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Old 14-04-2015, 15:18   #46
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

No it's not too big but as someone's roomed the learning curve will be steep and it's easy to get discouraged. Having said that easy solution is to just take sailing lessons. I'm sure there's dozens of schools in the Chesapeake Bay area they can teach you how to handle a boat that size. You also have the option of taking private lessons on your 32 foot boat. I speak from experience because I have a 30 foot Catalina actually a Catalina 309 which is probably 31 feet. In short I would say go for it you only live once make it count
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Old 14-04-2015, 15:23   #47
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

Just as a side note, Annapolis Sailing School would be a great place to get some experience, as they teach group lessons on 24' - 30' boats, and then you can rent the boats for the day or for the weekend.
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Old 14-04-2015, 15:52   #48
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

my first boat was 33ft and my current boat is 30ft and has enough space and amenities to be a comfortable live aboard when cruising. It is not really the size of the boat that is important but it's design and layout being suitable for your individual level of experience. If you are new to sailing just turn up at a local yacht club where you will easily find boat owners willing to take you on as crew and get some experience prior to buying your own boat.
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Old 14-04-2015, 19:19   #49
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
Just as a side note, Annapolis Sailing School would be a great place to get some experience, as they teach group lessons on 24' - 30' boats, and then you can rent the boats for the day or for the weekend.
I think this is a great idea. Sail a bunch of boats first before you decide. My ideal solo boat would be about 23 feet, but I sail a 40 footer (often solo) because that is what is comfortable for the kids and grandkids.
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Old 14-04-2015, 20:56   #50
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

No it is not too big. Since you are going to live aboard 32' is about minimum for a comfortable existence.
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Old 15-04-2015, 01:48   #51
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

For the OP:

You've had a lot of feedback here. To put my response in perspective, let me say I only lived aboard a 30 footer when I was cruising it with Jim--when we returned to SF from HI,I returned to my house to live, so I have no experience of living aboard a 30 footer while working.

I did live aboard our 36 footer while working. It was tight, for two 9 to 5'ers. So, a whole lot of your choice depends on the shading of the values between sailing and liveaboarding.

If the reason you want a sailboat is to go sailing, then, frankly the Grampian 26 mentioned a long ways back would be seakindly, and you could learn basic sailing skills.

Jim's 2nd boat was a Catalina 22 trailer sailer, fast and responsive, but his learning boat was an O'Day 15 (iirc). So, IMO, you don't need 30+ ft. for a learn-to-sail boat.

Jim's S & S 30 handled everything that came at her on the r/t to HI from SF, including quite a number of gale force wind days. Thirty feet could work pretty well as a liveaboard, but I'd suggest you look at a number of roughly 30 footers, before you decide on what you need.

Often, one's experience is that what one thought would be a problem, won't be.

For learning to sail, honestly, you could scale to a sailing dinghy, and live aboard the 30 footer, as suggested (on the first page of responses, I guess), and self-teach a whole lot about sailboats, which will then be your base line knowledge for growth in sailing skills.

You can learn a lot about sail trim by sailing with racers. I think that's a good deal.

The way the world is changing, you might actually, at some point, choose to get some form of formal qualifications. This is something to decide later on, unless licensure is required in the Chesapeake. Meanwhile, choose, is the primary desire to sail, or to liveaboard? The advice will be really different depending on your goal.

Ann
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Old 15-04-2015, 03:12   #52
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

I think the answer depends quite a lot on what kind of a sailor you are. If you have tendency to rush ahead and learn what you should not have done only afterwards, or if you have hard time accepting your misjudgements and correcting them, then it could be better to make the first mistakes with some lighter and cheaper boat. Or you could sail with some more experienced sailors for a while. But if you have tendency to be careful, study things carefully before taking new challenges, and you like continuous learning, then I don't see any problems starting with a 32' boat.
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Old 15-04-2015, 03:38   #53
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

Sailing a boat isn't that hard for someone who's endowed with some common sense and is prepared to seek education and training whilst taking baby steps, however sailing a boat well is a different matter. after 45yrs of sailing there are people out there who have forgotten more than I know but I still enjoy. I was talking to a sail trainer for a well known charter company and he told me that a heart beat was enough to charter from them but if the client still felt uncomfortable he would go out for half a day.
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Old 15-04-2015, 09:47   #54
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

I lived on - and sailed regularly - a Morgan OI ketch, much of it single handed. There's no reason you can't learn on a 32 foot boat, but it might be helpful to learn some boat handling skills on a smaller keelboat, then transfer those skills to your 32. On the other hand, if you learn on your own boat, you will have a very good idea how it handles in various conditions.

Take two or three days and practice crew overboard recovery - all day - on whatever boat you buy. You'll quickly develop a feel for what THAT boat can and connot do.
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Old 15-04-2015, 10:13   #55
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

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1.......It takes me less than two hours to go from everything spread out for a project involving lots of tools to tidy, clean, and ready for guests, which is even cleaner than necessary for sailing.

2........As for "real sailing," last I checked, the whole point is "raising the rags and getting the boat to move." The monthly beer can race at our marina has several liveaboards participating, as well as day sailors on cruising boats. We took third last month.

3............As for the original question, the Catalina 34 is very popular at our marina for owners who use their boats regularly, including liveaboards. The C34's often constitute half the race fleet. There were also a handful of Hunter Legend 35.5's around for awhile.
1. I agree. We can just go sailing ANYTIME, because EVERYTHING is ALWAYS put away, where it belongs and where it doesn't shake, rattle & roll when we're sailing. It takes DISCIPLINE to do that. And a little time learning just where everything should go.

2. Yes. Also, sailing lessons on YOUR boat are always helpful.

3. Don't forget that an active owners association and websites will save you tons of $$$ and avoid having to reinvent the wheel. Our C34 group has tons of experience. A forum: Main Message Board and lots of associated technical information. Whatever boat you buy, check out your "support group online" first, because if there isn't one...

Two weeks after I bought our C34 I was singlehanding.

Docking 101 DOCKING 101 -- Mid Ship Cleat and Aft Spring [includes a link in Reply #1 to a very good single handed topic]

Single Handing 101 single handing

Single Handing 101.1 Midship Cleats Pictures Midship cleat PHOTOS / Flix
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Old 15-04-2015, 11:49   #56
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
For the OP:

You've had a lot of feedback here. To put my response in perspective, let me say I only lived aboard a 30 footer when I was cruising it with Jim--when we returned to SF from HI,I returned to my house to live, so I have no experience of living aboard a 30 footer while working.

I did live aboard our 36 footer while working. It was tight, for two 9 to 5'ers. So, a whole lot of your choice depends on the shading of the values between sailing and liveaboarding.

If the reason you want a sailboat is to go sailing, then, frankly the Grampian 26 mentioned a long ways back would be seakindly, and you could learn basic sailing skills.

Jim's 2nd boat was a Catalina 22 trailer sailer, fast and responsive, but his learning boat was an O'Day 15 (iirc). So, IMO, you don't need 30+ ft. for a learn-to-sail boat.

Jim's S & S 30 handled everything that came at her on the r/t to HI from SF, including quite a number of gale force wind days. Thirty feet could work pretty well as a liveaboard, but I'd suggest you look at a number of roughly 30 footers, before you decide on what you need.

Often, one's experience is that what one thought would be a problem, won't be.

For learning to sail, honestly, you could scale to a sailing dinghy, and live aboard the 30 footer, as suggested (on the first page of responses, I guess), and self-teach a whole lot about sailboats, which will then be your base line knowledge for growth in sailing skills.

You can learn a lot about sail trim by sailing with racers. I think that's a good deal.

The way the world is changing, you might actually, at some point, choose to get some form of formal qualifications. This is something to decide later on, unless licensure is required in the Chesapeake. Meanwhile, choose, is the primary desire to sail, or to liveaboard? The advice will be really different depending on your goal.

Ann
Well said! I wonder if the original poster is still with us?
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Old 22-04-2015, 18:11   #57
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

im looking at a Catalina 22 pop top. Im wondering if she will be able to cruise to the Bahamas from Florida single handedly well. is she too small for that ?
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Old 22-04-2015, 18:20   #58
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

Able... in the right conditions, with an experienced skipper. .but conditions are hard to predict. ..there are 24+'s that would be better.
In a boat that small I would want it watertight on the top as well as the bottom and a fixed keel.
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Old 22-04-2015, 19:59   #59
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

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im looking at a Catalina 22 pop top. Im wondering if she will be able to cruise to the Bahamas from Florida single handedly well. is she too small for that ?
ROTFL! Sure, you could do it, but you would be cold, wet, miserable, and hungry. The C22 is a daysailer/overnighter.

In the same price range, you could get a C&C25 and have some creature comforts and speed (to get you across the gulf stream). A Cape Dory 25 would be another tried and true boat.

Sorry, but better to be brutally honest, don't choose the catalina 22 (or 25, or 27).
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Old 23-04-2015, 03:58   #60
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Re: Is a 32' Sailboat Over-sized for a Beginner?

Are you looking for a trailer-sailer in particular? There are bigger, sturdier trailer-sailers that would make a trip to the Bahamas much nicer. The San Juan 23 or O'Day 25 might work for you, if you have the towing capacity.
Also, look in at The Trailer Sailor - Home for a lot more experience and expertise on trailerable sailboats.
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