Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 22-03-2018, 14:48   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4
Next step thoughts?

TL;DR

Just finished ASA 101 class, and I have plenty of time on my hands. What is the best next step for solid learning and to get time on the water? I can join a local lakeís Sailing club, purchase a 27í boat on the same lake, or purchase a boat to keep on the east cost to use one weekend a month for a few years?

Details if you have a lot of time:

After a few weeks worth of reading this site, it is with hesitation that I post this first question. This is because I currently sit at the selfish end of the sailing spectrum (I am all need with no practical knowledge to pass along). This may also place me squarely in the group of those who post and then appear to Ďgo awayí for a few years. If this is the case, it is due to the fact that while at the very beginning of this journey I want to be respectful and most of my questions can easily be answered by reading prior beginnerís posts, so this may result in a lower number of posts in the short-term. I suspect it will take years of practical experience prior to being in a place to properly give back.

My question likely falls into the category of Ďjust read someone elseís postí (I see similar questions and one from yesterday), but I think my question may branch off to unique areas based upon the initial replies. But I guess every new person thinks that, asks anyway, and then is pointed to these other posts. No matter the outcome, and with respect to the group, here goes...

Background to question: I currently have time on my hands and in 5 years Iíll be an empty-nester. With these facts, I have started going down the decision-trees that may lead my wife and me to become liveaboards. I am practical enough to recognize that any number of decision tree points may result in this goal/dreamís early termination (or perhaps several adjustments). But in the meantime, I am moving forward. Here is how early in this process I am: I just finished an ASA 101 course on a lake. The decision tree was Ďif I donít like it Iím doneí VS if I really valued the experience then move on. I LOVED it! And now I am ready for the next step. I would like some time on the water prior to 103/104, but please correct if you think Ďjumping right iní has value.

It appears I have several choices and donít know enough to properly setup a pro/con list. I do understand that I can take any approach and be Ďokí, but if you were starting all over (or could talk to that younger you) what would you do here? Or what other considerations should be evaluated?

The options I see for the next step of time on water (for me) are:
  1. Join a Sailboat club (one year membership) on a local lake. I could sail frequently (~ at least once a week) in a 22-25 foot day sailor.
    • Pros:
      - Could sail as much as I want
      - Iím 20 minutes from the water
      - Have a large support group (beyond you all here)
    • Cons:
      - Canít take things apart to see how they work (plus I didnít see much to take apart on a day sailor)
  2. I could purchase a boat (but maybe 27 feet or so at $7,500 - $10Kíish) on the same lake
    • Pros:
      - Could really get hands-on with learning a boat (transferable to a larger one in 5 years or so)
      - Iím 20 minutes from the water
    • Cons:
      - Smaller (early on) support group
  3. Could purchase a larger boat (at $15-20Kíish - doesnít even have to be sailable at this early point) and keep it on the east coast. The intent would be to learn more (e.g. electronics, navigation, engines, and etc.) for a few years and then sell it and purchase another one when Iím ready (no rush)
    • Pros:
      - Obtain a wider knowledge and skill set (transferable)
    • Cons:
      - Could only get there one weekend a month (plus a few weeks here and there)
      - Less time on the water during this first year
      - Smaller support group

I donít mind doing all 3 but perhaps one at a time. I suspect the Club is the best option, but any direction, suggestions, thoughts, or support will be very welcome! Thanks!

P.S. Iíll work to make future posts more (length) appropriate.
__________________

__________________
Laredo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2018, 15:25   #2
Senior Cruiser
 
Jim Cate's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 12,075
Re: Next step thoughts?

G'day Laredo, and welcome to CF.

First, congratulations on a well crafted and thoughtful first post! Could stand as a model for others to emulate. Don't apologize for length, for there was little waste in it, and setting out all the parameters at once saves a lot of back and forth traffic. Well done IMO.

Now to your questions..

Your first option would likely give you the greatest opportunity to increase your sailing skills in a relatively short time. IMO, time on the water and on the helm and in command is the single most important factor in that development... especially if coupled with some further tuition, either formal or informal (ie sailing with more advanced skippers, perhaps as race crew). However, as you have noted, it does little to prepare you for the other parts of live aboard cruising: boat husbandry. My thought is that perhaps a year or so in this mode would be a good thing.

That could lead you into the second option of owning a small cruising type boat, keeping it local so that access is easy. This would lead to the mundane skills of boat ownership being developed... routine maintenance, perhaps some minor upgrades (don't want to over capitalize on a transitional boat) and perhaps starting to race locally if that appeals to you. A year or two of that will both increase your practical knowledge of boat ownership, your sailing skills in a boat more like what you will eventually cruise in and likely expose you to others in a similar stage of development in different boats. Such familiarity with a broader range of vessels will help you reach the third stage (buying your own cruising boat) with a better knowledge base for making your choice.

So far, if this goes well you will not have expended large sums of your cruising capital. The sort of vessels that I envision are well down their depreciation curves and should not lead to big losses when you sell them onwards. This should put you in a good space for the great leap forward into a cruising life... if your experiences drive you in that direction. You will be well enough equipped with knowledge and experience that you won't be posting the ubiquitous "I wanna buy a boat and sail around the world" query that pops up here so often. We will be available for help with much more specific and directed questions should they arise, and you will be much more adept at distinguishing between useful and specious replies.

I'm not a big believer in formal sail training myself, but all along this trail that I've proposed if you should feel the need for continuing with your instruction with ASA or other sources, you will have enough personal experience to better utilize the instruction. It will be more fine tuning than basic startup, and there is where I believe the greatest benefit lies.

At any rate, that's how I see it. Doubtless others will have different ideas and you should consider them all. Good luck!

Jim
__________________

__________________
Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II , lying Twofold Bay, Eden,NSW after our 32d crossing of Bass Strait!
Jim Cate is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2018, 20:11   #3
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4
Re: Next step thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
G'day Laredo, and welcome to CF.
Jim - thanks so much for your warm and kind welcome! I feel welcomed and happy to be here.

I appreciate your reply and value your input and details. I plan to head to the lakeís marina tomorrow, join the Sailing club, and sail often. This will give me a year of practical experience, along with the association of a Club who are willing and wanting to help.

I suspect I will have a solid foundation when, in 11 months, I return to discuss what boat to buy for the next phase. In the meantime my contributions at this point would be silly at best but in reality closer to irresponsible and dangerous. So I may not be posting much, but Iíll be here learning and reading several times a day.

Thanks again. I appreciate it very much!
__________________
Laredo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2018, 22:23   #4
Registered User
 
Plangstraat's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: Victoria British Columbia
Boat: Beneteau 321
Posts: 37
Re: Next step thoughts?

Welcome Laredo and thank you for a well written post. I agree with Jim; your post is not lengthy. In fact, it contains just enough detail to (hopefully) elicit some interesting responses.
Jim's advice is solid and certainly worth considering. My path has been a little different. In fact it is almost exactly the second option you have proposed.
My wife and I completed a US Sailing Basic Keelboat course to determine if we wanted to more seriously consider investing in sailing. Like you, we were absolutely smitten.
We bought a very used Siren 17. It's a little day sailer with a swing keel. I believe we paid $1500 for the boat. The first winter was spent restoring the boat. This included plenty of fibreglass work, replacing hardware, painting, etc.
What I appreciated about that first winter is that we learned a lot about boats, how they work, how to maintain them, etc.
The next summer we sailed every chance we could on the freshwater lakes in our area. We made plenty of mistakes but we got better. By the end of that first season we were relatively competent beginning sailors.
We sold the little boat after the second year and bought a 26 foot water ballast Hunter 260. That boat was also with us for about two years.
We then moved to the coast and have since purchased a 32 foot Beneteau 321. We cruise the boat in the Pacific Northwest.
For us, the progression was perfect. Starting with a small boat and moving up in manageable increments gave us the opportunity to never feel overwhelmed. We learned to become better sailors and as the boats became larger we learned about more systems, moved from small outboards to an inboard diesel, incorporated more complex electronics and navigation, etc.
Jim's advice to join a sailing club or join up with those looking for racing crew is solid. This approach has worked for many people I have met.
I tend to be more solitary. This really wouldn't have fit for me. In addition, I feel more confident when I know the boat I'm on inside and out. Having said that, I have taken a couple of additional sailing courses over the years to try and hone my sailing abilities. I'm pretty certain I'd be a better sailor had I joined a racing crew but the path I chose has given me endless hours of joy and satisfaction.
I guess the moral of the story for me is that there isn't a single "right" path. It's whatever fits best for you.
__________________
Plangstraat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22-03-2018, 22:55   #5
Registered User
 
sailpower's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Fort Lauderdale, FL
Posts: 841
Re: Next step thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laredo View Post
TL;DR

Just finished ASA 101 class, and I have plenty of time on my hands. What is the best next step for solid learning and to get time on the water? I can join a local lake’s Sailing club, purchase a 27’ boat on the same lake, or purchase a boat to keep on the east cost to use one weekend a month for a few years?

Details if you have a lot of time:

After a few weeks worth of reading this site, it is with hesitation that I post this first question. This is because I currently sit at the selfish end of the sailing spectrum (I am all need with no practical knowledge to pass along). This may also place me squarely in the group of those who post and then appear to ‘go away’ for a few years. If this is the case, it is due to the fact that while at the very beginning of this journey I want to be respectful and most of my questions can easily be answered by reading prior beginner’s posts, so this may result in a lower number of posts in the short-term. I suspect it will take years of practical experience prior to being in a place to properly give back.

My question likely falls into the category of ‘just read someone else’s post’ (I see similar questions and one from yesterday), but I think my question may branch off to unique areas based upon the initial replies. But I guess every new person thinks that, asks anyway, and then is pointed to these other posts. No matter the outcome, and with respect to the group, here goes...

Background to question: I currently have time on my hands and in 5 years I’ll be an empty-nester. With these facts, I have started going down the decision-trees that may lead my wife and me to become liveaboards. I am practical enough to recognize that any number of decision tree points may result in this goal/dream’s early termination (or perhaps several adjustments). But in the meantime, I am moving forward. Here is how early in this process I am: I just finished an ASA 101 course on a lake. The decision tree was ‘if I don’t like it I’m done’ VS if I really valued the experience then move on. I LOVED it! And now I am ready for the next step. I would like some time on the water prior to 103/104, but please correct if you think ‘jumping right in’ has value.

It appears I have several choices and don’t know enough to properly setup a pro/con list. I do understand that I can take any approach and be ‘ok’, but if you were starting all over (or could talk to that younger you) what would you do here? Or what other considerations should be evaluated?

The options I see for the next step of time on water (for me) are:
  1. Join a Sailboat club (one year membership) on a local lake. I could sail frequently (~ at least once a week) in a 22-25 foot day sailor.
    • Pros:
      - Could sail as much as I want
      - I’m 20 minutes from the water
      - Have a large support group (beyond you all here)
    • Cons:
      - Can’t take things apart to see how they work (plus I didn’t see much to take apart on a day sailor)
  2. I could purchase a boat (but maybe 27 feet or so at $7,500 - $10K’ish) on the same lake
    • Pros:
      - Could really get hands-on with learning a boat (transferable to a larger one in 5 years or so)
      - I’m 20 minutes from the water
    • Cons:
      - Smaller (early on) support group
  3. Could purchase a larger boat (at $15-20K’ish - doesn’t even have to be sailable at this early point) and keep it on the east coast. The intent would be to learn more (e.g. electronics, navigation, engines, and etc.) for a few years and then sell it and purchase another one when I’m ready (no rush)
    • Pros:
      - Obtain a wider knowledge and skill set (transferable)
    • Cons:
      - Could only get there one weekend a month (plus a few weeks here and there)
      - Less time on the water during this first year
      - Smaller support group

I don’t mind doing all 3 but perhaps one at a time. I suspect the Club is the best option, but any direction, suggestions, thoughts, or support will be very welcome! Thanks!

P.S. I’ll work to make future posts more (length) appropriate.
I went the club route for my first year after taking 5 ASA courses at the same club and am glad that I did.

An advantage of a club is that you will meet like minded folks who are at your level or maybe have some experience and you are all, literally, in the same boat. IMO it is good to have that network in the beginning. As for missing out on fixing things, pay attention, learn and enjoy.

If you buy a boat to start it is all on you. People do that so there is no one size fits all answer.

After my first year of club membership I bought a 30 and the following year a 42 to liveaboard.

This was in Boston.

Good luck.
__________________
sailpower is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23-03-2018, 02:32   #6
Moderator Emeritus
 
GordMay's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario - 48-29N x 89-20W
Boat: (Cruiser Living On Dirt)
Posts: 32,058
Images: 240
Re: Next step thoughts?

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Laredo.
__________________
Gord May
"If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time/$ to fix it?"



GordMay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23-03-2018, 04:29   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Nov 2017
Location: Connecticut
Boat: in the works
Posts: 143
Re: Next step thoughts?

Great question! I love Jims answer too. I'd go the club route, or even look to see if there are any crew opportunities local, if thats an option. If you really want to buy (who doesn't!) IMHO sticking with something around 25' is a good size to add experience and not break the bank. Buy smart, keep her in good shape, and you can sell it without losing your shirt when you move up. But of course that route has running expenses that dont go away. Theres also option C: Look through crew listings for an opening and get some salt in your blood! Could be the best use of vacation time I can think of!
__________________
jefjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-03-2018, 14:26   #8
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4
Re: Next step thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plangstraat View Post
My path has been a little different. In fact it is almost exactly the second option you have proposed.
Thanks for your welcome! It feels good to be here, and I enjoyed learning about your path. It is encouraging to hear a first-hand account of where I can be in a few years.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plangstraat View Post
For us, the progression was perfect. Starting with a small boat and moving up in manageable increments gave us the opportunity to never feel overwhelmed.
Iíve adjusted my plan: I will join the Club and plan to purchase something for the lake in 3-6 month. My thinking is Iíll focus on frequently sailing for a few month and will follow-up with ownership during the last 6 months of membership. Perhaps I should purchase a boat that needs (a lot of) work? I will still be able to sail frequently (on Clubís boats) and receive help/guidance on my learning effort from members as needed. The main reason for this adjustment is that I wonít feel like Iím taking and not giving, since at a minimum I will contribute to the Clubís coffers

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plangstraat View Post
Jim's advice to join a sailing club or join up with those looking for racing crew is solid.
The Club has regular regattas. I may not get salt immediately but will gain experience.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Plangstraat View Post
I tend to be more solitary. This really wouldn't have fit for me.
I am concerned here... The reason I have a five year plan is because I am happily socially booked with my family. I am available during work hours, but Iím guessing the social events (and probably regattas) arenít during work hours. Weíll see...
__________________
Laredo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 26-03-2018, 15:43   #9
Registered User

Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 4
Re: Next step thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailpower View Post
I went the club route for my first year after taking 5 ASA courses at the same club and am glad that I did.

An advantage of a club is that you will meet like minded folks who are at your level or maybe have some experience and you are all, literally, in the same boat. IMO it is good to have that network in the beginning. As for missing out on fixing things, pay attention, learn and enjoy.
Thank you for taking your time to help me. I appreciate it! In a previous post, I detailed an updated plan that I hope captures the best of both options 1 and 2 (given my timeframe). It is comforting to know Iíll be surrounded by a network of peers. I also like the fact that i wonít be pestering some poor guy who was nice enough to help me once. These guys are at the marina and want to help other members.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailpower View Post
After my first year of club membership I bought a 30 and the following year a 42 to liveaboard.
That is my mid-term goal. It is always nice to learn from the very person who has done this. It somehow makes the goal Ďfeelí more reachable. Thanks!
__________________

__________________
Laredo is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Want To Buy: Up-N-Out 4-Step Inflatable - Wide Step dinghy ladder rgesner Classifieds Archive 3 04-10-2015 16:46
Step 1: convince wife. Step 2.....? ontherocks83 Atlantic & the Caribbean 0 23-07-2015 09:58
For Sale: Brushing Awlgrip — A Step by Step Video Guide dennisjay Classifieds Archive 2 17-05-2011 11:54
Step-by-Step - for Dummies . . . Jimbo2010 OpenCPN 7 30-09-2010 18:43



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:51.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.