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Old 15-08-2014, 20:31   #16
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

I was on vacation and took a trip to charleston, free mooring right in town, there was a steel ketch there for sale and at the time they were living aboard but were only asking five grand for it. perfect starter opportunity, if I had been retired.


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Old 15-08-2014, 20:56   #17
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Blake, if you are set on a 20 footer, seriously consider a san juan 21. It's 1400 lbs with a centerboard so easily trailable. It has enough of an interior that you can spend a week or a weekend on it. It is also a popular racing class so you will have little trouble selling it when you are ready to move up. And more important, it's a great little sail trainer.
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Old 16-08-2014, 01:14   #18
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Buy as big of a boat as you can and just do it! Nike had it right.
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Old 16-08-2014, 09:21   #19
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

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Buy as big of a boat as you can and just do it! Nike had it right.

Except that he said he already has debt.


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Old 16-08-2014, 09:36   #20
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

5k for a steel ketch ? Sounds sketchy.

How about this ?

65' Tender/Liveaboard
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Old 16-08-2014, 17:46   #21
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Blake, Huge and old and steel or wood can quickly destroy your dreams,- choose wisely!
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Old 16-08-2014, 18:20   #22
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

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Blake, Huge and old and steel or wood can quickly destroy your dreams,- choose wisely!

Do you have a suggestions? I don't plan to go too big, old, or steel...? A ~30', 90's and fiberglass


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Old 16-08-2014, 18:52   #23
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

fiberglass. not glass over wood, but as much glass as possible.

Remember what Confucius said:

"Wood rots, steel rusts, but plastic takes 10,000 years to biodegrade."
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Old 16-08-2014, 19:39   #24
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

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Do you have a suggestions? I don't plan to go too big, old, or steel...? A ~30', 90's and fiberglass


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Actually, you are better of with an older fiberglass boat than a newer one. Back when fiberglass was first used, and into about the mid-80's, builders did not know how little they could get away with.

Now they do.

An older boat may have other issues, but usually the hull is not one of them. A well maintained older boat is worth paying more money for than a so-so newer one, as a general rule of thumb.

Don't discount the 70's and early 80's boats at all.
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Old 17-08-2014, 06:00   #25
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Blake, Often older boats have value by their history of care more than by their original manufacture. When shopping for your boat, I would suggest that you list the top criteria and look only among these vessels.

For example: 28' to 34' LOA; shoal draft 5' or less; inboard diesel; fiberglass non-cored hull; encapsulated keel; ......

Your criteria might be different, but it's best to have some specific items to focus your search. Add a price and geographic limit and you can more easily sort your prospects.
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Old 17-08-2014, 09:56   #26
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Blake G....you are in a great location to start your dream. You have easy access to a lot of available boats that will suit your dream. With your comments I'm sure you will succeed as long as you consider the good advice offered by these "seasoned sailors".....

I love my ole/old 1973 Ketch Rig, Old is good....


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Old 17-08-2014, 12:38   #27
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

Well, a trailer sailer can be a very good way to get started, because you are not paying for a slip, and don't have to pay for haulouts since it is always hauled out and sitting right there in your driveway, ready to work on.

The trick to that is to remember you will probably be selling it in 2 to 5 years. A newer boat depreciates but usually is low maintenance. An old boat properly maintained will not depreciate much. Buy a mid 70s fiberglass boat and it should be worth about what it is worth now. But sometimes repairs and maintenance are a dealbreaker. However, trailering the boat makes things cheaper and easier.

You could just jump right into a 30 or 35 foot boat, but a learner boat in the driveway mooring is a good option too. I think some of the ODays would be good, and one from the early 80s could be had for $2k to $4k. A Catalana 22, or a West Wight Potter 19 come to mind. Here is something I just googled... SailboatOwners.com . An early Hunter or a McGregor 26 would make a learner boat. The Mac isn't much of a sea boat but it is big enough for a couple to take short coastal or inland cruises and still trailers reasonably well. Good lake boat. Tow it on vacation and use it as a camper.

Jumping right in to a proper cruising boat is a commitment. It will start costing money right away. Insurance, marina slip, haulout, bottom cleaning and painting, and lots of stuff that breaks just as you almost get caught up on the stuff that already broke. The only way to do this on a budget, imho, is get rid of the house right away, or rent it out, maybe turn your garage into an apartment for yourselves and rent out the rest of the house so you can occasionally sleep on land, and you can store all the stuff that doesn't fit on the boat. Dock boxes are never big enough. But you can't keep paying taxes or mortgage or upkeep on a house when you are just getting by, unless it is paying for itself in rental, and still afford to keep a boat in the water. Selling the house is simplest. This also burns your bridges and helps you to focus on the boat. Just make sure you got a boat that meets your needs. Avoid wood! And steel. Simply too much maintenance. Ferrocement? Maybe, if somebody who knows his stuff checks it out for you. Aluminum? Not many aluminum sailboats. Basically for your situation, fiberglass is pretty much it. Glass over wood wood be a poor choice, too, in general, though it can be a great way to build your own small boat.

Being in the right place at the right time with cash immediately available is the way to get a smaller boat at a great price. A 26 to 35 foot cruising boat could be had for well under $10k, sometimes, pretty much ready to sail. I got my current boat for $2k, and I got the slip too, when there was a several year long waiting list. So yeah if you buy locally, look for one in a transferable slip.

If you decide maybe you don't care to actually sail much after all but want to live afloat, consider a houseboat. Lots more room. Unlike other types of boat, building a houseboat isn't necessarily all that expensive, depending on how heavily marinized your construction methods and materials. A motor yacht is also generally roomier than a sailboat. A catamaran can be very spacious, but they typically cost a lot more than a monohull. And speaking of room, for actual full time liveaboard, most couples won't like anything much less than about 32' or so.

And if a boat is listed at more than just a couple grand, you really need to see a very recent survey. I would say this should be mandatory for buying any boat over $5k.
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Old 17-08-2014, 15:01   #28
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

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Originally Posted by GrowleyMonster View Post
Well, a trailer sailer can be a very good way to get started, because you are not paying for a slip, and don't have to pay for haulouts since it is always hauled out and sitting right there in your driveway ................
..................... You could just jump right into a 30 or 35 foot boat, but a learner boat in the driveway mooring is a good option too. ...............
................ The only way to do this on a budget, imho, is get rid of the house right away, or rent it out, ...............
GrowleyMonster has some very good thoughts here. The trailer sailer in the driveway has some appeal, but then that driveway is attached to a huge drain on your income,- the house +! It takes a "head dive" comittment to go to the boat with the sale of the house, but it's good if you're sure. Anyway, I like GrowleyMonster's advice!
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Old 18-08-2014, 11:50   #29
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

[QUOTE=GrowleyMonster;1607880]Well, a trailer sailer can be a very good way to get started, because you are not paying for a slip, and don't have to pay for haulouts since it is always hauled out and sitting right there in your driveway, ready to work on.

Thank you very much for your valuable advice. My wife and I lead very simple lives and have very few if any land based attachments. We don't currently own a home we rent a house and have for sometime so we are on a month to month agreement.

I hope my first trailerable sail boat will be around the $2k range. With that said I'm fairly handy and I like to think I learn quickly. I'm watching my semi-local craigslist area and I have found many on face value, good deals but I'm still doing my research on buying used boats. Before I said 90's but meant 80's but when it comes time to buy I'll make a post or add to this one the listing to get all of your guys opinions. I'll have a sailing friend of mine go over the boat. When we buy our big boat we will have it surveyed professionally.

Thank you all again very much!



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Old 18-08-2014, 12:00   #30
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Re: Im new to Sailing and would like to become a Liveabord

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fiberglass. not glass over wood, but as much glass as possible.

Remember what Confucius said:

"Wood rots, steel rusts, but plastic takes 10,000 years to biodegrade."
That old Confushee was a smart bugger...
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