail.

You will learn plenty while doing the thing. Ask your neighbours at the dock for whatever puzzles you at any given moment. People are willing to share their tips and tricks.

Have fun,
b.
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Old 09-05-2016, 18:03   #12
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Re: New to Cruising

Your question is pretty much "What should I do and how can I do it for the rest of my life?"

Even your MOM would have trouble with that (although NOT MY Mom!).

The journey of a thousand miles begins with the first step.

Heard that one before?

For starters: Take a look at the liveaboard section of this forum, and start reading.

Do a search on this or any other boating forum, and search on BOOKS.

Do a search on this or any other boating forum, and search on NEWBIE.

Good luck, we've all BTDT.
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:10   #13
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Re: New to Cruising

I guess it depends on how you define cruising - it is like asking how do you define alcohol - alcohol can be anything from a white wine to moonshine -
same with cruising - it can be anything from a run up and down the east coast of the usa to a circum nav

But to begin perhaps a few ASA sailing course that would include the bareboat chartering courses and see if you even like sailing - the more you learn about it the more you begin to understand it and what options are out there

we thought cruising was up and down the usa and thru the Bahamas - we then got a bit carried away and well it turned out for us to be a bit more -

as for alcohol - when I could afford it - jack daniels on the rocks - but now local red and white wine - boy do I miss those bloody marys
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Old 10-05-2016, 05:19   #14
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Re: New to Cruising

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, defiance.
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Old 14-05-2016, 20:19   #15
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Re: New to Cruising

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At this point I was looking to see what kind of resources are out there prior to taking a ASA class or getting out on the water is there a "go to" guide of sorts to get a good general overview of everything from buying a boat to general systems understanding?
The Annapolis Book of Seamanship, for an overview of hull types, rigging, sail handling, navigation, and many other aspects of sailing and seamanship. This will at least give you enough information to know what questions to ask. And once you know that, honestly just Googling things is a good way to go. Query this forum on Google (don't use the forum's native search engine) and you can find an answer to just about any question you can imagine. Want to know what's the best kind of marine toilet, for instance? There are literally hundreds of pages of discussion about that.

(Incidentally, to save you some time on that one, the answer is desiccating head )

Something I did a lot was to look at a bunch of sailboat listings, note the gear aboard I didn't understand, and then query this forum with "best [insert name of gear]," to find long discussions about the pros and cons of different set ups. Very helpful.
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