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Old 26-12-2013, 04:58   #76
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Speaking as a cruiser, this is Cruisers Forum, it is apparent to me that most cruisers will sit long periods in one area before moving on. Months or years! Overall, I believe we have two separate situations to contend with.

1. The moment we take our boats out, we fear that something big will break, or we will run into something big (usually a log). We are too used to the 20 to 1 rule. I.E. You spend about 20 days doing maintenance on a big boat for each day you go sailing.

2. Big boats in small marinas is a real pain. They simply can't get in/out very easily. In the tight marina I am now in I roped the boat in from the channel. Roped? That means I was tied to shore and other boats and moved 1 to 3 feet at a time. At any given time there were at least 6 lines keeping my boat in line. Why? My boat is 40 feet wide, and the clearance between the sterns of the other boats and the wall was 5 feet wider. One gust of wind would have pushed me up against other boats or the wall. I then did a very careful turn into the slip. Mind you.

A. I made a personal inspection of the marina before arriving.
B. I moored outside the marina 4 days waiting for the marina owner to come back.
C. The marina had to move 4 boats to make room for me.
D. I measured the area they had for me and rightly insisted that a 5th boat needed to be moved or else I would not fit.

With all this hassle to get into a marina it does make it difficult to leave. Mind you, it was well worth getting in this time.

I arrived in the marina just a few days before typhoon Yolanda hit Cebu Island a few miles North of me. Trees in front and behind my boat were uprooted. However, being in the marina allowed me to take 15 lines to shore (4 were chains). Had I been moored, I would have been pushed into the trees.

The care necessary to move a big boat like mine made me laugh one day. Someone asked when I was in Singapore if we could take it out for a few hours. Right a few hours, it takes a few hours to just coordinate with the marina to have tenders ready to help ensure I don't bump into the multimillion dollar yachts. Now that would blow my cruising budget quickly.
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Old 26-12-2013, 05:01   #77
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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Originally Posted by Alenka View Post
I could be wrong but I suspect, looking how new boat sales have slumped, there are less and less such purchases. Which I hope in the long run will be much better for those of us who buy boats to sail.
I have an 180 degree opinion to that. I think it is precisely BECAUSE of those sales that folks who like sailing get to benefit from (nearly) new boat technology for much less. The only downside that I do see is that a lot of boats are built for marina comfort, and less for cruising and so modern boats might fit your requirements somewhat less but it is a small point.

I think that there is tonnes of benefits from people who don't sail as much as the more active people do. If we had to carry this industry with that small group, we would have a lot fewer shops and yards to benefit from, fewer marinas to choose from, boats to choose from, in fact every single thing would be harder to get and more expensive. All hail the landlubbing sailors!


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Old 26-12-2013, 05:07   #78
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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My boat is 40 feet wide
With all due respect, I would be willing to bet that not even 1 of the 4,000 boats mentioned by the OP has a beam that wide. I have never heard of a boat that wide before (wider than 90% of yachts are long).

I am not surprised that you are having trouble. If I was building a marina, I would not be prepared to make the investment to cater for that 1 individual who chooses a boat with a beam that wide. No offence meant but it seems a case of the bed you made...

[EDIT] I notice you are selling her because of berthing issues. That makes sense then.


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Old 26-12-2013, 05:53   #79
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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I have never heard of a boat that wide before (wider than 90% of yachts are long).
The favorite comment I once got was my boat is like sailing an aircraft carrier. I must admit all that stability does make for a very enjoyable sail even in heavy seas.
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Old 26-12-2013, 06:22   #80
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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Marina del Rey has over 4000 slips and very few are empty, yet it seems like on any given day fewer than 1% actually go out on the water - even on the weekends.

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.

How can so many people afford to use their boats so infrequently? Why aren't more boats offered for sale?
People don't use their boats because boating is dangerous and hard work. Most boats are "conversation pieces". PS Im 76 and just bought the boat in pic (it has electric winches).
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Old 17-11-2014, 09:37   #81
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

I really believe that it is much more about the fear of actually sailing the boat than some of the other reasons discussed.

As a small plane pilot it is the same. I fly a lot for a private pilot close to 100 hrs/year. I find many pilots are afraid to fly their aircraft unless the wind is right down the runway and there is not a cloud in the sky. Many never go to the airport the plane just sits in the hanger. A bit less visible that in a slip but the same thing. They even keep up the annual and some years never fly it at all.

Talk about scary, go flying with somebody who flys less than 10 hrs/year.

I was also impressed on my recent trip to the Bahamas where I and a friend sailed almost every day but most stayed in the anchorages if the wind was predicted to be over 15kts. We sailed all the time in 25 to 30 knot winds, of course with my Swan it is just getting happy with 25kts.

As a person new to sailing I was also surprised when I first got my boat that every marina where I left my boat I would tell people I would come back from my home in Oregon and go off cruising. I was amazed most people would tell me they didn't think I would ever leave because everybody in the marina that was preparing to go off cruising was still in their slip years later.

Very interesting psychology boat and plane owners the same it is much about the dream. Being able to talk about your toy brings a lot of joy and fills the need for many people much more than actually using it because they are actually afraid of it too big or not. With good reason in many cases, in fact I think the to big thing actually was what killed JFK Jr. Too big and fast for a low time pilot to fly at night.

Great thread.
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Old 17-11-2014, 11:01   #82
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

A baot builder freind of mine was very excited to be moving to San Diego since while visiting it he saw a great harbor and lots of sailboats there. Now, 2 years later he complains to me about not finding anyone there who acutally sails regularly or even not so regularly. He walks around marinas and just encounters security guards and an occasional woner out to tinker with his boat. Here in New England each marina and each mooring field are beehives of activity from May to October and he expected something similar there.

We discuss it often on the phone and came to the conlusion that the state of the ocean there is to blame. The swell, the current, the lee shore, the cold waters are all keeping most people away from active day sails. And probably after a few visits to Catalina most sailors there are bored or are not too happy at the prospect of being boarded by a number of various authorities capable of inflciting severe fines, which my understanding is California is famous for.

And also but this is my educated guess, most of the boats there probably are not owned by true sailors but by the well heeled to impress clients, friends and themselves.
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Old 17-11-2014, 14:39   #83
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Growing up in the frozen Great Lakes and watching all of those great ABC After-School Specials with sunny California made me wonder if folks took for granted being able to ride a bicycle all year round . All that to say
I am still California Dreamin!
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Old 17-11-2014, 20:29   #84
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

At my marina on a lake (1500 acres) there are about 100 sailboats ranging from Sunfish to Catalina 22's to Flying Scotts and at any given time, if the wind is up, 25 are out. Most get sailed weekly, only a few never make it out.
Sure it's small boat sailing but it is FUN, Pure wind in your face Fun
Most of us have owned larger boats at times but nothing beats a
low maintenace bost that you actually use all the time.

When i decided to get back into sailing last year I turned here for advice
and was advised to get a small boat and just sail. It's exactly what I did and
bought an Oday Mariner (19') and sail three or four times a week.

But at the same time I really wanted to go big and go cruising
the solution for me was to join other boats as crew.
The best advice I ever got was to get a small boat and have fun.
I agree with others here that having a big sailboat is a status, ticket punch for some. They love the idea more than the actual doing.

Having been involved with some form of aviation my whole life
Taildragger is 1000% on the money
The most dangerous pilot on the planet is the guy who gets his ticket,
buys an aircraft and then flys less than a few hours a week.
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Old 17-11-2014, 21:23   #85
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Having been involved with some form of aviation my whole life
Taildragger is 1000% on the money
The most dangerous pilot on the planet is the guy who gets his ticket,
buys an aircraft and then flys less than a few hours a week.[/QUOTE]

Most especially a Surgeon who...
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Old 17-11-2014, 21:24   #86
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

It's off topic but it's the same with motorcycling. If you ride nearly every day and then ride with a bunch of guys who maybe ride twice a month at the most, you realise why there are so many accidents.

Small boats are so much fun I must say. You feel the effect of the wind and the waves more. You feel the benefit of any sail tweaking more. The pleasure gain from your dollar spent is much more.

Unless I live aboard again I think I will stay with small for a while.

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Old 17-11-2014, 22:23   #87
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

I think Taildragger has a good point. When living aboard in San Diego several years ago, I was regularly delivering boats from SD and the LA area to Ensenada, MX after the new owners took offshore delivery to avoid CA sales tax. Many didn't have clue how to drive or main tain a boat and left the boat in Ensenada for months longer than the requisite 90 days. I wOuld eventually bring their new acquisition back to a CA port and because I moved around a lot from marina to marina delivering boats, I saw these expensive vessels sitting for years with no one aboard. Eventually, I set up a great little side business visiting these abandoned vessels, turning over the engines, arranging for basic maintenance and taking the odd one out with the owners and their guests. Many times they bought the boat just to show it off but weren't competent to take her away from the dock! Phil
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Old 17-11-2014, 22:43   #88
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

That's sad, Capt Bill.
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Old 17-11-2014, 23:03   #89
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

Sailing and boating in general is in decline. Even in the SF bay most, oh 80 to 90% of the boats at dock never leave the dock in any given year. Oh the racers will go out in any weather for sure.

In 2007/2008, any given weekend there would be 12 to 20 boats at china camp, here in the bay. Least the weekends I was there. This year, most weekends will see not more then 8 boats, 4 of which are full time anchorouts. More likely a boat will drop the hook for a few hours before heading back to the dock. So few anchor out overnight anymore.

Boats take money and time, both of which seem to be in short supply. Lots of boats rotting at the docks.

I myself will avoid sailing the bay on weekends and never ride my motorcycle in groups. Too many people out for a stress filled sail or ride on the weekends.
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Old 17-11-2014, 23:09   #90
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Re: Why don't people use their boats?

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Originally Posted by sailorchic34 View Post
Sailing and boating in general is in decline. Even in the SF bay most, oh 80 to 90% of the boats at dock never leave the dock in any given year. Oh the racers will go out in any weather for sure.

In 2007/2008, any given weekend there would be 12 to 20 boats at china camp, here in the bay. Least the weekends I was there. This year, most weekends will see not more then 8 boats, 4 of which are full time anchorouts. More likely a boat will drop the hook for a few hours before heading back to the dock. So few anchor out overnight anymore.

Boats take money and time, both of which seem to be in short supply. Lots of boats rotting at the docks.

I myself will avoid sailing the bay on weekends and never ride my motorcycle in groups. Too many people out for a stress filled sail or ride on the weekends.
Same here. never sail on the weekends and stopped riding in groups many years ago. Both sailing and biking are best with just you and a partner at most, and no other bugger around.

Coops.
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