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Old 07-01-2018, 08:41   #46
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

Sounds to me that you've narrowing it down considerably -- given your previous boat/outdoors experience when "your sailboat" pops up in your vision, you'll recognize it. I didn't read what you did in the military, but if part of your career was with a rucksack on your back (or doing the duffle-bag-drag in C130s), you'll have a completely different perspective on personal requirements compared to those who spent years compelled to travel business class, find a valet and roll off the plane into senior staff meetings. I like the tone of "TP's" synthesis... Around 30ft+/- there is so many options it is hard to narrow down even with semi-rigid budget parameters... rescanning these pages, I think the draft if the vessel was about the only semi-firm feature, and even that seemed to have gotten squishy as the discussion progress.

You seem to have decided that financing may not be the best for you -- I heartily agree. Even for those of us not remotely independently wealthy, there is a serviceable vessel out there. I've owned sail and power boats off and on since the early 70s -- and the biggest mistake I made was to let myself get talked into a post-retirement "escape vessel" that eventually blew through my budget and was in time financed -- I intended to see the world (or at least part of it) and never left the Chesapeake -- word to the wise! It has taken years to regroup and get back to what matters (to me), but excepting that one huge mistake that effectively left me tied to the dock, I've never paid more than $10K for a boat (see the blog you can see some of them). You can get the one you that suits you, its out there -- dollars are not the limiting factor, but imagination can be -- looking at your camper-home pictures, I'd guess you'll do just fine.
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Old 07-01-2018, 09:19   #47
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

OUr member here boatman61 has very good advice (as usual) in this category: Never spend more on a boat than you are willing to lose.
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Old 07-01-2018, 10:29   #48
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

I'm a retired helicopter pilot so I know flying and navigation. I grew up on power boats and even did a stint not flying in the Navy and got my OOD (Officer of the Deck) qualification on a 42,000 ton amphibious assault ship (USS IWO JIMA). I got a 96% on my Coast Guard "rules of the road" test. So I'm comfortable navigating and following charts. Trimming, jibbing, and tacking are what I will be learning, and how/what to pack, and what life is like at 6 kts!
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Old 07-01-2018, 11:42   #49
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

Quote:
Originally Posted by zimm View Post
I'm a retired helicopter pilot ... and got my OOD (Officer of the Deck) qualification on a 42,000 ton amphibious assault ship...
Dang Sir -- yer way over-qualified... John Hanna (Tahiti) used to say he could teach anyone what they needed to know about sailing in 30-minutes, the rest was just practice. Although some modern vessels have nav-stations that rival the space-shuttle at 4-6kts I'm unconvinced that it is a requirement... my project this month is to try to learn the sextant basics.

Maybe someone already mentioned it, but it is worth poking around on the Atom website -- years of down-to-earth knowledge over there and it pretty much can be used for the 25-35 foot size sailboats.

Atom Voyages - Home
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Old 07-01-2018, 13:42   #50
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

Quote: "I'm a retired helicopter pilot ..."

Oh, Dear! Why are you asking us then? You shoulda told us that right off the top :-)

John Hanna was right. I'm not John Hanna, but give me a day, and I can teach you all you need to know to go solo. And I promise you that even at six knots - four, more like - you won't be bored ;-0)!

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Old 07-01-2018, 15:09   #51
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

Catalina 30 tall rig is a great boat for just that. However, it may lead to wanting a larger boat when your kids get a bit bigger like mine have. Have fun!
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Old 07-01-2018, 15:12   #52
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Re: What size/type first our first sailboat- 2 adults/2 kids sailing in Miami/Keys

I actually started by joining a club that gave me access to various boats to see what I enjoyed most. Maybe check on that. Helped me decide. Good luck.
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