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Old 15-04-2014, 14:54   #16
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Re: How to get into sailing

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Originally Posted by GrowleyMonster View Post
I have to agree with the others. What you want to do is not really very workable. A club is a good option, or a sailing school. Nice thing about a sailing school is that you would have the credentials most charter outfits would recognize, so you could fly down to the Caribbean or some place, and bareboat charter. If your sailing would only be a week or two a year, this would actually be cheaper than owning a boat, even if the boat were given to you.

Crewing on someone else's boat is a great way to get started. No experience? No problem. All you have to do is whatever the skipper tells you, which initially will mostly consist of sitting on the rail or scrambling across to sit on the other rail, acting as self propelled movable human ballast. Once you are good at sitting on the rail, you will probably be taught how to grind on a winch. Once you get good at turning a winch handle, you might get to learn more technical stuff. Eventually you will get a pretty good grasp of the bigger picture. Wednesday evenings or Sunday, most clubs or marinas have informal "beer can" races, Everybody has lots of fun and you will meet all sorts of folks, some pretentious and full of themselves, but most just great folks who love to socialize and sail.

My favorite option to recommend would be to start out with a dinghy and a dummies book, and of course a couple of good PFDs, figure on getting dumped in the water a few times, and go it yourself on some local lake or sheltered bay. Or maybe a nice day sailer. You could easily pick up something for a couple grand. With careful maintenance you would get most of your purchase price back on resale should you decide to move up to a small cruising boat. Teeny weeny boats will teach you about the dynamics of sailing a lot quicker and more effectively than a cruiser, IMHO. The bang for buck is much higher with a daysailer if you ask me. TBH right now the only reason I have a bigger boat is because it is cheaper to live aboard than to rent an apartment. Practically all of my sailing the last several years has been on Lake Pontchartrain or to/from nearby Gulf Coast ports and a 24' daysailer with a small cuddy forward would actually be better for that kind of sailing. I have owned more small boats than big boats. Anyway, even if daysailers or dinghys are just a step in the learning ladder for you, it won't be money wasted at all.

Look up Glen-L. You can get a used dinghy or daysailer pretty darn cheap. You certainly can't build a boat cheaper than you can buy a used one that has been knocked around a bit, but you can typically build one cheaper than you can buy new, at least for a small boat. A small sailing skiff can be a 3 weekend project and cost you maybe $400 to build, if you want to go really really basic. I have had a lot of fun on cheap plywood sailing skiffs I have built. Glen-L is a good source for plans and parts.

Capsizing is a great learning experience that you seldom get to enjoy in a cruiser. Fortunately.

Google "Power Squadron" and see if they have any classes in your area. They can teach you an awful lot about boating in general, going into basic boathandling, navigation, upkeep, rules and regulations, and of course safety.

Be safe and have fun!

+1 .
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Old 18-04-2014, 12:49   #17
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Re: How to get into sailing

My Laser made me a great swimmer. I made the swim team by the time I learned the basics of sailing. The plus side is I feel comfortable in weather now because of sailing a dinghy. They are also easier to work on.
GrowleyMonster said it perfect.

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Old 18-04-2014, 13:12   #18
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Re: How to get into sailing

Well there are more of us on here from West Michigan every day! Glad to hear of another! You didn't say exactly where you are? I sail out of Muskegon on our 29ft boat (its for sale ). Me and my friends go out regularly during the week and most weekends. As far as coming along for a ride you be, as long as you are sensible and good natured people. I won't even make you sit on the rails! On a boat as old as mine who cares about "performance".

In my experience especially at this time of year if you just hang around the marina storage lots and talk to people waxing, washing, working, varnishing ect you can make some fast friends. Even more so if you offer to help or bring a 6 pack of cheap beer! If your around the Muskegon, Grand Rapids, Grand Haven, Holland area shoot me a pm. Or you can check out any of the Yacht Clubs. Muskegon Yacht Club is a great bunch of down to earth (and some not so much) people. If you walk the docks when people have their boats in the marinas and strike up a conversation most people are plenty friendly and may after knowing you for a while (or that day) offer to bring you out. I wouldn't ask though as that might be considered rude. Make yourself seen around and you'll get invited along. Besides your retired you've got all day to kill .

There are lots of good books on the subject of learning to sail as well. If you bought a sailing dinghy say an 8ft and learned to sail in it you'd then also have a dinghy if you decided to buy a larger boat too! There was a Dyer Midget dinghy on craigslist out of Grand Haven for $700! They are great dinghys.
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Old 03-05-2014, 23:16   #19
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Re: How to get into sailing

Has anyone heard of the following for teaching video's etc?

Watch Quality Sailing Videos & Learn How to Build a Wooden Boat from the Pros

It looks positive, but can't seem to find anyone that has purchased a membership to give it a go.
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Old 04-05-2014, 13:49   #20
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Re: How to get into sailing

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Originally Posted by rebel heart View Post
I've got a great boat for sale, fully kitted out for cruising. It's a little out of the way and probably needs some TLC at this point.
No worries! It'll buff right out!!

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Old 04-05-2014, 14:27   #21
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Re: How to get into sailing

One way is to offer to crew on local round the bouys races. You learn fast in that environment. Once you are accepted you might find room for your wife on the same boat.
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Old 04-05-2014, 15:36   #22
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Re: How to get into sailing

Ha my wife gets invited to the Tuesday night races before I do. I had to buy my own boat. Girls have it made.

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Old 05-05-2014, 13:21   #23
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Re: How to get into sailing

Quote:
Originally Posted by GrowleyMonster View Post
I have to agree with the others. What you want to do is not really very workable. A club is a good option, or a sailing school. Nice thing about a sailing school is that you would have the credentials most charter outfits would recognize, so you could fly down to the Caribbean or some place, and bareboat charter. If your sailing would only be a week or two a year, this would actually be cheaper than owning a boat, even if the boat were given to you.

Crewing on someone else's boat is a great way to get started. No experience? No problem. All you have to do is whatever the skipper tells you, which initially will mostly consist of sitting on the rail or scrambling across to sit on the other rail, acting as self propelled movable human ballast. Once you are good at sitting on the rail, you will probably be taught how to grind on a winch. Once you get good at turning a winch handle, you might get to learn more technical stuff. Eventually you will get a pretty good grasp of the bigger picture. Wednesday evenings or Sunday, most clubs or marinas have informal "beer can" races, Everybody has lots of fun and you will meet all sorts of folks, some pretentious and full of themselves, but most just great folks who love to socialize and sail.

My favorite option to recommend would be to start out with a dinghy and a dummies book, and of course a couple of good PFDs, figure on getting dumped in the water a few times, and go it yourself on some local lake or sheltered bay. Or maybe a nice day sailer. You could easily pick up something for a couple grand. With careful maintenance you would get most of your purchase price back on resale should you decide to move up to a small cruising boat. Teeny weeny boats will teach you about the dynamics of sailing a lot quicker and more effectively than a cruiser, IMHO. The bang for buck is much higher with a daysailer if you ask me. TBH right now the only reason I have a bigger boat is because it is cheaper to live aboard than to rent an apartment. Practically all of my sailing the last several years has been on Lake Pontchartrain or to/from nearby Gulf Coast ports and a 24' daysailer with a small cuddy forward would actually be better for that kind of sailing. I have owned more small boats than big boats. Anyway, even if daysailers or dinghys are just a step in the learning ladder for you, it won't be money wasted at all.

Look up Glen-L. You can get a used dinghy or daysailer pretty darn cheap. You certainly can't build a boat cheaper than you can buy a used one that has been knocked around a bit, but you can typically build one cheaper than you can buy new, at least for a small boat. A small sailing skiff can be a 3 weekend project and cost you maybe $400 to build, if you want to go really really basic. I have had a lot of fun on cheap plywood sailing skiffs I have built. Glen-L is a good source for plans and parts.

Capsizing is a great learning experience that you seldom get to enjoy in a cruiser. Fortunately.

Google "Power Squadron" and see if they have any classes in your area. They can teach you an awful lot about boating in general, going into basic boathandling, navigation, upkeep, rules and regulations, and of course safety.

Be safe and have fun!
Glen L has great designs but building will never be cheaper than buying a well kept used boat of similar design in this economy. While searching craigslist just type in under boats, "sailboat"
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Old 05-05-2014, 15:47   #24
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Re: How to get into sailing

Have figured out a different approach. Finalized an offer on a very nice O'Day 28. Assuming all goes well with the survey I will sail it from Chicago with a delivery captain and learn a bit more every day. Retirement is wonderful.


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Old 05-05-2014, 15:59   #25
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Re: How to get into sailing

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Originally Posted by Csimoni View Post
Have figured out a different approach. Finalized an offer on a very nice O'Day 28. Assuming all goes well with the survey I will sail it from Chicago with a delivery captain and learn a bit more every day. Retirement is wonderful.


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That's the way. Learn via experience. Bugger the schools, they are a lot of money for alot of stuff you won't need. Do recommend you do some kind of course in weather, navigation and if it's got a diesel engine, then basic diesel maintenance.

I don't know how far you have to sail it, but make sure your choice of Captain has some experience. Don't pay anyone, you should be able to find someone with suitable experience willing to do it for the trip.

Have fun.
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Old 05-05-2014, 17:23   #26
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Re: How to get into sailing

I am in the same boat (I know, bad pun). I am also trying to learn about sailing. I joined a local sailing club that races on Wednesday. I was put on a short handed boat last Wednesday and started to get a feel of sailing.

I plan to be active in the club and buy a boat in the next few months. By winter on 2015 (two summers with this club) I hope to know how to sail enough to be on my own.

This club (probably true to all clubs) was loaded with friendly people. It was a very pleasant 1st time.

Good luck

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Old 07-05-2014, 08:08   #27
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Re: How to get into sailing

Find a local yacht club, figure out when their Wednesday night series is and show up on the dock with a case of cold beer. You'll learn more from racers as long as you pick a good crew, and you'll start making contacts.
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Old 07-05-2014, 10:52   #28
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Re: How to get into sailing

My first sail we hired a captain and chartered a boat. Looking back I cant believe the charter company was so lenient. The captain just sailed with us greenhorns to bimini then flew back. We then proceeded to port lucaya and back in 10 days. Competent bunch though.
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Old 07-05-2014, 15:56   #29
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Re: How to get into sailing

It takes about 2 hours to learn how to sail. Seamanship takes a lifetime to learn. Get a good primer like the Annapolis Book of Seamanship or Chapman on Piloting and start reading.
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Old 07-05-2014, 16:03   #30
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Re: How to get into sailing

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Find a local yacht club, figure out when their Wednesday night series is and show up on the dock with a case of cold beer. You'll learn more from racers as long as you pick a good crew, and you'll start making contacts.
Sailmanship you will learn from racers, seamanship you will pick up from cruising, experience and short courses on theory.

If you desire to race then absolutely go for it, but if you want to just cruise and visit places, getting too involved in club racing could actually turn you off. It depends on what your looking for.
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