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Old 12-07-2011, 21:58   #1
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New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

Hello cruisersforum,

I've been thinking about sailing for a few years now, then contemplating living aboard, then obsessing on the idea of living aboard the past year.
I've never sailed in my life, but I tend to think this is a bit irrelevant in my case. I usually know what I would like because I'm a realistic individual who considers all the potential bad with the good.

I've been reading about many of the aspects of living aboard, so I know the fundamentals of what I'm getting into, but I know I have lots to learn.

I want to turn my back on it all. With this land anchor, I don't want to give up what I can be, where i can go nor what I can do.

I would like to explain what I hope to achieve with my dreams of living aboard, and what I hope to gain from joining this forum. These aren't necessarily questions I expect answered here, I will make use of the search function and make the appropriate threads.

I want to own a sailboat from 27' to 30' under $10,000.
I want to sail wherever I want, therefore I want a "seaworthy" boat.
I want to know what repairs are commonly needed for a sailboat sold at the price range and size I am looking for.
I want to know how tight-knit are the sailor community (offline).
I want to be self-sufficient.
I want to know what jobs are common for liveaboards who don't rely much on the land (business within sailor community).
I hope to learn everything I need to achieve my goals with the least resistance possible.
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Old 13-07-2011, 07:36   #2
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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Originally Posted by Capt. lulz View Post
I want to own a sailboat from 27' to 30' under $10,000.
This is pretty reasonable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt. lulz View Post
I want to sail wherever I want, therefore I want a "seaworthy" boat.
For 10k, this isn't as reasonable. You really need to define "wherever I want" and be realistic. For $10k you're not going to buy a boat that'll take you through the roaring 40's. And frankly, most people really don't want to go there.

For 10k you can easily pick up a boat that'll take you all over the Americas and Caribbean islands. You might even be able to cross the pond to Europe at some point if you add on some more gear, tweak up the boat a little and time it right.

Almost everyone starting out wants a boat that'll take them anywhere. Almost no one really takes their boat beyond easy cruising grounds.


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Originally Posted by Capt. lulz View Post
I want to know what repairs are commonly needed for a sailboat sold at the price range and size I am looking for.
Varies a lot. Might need a bottom job, might need engine work, might need electrical work. You might want to add on some extra gear.

Most "common" need for a cheaper boat is just honest to goodness TLC. Ripping out old crap and replacing it, cleaning the hell out of it, refinishing woodwork.

With a size range of 27-30 and a budget of 10k I think it'd be reasonable to find a boat that's in good mechanical and cruising shape, but just needs some refreshing up.

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I want to know how tight-knit are the sailor community (offline).
The boating community is very friendly and open. The marina is the first place I've lived where I know my neighbors by name.

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I want to be self-sufficient.
Very doable within reason. Again this varies a lot. Want refrigeration? That takes a lot of power. Don't need it? It's easier.

Especially on a smaller boat like what you want, since you don't have as much room for solar panels. You'll be limited by food and water though. I don't know if a 30ft boat could fit a water maker(and they're pricey).


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I want to know what jobs are common for liveaboards who don't rely much on the land (business within sailor community).
Bottom cleaning(scuba), canvas work, engine work, electrical work. If you can do computer work you might be able to manage that online. That's how I'll be supplementing my income. I have a long range wifi antenna so I can anchor out and still be online.
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Old 13-07-2011, 07:59   #3
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt. lulz View Post
Hello cruisersforum,

I've been thinking about sailing for a few years now, then contemplating living aboard, then obsessing on the idea of living aboard the past year.
I've never sailed in my life, but I tend to think this is a bit irrelevant in my case..................I hope to learn everything I need to achieve my goals with the least resistance possible.
Hello & welcome, I found your post very interesting by the manner in which you seem to be so organized in your plan, but yet without ever sailing. I noticed that you stated that never having sailed is irrelevant in your case, but then I wonder what drives your motivation to sail and live aboard. Since no sailing experience has more immediate feedback and no sailboat more responsive than a little boat, I encourage you to spend some time learning on an eight to ten foot sailing dinghy. I don't mean to cast doubt on your dreams, but it seems that some practical experience should be your next step.
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Old 13-07-2011, 08:06   #4
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

Welcome Aboard Cruisers Forum
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Old 13-07-2011, 11:05   #5
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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This is pretty reasonable.

For 10k, this isn't as reasonable. You really need to define "wherever I want" and be realistic. For $10k you're not going to buy a boat that'll take you through the roaring 40's. And frankly, most people really don't want to go there.
Going where I want is not a required parameter within my budget, it is simply something I want for my boat. If it's something I can get with the remainder of my boat purchase, that would be great, but it's not what I'm expecting because I don't know what repairs are common nor their price.



Quote:
Almost everyone starting out wants a boat that'll take them anywhere. Almost no one really takes their boat beyond easy cruising grounds.
I suspected this, and I think living in the comfort of a marina might play a factor in this. The simple fact of having a single place you live, deters from the idea of going too far. Of course there are other factors.

Quote:
Most "common" need for a cheaper boat is just honest to goodness TLC. Ripping out old crap and replacing it, cleaning the hell out of it, refinishing woodwork.
I was researching yesterday of how to refinish wood. In fact, my self-sufficient aspiration includes working on many of my boat's systems myself.

Quote:
Especially on a smaller boat like what you want, since you don't have as much room for solar panels. You'll be limited by food and water though. I don't know if a 30ft boat could fit a water maker(and they're pricey).
What's a water maker?...


Quote:
Bottom cleaning(scuba), canvas work, engine work, electrical work. If you can do computer work you might be able to manage that online. That's how I'll be supplementing my income. I have a long range wifi antenna so I can anchor out and still be online.
Being in the IT field, this is about what I expected.


Thanks for all your help
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Old 13-07-2011, 11:08   #6
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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Hello & welcome, I found your post very interesting by the manner in which you seem to be so organized in your plan, but yet without ever sailing. I noticed that you stated that never having sailed is irrelevant in your case, but then I wonder what drives your motivation to sail and live aboard. Since no sailing experience has more immediate feedback and no sailboat more responsive than a little boat, I encourage you to spend some time learning on an eight to ten foot sailing dinghy. I don't mean to cast doubt on your dreams, but it seems that some practical experience should be your next step.
My motivation is not sailing itself, but to achieve a minimalistic, self-sufficient, and nomadic lifestyle.

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Welcome Aboard Cruisers Forum
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Old 13-07-2011, 11:33   #7
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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I suspected this, and I think living in the comfort of a marina might play a factor in this. The simple fact of having a single place you live, deters from the idea of going too far. Of course there are other factors.
It's not the going too far idea. You can sail from Maine to Florida, to the Virgin Islands to South America pretty easily because you're never too far from land. It's easy to run and hide from bad weather. But a long ocean voyage just takes a lot more boat, and really, a lot more skill and stamina.

And it's not that you can't do that, see Amazon.com: Twenty Small Sailboats to Take You Anywhere (9780939837328): John Vigor: Books for how this might be doable with your budget.

But 10k will go a lot farther with a "just a coastal cruiser" type boat. And in some ways, those "just a coastal cruiser" boats have advantages. They're usually more roomy, comfortable and can get into more shallow areas than their ocean going cousins.

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I was researching yesterday of how to refinish wood. In fact, my self-sufficient aspiration includes working on many of my boat's systems myself.
This will save you a lot of money. I personally try the same and find "working on the boat" to be rewarding.

The nice thing about sailboats is they're pretty simple. You can do all your own wiring and electrical, do the fiberglass work, do the painting, the plumbing, engine work, even make your own sails if you really want to get into things.

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What's a water maker?...
A water maker uses reverse osmosis to turn salt water into fresh water. When you mentioned "self sufficient" I thought you meant "off grid living", where supplying water would be an issue.

But if you're aiming for a more "nomad" life style, this wouldn't be an issue. You could just anchor out at places and row to shore to ferry water(and food) back.
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Old 13-07-2011, 11:45   #8
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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A water maker uses reverse osmosis to turn salt water into fresh water. When you mentioned "self sufficient" I thought you meant "off grid living", where supplying water would be an issue.

But if you're aiming for a more "nomad" life style, this wouldn't be an issue. You could just anchor out at places and row to shore to ferry water(and food) back.
Because I haven't settled into either lifestyles yet, I don't know which is more feasible nor comfortable for me to do. I want my possibilities to be open since I tend to live a dynamic and ever-changing lifestyle.

I never heard of a water-maker (excuse my ignorance), but now that I have, I am open to a possibility I assumed was not.

Thanks
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Old 13-07-2011, 11:51   #9
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

BTW: I found this video to be most inspirational:
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Old 13-07-2011, 12:15   #10
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

Capt Lulz, What is the region where you expect to start? Posters here are worldwide and opportunities for livingaboard vary. We are more familar with the southeast US and Bahamas where living aboard is fairly common and easy. There are complications with finding liveaboard slips in some areas and differences in available moorings or anchoring possibilities. As others have said, there is a strong camaraderie among cruisers and a great advantage to your pursuit in working on the boat and completing your own repairs. I think that investing in a water maker may be a decision best delayed after seeing how well you do with a thirty or forty gallon supply tankage. One early concern may be the refrigeration/freezer question. Having refrigeration will draw ninety percent of your power needs and those that strive for a minimalist life may adapt to the freedom of not having it. Our first twenty years aboard was without refrig/frz, but we are now enjoying it, but teathered to the need for power. Here again, your location is a factor. We rarely need to heat our cabin. So, give us some sense of your area.
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Old 13-07-2011, 12:22   #11
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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Capt Lulz, What is the region where you expect to start? Posters here are worldwide and opportunities for livingaboard vary. We are more familar with the southeast US and Bahamas where living aboard is fairly common and easy. There are complications with finding liveaboard slips in some areas and differences in available moorings or anchoring possibilities. As others have said, there is a strong camaraderie among cruisers and a great advantage to your pursuit in working on the boat and completing your own repairs. I think that investing in a water maker may be a decision best delayed after seeing how well you do with a thirty or forty gallon supply tankage. One early concern may be the refrigeration/freezer question. Having refrigeration will draw ninety percent of your power needs and those that strive for a minimalist life may adapt to the freedom of not having it. Our first twenty years aboard was without refrig/frz, but we are now enjoying it, but teathered to the need for power. Here again, your location is a factor. We rarely need to heat our cabin. So, give us some sense of your area.
Hmm, I wont say a particular area because I don't know where I will be by the time I get a boat, but I will say that I'll be on the east coast (USA), and I'll want to sail where living expenses are cheap.
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Old 13-07-2011, 12:45   #12
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

Welcome aboard,

I will say it wasn't too long ago that I was an aspiring newbie as well. Through much reading and browsing of this site and other forums I realized what i first wanted wasn't really possible. Many of which are your list of requirements. I realized after months of reading and researching that best way to start start is to start small. I also read like crazy. all of the Pardee's books, Vigor's and 100's of others and realized how little I actually knew about sailing. I thought it was all about sailing into the sunset in the tropics. With no work and all play. Haha . originally I wanted a boatthat was the end all of all your requirements then after asking a lot of questions and experiencing living in a very small area. It was pretty clear that it was a better path to get a smaller boat and gain some real life experience. It was the best decision I ever made. I was able to purchase a blue water boat IF Folkboat that just completed the single hand Transpac so she was very capable. My Girlfriend at the time had the same dreams and aspirations as well yet she had never sailed before. I was like before we start talking about anything lets get you out on the water outside the golden gate bridge to see if you even like sailing...... well guess what she couldn't stand it. Seasick the whole time and not enjoyable for her. The bottom line she had a different idea of what sailing actually is. Lots of work, lots of suffering haha, lots of maintenence and a whole lot of $$$. Not to talk you out of your dream. Just go into it with as much knowledge as you possibly can. there are great people on here giving solid advice. i was glad I listened and learned. Oh and one last thing sailing opinions are like Movie critics.........

Aloha
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Old 13-07-2011, 13:01   #13
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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Welcome aboard,

I will say it wasn't too long ago that I was an aspiring newbie as well. Through much reading and browsing of this site and other forums I realized what i first wanted wasn't really possible.

Aloha
Hello dofthesea,

So... what's "not possible"?
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Old 13-07-2011, 14:17   #14
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

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I hope to learn everything I need to achieve my goals with the least resistance possible.
You have a LOT of reading to do! Then you will be in a position to make your first wrong choice.

I hope it all works out well!
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Old 13-07-2011, 15:42   #15
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Re: New Here (Aspiring Liveaboard)

I'd suggest getting out and sailing before you go too far into this. You could get on a boat and turn green the second you set foot on it.
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