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Old 03-06-2012, 01:22   #1
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Many Questions Very New

First of all my name is Bob and I'm from Saskatchewan (middle of the prairies in Canada) so when I say I am new I mean I am new...lots of experience boating on lakes in Saskatchewan but an 18 ft lund walleye boat really doesn't compare / translate to a catamaran sail boat on the ocean...please bare with me.

First off why I am here is because I plan on retiring in about 7 years and I thought I wanted to buy a place in Jamaica or Mexico or somewhere in the Caribbean. After realizing the affordability of a cruiser boat, the fact I love camping / being on the water, the fact your not locked to one particular place and have total freedom appeals to me so much. For the last year I've looked at boats, costs etc...the problem is I really don't know where to start. Anyone who is able to answer some of questions / provide advice I say thanks in advance.

1) For multi-hull (and i'm pretty sure that is what I want due to stability) what size would I be looking at to be able to sail in the Caribbean? Eventually I want something that could potentially make it to Vancouver around south america and back up to NY / PEI...what sizes would be required for both? I'd assume I'd start with something for just the Caribbean and if I loved it as much as I think I will I would upgrade. Something that 4 people could comfortably be on for a while.

2) 2 hulls...3 hulls...what are the pros/cons of each?

3) It seems that living space is smaller on multi hulls versus cruiser style yachts....what are good types of multi hulls to live aboard?

4) How much work is it? I know it is hard to answer and I'm not shy of work but I also don't want something that is break your back intensive 8 hrs/day every day...I assume it isn't as I see many older people doing it.

5) What are the costs....what does it cost roughly a month to operate / live....I'm not talking living lavishly but you know fuel...food...docking fees???...traveling a fair amount still and going from place to place...maybe 3 or 4 different islands in a month...spend a week at each on and off the boat.

6) How do you get started? I'd assume the idiot who buys a boat and gets on it and goes with no knowledge ends up the dead idiot quite quickly. Like anything in life knowledge is power and generally knowledge allows you to beat almost any challenge.....but for someone with no ocean in site what can I do...are there courses a person takes...learns how to sail..how to navigate..I'm sure like on land there are maps of the ocean that basically tell you where not to go because you will die...if on my vacation I went to a place like Vancouver is there a place that offers courses...are there on-line courses? I obviously would want hands on but to learn the theory behind everything?

7) What's involved in docking/going aboard land from country to country? I'd assume customs of some sort must be involved...what goes on how does everything work?

8) What happens during hurricane season out there? Are there place that are generally safe or is it flip a coin you might lose everything every time the season comes around?

9) For a decent boat...nothing fancy...something reliable...(I'm single) so big enough for me...but up to 3 more people....that can go anywhere in Caribbean and hopefully much farther...that can be sailed by one person when needed...what type of a price should I be looking at? I'm not a rich person...I'm not poor either...I would spend 300,000 if needed but I see boats for quite a bit less that look decent...this however would be my house and my current house is almost worth 500,000 but I would love to spend less if i could.


Thanks again to anyone who muddles through my barrage of dumb questions and has answers for a dumb land lubber.
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Old 03-06-2012, 05:00   #2
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Bob.
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Old 03-06-2012, 07:17   #3
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Welcome to the forum.

1) A 45' cat would be ample room for 4 people and within budget

2) If you are going to do multi-hull, then 2 hulls. Personally, I would never sail the route you are talking about on a multi-hull. The mono-hull offers better windward sailing and will not wind up upside-down. You will find vigorous ongoing debates on this site for this topic. It boils down to personal preference. IMHO, a multi-hull is well suited for the Caribbean area, beyond that, 50’ plus mono-hull is the way to go. The open sea can be a horrible place.

3) Check out his site: http://www.svfullmonty.com/ Keep in mind you will always want the galley on the center of the hull and low (not in the main saloon).

4) Most people when at shore, work a day then play a day, or two. While at sea, it is a full time job. The key factor is you want a boat rigged so a single person can handle it FROM THE COCKPIT.

5) Here is a link to a couple who have tracked every penny for 5 years: http://www.svbebe.com/ Click the costs tab. Also, check out their boat. It is a proven safe solid world blue water cruiser

6) Look at a few boats: www.yachtworld.com Then, get a good broker as a buyer’s agent (the seller pays them when you buy). If you need a recommendation, PM me. Most important: get a good surveyor, one that works for you. It is worth every penny. When you find a boat, take the surveyor with you to see it before you make any offers. Spend some time at a couple of the in the water major boat shows. Browse the boats and you will soon find likes and dislikes. Many offer seminars on cruising (for a small fee) in addition to the boats. NEVER buy a new boat (unless you have money to burn). Depending on the brand you buy, the life expectancy of fiberglass boats is 20+ years. Also, many boat manufactures have web-site with links to people cruising full time. This is a great way to find blogs on the boats you are looking at.

7) This is the easy part. Most countries outside the USA are relaxed about yachties. A current passport is all you need. When you arrive, it is always easy to find someone to guide you through the process. Be cognizant about the length of time you can stay and do not put yourself into a situation where you “have to” leave. You will always want to leave with a good weather window

8) Stay away from hurricanes and migrate either north or south during peak season. Most insurance policies will have limitations of where you can be located during the season.

9) You will find a nice boat for $350 to $400K – The market is a buyers market right now and will be for the foreseeable future.

Have fun shopping. We went to some very cool places and really enjoyed the process. We shopped for 3 years prior to purchasing
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Old 03-06-2012, 08:33   #4
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Welcome to the community! The questions you pose are many and much can be researched on previous threads. Starting at the first question and the selection of the multihull for the purpose of stability; don't be too quick to judgement here. Look at the motions of both and don't assume that either remains a stable platform. Many who look to sailing from a point of less experience see a monohull as quite different from reality. Also, look at the capacity for carrying provisions and tankage with an eye on the effects of weight on the monohull and multihull performance. Needed size is another feature that is easy for someone with a shoreside perspective to overestimate. A boat under forty feet can easily fit your needs for a single-handed sailor including occasional guests. Be slow to limit your choices and to spend big money.
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Old 03-06-2012, 08:44   #5
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Hi Bob,

You will get some valuable info by searching earlier threads:

Cruisers & Sailing Forums - Search Forums

Cheers,
b.
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:16   #6
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Using the search function will bring up lots of threads on the questions you asked.

The problem is that many of those threads will have conflicting information. To a great extent this is because the smallest boat you can live on or the largest boat you can single hand is dependent on who you are. Some folks are short and thin and have no problem with a bunk less than six feet in length, while a highly skilled 6'4" deck ape can often single hand a much larger boat than a smaller person.

One thing that caught my eye was you idea of going around South America. Rounding Cape Horn at the tip of South America is frequently viewed as one of the most dangerous passages in the world requiring a skillful sailor and a seaworthy boat. Going through the Panama Canal is a much easier option.

Spend a week or so not only searching/lurking this site (and other internet locations as well) and you will be in a better position to asked much more pointed questions.

As an example you will find lots of monohull verses multihull threads, then you will cat verses tri threads, then you will find certain monohull, or cat, or tri owners think their brand of boat is better than any other. Just because some one says a Cal 40 or a Chris White cat or an Ian Farrier tri is the best boat for them does not mean it is the best boat for you. There are trade off in all these choices and your personal evaluation of the trade offs is all that counts.
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Old 03-06-2012, 10:49   #7
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Re: Many Questions Very New

In my humble opinion (and I preface this by saying that I'm just doing a lot of research as well and do not currently own), you would do well to find a production cat with blue water capability or a production monohull. Whichever you choose, find a boat that has a lot of people who have sailed a lot of miles in the type of boat you want to sail in the area you want to sail. Sailing around the Caribbean hopping from island to island is one thing (called coastal cruising), while bigger passages sailing across open stretches (called blue water sailing) is another animal all together, especially when you're talking about places like Cape Horn. I have crossed the big oceans in large ships, and I can tell you from experience that the big blue is not to be trifled with. Still, many have crossed and its not to say it can't be done. Just that it is a serious endeavor and must be treated as such. When people say places like Cape Horn are out of your league, take that advice as fact and always err on the side of caution. As for which boat, I like production cats. They are the larger brand versions which have many owners, much information, and large companies to support them, including brands like Leopard, Fountaine-Pajot, PDQ, Seawind, etc. Many people prefer "one-off" boats, meaning those designed by great designers like Chris White, which are built by different builders around the world. Personally, that makes me a bit nervous, as I like the support of many owners and a big company, but many people swear by these designs. Production cats appear to be a bit easier to buy and sell because the price is a more constant and people understand what the boats are. For me, cruising as a couple, we have been looking at boats in the 36 to 44 range, with price tags in the 200 to 300k range. Generally, I wouldn't buy a boat much older than ten years or so, but again that's my preference. A lot of design changes over the years have helped newer boats be safer and more comfortable. The boats I've been looking at do most of their depreciating in value over the first five years, then taper off a bit up to ten years, then remain pretty constant in price. Everyone says get a great surveyor and pay what it takes. For blue water, bigger boats always seem to be suggested as better, but for island hopping, you can go a bit smaller. If it were me, I wouldn't be much interested in trimarans. Just not enough out there and not enough support. Many more cats on the water and sailing around the world. The debate on cats vs. monohulls is endless and there are pros and cons to both, not the least of which is price. Still, I prefer cats all the way.
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Old 03-06-2012, 14:09   #8
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Re: Many Questions Very New

One reason I suggest lurking and reading a lot is to get a better feel for things. While Camp Director G has some good points I can easily point this link

Edwards Yacht Sales, Quality Listings, Professional Brokers (Clearwater, FL)

Which is contrary to some of his points. I have no connection with this boat but is is a non production tri over 10 years old that if as advertised would be a fine boat meeting many of your initial requirements for $US50k.

I am currently researching my next boat and while this looks like a good deal it does not meet some of my requirements. I most likely will wind up with an Fboat of some flavor (probably an F31AC) because I want to be able to trailer it. On the other hand I have a friend who has an F31CC who selected it over the F31AC for reasons I completely understand. Most folks would agree the AC (Aft Cockpit) would be a good choice for a couple to cruise in while the CC (Center Cockpit) is a better choice for a single Dad with a 12 year old daughter who needs her own space when cruising. A real consideration for me with the Fboats is it is a lot easier and cheaper to keep a boat on a trailer when not using as opposed to keeping it at a dock. Plus I can tow the boat in days to places it would take weeks or months to sail to. As an example I could cruise the Bahamas, then tow the boat to So. Cal. and cruise the Sea of Cortez in the same week. There were a lot of production Fboats and a large user group support. Same thing goes for Telstars.

This is not to say that many of CDG's points about cruising cats are not good ones. But most experienced folks will point out that lots of the boats he mentions have owners and charter versions and you will find lots of threads describing the pros and cons of these versions. Without getting into that argument I will point out that some of the sharpest threads I have seen deal with which 30-50 foot cruising cat is best.

Another step you may consider once you feel you are up to speed is make posts like this one. It will help you refine your ideas about just which boat fits your needs best.
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Old 03-06-2012, 14:27   #9
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Canadian Eh !
Ya me too, I am into my second year researching.
My sailing history includes a family owned sail shop in Toronto and a decade of cruising in Georgian bay. With a lifetime of racing and all my exposure to sailing I found that, to set up for a drop the lines and take off for a decade of world cruising , the learning curve is steep and never ending.
I just completed a bareboat in the BVI's, more like lake sailing than ocean sailing, mind you the water tasted like crap.
Just to let you know I will be purchasing soon a cat as well.
Feel free to send me off a message and a phone call could get you some sailtime as crew for me, we speak the same lingo.

Cheers Scott Doran

(Check out ' LUECAT Blog, be patient and read it all, it will take months and you will slowly osmose practical seat of the pants knowledge.)
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Old 03-06-2012, 14:44   #10
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Re: Many Questions Very New

welcome aboard--looks like you are already getting the propaganda--i wont contribute....yet..LOL
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Old 03-06-2012, 16:00   #11
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomfl View Post
(...) I have no connection with this boat (...)
Traitor!

;-)

That's the one I wanted for Xmas ...

Newick, huh? Often wondering if they sail as well as they look.

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Old 03-06-2012, 17:01   #12
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Re: Many Questions Very New

First off welcome to CF Bob.

Since you have 7 years from retiring, you have lots of time. I'd suggest you do some sailing lessons. American Sailing Association 101, 103 and 104 to start which gets you up to Bareboat Chartering. Then do a ASA 114 which is for catamarans.

Do this somewhere warm in the winter like Florida, Mississippi, Texas, etc. Then start chartering a couple of times per year, as much as your wallet and vacation time will allow for. You'd start with smaller boats then work your way up.

This is how I've learned sailing, all except for the ASA 114. We've chartered with friends in Vancouver and La Paz, Mexico on both monohulls from 35' to 42' and catamarans 40' to 43'.

Also, in Saskatoon you can take the Canadian Power & Sail Boating Course usually from Fall til December, and they offer others such as VHF Radio licence courses and other more advance such as Piloting.

Besides that and reading lots of books and online, you will answer all of your own questions.

Send me a personal message (PM) if you want any suggestions for lessons and charter companies we've used.
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Old 03-06-2012, 19:34   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krafthaus
First off welcome to CF Bob.

Since you have 7 years from retiring, you have lots of time. I'd suggest you do some sailing lessons. American Sailing Association 101, 103 and 104 to start which gets you up to Bareboat Chartering. Then do a ASA 114 which is for catamarans.

Do this somewhere warm in the winter like Florida, Mississippi, Texas, etc. Then start chartering a couple of times per year, as much as your wallet and vacation time will allow for. You'd start with smaller boats then work your way up.

This is how I've learned sailing, all except for the ASA 114. We've chartered with friends in Vancouver and La Paz, Mexico on both monohulls from 35' to 42' and catamarans 40' to 43'.

Also, in Saskatoon you can take the Canadian Power & Sail Boating Course usually from Fall til December, and they offer others such as VHF Radio licence courses and other more advance such as Piloting.

Besides that and reading lots of books and online, you will answer all of your own questions.

Send me a personal message (PM) if you want any suggestions for lessons and charter companies we've used.
Best advice so far...

Too early to talk about immigration, customs and even what boat to get...

CF is a huge resource. Everything that can be said has been said, and will be said again. Search function is great, follow some threads, dive in when terms are used you dont understand and ask.

I own a boat and charter twice a year so I can sail different boats and sail in places where my boat is not. I have no "official" sailing certs other than competent crew and daysailer. I have had zero issues chartering up to 42 feet. All they want is a sailing resume, sometimes a one hour check ride the first time ai charter and a credit card that will cover the deductible.
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Old 03-06-2012, 21:52   #14
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Re: Many Questions Very New

Welcome fellow Canuck

You are close to one of the best places in the world to sail: the Salish Sea, Gulf Islands, Desolation Sound, etc.. You can learn to navigate tidal waters with lots of rocks under the tutelage of an experienced, knowledgeable instructor.

There are several sailing schools in Vancouver and on Vancouver Island. I have worked for most of them, so PM me if you want more information.

On the long weekend in May I was out with a family on a Lagoon 380, helping them understand cats and getting an International Certificate of Competence, which they needed it for a Greek charter.

Power Squadron courses are an option, but they do not provide practical, on the water courses, yet. (That might be in the offing. Had to sneak in a nautical term.)

Jack
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Old 05-06-2012, 18:33   #15
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Re: Many Questions Very New

What's everyone's take on the Vancouver Sailing Club? They seem decent based on the website and although I hate to assume, I'd have to assume they are good just because Vancouver ought to have a good club so long as Luongo and the Sedin twins aren't at the helm

Their prices for the ASA 101, 103 and then the 1 week cruise where you get the 104 and 114 seems pretty stellar. I like the fact that I can take Friday off of work and fly out and get the 101 on a weekend and be back for Monday morning work and same with the 103 as well...plan a 2 week vacation for the 104/114.

I find it so hard to believe that in roughly 12 days if a person wanted he could go from never being on an ocean ship to being able to charter around the world...boggles the mind.....prescribe every kid who walks into your office anti biotics = 8 years + in school.....being licensed to use someone elses million dollar boat putting 30 people's lives in jeopardy...12 days


Thanks so much to everyone answered / sent PM's .... I'll get ahold of you etc...just the basics of getting these courses under my belt and where to find stuff...should have known to search google for sailing clubs but didn't know ASA had recognized courses etc.

I did have one other thing though....I don't understand the comment of a multi hull being less stable...I would have thought they would be more stable than a mono hull and harder to capsize...but I grew up looking at combines not boats
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