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Old 09-09-2012, 01:04   #1
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Opinions Please on Impending Purchase (search process)

Currently am beginning the search for full time liveaboard cruising on long passages. Definitely will be a catamaran 40-50 foot.

Am concerned about search process. Specifically, due to inavailability of boats for rent, do I spend thousands on various charters (and thereby less money for purchase when that time comes) to try out different vessels? Or, do I buy an 'intermediary' boat to really tell me what I do/don't like?
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Old 09-09-2012, 02:38   #2
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Re: Opinions please on impending purchase (search process)

Why not crew. It will cost you little.
Time/money spent deciding what is going to best suit you is rarely wasted.
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Old 09-09-2012, 03:59   #3
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Re: Opinions please on impending purchase (search process)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard5 View Post
do I spend thousands on various charters (and thereby less money for purchase when that time comes) to try out different vessels? Or, do I buy an 'intermediary' boat to really tell me what I do/don't like?
Whichever approach works best for you.

Reading and researching as much as possible is useful - but at the end of the day only you can decide what boat works for you and to do that you need hands on knowledge. Relying on others (printed word or in person) only gets you so far, with boats and everything else in life.

But the good news is that pretty much anything you buy will do the job that 90% of folks want from a boat (leaving aside boat condition!). and no boat will be perfect so don't get hung up on finding the perfect boat that does everything you want (or simply think you want). What you need and want (seperate things!) will change over time anyway, not only as you learn first hand but also as your circumstances, use and plans change - that's just life!

Folks rarely buy the perfect boat (or as near as) first time around - but usually they buy more than good enough from simply plenty of research, thinking and as much "hands on" as they can get beforehand. Some go on to buy "better", some keep trying many times! - others realise that what they have is in fact good enough. (and with boats plenty of opportunity to add wants - even if not everything on the wish list).

Nonetheless when it comes to writing the cheque you will be taking a punt, how big a punt depends on how much time and effort willing to put in before hand.
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Old 09-09-2012, 04:47   #4
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Re: Opinions please on impending purchase (search process)

We recently bought a new to us boat. We knew our budget and had already chartered boats of similar size. We ended up buying a little MORE boat than what we thought we could get by with. Have not regretted it.
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Old 09-09-2012, 06:14   #5
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Re: Opinions please on impending purchase (search process)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard5 View Post
Currently am beginning the search for full time liveaboard cruising on long passages. Definitely will be a catamaran 40-50 foot.

Am concerned about search process. Specifically, due to inavailability of boats for rent, do I spend thousands on various charters (and thereby less money for purchase when that time comes) to try out different vessels? Or, do I buy an 'intermediary' boat to really tell me what I do/don't like?

Be careful of buying a boat to see if you really like that type - then you'll have to sell that one and find the perfect boat for you. It's not that easy. Can you crew on different type boats? - see how you like them in action. If you do buy a boat that's not perfect and want a different type, try to sell the first one before you buy the second. It really adds to the stress and strain of the budget having two boats.

I'm assuming you've sailed on a monohull as well as cats - they sure are different. If not, I would suggest you charter or crew on a monohull, just to see what the other is like. If you've tried both, then you should be OK with your decision.

Good luck!
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Old 09-09-2012, 08:56   #6
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Re: Opinions please on impending purchase (search process)

Quote:
Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
Whichever approach works best for you.

Reading and researching as much as possible is useful - but at the end of the day only you can decide what boat works for you and to do that you need hands on knowledge. Relying on others (printed word or in person) only gets you so far, with boats and everything else in life.

But the good news is that pretty much anything you buy will do the job that 90% of folks want from a boat (leaving aside boat condition!). and no boat will be perfect so don't get hung up on finding the perfect boat that does everything you want (or simply think you want). What you need and want (seperate things!) will change over time anyway, not only as you learn first hand but also as your circumstances, use and plans change - that's just life!

Folks rarely buy the perfect boat (or as near as) first time around - but usually they buy more than good enough from simply plenty of research, thinking and as much "hands on" as they can get beforehand. Some go on to buy "better", some keep trying many times! - others realise that what they have is in fact good enough. (and with boats plenty of opportunity to add wants - even if not everything on the wish list).

Nonetheless when it comes to writing the cheque you will be taking a punt, how big a punt depends on how much time and effort willing to put in before hand.
Agreed and well said.

We are currently cruising for our second time, this time aboard a '93 Privilege 482 catamaran. Our first boat was before kids, and a Downeaster 38 monohull. With the Downeaster we learned what we liked and didn't like, but buying a catamaran the second time around, was like buying a boat for the first time again. We knew nothing about catamarans.
We were saving every penny in order to make our cruising kitty last for as long as possible, so we didn't want to spend money on charters. And with kids in the picture, crewing wasn't possible. We did tons of research and took advantage of Multihull Days at the Annapolis Boat Show. While searching for our "perfect" boat, just getting onboard each boat with the broker gave us a good feel for whether it was the right boat, or not. Now, even though there are pros and cons with every boat, we are very happy with our choice, and if we had to do it all over again, we would pick the very same boat.
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:04   #7
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Re: Opinions Please on Impending Purchase (search process)

You don't have to have sailed in the EXACT boat that you want to buy, but you should have some experience with that TYPE of boat.

I would, for example, say that it is foolish to buy a 40-50 foot catamaran if up to now you have only sailed monohulls, or if you have only sailed 25-30 foot catamarans. It is also foolish to buy a 40 foot cruising catamaran if you have only sailed on 40 foot racing catamarans. But if you have sailed on a couple of different 40-50 foot cruising catamarans, then you should have a good idea of what they are like, and it is not necessary to have sailed the one particular model that you are considering buying.

My 2-cents worth, anyway.
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