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Old 12-11-2012, 20:57   #76
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by S/V Illusion View Post
I know.

And if you are counting on sailing/boating to change your "way of life", that is a matter of attitude, not venue.
Perhaps you are inferring that I see the sailboat as a fix-all to whatever problems in life I am currently having. This is not the case. My attitude towards life is one in which time is more important than money. That attitude can be applied anywhere. However, my wife and I see sailing as way to travel the world and also apply said attitude while having some level of autonomy and feeling of home.

What would you have me say? I wish I had the right words for you, but like it or not, I intend to go through with this. Perhaps it will take me 6 months, or perhaps it will take me 6 years. I am more than aware of my shortcomings. I don't see why this should be an excuse for anyone but myself to not go through with pursuing this. Perhaps you were born and raised into an environment which fostered the skills necessary for cruising; I was not.

We are going to do this. Whether or not we receive helpful advice from you or anyone else is irrelevant. Greatly appreciated, but irrelevant.
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Old 12-11-2012, 21:03   #77
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by Adelie View Post
Cruising would be regularly making passages involving several nights or more underway. From what a lot of cruisers have written figure on that being about 10% of your nights. In addition to the sailing you will be anchored most of the time, figure 80%, and the final 10% in a marina or on the hard. When underway or at anchor in brisk conditions, let's say 20-25% of the time, the V-berth will be untenable for sleeping, it will be just too bouncy to sleep. That means anyone trying to sleep will be in main cabin of a smaller boat. Pilot berths being near the center of the boat will have the least motion and do not need to be converted nightly. Quarter berths would be the second best: a little more motion, a little better privacy, more exposure to spray coming in the companionway, less than half the main cabin space used. Settees, longitudinal seats for a table have motion as good as a pilot berth but require a bit of effort to convert nightly and back each morning.

The following links have interior layouts showing the various options:
CAL 34 - 2 quarterberts and a U-dinette
CAL 40 - 2 pilot berths, 2 settees and 2 quarterberths
CASCADE 29 - 2 quarterberths and a dinette

Even though needing to sleep in the main cabin happens only a modest amount of the time, awkward sleeping arrangements can contribute to loss of sleep sufficient to impair judgement and create safety issues. For that reason interior arrangements more conducive to underway living are generally preferred over marina living arrangements until the boat is large enough to accommodate both.

Living aboard you can expect to spend very few nights underway or in bouncy anchorages. Dinettes require a fair amount of effort to convert to a berth: the table needs to be removed or dropped, cushions rearranged and lee cloths installed to create a single out of the double. Given the limited number of times this will be needed for a liveaboard, a dinette is more reasonable. In the case of a U-shaped dinette, if you are handy you could create a table attachement that allows you to pull a couple of pins, slide the table top towards the center of the boat, and sleep on the base of the 'U' without expending significant effort twice every cycle.

Here's the timeline I could reasonably see happening:
Move to east coast, buy a boat by June '13.
Outfit the boat and build sailing skills until Nov'14 (after hurricane season)
Cruise thru Caribbean building cruising skills until May'15 (just before hurricane season)
Start the round the world portion of your cruise, either NE to Europe or SW to the Panama Canal. A cruise where you don't dawdle will take 3yr. If you push hard you can do it in 2yr, but you won't see much on the way. I would count on 5 or more years.

This would push you into your early 30's for kids. As someone who started having kids at 40 and had quite a number of acquaintances have difficulty having kids in their early to mid 30's, I can recommend from experience that late 20's really is the best time.

Consequently I would suggest making 1 kid a consideration in boat choice, and if a second one came along while still cruising you would have a year or two where they would be small enough to share a bunk. In the meantime this would give you extra storage space or room for a guest while underway, not just at anchor.

Alternatively move to the Pacific Northwest which would probably shave a year of the build up but would require a bigger mental shift when you do actually setoff as the geography of the west coast is not as conducive to gradual accumulation of skills.


A short list of the boats I would consider follows:
BAYFIELD 25
CENTAUR 26 (WESTERLY)
TARTAN 27
VEGA 27
TRITON (AEROMARINE)
TRITON (PEARSON)
CAL 28
CASCADE 29
CAL 29
ALBERG 30
WANDERER 30 (PEARSON)
BAYFIELD 30/32
VANGUARD 33 (PEARSON)
RANGER 33
PEARSON 10M
CAL 34
COLUMBIA 34 Mk II

If you wanted to stretch your budget a little, there is a CAL 36 for sale in Mexico for about $16K.

The rest of these boats are available for $5-14k though some of them might be in awkward locations like Wisconsin.

Keep in mind that a larger boat in just as good a condition at a price you can afford may still overwhelm your budget with secondary costs. A larger boat requires larger anchors, anchor line, anchor chain, sails, winches, fitting, rigging wire, running rigging and autopilots. Larger in this case is a synonym for more expensive. At about 30' you are going to start needing a windlass ($1200 for a new manual, $2k new electric) for anchor retrieval, and 34' would be the absolute limit.
Thanks for this post. I'll definitely take it to heart. Are there many people here who are experienced with having children/babies aboard such a ship?
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Old 12-11-2012, 21:04   #78
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by Lysander View Post
You ask me what we will do to support ourselves. This question has already been asked by myself in this thread; perhaps you have a suggestion.
You're a writer, freelance writing is a possibility - though there is a lot of online competition already. I'm not sure how much a person can earn in this field. Also, I'm not sure I could be productive in such a small space. Maybe you can do better.

You might be able to do some handiwork or manual labor at some ports. This is nice way to get a break from the boat, but will be illegal in many of your ports unless you do it JUST right. It will also entail some costs, which may exceed the value of the additional income.

You might be able to persuade someone to let you churn your reports from "home" instead of from a cubicle - the same work you are doing now.

You might become a freelance report churner, doing your current work but for different companies on a freelance basis.

All will require some limits in your lifestyle choices, such as ensuring that you are always within reach of internet service, and possibly dedicating a space aboard the boat to doing your work.

This is how I plan to be able to afford to cruise on a catamaran in the future - but a catamaran is far more suited to a work-from-home (IMHO) than a small monohull.
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Old 12-11-2012, 21:29   #79
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Re: Advice

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You're a writer, freelance writing is a possibility - though there is a lot of online competition already. I'm not sure how much a person can earn in this field. Also, I'm not sure I could be productive in such a small space. Maybe you can do better.

You might be able to do some handiwork or manual labor at some ports. This is nice way to get a break from the boat, but will be illegal in many of your ports unless you do it JUST right. It will also entail some costs, which may exceed the value of the additional income.

You might be able to persuade someone to let you churn your reports from "home" instead of from a cubicle - the same work you are doing now.

You might become a freelance report churner, doing your current work but for different companies on a freelance basis.

All will require some limits in your lifestyle choices, such as ensuring that you are always within reach of internet service, and possibly dedicating a space aboard the boat to doing your work.

This is how I plan to be able to afford to cruise on a catamaran in the future - but a catamaran is far more suited to a work-from-home (IMHO) than a small monohull.
The freelance writing/report churning might have to be one of the routes I take. Ideally I want to be a jack of all trades, so that I don't have to rely on one specific source of income. Thanks for your suggestions.
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Old 12-11-2012, 21:51   #80
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by Lysander View Post
Thanks for this post. I'll definitely take it to heart. Are there many people here who are experienced with having children/babies aboard such a ship?
On this forum, RebelHeart who just left San Diego with a 3yr old. I can't recall if they have had another one or if they are planning to.

Off forum any number have people have had kids while cruising. The most ambitious was the couple on a 25' boat that had 2 kids while circumnavigating, had a 3rd just after getting back, got a 33' boat and went cruising again.
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Old 12-11-2012, 21:57   #81
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Re: Advice

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On this forum, RebelHeart who just left San Diego with a 3yr old. I can't recall if they have had another one or if they are planning to.

Off forum any number have people have had kids while cruising. The most ambitious was the couple on a 25' boat that had 2 kids while circumnavigating, had a 3rd just after getting back, got a 33' boat and went cruising again.
Wow, that's pretty inspiring. Glad to know it can be done.
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Old 12-11-2012, 22:05   #82
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Re: Advice

Here's the dream in a nutshell:

Don't quit yet, but here some advice...
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Old 12-11-2012, 22:27   #83
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by Lysander View Post
..... My attitude towards life is one in which time is more important than money.

That attitude can be applied anywhere. However, my wife and I see sailing as way to travel the world and also apply said attitude while having some level of autonomy and feeling of home.
..... Perhaps it will take me 6 months, or perhaps it will take me 6 years. I am more than aware of my shortcomings.

We are going to do this. Whether or not we receive helpful advice from you or anyone else is irrelevant. Greatly appreciated, but irrelevant.
Lysander, after 6 pages….I think you have passed the first “virtual” test that you are realistic, acknowledge your limitations but are both determined for a major change in Lifestyle. Not unlike what I did at your age after being guided and fast tracked in a strong academic direction, before running away to Sea.

Some Practical advice:
Get yourself in amongst cruising boat and folks a.s.a.p., to filter the theoretical thru what you will actually come to recognize as the subjective reality of those actually doing it.

Find an experienced service Mentor and volunteer your labor to assist them in repairs.
If you are indeed a fast, dedicated learner with ambition, they may soon compensate you for your work, giving you an invaluable education for your new lifestyle.

With new found skills, find an experienced sailing mentor that does professional deliveries and do a few trips together with them to lock in practical sailing skills and management techniques borne from years of experience.

Think of what you are doing as an evolution (rather than a revolution) and enjoy the ride…..
It is wonderful ride if you can always remain in control of your priorities as a couple.

Best of Luck!
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Old 13-11-2012, 00:27   #84
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Re: Advice

Lysander, go for it! In my opinion, you seem to have so many of the assets required for successful cruising, even without the skills yet. Just make sure first that you both enjoy spending time on the water and that whichever boat you choose needs minimum work to get it seaworthy.

Learning to sail is the easy bit. Go have some fun in a dinghy and do some crewing (maybe racing, ballast is always welcome even without skill) before you contemplate a purchase though. Tackle the rest slowly as you go along and I suggest just cruise coastal initially (always sensible with a new purchase anyway). Read everything you can get our hands on.

Best of luck
PS Has everyone forgotten Bumfuzzle? (Knocked terribly for what they were doing here on CF). It may not be ideal, but it is possible with no experience and no practical skills.
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Old 13-11-2012, 01:02   #85
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Re: Advice

Lysander,

Here's the best advice you're gonna get regarding the cruising lifestyle. Go invest the money at Amazon to buy Beth Leonards book "A Voyagers Handbook" Read it cover to cover. If she doesn't discuss it in her book - it probably ain't worth knowing
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Old 13-11-2012, 08:36   #86
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Re: Advice

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Unless you have a job prospect in Houston I would choose a coastal area with a larger yachting population. More boats equals more prospects for finding a good used cruising boat. Check out SE US or So. Cal to find a good small boat. Houston has fewer boats and thus you'll have a harder time getting to a good boat.
Actually, Houston supposedly has the third largest fleet in the US. Tons of boats for sale around here plus we actually have jobs available for those who want/need to bulk up their kitty.
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Old 13-11-2012, 13:30   #87
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Re: Advice

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Shows how much I know... What the **** is flax packing??!?!
Ah, flax packing...how fondly I remember my old monohull...all just part of that Idealistic Utopian Dream....called cruising....

Last cruising season we jokingly started taking pictures of what we dubbed the "Kruising Kama Sutra". It's not as fun as it sounds -- it typically consists of contorting your body into small spaces on a boat. Why? Could be to tend to the "flax packing". Cruisers spend a lot of time practicing this art. By next season we should have a full series suitable for publishing in a coffee table style book!

By the end of the season I am ready for a boat-break. So, we travel, spend some time at home, etc. Then, as the season draws near again, I have forgotten about all the pain, agony, and $$$'s and I'm ready to go again!

This is something to keep in mind as you plan for your dream: Most cruisers do not cruise full time (really...nobody told you that yet?). For example, in the Caribbean most cruisers just cruise when it is not hurricane season (wise choice). So they are typically only on the boat about Dec-June and sometimes less. Then they spend the rest of the year doing something else -- like working (so they can afford to go cruising next season) or traveling. But usually, they spend it AWAY FROM THE F'ING BOAT!

Now that it is November I am starting to think about preparing for next cruising season and I am looking forward to the cruising, but I am dreading the Kruising Kama Sutra.
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Old 13-11-2012, 13:36   #88
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Re: Advice

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Originally Posted by belizesailor View Post
Ah, flax packing...how fondly I remember my old monohull...all just part of that Idealistic Utopian Dream....called cruising....

Last cruising season we jokingly started taking pictures of what we dubbed the "Kruising Kama Sutra". It's not as fun as it sounds -- it typically consists of contorting your body into small spaces on a boat. Cruisers spend a lot of time practicing this art. By next season we should have a full series suitable for publishing in a coffee table style book!

By the end of the season I am ready for a boat-break. So, we travel, spend some time at home, etc. Then, as the season draws near again, I have forgotten about all the pain, agony, and $$$'s and I'm ready to go again!

This is something to keep in mind as you plan for your dream: Most cruisers do not cruise full time (really...nobody told you that yet?). For example, in the Caribbean most cruisers just cruise when it is not hurricane season (wise choice). So they are typically only on the boat about Dec-June and sometimes less. Then they spend the rest of the year doing something else -- like working (so they can afford to go cruising next season) or traveling. But usually, they spend it AWAY FROM THE F'ING BOAT!

Now that it is November I am starting to think about preparing for next cruising season and I am looking forward to the cruising, but I am dreading the Kruising Kama Sutra.
Funny,

I figure I'll prepare for my cruises by folding myself into a old tire, and have my wife beat me with a piece of split bamboo. It sounds like something I had to endure when working on military helicopters. Would be good training.

That way, when the "Kruising Kama Sutra" comes I'll be prepared.

James L
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Old 13-11-2012, 13:52   #89
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Re: Advice

A bit bigger than you're looking at, but Liza Copeland has written a couple of books about 2 circumnavigations on a 40 footer with 3 kids and her husband.

Just Cruising
About Cruising - Liza / Andy Copeland & Bagheera
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Old 13-11-2012, 18:40   #90
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Re: Advice

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Actually, Houston supposedly has the third largest fleet in the US. Tons of boats for sale around here plus we actually have jobs available for those who want/need to bulk up their kitty.
I said exactly the same thing.....glad we're consistent!!!!
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