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Old 22-01-2009, 10:52   #16
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First post? Medium term? Cheap Boat to do up? Mmmmm........

......anyway Best bet is learn the sailing stuff on a cheap boat designed for "only" sailing inshore / coastal - don't worry it is still "proper" sailing, plenty (if not more) opportunities to sink / drown yerself .....just cheaper to do and probably more enjoyable / practical.

No point buying a world traveller at the YOU do not know what YOU want from a maybe I could live on a basic (equals cheap) 27 foot boat, but it doesn't mean you could - or that either of us would want to on a RTW trip.

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Old 22-01-2009, 14:52   #17
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Originally Posted by grovernors View Post
old sailboat "graveyard" that unwanted vessels .

A boat that can safely circumnavigate would be in a Graveyard?

There are many bargain seekers out there - and some here on this forum - who would spot any boat that seaworthy that just needs a bit of work - and then sell it.

To sail around the world is not a small undertaking.

Slocome did it in 1895 but on a boat he had remade timber for timber, it was 40 feet long, 1 foot for each year of his experience as a sailing ships captain.

We bought a 39 footer 8 months ago that was in perfect sailing condition. I have been sailing since I was a kid and done half a circumnavigation in a rally/race prior. I am on the steepest learning curve! Every bit of equipment on a boat is totally different than any you would find on land. Engines are totally different too - diesel instead of petrol and mechanics cost a fortune because they have to come and see you, you can't take the boat to them.

There is a lot to learn.

Circumnavigating is so difficult that people were still setting (valid) records only a few years ago: Kate Cottee female circumnavigation without assistance etc 1988?

And people out there sometimes don't come back. Look at another thread on this board today with a boat lost in the Indian Ocean - 1 survivor and we are hopeful for the other 2.

All that being said, yes it can be done. Not by everyone. It makes it fundamentally more difficult with a little boat, little money, little experience and little monthly income. Only you know the real score on those things.

We are battling, but our monthly income is high compared to others, our boat slightly on the small size of average (I think the 'average' is about 41 feet?), and our boat is simpler in system than others. It should be an easy ride. But its not. Every day is budgeted. Nicolle can't buy an ice cream at the shop this weekend - or from the ice cream truck when it comes here tomorrow and Sunday - because we have blowen the budget for the week.

Do you really want to undertake one of the worlds most stressful lifestyles when you can't even afford an icecream? Let alone a boat that is not everyones cast-off?

So yes, it can be done. But the reality is a bit different from the dream. Make sure your feet are on the ground and your hand enjoys plunging deep into your pocket!


Notes on a Circumnavigation.

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
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Old 22-01-2009, 15:26   #18
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Hey Mark,

Buy Nicole an Ice Cream Cone...Poor Girl!

Grovernors...never came back?
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Old 22-01-2009, 15:30   #19
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Have Nicolle buy the ice cream and send me a private email...I'll pay. Are you guys still planning to go to Thailand?
I've not had the cruising experience to address some of the questions posted but I agree that if the newbies start slow and small, they will get on the learning curve and figue out what they need. There is no real short cut.
Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 22-01-2009, 18:30   #20
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Originally Posted by jimking100 View Post
Are you guys still planning to go to Thailand?
Yes. Thats why the buget is so tight at the moment. We are making sure the boat is ready for 6 months in Indonesia and Malaysia before we get to Thailand.

We were at a marina the other day and found some short ends of brand new docking lines in the trash can. *Blush* yep! We grabbed them! Not lettin those go to waste.

Tempest245: Hey Mark,

Buy Nicole an Ice Cream Cone...Poor Girl!
She can buy the CONE. Its the ice cream inside the cone that she's not gettin!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Notes on a Circumnavigation.

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
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Old 22-01-2009, 19:10   #21
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Really? Couldn't just answer the guy's question without lecturing him about how he needs to become an astronaut before he buys a boat?
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Old 22-01-2009, 21:12   #22
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Buy the boat, just do it. Important size is whatever ya feel comfortable in. Your first boat aint gonna be your circumnavigator anyway, but ya gotta learn somewhere.

Besides, wasn't there someone here asking if they could do the entire Baja Peninsula by kayak. Ain't the size that counts... Motion of the ocean, ya know?


Q: "How do you stay fit?"
A: "Passing the vodka bottle and playing guitar." - Keith Richards
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Old 23-01-2009, 00:46   #23
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I'm new to this forum, but have been sailing a number of day sailors for many years. After reading many postings and making a few comments or many, I have learned that although I think I know something about sailing, I really know very little. I am presently land locked in Oklahoma, but plan to retire in a few years and head for Chicago or maybe upper Michigan and take some serious sailing lessons in something around 40 ft. After a years sailing and living on board on the Great Lakes. I think I might be ready to head for the open sea. Time will tell.

I was reading about a young man and three of his friends that want to buy a boat and sail it down the east coast, south america, and around the islands. He thinks he might accomplish all of this in a months time. Only if he grows wings or drinks alot of Red Bull. He plans on leaving around the start of hurricane season. I think they will all die. By the way, the old used up sailboat graveyard is right next to Davy Jones' locker at the bottom of the sea. You can get there from here if you rush into things. Get the proper experience first, and let some seasoned blue water cruisers tell you that you are ready without having to ask them.

The one thing that I have learned from reading all of the information on the forum is that alot of people have alot of experience and some of them get into alot of trouble. The other thing is that there are a few with big dreams and no experience and everyone says take a few years and get your crust of salt before jumping overboard. In the flying community there is a saying; "There are old pilots and there are bold pilots, but there are no old, bold pilots". The same thing applies to sailing.
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Old 23-01-2009, 05:59   #24
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Most blue water cruising boats are in the 37 to 44ft range! Why, well yes price but even if you can afford the most expensive boat you still have to be able to sail it without a crew. Smaller than 37 and storage becomes an issue smaller tanks fuel and water, less room for water maker etc. I get a little tired of reading how someone sailed without watermaker, shower, fridge etc. Why? It is as though they are trying to show how tough they are, most people in the developed world have water to drink and bath in, a refrigerator and TV so why would you not want those basics when you live aboard? If you are unable to afford those basics then maybe you can't afford to cruise. As has been already pointed out you can go in a 20ft boat if you are prepared but the chances of doing it safely are greatly diminished along with comfort which then begs the question why bother?
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Old 23-01-2009, 06:30   #25
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"Do you really want to undertake one of the worlds most stressful lifestyles when you can't even afford an icecream? Let alone a boat that is not everyones cast-off?"

As someone who looks forward to living aboard some day, I am always amused by quotes such as these. If it truly is the world's most stressful lifestyle, why do it? Obviously there must be some reward in the lifestyle, right? Let's also focus on that rather than just the "you don't know how hard it is..."

If passages, and ocean crossings, and storms are stressful, there are people who cruise for years without leaving sight of the coast.
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Old 23-01-2009, 07:40   #26
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How small for a single-hander? I believe a circumnavigation was made in an under 10' aluminum "purpose built" boat from Australia about 20yrs. ago. For me, this is a stunt, not cruising.
In Mexico, in 1986, we met a French couple with a small child
who were cruising in a 20 footer, and it looked tiny to us. We also knew a couple who cruised from Oz to Canada and back in a
24 foot. Top Hat, returning with a child. Other friends circumnavigated in a 26 footer, and whose electronics consisted solely of a depth sounder. No radios, etc., etc.

Today's trend is toward ever larger boats, yet small has many
factors in its favor. It all depends on what you want, and what
you think you need.
(Signed) Ann Cate
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Old 23-01-2009, 10:23   #27
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A good friend of mine just looked at a 28' Bristol, $4,000, diesel engine ran, in fair shape. IMHO a sweet buy, of couse it needed some work but nothing out of hand for a somewhat skilled or willing to learn energetic owner. The galley needed rebuilding, packing gland, and cosmetics...another $3-4k over time it would be great. (To steep of companionway for my disabled friend who has been living and cruising on a 28' Pearson Triton for 10 years, third liveaboard boat!)
I see buys like this frequently. Perhaps or not a bit small for the long term but certainly enough to see if cruising/ liveaboard is the right path. Well built, solid and not too much to lose on resale. While you were fixing her up you could learn much about sailing from your 10' sailboat or a sailing dinghy, sailfish or lazer. We have Sailing Singles here always looking for crew. There are so many ways to sail and learn for free. If you have a pretty little sailboat you will be sure to attract some expieriencd sailors willing to show you the ropes. I could teach the basics of sailing in 4-6 times out, from there its a life journey to master.
I have been sailing all my life, I passed my 100 ton aux.sail in 1984. I started on Lake Erie in 1961, started cruising the Bahamas in 1979 for weeks and then months at a time, for navigation we were lucky to have an RDF, refrigeration which we did not have was extremely rare and broke all the time. It does not take a fortune to cruise if you don't mind camping, you can buy all the luxuries over time. Take small steps...keep it simple, go for weekends. Learn what it is you are really after from sailing/cruising. When I was growing up, my Dad told me about sailboats is that anything over 27' is luxury. I had 43', then a 30', now I have 35' and I don't need crew to go. I also have more time from less maintenence. In my observation so many PEOPLE on this forum demand all the creature comforts of a land based lifestyle they make SAILING complicated! I live a simple happy life, I don't want all the STUFF nor the EXPENSE of the STUFF, that's why I cruise.
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Old 23-01-2009, 11:16   #28
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Originally Posted by sandy daugherty View Post
Whoa there! Deciding to sail around the world is like deciding to drive around the world; there are a couple of catches. Like learning to drive before you go take a driving test before getting a license before buying a car before putting away a little gas money before starting out before heading north east, south or west before running out of road, etc. Its always the little details that get you.

There have always been people who lived on flag poles or tree houses or in buried caskets. Someone survived going over Niagra Falls, too. Is this what you had in mind?

Take the A. test first. Buy a minimalist camping trailer. Paint the windows light gray and blue gray. Buy groceries. Lock yourself in. Oh yeah, take a book along. You pass the solitary confinement test in 30 days. Buy more groceries, lock yourself back in, while someone else drives you around the General Motors Test Track. For a month. Every 15 minutes you have to stand up and look around. Every two hours you have to be dowsed with cold salt water. Every three days you have to dissasemble and rebuild a rusty old piece of mechanical something, with the wrong tools. Once a week the camper falls over in one direction of another, throwing all the contents into one soup of disorder. Oh yeah, sleep when you can. This is the B. Test. You have passed if you still want to pass.

Another thing; if you pass, you failed. You don't want to see the world, you want to escape from it, at almost any price.

If, on the other hand, you want to explore this idea of living on a sailboat and going places, Do this. Get a small boat. Learn to sail. Sail across the lake and spend the night. Put it on a trailer and drive to a bigger lake and spend a week. Buy a bigger boat, and go to bigger water. Take each step to learn, through personal experience, how to deal with everyday things before you have to deal with once in a lifetime things. And remember: NOBODY BUYS THEIR LAST BOAT FIRST.
An excellent, real world reply!

Be patient and learn. First, you must learn to sail a little boat.

Take a look at this website: Atom Voyages | Voyaging Around the World on the Sailboat Atom with James and Mei

James and his wife are good friends of ours. Browsing their site is time well spent for all cruisers, dreamers and sailors regardless of expereince.

All the best -
Bill & Lisa Ballard
Savannah, Georgia
S/V Jo Beth
1984 Pacific Seacraft Crealock 34
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Old 23-01-2009, 13:38   #29
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Originally Posted by malbert73 View Post
If it truly is the world's most stressful lifestyle, why do it?...
Originally Posted by malbert73 View Post
... Let's also focus on that rather than just the "you don't know how hard it is..."
Its a good couple of thoughts you have in there and they relate back to the way people respond to these queries about boat size.

I will help answer both parts - stress and "I didn't know how hard it was, now I'm telling you"...

I have been the mate on a racing Swan 651 trans-Atlantic and other stuff too but always plenty of crew stuffed around all the winches. Safety in numbers? (Deluded by numbers?)

But when I bought our boat I couldnt get a 65 footer, so I got what I could afford, a 39 footer.

The longest leg one is likely to do on a tropics circumnavigation is the 3,000 miles Galapagos to Marquesas.
3,000 miles is the same distance as LA to New York and then down to the tip of Florida.
With only 2 people on board, me and Nic.
Remember Galapagos isn't on the coast. Its 1,000 miles from Panama.

At the halfway mark I was sitting in the cockpit wondering about our half way and I thought what happens if.....:

We hadn't seen a ship or boat, or sign of life for over 1 week. (we weren't to see one for 20 whole days)

It doesn't take a storm to make the position precarious... just 2 mistakes.

Someone being injured and something breaking down.

Then you are in a position of having to EPIRB therefore losing your yacht, savings, lifestyle etc... as well as the endangerment of the life of the injured person.

But so far off shore how often would a ship come along? Its NOT on a shipping route. Half way to Marquesas is right in the middle of nowhere H2O!

As for gentle seas and trade winds... trade winds are good for old heavy sailing ships, 20-25 kts is fine downwind, but trying to turn and plug back 1,500 miles is difficult!

You can't go north as there is NOTHING: Hawaii is 2,600 miles, Mexico 1,600, Peru 2,000 miles.

So you get through that and catch landfall in Marquesas and the moment of real fear half way across disappears into the back of your mind.....

Until someone says they want to do it in a 25 footer or a 20 footer, or a beer package, surfboard made of hay like some old Polynesian in 2000BC....

Then when they say that, I then feel its fair for me to say "you don't know how hard it is...".... "Its stressful, why do it?..."

I am not telling people what to do or what not to do in these and other threads... I am just giving my opinion, as I see it, for others to take it, dismiss it, or take one or 2 of the ideas on board.

ONe last thing: About being injured. How do you think the easiest way to badly injure a person at sea is? Falling down the companionway.... Dang that easy life could be so easily stressful!

Notes on a Circumnavigation.

Somalia Pirates and our Convoy
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Old 26-01-2009, 10:04   #30
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My fiancee has just moved aboard my Tayana 37. So far, so good, but I am beginning to think 37 is an absolute minimum for liveaboard. I also happen to think 37 is an absolute maximum for one or two sailors. So, there's the rub!

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