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Old 22-08-2010, 18:41   #61
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I think that as with most other things in life, when you buy a boat you get what you pay for.

The idea is to go in with your eyes open. No romantic illusions.

Having said that, I had no idea of what I was getting into when I bought my current boat, even though it was custom built (for someone else) and in turnkey condition. Fortunately I had the financial wherewithal to pay someone else to do the work that I couldn't do, and the motivation to learn the rest.

If you buy a boat-- no matter what the price-- you will learn a great deal-- about sailing, navigation, maintenance and yourself. This learning experience is one of the best reasons to own a boat.
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Old 22-08-2010, 18:54   #62
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I have read this post with great interest. I hear both sides. I still don't know who is right, meaning, I still don't know WHAT is right. I have a question: I can't fix things. I don't fix things. I would like learning how to fix things, I suppose, but so far have always paid others to do the work for me. I can paint and sand with the best, (well maybe not "the best") but I can and will do that. Because of this lacking in my chemical make-up, I am now wondering if this long time dream of cruising is for me. Now comes the question... Should a person who has no knowledge, ability, or confidence in fixing things that seem to constantly break on a boat even be thinking about buying one, cruising on one, and living on one?
If you indeed want to lean you can. What's stopping you from taking a course or two? You say you can paint and sand ... did you always know how? If you have the dexterity to paint and sand, you can do the other. You just need to put in the time and get your hands dirty. Believe me, if I can do it, you can. I'm not great, but I can get the job done. And I learned from other cruisers, friends, anybody who would show me and help.

As the old Zen saying goes ... "the work with teach you the work."
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Old 22-08-2010, 18:59   #63
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Originally Posted by ty.gregory View Post
I have read this post with great interest. I hear both sides. I still don't know who is right, meaning, I still don't know WHAT is right. I have a question: I can't fix things. I don't fix things. I would like learning how to fix things, I suppose, but so far have always paid others to do the work for me. I can paint and sand with the best, (well maybe not "the best") but I can and will do that. Because of this lacking in my chemical make-up, I am now wondering if this long time dream of cruising is for me. Now comes the question... Should a person who has no knowledge, ability, or confidence in fixing things that seem to constantly break on a boat even be thinking about buying one, cruising on one, and living on one?
As to whether you can cruise with no mechanical skills people seem to do it.
However I'd suggest that your other skills and assets would need to be upgraded - weather forecasting, "trade" goods, record keeping, wine cellar, etc. so that you can trade what you're good at for repairs.

I'd recon you'd need to start with a boat and engine in very good condition, have a good collection of spares on board, know weather forecasting to avoid the worst and have good communication equipment and know how to use it.

The reality is likely that given the choice of having an incompetent mechanic mess with your pride and joy and fixing it yourself you'll probably surprise yourself with what you can do.
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Old 22-08-2010, 19:13   #64
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Originally Posted by ty.gregory View Post
I have read this post with great interest. I hear both sides. I still don't know who is right, meaning, I still don't know WHAT is right. I have a question: I can't fix things. I don't fix things. I would like learning how to fix things, I suppose, but so far have always paid others to do the work for me. I can paint and sand with the best, (well maybe not "the best") but I can and will do that. Because of this lacking in my chemical make-up, I am now wondering if this long time dream of cruising is for me. Now comes the question... Should a person who has no knowledge, ability, or confidence in fixing things that seem to constantly break on a boat even be thinking about buying one, cruising on one, and living on one?
Ty, if I were in your situation I'd probably skip the full time cruising for right now and just charter.
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Old 23-08-2010, 15:27   #65
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Thank you, I appreciate your comments. I definetly will take some Mechanical courses! I want/need to go cruising, and damn it, that's what I'll do!
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Old 23-08-2010, 16:38   #66
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If you have a manual, the proper tools and enough time you can usually figure it out-- unless the manual was poorly translated from some Asian language, in which event you must hire someone.
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Old 23-08-2010, 17:53   #67
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If you have a manual, the proper tools and enough time you can usually figure it out-- unless the manual was poorly translated from some Asian language, in which event you must hire someone.
This has been my experience as well. And there is usually another cruiser around who has some experience and is glad to help. People like to be helpful.
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Old 23-08-2010, 18:35   #68
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Thank you, I appreciate your comments. I definetly will take some Mechanical courses! I want/need to go cruising, and damn it, that's what I'll do!
I'm not convinced that you need to be Joe Mechanic to cruise, especially if you can afford to hire a mechanic once a year to completely service the engine. You should be able to bleed your lines, change your fluids and filters, change the impeller and alternator, and service the packing gland. You can hire a good mechanic to walk you through all those tasks on your particular engine in a day. It will be an expensive day, but at the end of the day you'll probably feel better about cruising.
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Old 23-08-2010, 19:00   #69
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You can hire a good mechanic to walk you through all those tasks on your particular engine in a day.
I think you might be better off taking a boat engine course or two, like the ones put on by Mack Boring. They are designed to teach you, which is something the typical mechanic is not good at. For that matter, the mythical "good mechanic" is hard to find. I also noticed that there will be a rigging seminar at the Annapolis Boat Show.
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Old 23-08-2010, 19:05   #70
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I think you might be better off taking a boat engine course or two, like the ones put on by Mack Boring. They are designed to teach you, which is something the typical mechanic is not good at. For that matter, the mythical "good mechanic" is hard to find. I also noticed that there will be a rigging seminar at the Annapolis Boat Show.
Thanks for the heads up on that.
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Old 23-08-2010, 19:06   #71
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75-100k? Wish i had that problem...Just dropped a massive 2500 on my little Tanzer 28..and stole it for maybe half of what it was worth...good strong boat in decent shape and one who at some point in it's life was owned by real seamen..can tell by the little touches...the last two owners were mentally challenged...but I will bring her back to life.

Having said that..I know I will have to haul, scrape and paint, and that I will have to replumb her..god plumbing sucks...and that I will have to rewire her..and all the running rigging, and a new tiller, and a head that doesn't go right overboard, a new main..etc, ad nauseum...but I knew what I was looking for and what I was getting into,
now, in all actuality, I could pull up the one sail i have which doesn't suck, and sail her,
but she is by no means seaworthy to my standards, and I will spend many enjoyable evenings at that nice quiet marina overhauling her..but at my current pace, i expect to be sailing her in the next couple of months..just little shakedowns really..

So, cheaper, older being cost effective, yes..if you know what you are getting into and
have the knowledge, experience and skills to make her a diamond from a chunk of coal..if stepping aboard and dropping the lines is more important...spend the $$$

If you consider personal involvement in your own boat maintenance a cost..then you just have to be willing to pay it...because I don't care if you buy a spanky new Island Packet...by the time the ink is dry on the contract, she will need something..they always do.

My own sometimes humble opinion, is that if you aren't willing to work on your boat, you will not be familiar enough with her when something goes south out on big blue..not being insulting by saying that, but that's my opinion...and the one thing old navy puke do well, is have opinions...<G>

Hope that's relevant..
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Old 23-08-2010, 19:23   #72
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I'm not sure how to go about explaining this but I'll try. Talking about the false economy of buying an older boat vs. a newer one assumes you are in a position to be able to spend the greater amount of money for that newer boat. If thats the case, then I guess it comes down to whether or not you like to "work" on your boat or just sail it. If thats the case then go with the newer boat, less likely to be things needing fixing and you can spend more time sailing.

Now if you are like me, money is of great concern to me when I look at a boat. I'm not in the position where I can kick around the benefits of spending $100K vs $85K. Thats damn near my entire lifes budget for the whole deal, boat and years of living afterwards. So for me the best thing is to buy a cheaper older boat, knowing full well that I will be face with a fair amount of work in getting her ready to go out in the great wide world. The whole concept of it being a false economy rubs me the wrong way. Whose economy? Mine? No, its good economy to me, because I am getting a suitable boat cheaper, which allows me to get out on the water sooner rather than later or not at all, plus my economy puts a value on my skills which I can bring to bear on refits and what not. The trick is in paying a good price for what you get.

I'd fallen in love with Espina 6 years before I ended up buying her, and the only reason I did buy her is because the price came down to where I could do so. I was well aware of the warts n bumps, and since I enjoy working on her, its worth it to me. Every time I go down there and do a job, I come away with a great feeling of satisfaction, and accomplishment. (both feelings which are sadly lacking in my full time job) It may take me a year or two to get ready but I am on MY boat, not the banks.

So as to it being a false economy, No I don't think it is. It entirely depends on your personal circumstances and your personal comfort level with 'working' on a boat as opposed to 'playing' on a boat.


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Great post Sabre - you summed how I feel probably better than I could have myself. Thanks for saving me all that typing!
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Old 23-08-2010, 23:11   #73
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I am going to look into this "Mack Boring" person/school(?) thank you, Kettlewell. And I know I can learn to "bleed your lines, change your fluids and filters, change the impeller and alternator, and service the packing gland. You can hire a good mechanic to walk you through all those tasks on your particular engine in a day." (thank you Bash). I am glad to hear there is a solution, or at least, a remedy. If I had known I would want to be a sailor one day, I swear I would have actually put my toys back together again instead of just taking them apart.

I think this might be a good topic for a Post dedicated to people like me who want very much to live the cruising life with the fun and the adventure, the, you know-- Sailing part... And I'm okay with the slepping of water jugs, and the bugs and the crap that goes along with the fun. I am aware "cruising on a sailboat" is not all vacation times and is actually hard work too. I have been on this websight long enough to know the incredible amout of not-so-fun tasks involved in the whole LIFESTYLE. It's just that it would be nice to think that for the most part you actually have the chance to sail and live the adventure and enjoy your sun-downers without this seemingly ever present TO DO list growing and growing and growing where you wake up at night screaming. I plan on spending around $100K usd and I hope this will get me a 27 to 39 foot boat to live on and enjoy.
Thank you one and all for your in-put. And I will start this new post!

Ty

PS What the hell is a packing gland?
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Old 23-08-2010, 23:20   #74
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PS What the hell is a packing gland?
A leading cause of cancer in men and you need to have it checked annually. Its called a PGA test I think.
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Old 24-08-2010, 00:01   #75
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...GREAT, thanks Doodles...
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