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Old 30-09-2015, 16:44   #1
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Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Well, I got my wife enjoying sailing on small boats and hobies now we are actually looking for a sailboat boat we can both learn on. I'm looking at something between 20-27 ft. That is trailerable, meaning easy to launch and retrieve with both of us and doesn't require a crane to step the mast, I have a toyota tundra that can tow 9000#. We will store the boat on the trailer rigged on the naval base here is Norfolk VA, they charge $260 a year, is that good? We will mainly be sailing the Chesapeake but towing it to other destinations when we are more comfortable. I would like a decent place for a couple to sleep, maybe a niece and nephew once or twice a year, a place to cook and a porta poty, for a weekend or maybe a little longer. I've found the Catalina 22, Macgregor 25 and the old 26. So I'm just looking for any other suggestions, I would like stay at about $5000 I could go a little higher but this is my first boat so I know it could get a few bumps.
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Old 30-09-2015, 19:02   #2
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

I learned a Catalina 22 with swing keel and pop top. Awesome, stable and fun boat to learn on.
But
It was a lousy camper for more than a few days. The v birth was too difficult to get into, and I am small, 5 feet tall and 105 lbs and I still found it rough. My BF, at 6"1 and 160 lbs found it much harder. We did keep a port a potty and cook on the boat.
Forget using the spot behind the bulkhead for the potty though. It was OK for me, but anyone larger could not make it work. The Porta potty lived in the cabin wedged between the dinette and settee.

Cooking was challenging too. We used the table and one of us would sit on the port a potty as cook.

Still, we had a lot of fun in that boat! We even took it for 10 days on lake powell. The boat did well even when the winds made passage in the main channel really rough. I still have a soft spot for boaty and would buy another!

We now have a macgreggor 26x. Better camper, lousy sailing and lousy motoring too. You can't get this boat to round up to the wind! One thing I love about it though is that it takes about 45 minutes to step the mast and fully rig the boat. And that's with just us two. No problem at all.

The Catalina was a little harder, but not by much. We could still set up in an hour or so, but we sweated a little more.
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Old 30-09-2015, 23:49   #3
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

I would go the Cat 22 , 5+K should get you a nice boat & trailer . My wife owned a pop top C22 and loved it . Plus there is a big owners group . Good luck keep us posted .
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Old 01-10-2015, 19:28   #4
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sea Dreaming View Post
I learned a Catalina 22 with swing keel and pop top. Awesome, stable and fun boat to learn on.
But
It was a lousy camper for more than a few days. The v birth was too difficult to get into, and I am small, 5 feet tall and 105 lbs and I still found it rough. My BF, at 6"1 and 160 lbs found it much harder. We did keep a port a potty and cook on the boat.
Forget using the spot behind the bulkhead for the potty though. It was OK for me, but anyone larger could not make it work. The Porta potty lived in the cabin wedged between the dinette and settee.

Cooking was challenging too. We used the table and one of us would sit on the port a potty as cook.

Still, we had a lot of fun in that boat! We even took it for 10 days on lake powell. The boat did well even when the winds made passage in the main channel really rough. I still have a soft spot for boaty and would buy another!

We now have a macgreggor 26x. Better camper, lousy sailing and lousy motoring too. You can't get this boat to round up to the wind! One thing I love about it though is that it takes about 45 minutes to step the mast and fully rig the boat. And that's with just us two. No problem at all.

The Catalina was a little harder, but not by much. We could still set up in an hour or so, but we sweated a little more.
Very good post!
I think your observations on the lack of comfort and space and sailing ability should help others.
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Old 01-10-2015, 19:32   #5
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Catalina 22.

For sleeping, the trick is to avoid using the V berth, or else you can't use the porta pottie at night.

You build a small plywood shelf with fiddles on the bottom that fits between the dropped down table and the starboard side once the kitchen is slid aft. Use the seat back cushions as fillers and there's a big double bed!

We did this in the mid 80s.
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Old 01-10-2015, 19:53   #6
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Catalina 25 with a swing keel. It's too heavy for lots of tow vehicles but yours should do.

Never sailed one. Just throwin out another option.
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Old 01-10-2015, 19:55   #7
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Watch this thread.
Boats Less Than $30K Recent Noteworthy Finds

There was a 26 foot Folk boat that sold for less than $2k.

There was a larger Alberg 34 that sold for about $4k.

You want a trailerable boat. But if you have access to a good place to sail, I think I would skip the trailer ability if you could get a better or more comfortable boat, and if your sailing location and where you keep the boat would please you.

Some marinas take small keelboats out and put them on cradles till the owner wants to sail it again, with the mast kept up.

You could find a Catalina 27 for about $4-5k.
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Old 01-10-2015, 21:00   #8
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Saw these tonight, with you in mind, for a first boat. Located in Norfolk area listings on Craigs.


S2 26ft. $3500
Very clean looking. Has standing headroom, 15hp outboard.
Sail boat

Catalina 25. Asking $3500 OBO, Eager to sell.
1983 25' Catalina sailboat

Another financial distress looking for all offers. Boat is 30 feet.
PRICE REDUCED AGAIN!! "Island Time" - 1978 Columbia 8.7 Supercruiser
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Old 01-10-2015, 22:23   #9
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

I can't believe how low priced some boats are! Wow!


Hunter 27
$1,500!!

Located in VA.
Diesel inboard engine. Yanmar 8hp.
Hunter 27 Sailboat
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Old 02-10-2015, 05:49   #10
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Thanks for the suggestions but now you have me thinking would it be better to just slip a boat and avoid the hassle of having to put a boat in the water and pull it out every time I want to use it. My goal is having something I can take out after work during the week. I live 10 minutes from where I would slip it. And I'm thinking its $4.50 a foot if you do it for a year." Is that good?" And I do have great cruising here out of the marina, north I have to whole Chesapeake Bay, The start of ICW is 10 miles and if I go right out of the marina I have some bay then the Atlantic so lots of opportunities. But then my boat needs will change to something more comfortable, standing headroom, a usable galley, a head with a holding tank, a comfortable cockpit to take people out for an evening sail. I plan to use this for weekend and even up to a week or 2, with me the wife and a pooch and a niece and nephew every so often. I would love something small and comfortable, thats what I did with our travel trailer and it worked out great, big enough to be comfortable but small enough I can take it places others can't. So new question what boats should I look at and would you recommend a shallow draft? And would I need to increase what I could pay to get this? 10K would be the absolute most.
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Old 02-10-2015, 11:58   #11
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Well now your talkin' . Get a slip ! Here is a thought , after work it's to late to go sailing or there is no wind . But all you want to do is go to the boat have a couple of drinks and unwind . Sure you can do that when it's on the trailer at home but its not the same thing . Also now that you are getting a slip , that opens the door to something a little bigger , because you won't have to trailer . Trust me it will be worth it . A Catalina 27' comes to mind . But now that you are thinking about 27' that opens up a whole new world . Or let's save some time , bump it up to 30'.
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:07   #12
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

I can attest - trailering is right up there with appendicitis. It just adds another layer of stuff to do that interferes with actually sailing.

We trailer our boat simply because we are well and truly landlocked. But it would not be my preference at all.

It might be worth while to simply look at your first boat as a stepping stone to future plans. Get a slip now and a boat large enough to enjoy and sail NOW, but keep the total cost low so you can move up as you become more experienced.

I guarantee as you become more experienced, your ideas about your needs and desires change too.
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Old 02-10-2015, 12:59   #13
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

Quote:
Originally Posted by subnate View Post
Thanks for the suggestions but now you have me thinking would it be better to just slip a boat and avoid the hassle of having to put a boat in the water and pull it out every time I want to use it. My goal is having something I can take out after work during the week. I live 10 minutes from where I would slip it. And I'm thinking its $4.50 a foot if you do it for a year." Is that good?" And I do have great cruising here out of the marina, north I have to whole Chesapeake Bay, The start of ICW is 10 miles and if I go right out of the marina I have some bay then the Atlantic so lots of opportunities. But then my boat needs will change to something more comfortable, standing headroom, a usable galley, a head with a holding tank, a comfortable cockpit to take people out for an evening sail. I plan to use this for weekend and even up to a week or 2, with me the wife and a pooch and a niece and nephew every so often. I would love something small and comfortable, thats what I did with our travel trailer and it worked out great, big enough to be comfortable but small enough I can take it places others can't. So new question what boats should I look at and would you recommend a shallow draft? And would I need to increase what I could pay to get this? 10K would be the absolute most.
Hi.

IF I were in your boat shoes (location, budget, experience level) and had the option to spend $5K to $10K and I wanted my family (wife/admiral) to be happy and to have FUN learning how to sail, I would do the following:

1. Pick a boat that is comfortable
2. Pick a boat with a private head (enclosed head)
3. Pick a boat that requires little repair to get it out sailing ASAP.
4. Pick a boat that requires little TIME to get ready for sailing each time I want to go.

Given that, I think you will probably find yourself enjoying the experience more if you do get a boat that does not require trailering and stepping a mast etc. There is a cost to that (keeping it in a slip) but I believe the benefits will be appreciated later and it will seem worthwhile (reasonable expense).

Because you live close to where you would keep the boat, it just makes it so much easier to drop by the boat as frequently as you wish, to make small repairs, to sit on it (relaxing) and to actually go sailing. Some of the best times can be just an hour or two of sunset sails.

Given that there are many boats that are within your budget, you can be selective. Look for one that does not require much from you at first.

Also, the "comfort factor" of going from 22ft to 25 ft to 27ft to 30ft will be something you realize when you actually try to climb up into the Vberth to sleep, or your wife wants to use the head. I am 6' tall so I would make sure to stretch out on the settees and the Vberth to make sure I fit or the boat fits me. Some smaller boats have such little space in the Vberth it is impractical for people or it feels like one is in a coffin with the ceiling right above your face. Look carefully, try them on for size.

Of the boats I linked for you, the S2 and the Hunter seem like the best to examine immediately (IMHO). The S2 looks like it has been nicely kept. The Hunter looks like it may need a little more TLC, but it does look like it has potential. The very low price is questionable (is there a reason not listed), but if that is the real price, it would get a bargain hunter's attention.

Good luck on your boat search!
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Old 02-10-2015, 13:13   #14
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

The difference in sailing time between something in a slip and something even stored with the mast up at a marine is pretty substantial. When I had my boat stored 20' from a crane on the trailer I still figured it took about 30 minutes to get it in and out of the water, so that's an hour of sailing time you loose. It really cuts into those 2 hour, after work, trips. When it's in the slip... Step on, turn the key, cast off, rig for sailing while on the way out of the marina.

Something in the 27-32' range would work well, have enough room for a decent weekender, likely have a seperate head, and not break the bank.
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Old 02-10-2015, 13:13   #15
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Re: Suggestions on First Sail Boat

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I can't believe how low priced some boats are! Wow!

Hunter 27
$1,500!!
SailboatData says that boat has 3000lb ballast. If that's lead, that boat is worth $1500 for the scrap value of the keel. Add the scrap of the mast, boom, and other metal parts - definitely undervalued.

For the OP, if you're looking at a boat in a slip, I'd always suggest a Catalina 27. They're a good boat, lots were made (parts/sails easy to find), and easy to locate in usable shape for $4K or so. I'd look for an outboard powered one if keeping on budget is key.

(Although that hunter looks good if it'll float and the engine works)
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