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Old 01-04-2012, 05:24   #151
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

interesting fund raising idea

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Old 01-04-2012, 05:28   #152
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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shoestring cruising just got a whole lot more fun in the states!

BBC News - Cannabis cultivating store WeGrow opens in US capital

I can see some pot-smoking lowlifes going into the store and whispering to the clerk: "hey man, got any good seeds?"
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Old 01-04-2012, 10:32   #153
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Originally Posted by sctpc View Post
Same and ant it a pain getting that floppy 30 kgs up then pumping it up and the worst is trying to get it in the water in a rolly anchorage and not drop the outboard ( yes i use a line but if I am by may self?)
I do it in steps:
1) Remove all fenders and sails in bags from the locker
2) Go down in the locker
3) Put the dinghy (rolled in transport bag) upright in the locker
4) Heave the dinghy in the cockpit
5) Get out of sail locker
6) Carry the dinghy to the foredeck (easier with a helper but did it alone many times)
7) Remove the dinghy from bag
8) Take the bag to the cockpit and bring back the pump.
9) Make the painter fast to a bow cleat, with a lot of slack
10) Holding to the forestay, inflate the dinghy (~100 pump strokes per side)
11) Make the genoa halyard fast to the bridle on dinghy painter
12) Heave on the halyard to put the dinghy upright on deck
13) Push the dinghy over the lifelines
14) Lower the dinghy on water, slowly veering the halyard
15) Release the halyard from the dinghy, make it fast to pulpit
16) Holding (firmly!)the painter, lead the dinghy to the stern
17) Make the painter fast to a stern cleat, with a lot of slack
18) Grab the *stern* painter (this is the trick) on the dinghy
19) Make it fast without any slack, so that the stern cones of the dinghy press on the hull
20) Make the outboard safety line fast to the stern pulpit, with enough slack
21) Remove the outboard from support on stern pulpit
22) Go down in "sugar scoop" stern
23) Lower the outboard on dinghy transom
24) Tighten both presses on transom
25) Cast the outboard safety line from the stern and lay it in the dinghy
Et voilą!

To stow the dinghy, I just have to retrace these steps... Adding a (floating) stern painter (with bridle) on the dinghy transom was the trick that made it easy to install/remove the outboard.

Alain
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Old 01-04-2012, 11:27   #154
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

My inflatable kayak has a 500# carrying capacity, Lucky I'm not that heavy. It also has space for water and fuel jugs, food, etc, Plus its less then 40 pounds so easier to girl handle on and off the boat. It's not as fast as a hard kayak, but its faster then a hard dinghy rowing.. I did a lot of research before getting it. It works well enough for me...
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:03   #155
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
My inflatable kayak has a 500# carrying capacity, Lucky I'm not that heavy. It also has space for water and fuel jugs, food, etc, Plus its less then 40 pounds so easier to girl handle on and off the boat. It's not as fast as a hard kayak, but its faster then a hard dinghy rowing.. I did a lot of research before getting it. It works well enough for me...
I am actually looking for such a thing! Mind if I ask what kind/make you have?
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:25   #156
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

Its an Advanced Elements AdvancedFrame Convertible Inflatable Kayak. 1 or two persons. With one person, there is space for 4 water / fuel jugs and a few bags of grocerys. Its stable too so easy to enter and exit from the boat.

two separate main air chambers, so a leak in one will still let you get back to the boat.
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:27   #157
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

I have the one person version of this brand. Great little kayak! Very well made and handles well.
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Old 01-04-2012, 21:14   #158
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

So my family always owned a boat and I owned one for a few years...boatless now but looking again...trying to get my head wrapped around maintenance costs. I have read a bunch of budgets people have posted online and many are in the $500+/month range for maintenance which seems insane to me.

I had a 27ft ericson with an outboard, not exactly a blue water cruiser, but maintenance costs were very little and I could see myself living on the boat if I did not have to work a white collar job. I did some relatively expensive upgrades (for example, PO had taken out the old head with macerator and put in porta potty...I took out porta potty and put in head with holding tank) and as I bought her for basically nothing did have to put some money into maintenance necessities early on. But I don't think on the average, in the long-term, necessary maintenance would be that expensive. The biggest cost, by far, was moorage, which is why I sold the boat. I had barely any time off and the moorage cost was killing me, just didn't make sense. I thought about moving the boat but at the time I thought it was too much of a PITA to live on a small primitive boat and maintain a professional appearance for a white collar job.

Maybe I should explain that in my opinion a shoestring sailor would be a person who (1) only spends money on necessities; and (2) does not move around that much. Moving around, from my experience, is a big expense for a boat as their propulsion systems are some of the the most expensive maintenance items and their fuel efficiency is laughable in the best of cases. A shoestring sailor would be living on the hook so no or minimal moorage costs, and would be living on the boat full time.

Anyways, I will try to summarize both my maintenance costs and costs for running the boat. Please let me know if I'm totally missing a major item.

So looking at maintenance (and I don't mean polishing the steel so that your marina neighbor admires your boat). The only real necessary maintenance I did on my boat was bottom painting every 2-3 years and the 9ish year old outboard broke...I sold the broken outboard for $250, got a used one for $500, eventually bought a new one for $1,800 and sold the used one I had bought for $500. Bottom painting is expensive in Washington as you have to pay someone to do it and there are tons of environmental regulations. So about $900 every 2-3 years for bottom painting (which would be substantially less if I was cruising somewhere where I could do the work myself) and maybe $1,550 every 8-9 years for a new motor. So that's a max of maybe $650/year. Eventually I would have replaced the running rigging which is a bit of an expense. Sails I think I would buy used and then modify a bit to work on my boat, that's a couple hundred a pop. Aside form that I can't really think of much. That would maybe average out to $1,000 per year and would be a lot less if I could do my own bottom painting. I'm trying to figure out how you get to $500+/month in maintenance. I am married now and looking at a larger boat with an inboard diesel. I could see the far more complicated engine and larger sails adding a lot of expenses, but $500+/month still seems high. A diesel should last longer even though it's far more expensive. Hopefully sell the boat before the current diesel breaks.

Running costs were very minimal. I filled up a 6 gallon gas tank now and then. I replaced the old deep cycle battery with a new one from wal-mart for $50 once. I used 2 butane burners for cooking...cheap fuel if ordered in bulk and about $20 each (thought of switching to propane but holy crap expensive installing a proper system from scratch). Also you can get some cool BBQ attachments from most Korean supermarkets. Had a charcoal BBQ I used now and then. Finally found two aluminum kerosene lamps for cheap ($20, freakin brass lamps are a rip) but in retrospect it would be cheaper and better to buy some cheap battery powered LED lights. Kerosene is not cheap. I used a third-hand handheld GPS for navigation, which I got for basically nothing. Wood stove for heat, would go to shore with a handsaw and cut up enough logs to fill a 5-gallon bucket, which would make the boat hot as hell on a winter night. Used a 4-man roll-up inflatable boat as dinghy. Ice for the icebox was about $1 per week. Trying to think of what else there was...I would use a cell phone mainly which you can get here with unlimited voice, data, and text for around $50/month. Books are a major expense if not pirated. But a ton of free books are becoming available thanks to google. I have a nook and it's great for reading in the sunlight, great investment for a boater.

Thought I would also touch on a couple points briefly....

I am unsure how much cheaper it would be to cruise in a poor country. I have traveled to a few countries, some considered poor, and although restaurants were often much cheaper the basic ingredients were not vastly cheaper than the US. Sometimes more expensive. Or cheaper but of much lower quality. Fruits and vegs were usually cheaper but meats were sometimes more expensive.

Building something from scratch, e.g. a dinghy or boat, is usually a lot more expensive than buying a decent second hand item.

I would never be able to subsist off seafood and foraged foods, especially if I didn't move around that much. I love seafood but after a few months of living off dungeness crabs, clams, and a few fish as my only proteins I would be so damn bored of them.

Anyways, sorry to drone on. Feel free to go back to discussing medical care :P.
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Old 01-04-2012, 22:19   #159
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

I'm not sure who spends $500 a month on maintenance. Probably folks who fall well outside the $500 a month total living expenses. Buy a new radar, or chartplotter or autopilot, and the price starts rising quickly. Pay someone else for labor and the price goes up very quick.

My maintenance expenses per month averaged for the last 3 years has been about $68 a month. That includes haul out (I do my own labor), new (Used) main sail, two new batteries, belts, oil, filters, varnish, etc. Remove the haulout, sail and batterys and the month to month costs are low.

So far this year I've spent $20 on oil and coolant. ( Still have filters in the spares locker so no extra cost yet.) Thats $20 for the first quarter. Fuel is extra, but even there I've only used 10-14 gallons so far. More soon, I'm guessing

No bottom cleaning or diver except to change out the prop zinc. I move the boat enough to keep the growth down on the hull.

Small inboard Diesels get better fuel mileage then an outboard. Plus they run a long time, 6000-10,000 hours with proper care and feeding. I get about 12 miles per gallon, give or take a bit. Which allows me to move the boat around some, even at $4.50 ish a gallon..

So for the shoestring sailor, assuming you start out with a boat in good condition, maintenance costs need not be high.
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Old 02-04-2012, 03:11   #160
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Originally Posted by jm21 View Post
Maybe I should explain that in my opinion a shoestring sailor would be a person who (1) only spends money on necessities; and (2) does not move around that much. Moving around, from my experience, is a big expense for a boat as their propulsion systems are some of the the most expensive maintenance items and their fuel efficiency is laughable in the best of cases. A shoestring sailor would be living on the hook so no or minimal moorage costs, and would be living on the boat full time.
Whilst I agree with you on both points, I don't think that the physical act of "moving around" (including any fuel costs) is what makes moving around too costly - it's that you always arrive somewhere not knowing what and where is best value / cheapest, whether that be a s/h outboard or a tin of beans. Obviously asking around helps (plus internet!) but IME simply no substitute for own boots on the ground - and an acceptance that a learning curve always costs. I would caution that above comes "only" from wandering around the world for extended periods over several decades without a boat. But some things ain't that different ashore or afloat.

Nonetheless to my mind location(s) are the key, and probably involves having a home port (or 2) and / or a regular circuit or stomping ground over which one can build up own library of first hand knowledge that is updated regularly (stuff changes - even abroad ).....not to say that one can't go "off piste", just turning up in unknown places the exception rather than the rule. Obviously a learning curve ($$$) involved to arrive in the happy place of a lower budget, but such is life......

.....Options of course do open up if the Shoestring Sailor can factor in some work ($$$), whether at "home" (via boat or Jumbo Jet). With a tight rein on budget the amount of that required will be less than for the average Joe. FWIW, for me a life without making any money would be a nightmare (both for my bank manager and for me mentally - I see it as a game, a challenge - I work surprisingly hard at doing as much of SFA as I can ).

I rather suspect (actually I know!) that boat maintanence budgets grow to figures that get taken to the grave when need gets merged into want (the road to financial hell is paved with shiney things - whether ashore or afloat).

And as already said, keeping on top of maintanence (before things break or wear out) is far cheaper than doing repairs (often at times / places where cost is a secondary consideration). I.e you know that the mainsail is on it's last legs, first step is to learn to sew (a stitch in time etc) second step is to keep an eye out for a deal on a new or s/h one - and buy when the deal works for you, whether you fit before or after your existing sail shreds itself is a choice. but at that stage it is a choice. and you already have the good deal in the bank .


Quote:
Anyways, sorry to drone on. Feel free to go back to discussing medical care :P.
I must confess that end of things does bore me rigid , but that because for me it is not a big consideration (as from the UK) - but I appreciate that for others (especially as one gets older) it is something that needs to be carefully considered (and factored into the budget / the risks understood and accepted).
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Old 02-04-2012, 03:55   #161
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Whilst I agree with you on both points, I don't think that the physical act of "moving around" (including any fuel costs) is what makes moving around too costly - it's that you always arrive somewhere not knowing what and where is best value / cheapest, whether that be a s/h outboard or a tin of beans. Obviously asking around helps (plus internet!) but IME simply no substitute for own boots on the ground - and an acceptance that a learning curve always costs. I would caution that above comes "only" from wandering around the world for extended periods over several decades without a boat. But some things ain't that different ashore or afloat.
But what's the point of living on the boat if you are not moving around, not "cruising"? If you are just trying to live on a shoestring it seems to me living on land has got to be cheaper. If you are not going to move around but still live on the boat then you can forget about a lot of equipment like autopilots, wind vanes, life rafts, etc. and save tons of money. For that matter, just get a power boat. Since you aren't moving much fuel is not a big factor and you've saved on all those sails you won't need.
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Old 02-04-2012, 04:55   #162
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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But what's the point of living on the boat if you are not moving around, not "cruising"? If you are just trying to live on a shoestring it seems to me living on land has got to be cheaper. If you are not going to move around but still live on the boat then you can forget about a lot of equipment like autopilots, wind vanes, life rafts, etc. and save tons of money. For that matter, just get a power boat. Since you aren't moving much fuel is not a big factor and you've saved on all those sails you won't need.
Living on land is much more expensive than on a boat. In most places I've price shopped for marina's in the US, slip rent is either on par or much lower than the smallest and crappiest apartments in the same city.

I agree that if all a person wanted to do was live aboard in a marina and not move, a powerboat is the way to go. It's pretty easy to find one with broken engines that owe slip fee's or something and needs to be sold extremely cheap. Several people in this marina do exactly that. They're paying $200 a month for a slip instead of $600 for an 1br apartment.

Fixing up a boat is far more expensive than just 'living' either on land or water...

I think DOJ is spot-on that moving is costly in the sense that it takes time to settle into a new location and start finding all the good deals and get a job. That's why I'm focusing on self-sufficiency and preparing the boat, and myself, for living at anchor. So I can go to any city and still live as cheaply as possible while I do my scouting (or move on if I don't like it). The other thing is having a seaworthy boat, so I can actually sail to wherever I want to go instead of the costly route of the ICW...

Fixing up a boat is the expensive part, but once it's 'finished', maintaining it is not expensive at all. That's also why I've found it important to take my time and fix things exactly the way I want them, instead of just making it 'work' as cheaply as possible.

Job's are the other big factor in terms of how often you move, or cruise. It seems to me that the large majority of cruisers, whether they are shoestring or not, have some sort of fixed or residual income. They are not actively earning money while they cruise (I know a lot do, but it's definitely not the majority). So for those of us that have to put boots on the ground to fund their cruising habits, relocating must done carefully with lots of planning.

I've been living aboard and working on this boat for about 7 months now. I'm currently spending a lot more than $500 a month, but my living expenses are still right around $500... It'll probably take me atleast another 6 months before I'm ready enough to move to a new location, and maybe another year before I'm comfortable enough to start actually cruising. With the plan still being to work 6 months and cruise for 6 months at a time.

The big question that always I always hear, is whether it's worth it to buy a fixer upper or just save for better boat. I think this is a personal decision. I'll probably put over $10k into this boat over the course of 2 years when it's all said and done, and it's a lot of work... I could have just saved another year and bought a $15-20k boat instead of a $5-10k boat. But for me, living in Ohio and saving money was absolute HELL I'm infinitely more satisfied with my life living on the water, even in a marina, and putting all my money into this boat. So the change for me has been a positive one, even though I'm not out sailing around the world. My plan is still solid and financially realistic, and 2 years is not too long a time for the refit/relocation etc.. But 2 years would have been far too long to just sit and wait watching my money slowly accumulate.
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Old 02-04-2012, 05:10   #163
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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But what's the point of living on the boat if you are not moving around, not "cruising"? If you are just trying to live on a shoestring it seems to me living on land has got to be cheaper. If you are not going to move around but still live on the boat then you can forget about a lot of equipment like autopilots, wind vanes, life rafts, etc. and save tons of money. For that matter, just get a power boat. Since you aren't moving much fuel is not a big factor and you've saved on all those sails you won't need.
I find it hard to fundamentally disagree with you - but having said that.......

Whilst I agree that living on land can be (usually is?) the cheapest option (if one is open on where that land is - and what one is willing / able to give up, especially on the work front) nonetheless a boat can make financial sense, depending on circumstances and location - albeit that often also wrapped up with the simple desire to (and IMO no problem with that).

I certainly wasn't advocating staying in only one location forever, just that going "cruising" does not have to involve endless wanderings to see what is over the next horizon (that too gets boring eventually)....and if one is willing / wishes to take a different approach then the costs not only do drop but also become manageable by being far more optional, rather than getting sucked into spending money by neccessity.

For me the great benefit of a boat is the increased options it can give to someone to make own decisions - including the bad ones! (no such thing as a free lunch )......and as one size does not fit all, plenty of scope to do whatever works for "you".

Leaving aside that the term "cruising" has as much / little true meaning as "Blue Water" or a "safe" boat.......if someone else says that whatever I (or Uncle Tom Cobbley) does is not "real cruising", then so what? The tests are whether what I am doing works for me and whether I am having fun .

Going RTW for a year or 3, spending 6 months a year in the Carribean etc (and back "home" for work), migrating through your patch of 10 or 3 ports for a few years all (IMO) different sides of the same coin - whether or not "forever", for a few years or on a "suck it and see basis" (IME nothing lasts forever, including the simple desire to do something / anything).
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Old 02-04-2012, 06:04   #164
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Originally Posted by callmecrazy View Post
Living on land is much more expensive than on a boat. In most places I've price shopped for marina's in the US, slip rent is either on par or much lower than the smallest and crappiest apartments in the same city.

I agree that if all a person wanted to do was live aboard in a marina and not move, a powerboat is the way to go. It's pretty easy to find one with broken engines that owe slip fee's or something and needs to be sold extremely cheap. Several people in this marina do exactly that. They're paying $200 a month for a slip instead of $600 for an 1br apartment.

Fixing up a boat is far more expensive than just 'living' either on land or water...

I think DOJ is spot-on that moving is costly in the sense that it takes time to settle into a new location and start finding all the good deals and get a job. That's why I'm focusing on self-sufficiency and preparing the boat, and myself, for living at anchor. So I can go to any city and still live as cheaply as possible while I do my scouting (or move on if I don't like it). The other thing is having a seaworthy boat, so I can actually sail to wherever I want to go instead of the costly route of the ICW...

Fixing up a boat is the expensive part, but once it's 'finished', maintaining it is not expensive at all. That's also why I've found it important to take my time and fix things exactly the way I want them, instead of just making it 'work' as cheaply as possible.

Job's are the other big factor in terms of how often you move, or cruise. It seems to me that the large majority of cruisers, whether they are shoestring or not, have some sort of fixed or residual income. They are not actively earning money while they cruise (I know a lot do, but it's definitely not the majority). So for those of us that have to put boots on the ground to fund their cruising habits, relocating must done carefully with lots of planning.

I've been living aboard and working on this boat for about 7 months now. I'm currently spending a lot more than $500 a month, but my living expenses are still right around $500... It'll probably take me atleast another 6 months before I'm ready enough to move to a new location, and maybe another year before I'm comfortable enough to start actually cruising. With the plan still being to work 6 months and cruise for 6 months at a time.

The big question that always I always hear, is whether it's worth it to buy a fixer upper or just save for better boat. I think this is a personal decision. I'll probably put over $10k into this boat over the course of 2 years when it's all said and done, and it's a lot of work... I could have just saved another year and bought a $15-20k boat instead of a $5-10k boat. But for me, living in Ohio and saving money was absolute HELL I'm infinitely more satisfied with my life living on the water, even in a marina, and putting all my money into this boat. So the change for me has been a positive one, even though I'm not out sailing around the world. My plan is still solid and financially realistic, and 2 years is not too long a time for the refit/relocation etc.. But 2 years would have been far too long to just sit and wait watching my money slowly accumulate.
O.K. I'm with you on most of this but I still think in the "long term" living on land would be cheaper. And that's because you could buy food and staples in larger quantities since you've got more storage area; you could share expenses with a roommate if you are single; and you don't have all that boat maintenance if you're just a renter. Now "short-term" or on a temporary basis water could win over land.

But jim21 seemed to be talking about living on the hook and not moving about. That seems crazy to me and a big PITA ... why?
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Old 02-04-2012, 06:10   #165
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Re: Shoestring Sailors (Cruising on $500 per month - part II)

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Originally Posted by David_Old_Jersey View Post
I find it hard to fundamentally disagree with you - but having said that.......

Whilst I agree that living on land can be (usually is?) the cheapest option (if one is open on where that land is - and what one is willing / able to give up, especially on the work front) nonetheless a boat can make financial sense, depending on circumstances and location - albeit that often also wrapped up with the simple desire to (and IMO no problem with that).

I certainly wasn't advocating staying in only one location forever, just that going "cruising" does not have to involve endless wanderings to see what is over the next horizon (that too gets boring eventually)....and if one is willing / wishes to take a different approach then the costs not only do drop but also become manageable by being far more optional, rather than getting sucked into spending money by neccessity.

For me the great benefit of a boat is the increased options it can give to someone to make own decisions - including the bad ones! (no such thing as a free lunch )......and as one size does not fit all, plenty of scope to do whatever works for "you".

Leaving aside that the term "cruising" has as much / little true meaning as "Blue Water" or a "safe" boat.......if someone else says that whatever I (or Uncle Tom Cobbley) does is not "real cruising", then so what? The tests are whether what I am doing works for me and whether I am having fun .

Going RTW for a year or 3, spending 6 months a year in the Carribean etc (and back "home" for work), migrating through your patch of 10 or 3 ports for a few years all (IMO) different sides of the same coin - whether or not "forever", for a few years or on a "suck it and see basis" (IME nothing lasts forever, including the simple desire to do something / anything).
Sorry DOJ I know you weren't advocating staying in one place forever. I should have been quoting jim21 reply which to me seemed to be saying live on the hook and don't move around much. That's what I didn't see the point in.
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