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Old 20-12-2013, 15:42   #16
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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Originally Posted by OldFrog75 View Post
I suspect it's the same up and down the Southern California Coast - including Long Beach and San Diego - and I'd be interested to hear if it's like that in other places as well.
?
This is very common in East Coast too, big and small, new and old, same fate.
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Old 20-12-2013, 15:51   #17
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Maybe a month after I bought my first big boat, a Seawind 1000xl, I was visiting a couple on a nice ketch in the harbor. The topic of boat usage came up and both the man and woman started pointing at boats moored around us making comments like "that one has no engine" or "that one has no cables for the rudder" or a whole list of other reasons a boat could not be used.

A lot of us are well aware of the amount of time, money, and effort required to maintain a boat. It only takes a small break in the routine to maintain a boat and it is simply not sea worthy enough to be used, especially if the owner is looking for reasons, like the owners lack of seamanship, to not use a boat.
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:00   #18
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

When I go down to my boat during the week the parking lot is full of boat service vehicles. You would think half the boats are not operational due to repair and maintenance.
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:14   #19
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The big boat thing really is true. Marinas pack boats in like sardines. Anyone who thinks it's cake to dock a big boat in tight marina is lying through their teeth.
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:17   #20
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Originally Posted by eyschulman View Post
When I go down to my boat during the week the parking lot is full of boat service vehicles. You would think half the boats are not operational due to repair and maintenance.
I advise anyone looking to buy a boar to make sure they enjoy it. It's one thing to spend money on something you enjoy, spending it to keep the marina and bottom diver in business is different.
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:28   #21
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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I'm laughing because under those circumstances the much wider "sail only" lane in the middle of the channel would be so much easier to navigate given the lack of traffic....not to mention you'd have the right of way heading out past the breakwater...
Indeed. But those 1000 boats were all under sail-it was late afternoon. (MDR main channel is mostly DDW in and a beat out. And quite wide.)

the racers didn't mind. . Those that took their boat out 1 or 2 times a year were totally freaked by a boat sailing the "wrong" way. It was great fun. Heck, I've sailed a Catalina 36 out when there was much less traffic.

those that know MDR will also understand the fenders comment.

Back to the originally scheduled thread. ...
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:36   #22
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This is very common in East Coast too, big and small, new and old, same fate.
Very common every where I've been. Used to work as an instructor/captain out of a big marina in Texas, so I spent a lot of time in the marina. There were many boats I know for certain had not left the dock in 5 years. Reached over and squeezed a line on one once and it crumbled in my hand (it had not moved in way over 5 years). Puzzles me why people keep paying dock fees on such boats.

When we needed more boats we even contacted a number of unused boat owners about putting them in charter, refit to be repaid from charter fees, or even selling them. Nope, not a single owner was interested.

Strange, irrational, financially foolish behavior.
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Old 20-12-2013, 16:47   #23
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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Big advocate of small boat cruising myself. (snip!)
PS. One major advantage as well, no need to read those anchor threads.
Too true re the anchor threads. Still laughing.

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Having a boat is like having a gym membership. Even if you never go, you still want to think of yourself as the kind of person who goes to the gym/sailboat. That keeps you paying the fee despite all logic.
That is absolutely correct. I know a gal who says she's "in the club" because she has a boat that she's essentially removed all value from by virtue of improving it to death. The money she's poured into a MacGregor 22 is crazy -- especially since she has not been on it except 10 minutes when she first bought it. Since then it's been on a trailer, which is now rusting into oblivion.

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I advise anyone looking to buy a boar to make sure they enjoy it.
And Rebel Heart is spot on: far too many people think they want a boat and have this mythological idea of what it's like. Something along the lines of sailing smartly into a harbor, lowering the anchor that sets on the first try, kicking back with a cold one while all the other boats are so amazed by virtue of sailing skill that they come over to offer congratulations, adult beverages and invitations to dinner.

The reality is far different. Me? I like to relax and read a book, and if it's a good day said book is not Calder's nor an engine manual!
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:06   #24
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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When we needed more boats we even contacted a number of unused boat owners about putting them in charter, refit to be repaid from charter fees, or even selling them. Nope, not a single owner was interested.

Strange, irrational, financially foolish behavior.
I agree. You can charter a boat for the day for less than monthly slip fees so if you're not going to use it at least 12 days a year what's the point?
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:07   #25
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

I have known several people with nice big boats and could very well afford them. At least they could afford the money it takes but could not afford the time to use them. Some times people don't realize how little spare time they actually have.
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:09   #26
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Some pursue active use, some use their boats as often as their busy lifestyles will allow, and there are those who fulfill their nautical predilection by using their boats as floating waterfront property. I support each of them and applaud their fulfillment of their individual dreams.
Now that I'm retired I spend a considerable amount of time doing what I wish I had the time and money to do when I was younger. I have a lot of catching up to do!
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:09   #27
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Good to see some small boat lovin going on

I often feel like I'd see a lot more young people out there if they didn't think they needed a 40+ footer to make it work.
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Old 20-12-2013, 17:14   #28
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

I guess I'm guilty as charged. I have a boat and it's actually sitting up on the hard in Marigot, Saint Martin. It's there doing absolutely nothing while I'm here in Japan working on the last 1.5 years of my contract. And it's killing me. Every day I wake up and look around the bedroom wishing it were my berth on the boat.

But let me back up a little. I've been working for the past 10 years so I can retire early, buy a boat, hone by rusty sailing skills and head out for places I've never seen. A year and a half ago I saw an advertisement for a boat and it was a pretty sweet deal. Under market value (whatever that is) and all the gadgets I would need to live aboard. A perfect fit but I wasn't ready to buy just yet because I didn't need a dock ornament siphoning the money from my bank account. But I had that look on my face.

My wife said, "we have the money to buy it, what are the costs of keeping it for a couple years?"

I looked and it was doable. Yes, I would be working for another 3 years but after I'd have a boat and enough money in the bank to just enjoy life. So, here I am... half a world away from my boat. I have no strong attachment to land or any particular country for that matter. I just need to finish what I started here and be done with it.

I'm going to spend a few weeks on my boat with my wife in February then reluctantly put it back on land. This will be the last time I do that. Next time it will go into the water and stay until it needs bottom pain or a new seal in the saildrive or thru-hull maintenance or rudder repair or... well, you get the picture.

There is one truth I've learned from all this: The worse thing you can do to a boat is not use it.
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Old 20-12-2013, 19:41   #29
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

The "non-use" issue vs the "crowded waters" issue: YEars ago when Ann and I were still weekend sailors in SF bay, we would go out sailing every weekend, year-round. She was struggling through a Masters degree program, working full time and raising 3 kids as a single Mom... but on the weekends, we'd work on the boat and then go out, spend Saturday night on the hook somewhere and she would hit the books while I goofed off. What a life! But all the dedication paid off, and we've been cruising for a long time now.

But, I've digressed (fancy that!). I remember that on the yachting season's "opening day", the bay would be REALLY crowded with boats, many of which were seldom used... kinda scary, it was. But the really scary thing was that if you wandered around in the marinas that weekend, they were still full of boats! Even on that day of celebration and hype, most of the slips were occupied. Think what it would be like if say 50% of all the boats tried to go sailing on the same day -- chaos doesn't begin to describe what would happen.

So, for those who do go sailing, be glad that most of your fellow boat owners don't use them very much, no matter what the reason. Oh, BTW, the same sort of usage rate has been evident every where we have been in our cruising... not just MDR or SF.

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 20-12-2013, 19:50   #30
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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SNIP

There is one truth I've learned from all this: The worse thing you can do to a boat is not use it.
This post is the thread winner.
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