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Old 03-06-2008, 19:28   #1
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Good Boat Options for 45k-55k

Hi, I'm new here but didn't get much response Meet and Greet forum section so thought I'd come straight to the point.

It's always about the plan...right?

I currently don't know how to sail, but I love the water and want to be living aboard a cruising sailboat in about 3 years. I'm not sure how ambitious or realistic that is, but it's my goal. I currently own a top of the line tournament fishing boat that I'd like to trade for the sailboat (I'd like a catamaran I think) and my boat is worth around 50k.

What, if any, are my options? And what would you all suggest be my best plan of attack to conquer this goal. I'm in my mid 20's, prior military, currently working as a government contractor getting decent pay. My fishing boat is paid off and I'd like that to carry over to the catamaran.

Thanks for the help,
Carraig
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Old 03-06-2008, 19:46   #2
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It might help with our recomendations if we know where you live and how far from home you're planning on going to locate a boat.

In general, the price range you mentioned is at the very low end of cruising catamarans. Again, in general this will buy an older 20-25 year old boat. Usually these boats will require some work to bring them up to snuff.

Look around your area for British boats

Catalac 8M or 9M
Prout
Heavenly Twin
Iroquois

Crowther
Woods
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Old 03-06-2008, 19:47   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carraig View Post
I currently own a top of the line tournament fishing boat that I'd like to trade for the sailboat (I'd like a catamaran I think) and my boat is worth around 50k...

What, if any, are my options?

Welcome… hopefully some of the knowledgeable multi-hull aficionados will jump in here… have no idea what $50K gets in a Cat, but was under the impression that would need to be a bargain priced vessel… but I could be all wrong, so hang around and wait on the experts…

oops, I see Rick already jumped in...
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Old 03-06-2008, 20:44   #4
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Financially speaking...

Financially speaking your best option might be to sell your boat now and save like crazy for the next 3 years.

Without knowing your situation that could put you in line to buy a $150k cat.
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Old 03-06-2008, 21:04   #5
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Just bought a boat around your price range and while I was admittedly mono-hull obsessed I was keeping my eyes open for a multi-hull. Nothing turned up except the dregs of the market but I did end up happy with the mono-hull we found.

Good luck though!
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Old 03-06-2008, 21:13   #6
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I'm currently in southeast AZ working on the government contract but have a house on the TX coast near Corpus Christi that I go to a couple times a month. I guess I didn't realize the huge price variance between the mono and multi hulls. I think for a first boat I'd rather sacrifice some size in order to get a little more reliability, but then again what do I know.

My goal is to take off from the Gulf and sail the carribean, living aboard in the USVI the majority of the time. That is where my fiance grew up and where we'd like to return to, and the boat seems a more economical way to get that oceanfront property ;-)
Plus, it'd be nice to pull up anchor and visit the BVI and many other islands in that area.

Thanks for all the ideas so far.
Carraig
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Old 03-06-2008, 21:55   #7
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Dude !!!
Dont post here much myself either but...
Loose the stinkpot. Loose the fiancee. And get creative.
Crap, you're 20 sumpin.
Holy freaking ..........
Nice to have a dream but I am telling you now, a chick (UNLESS TOTALLY DEVOTED AND PROVEN WITH CASH INFUSION ) will suck all the spirit out of this dream before you have a chance to tear the wrapper off another condom.
BEWARE
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Old 04-06-2008, 00:50   #8
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Your biggest hurdle is selling the boat you have. It is alway easy to buy a boat, but it is hard to sell one. So once you over come that part, the rest is easy. Oh and don't take any notice to the dribble posted above. Having a partner along with you on your journey is the best thing imaginable.
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Old 04-06-2008, 08:26   #9
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Its good to dream, its better to compromise, and its best to stay open to whatever lands on your plate.
The boat market is depressed, but that doesn't mean that liveaboard cats are going to lose half their value. Something you find for $50K is going to to need a lot of work, and most of it will have a negative return on investment. It will be just get a little bit older. Bottom line, you don't want whatever you can afford right now.
Between $60K and $80K you will find some boats with good bones[listed above] that are worth rehabilitation, but will not appreciate much as a result of your efforts. You will want to wait for the holy grail of catamarans to come up for sale. I suggest these criteria: Clean, with good sails. Continuously maintained by a meticulous owner who has always resisted the urge to buy cheap substitutes. No black holes filled with a half ton of broken stuff kept for 'spares', the engine space will be relatively clean, with new spares. There will be good records, a minimum funk in the head, and no more than a hint of moldy aroma under the bunks. Clean bilges. A surveyor will go back over the boat a couple extra times, trying to find something to write up for his fee. He will find no delamination, no soft decks, not a single meat hook in the standing rigging, and everything on board will work right. The running rigging might not be shiney-new, and the electronics can be a generation or two older, but they must work. Don't fall in love with some of the jewelry the owner is leaving, like a stereo or a TV or a kayak etc. A $500 toy should have no effect on an $80,000.00 decision. If he bakes cookies and leaves the stero on a smooth rock station, be not affected. In fact, count the new cans of deoderizer on board.
A survey is not an option. It is pure common sense, and a mandate from your bank or insurance company.
If the owner is still alive, wring a promise from him that he will give you a tour of the boat, demonstrate the care and use of everything on it, how to winterize, what bottom paint he used and why, and what was next on his maintenance lists. Record it, every word. Video tape it if you can. Send him Christmas cards and candy on Father's Day just in case he finds the original manual for the ickumpucker, or the spare fuse for the doobiewah. Take him sailing with you to show you the best way to jibe the chute single-handed while roasting a pig in the galley.
So when do you know this boat has just come on the market? The best list is New and Used Yachts for Sale - YachtWorld.com. Its good to keep up with the magazines that list boats, Like Soundings, This Old Boat, Lats and Atts, Spinsheet, SouthWinds, and Lat 38 [sp?]. Join blogs for these boats where possible, and get to know the old-timers. To make an informed decision, you should beg a ride on as many different models as possible, and these are the best places to introduce yourself. Be ready to move when one pops up on the market. It won't normally happen because the owner has just got the hots for something new; its more likely that he's going through one of those life-changing events like a divorce, ill health, or a 20-something bride that wants to drive a pink Dodge Viper. But don't rush because the broker tells you to; the cheaper boats will sell first, and even the most practical owner has a higher expectation of the value of his jewel. A few low offers will help him understand the market.
Have a plan: know where you can keep the boat, how much it will cost. Estimate that you will spend about 10% of the purchase value on maintenance and replacements. Find out how much it costs to haul the boat, and what kind of insurance you can get. Being boat poor is worse than being house poor. A boat is a luxury.
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Old 04-06-2008, 09:32   #10
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Wow, what a well thought out and helpful post. Thank You!

Quote:
Originally Posted by sandy daugherty View Post
Its good to dream, its better to compromise, and its best to stay open to whatever lands on your plate.
The boat market is depressed, but that doesn't mean that liveaboard cats are going to lose half their value. Something you find for $50K is going to to need a lot of work, and most of it will have a negative return on investment. It will be just get a little bit older. Bottom line, you don't want whatever you can afford right now.
Between $60K and $80K you will find some boats with good bones[listed above] that are worth rehabilitation, but will not appreciate much as a result of your efforts. You will want to wait for the holy grail of catamarans to come up for sale. I suggest these criteria: Clean, with good sails. Continuously maintained by a meticulous owner who has always resisted the urge to buy cheap substitutes. No black holes filled with a half ton of broken stuff kept for 'spares', the engine space will be relatively clean, with new spares. There will be good records, a minimum funk in the head, and no more than a hint of moldy aroma under the bunks. Clean bilges. A surveyor will go back over the boat a couple extra times, trying to find something to write up for his fee. He will find no delamination, no soft decks, not a single meat hook in the standing rigging, and everything on board will work right. The running rigging might not be shiney-new, and the electronics can be a generation or two older, but they must work. Don't fall in love with some of the jewelry the owner is leaving, like a stereo or a TV or a kayak etc. A $500 toy should have no effect on an $80,000.00 decision. If he bakes cookies and leaves the stero on a smooth rock station, be not affected. In fact, count the new cans of deoderizer on board.
A survey is not an option. It is pure common sense, and a mandate from your bank or insurance company.
If the owner is still alive, wring a promise from him that he will give you a tour of the boat, demonstrate the care and use of everything on it, how to winterize, what bottom paint he used and why, and what was next on his maintenance lists. Record it, every word. Video tape it if you can. Send him Christmas cards and candy on Father's Day just in case he finds the original manual for the ickumpucker, or the spare fuse for the doobiewah. Take him sailing with you to show you the best way to jibe the chute single-handed while roasting a pig in the galley.
So when do you know this boat has just come on the market? The best list is New and Used Yachts for Sale - YachtWorld.com. Its good to keep up with the magazines that list boats, Like Soundings, This Old Boat, Lats and Atts, Spinsheet, SouthWinds, and Lat 38 [sp?]. Join blogs for these boats where possible, and get to know the old-timers. To make an informed decision, you should beg a ride on as many different models as possible, and these are the best places to introduce yourself. Be ready to move when one pops up on the market. It won't normally happen because the owner has just got the hots for something new; its more likely that he's going through one of those life-changing events like a divorce, ill health, or a 20-something bride that wants to drive a pink Dodge Viper. But don't rush because the broker tells you to; the cheaper boats will sell first, and even the most practical owner has a higher expectation of the value of his jewel. A few low offers will help him understand the market.
Have a plan: know where you can keep the boat, how much it will cost. Estimate that you will spend about 10% of the purchase value on maintenance and replacements. Find out how much it costs to haul the boat, and what kind of insurance you can get. Being boat poor is worse than being house poor. A boat is a luxury.
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Old 04-06-2008, 10:00   #11
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Something like 1987 Prout ELITE PRICE SLASHED!! Boat For Sale maybe? Granted I'm not ready to buy yet, but this seems to follow your general idea of a cleaner boat...at least from pictures.
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Old 04-06-2008, 10:40   #12
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Give the Wharram cats a look. You might also consider a trimaran as they tend to be much cheaper than cats. The Searunner line by Jim Brown are excellent boats and along with the Wharram cats have a well deserved reputation for seaworthiness and dependability. Scott Brown Multihulls will have a selection of Wharrams you can peruse online and Searunners can usually be found on Yachtworld. Check 'em out.

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Old 04-06-2008, 11:14   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carraig View Post
Hi, I'm new here but didn't get much response Meet and Greet forum section so thought I'd come straight to the point.

It's always about the plan...right?

I currently don't know how to sail, but I love the water and want to be living aboard a cruising sailboat in about 3 years. I'm not sure how ambitious or realistic that is, but it's my goal. I currently own a top of the line tournament fishing boat that I'd like to trade for the sailboat (I'd like a catamaran I think) and my boat is worth around 50k.

What, if any, are my options? And what would you all suggest be my best plan of attack to conquer this goal. I'm in my mid 20's, prior military, currently working as a government contractor getting decent pay. My fishing boat is paid off and I'd like that to carry over to the catamaran.

Thanks for the help,
Carraig
Hi Carraig

I've just bought a 35' Seawind cat myself after looking around for a year, although it's for the tropics rather than temperate waters.

If you are based in UK the market prices are expensive compared to US or the Caribbean.

Checkout Cats on AppolloDuck.com or yachtworld.com.

Decide if you want to cruise the coast or cross oceans (try and be honest on this one).

Also post you questions on SSCA.com or the cruiser Log forums, both of which are very helpful.

You will quickly gauge if the members are Caribbean sailors from the US, SE Asian sailors, Mediterranean Brits etc.

Make a list of boats you like and research them on the net.

50k is do-able for a smaller, older cat in good condition.

Also the present economics and weak US dollar are turning it into a buyers' market.

Good Luck

Joe
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Old 04-06-2008, 14:38   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by carraig View Post
Something like 1987 Prout ELITE PRICE SLASHED!! Boat For Sale maybe? Granted I'm not ready to buy yet, but this seems to follow your general idea of a cleaner boat...at least from pictures.
That is cheap for a Snowgoose Elite. Maybe it's the location. Maybe the owner seriously needs to sell. Or maybe there is something very wrong.

Looks like an excellent opportunity but caveat emptor.
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Old 04-06-2008, 15:02   #15
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This could very well be what I was talking about, or it could be a fixed-upper, a neglected boat someone purchased, cosmetized and is marketing somewhere distant from its most recent resting place. I vaguely remember a nose-warted Prout in the Chesapeake Bay area that sat for a long time, but I don not think this is it. Get the hull number and check with the very devoted Prout Owners Group. They will tell you what the story is. This is not an exceptionally good price for a 21 year old Snow Goose, but it IS a boat with good bones! And the Awl Grip looks good in the pictures.
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