We are 2-3 months away from purchasing
. I would love your suggestions on boats to consider?
Sailing background: We are Midwesterners who have been sailing for years. I've been sailing Lasers and Hobies on the wild winds and waves of Lake Michigan for years and have a great respect for the water
. We are also coastal cruisers who have chartered and cruised for 10 years (ASA trained as well)....just not on our own boat --until now. We are buying
and will use it throughout the year on our many trips to Florida
, vacations, eventually using it as our Winter retreat.
Criteria (not rated in any particular order of preference) :
--Age range: 1988-2008. Condition and upgrade requirements play a huge factor here.
--Purchase location: I'll look and buy anywhere from Annapolis
-but prefer in Florida's Gulf side knowing that I will sail it to our base in Tampa or Ft Meyers area (tbd).
--Budget: $110k US for boat including needed upgrades. This is our target.
--Cruising areas and use: We will cruise
Florida's Gulf Coast
and FL Keys our first 2 years. We will eventually (3+- years) head
to Bahamans and then target Turks & Caicos and VI's. No Antartica or even Atlantic passages in our plans. These are week-long trips, weekend trips, and a few trips longer. Some overnight passages, but mostly nights at anchor
--Hull shape and Draft
: see cruising areas above...(but also see below). I've run aground plenty and don't like it. I've also sailed crappy/stubby poorly designed low-draft winged keels. My slight preference is a skeg-hung rudder
and fin keel
off's might have to take place here.
--Sailing style: I'm happiest when I know my boat is trimmed and running at a nice speed. I don't like tugboats and I enjoy slicing through at a good 8-9 knots (i.e. efficiently sailing up and passing a weekend charterer). But also don't like pounding in seas --who does.
--Interior: 2-cabin owners-type layout. (this is my wife talking here!) 1) comfortable aft cabin
-queen-ish size if possible, 2) a nice head
w/shower, 3) comfortable 2nd cabin
accommodations when our non-sailing friends/family visit for a weekend island hopping voyage, 4) decent working galley
(no special requirements).
--We're open to either center or aft, though preference goes to aft cockpit
--Sugar scoop stern is most enjoyable for our fishing/diving/swimming enjoyment, however this understandably may be a trade-off.
--Lastly: the boat will have some ongoing demand so that we can re-sell her if our plans should change a few years from now.
So what do you think? Do you have boats you suggest we should consider (and why)? How about anything on the market now we should consider? Any high-quality, under the radar
type of boats I might be missing in our particular search? What might be helpful is something like: "Look at XYZ boat in the 1998 range. They are under-appreciated boats that might fit your criteria."