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Old 30-08-2012, 19:28   #16
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

Presentmoment....You have received a lot of valuable information, none of which I would dispute. Many people who look for a boat spend lots of money on things...some of which are necessary, most of which just take up space. There are also a lot of people who spend years at the dock getting ready. The truth is if you wait until you're ready, you never leave. Focus on Function and Safety you can do the rest down island!
My list: 1) Excellent bimini Without it you bake your brains! 2) Liferaft Be there when they pack it. Add your own stuff..glasses, medications, etc 3) Epirb Insurance that they will find you in the liferaft 4) Good fridge system Life on a boat, especially in the tropics sucks without a cold drink 5) Autopilot It makes the difference between enjoying cruising and being worn out all the time. 6) Watermaker As a nurse I wouldn't be offshore anywhere without one. You can buy RO water lots of places but you are never sure that they didn't just dip it out river where the cow or human just took a leak
7) functional dinghy You can't go anywhere without one 8) Single Sideband Essential to get daily weather information You can't always have the latest weather information, but you can wait until you do. Sailors with poor impulse control don't do well. Accept that Mother Nature is in control. 9) Solar panels With the water maker and the solar panels your level of land independence is increased by at least 50%. -----Extras that won't save your life but make things so much better---E-reader (Kindle-Nook-iPad)----Good stereo. Cruising is an incredible lifestyle.....Best of Luck....repost when you find your dream boat.

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Old 08-09-2012, 10:09   #17
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

so much good info from everybody - i appreciate the help. I might be crewing this fall so I can make sense of all this

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Old 09-09-2012, 01:32   #18
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

presentmoment, you now have lots of info to decide your plan of action. As a result of the recent financial crisis here in Europe there are quite a few boats that can be picked up at very reasonable cost once you have decided what you require. Quite a few people from your side of the pond fly budget to Europe, buy a boat, cruise around the med and sail home from Tenerife following the trade winds.
Good Luck with whatever you decide.
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Old 09-09-2012, 04:29   #19
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!​Twenty-Affordable-Sailboats-Take-Anywhere/dp/​0939837722

  • User rating: 4.3/5
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Twenty Affordable Sailboats To Take You Anywhere [Gregg Nestor,John Vigor] on ... comparison between the 20 boats to give you a reference on what is "the best boat".

You can find the bare of boats somewhere (like "Voyages of the Atom") and research the individual boats as I did or buy the book, all are tried and true designs. The advice is from world traveling veterans but there is a strong preference toward full keel, old school boats.

As someone mentioned above if you think your budget is $75K for a boat only spend half that and upgrade as needed. Well within your price range in ready to cruise condition and meeting all your needs (aside from the draft problem) the Alberg 35 is a popular choice and a beautiful older boat that will always have a strong resale value. There are lots of other choices but most are much pricier for a great specimen or in limited supply.
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Old 09-09-2012, 04:53   #20
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

The last 2 sailboats I bought had to have certain specifications for what i thought was a seaworthy boat - keel stepped mast, not a fin keel but something halfway between that and a full keel, skeg hung rudder and solidly built - definitely not a cored hull. Also, I did NOT want a bolt-on keel, they scare me. You may have to buy a boat and add lots of equipment, so budget for that. Also, a boat you buy may have the equipment you need, but it may be old enough to be needing replacement, so leave budget for that also.

Good luck hunting - and you have a good idea crewing on other people's boats, as long as they're experienced - you'll learn alot about cruising and fixing stuff along the way. Remember - cruising is maintaining and fixing your boat in exotic locations. Also, there are lots of boats in the islands for sale - I bought one in Grenada - so you can search and cruise at the same time.

Good luck!
S/V Therapy, Morgan 321
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Old 15-09-2012, 07:43   #21
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

Im still nowhere near knowing what boat I is the usual - the more I learn the less I know. All your comments have sent me down a few rabbit holes. As for now, I like the idea of the classic Alberg 35(they sound tough and tested - but i need to get inside one first to see how it feels of course!) Sounds like I can grab a good one for half my budget of 75k...but is it practical to upgrade them w/ the likes of a watermaker, cockpit shower, nice stereo (in the cockpit too), solar panels and such? Or were they just not designed with these things in mind? (well I guess obviously not - but can they be adapted well?)

Also, I hear they are quite narrow...maybe not the best for living on?
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Old 15-09-2012, 11:39   #22
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

Originally Posted by presentmoment View Post
Hi Guys and Gals,

I'm a young guy who recently sold my house and have some cash - with a boat budget of about $75k. I'll describe what I plan to do with my boat and I am looking for boat suggestions to get me started on narrowing down the search. I intend to buy a boat within the next couple years and learn to sail in-between by jumping on other boats and crewing (if you are in no rush - a good and cheap idea ). Thanx so much in advance! Here we go:

What I plan to do:

1. I plan to stay mostly tropical and casually travel the seas while living on my boat. I dont plan on crossing oceans regularly, but I do need a boat that is capable. An option to be able to sail European canals in the future would be nice but not essential. Everything is a trade off with boats, broadly speaking more keel is better for sailing (and crossing oceans) - less is better for the European canals. Your budget pretty much rules out anything with a lifting keel, and whilst the canals do vary probably looking at 4' max and 3' (and sometimes less!) is better. Not to say that likely are not plenty of canals where bigger cannot go - but just in this case less is more (choice). I suggest doing some research on where you want to go inland / decide how important that capability actually is (I used to spend a lot of the time in the French Canals - so understand why you want to go, awesome and can be pretty cheap ).

2. I value quality over quantity - meaning I would rather invest in a smaller, better built, well organized boat - plus it agrees more with my philosophy. I would guess about 30-35ft. I think on the other thread you mentioned a Missus, even if not - on some things good to plan ahead , I would be looking at 35' (plus or minus a couple of feet depending on boat model / design).

3. I would like to be able to single-hand the boat but I also want it to be comfortable for myself and one other with the rare option for guests. Can most boats (within my parameters) be sailed solo and does it take a lot of time/$$$ to set it up this way? Are some rigs better than others for this purpose?

Yes. Plusses and Minuses to every rig and number of masts / sails (leaving aside the more exotic ones, like Junk etc) - a few things can do to make life easier if singlehand (or shorthanded), mostly it is around being organised and not rushing (and to do that by not getting self into situations where you need to rush).

I also do not mind making improvements on the boat myself, I figure I'll build a better relationship with her that way too. From what I have read so far, older boats are for the most part higher quality? So saying that, is it a better deal to buy an older, better built boat and add the gizmos I want? Or is buying an already re-fit boat sometimes a better deal?

Don't over assume that older is better built than "all that modern rubbish". In the good old days they also built a lot of rubbish, whether by ignorance or intention (many builders are probably surprised the boats are still afloat decades later - if not the builders, then certainly the workers ).

Quality comes from design as much as from using brute force and ignorance - stuff got overbuilt as much from ignorance (albeit with good intentions) as it did from any plan that the boats last 50 years, although I am sure some did.

If you can find a boat that has just had a refit (and good one) then that would be the one to go for - will likely be reflected in a higher price, but nowhere near the cost of doing for self. Don;t underestimate the cost of refitting a boat (in time and money) - but nonetheless a boat that does actually only need a few gizmos fitted makes sense, cheaper to buy stuff s/h and already fitted onto the boat - but the upside is that you get new (and the lifespan that goes with that), how important that is depends on the Gizmo. For a list of Gizmos see one of the links in my signature (the collected works of CF!).

I am also completely mobile so I could buy the boat anywhere and explore that area first. Preferably tropical. I also have Canadian/UK Citizenship. Are there advantages as to where I register the boat?

Short answer is no (advantages) - starting point should be wherever your home country is (at least the home before you depart!) as usually boat registration has a residency requirement.

Also, in my boat I would appreciate good ventilation and lighting in the cabin, a swim ladder for warm seas, and enough storage for a fold-up bike and surfboard. I would also want sun and/or wind energy, refrigerator, and water maker...hopefully that's not too much to ask in my price range.

Those are all ballpark things - might not get ideal for all of them, but as I said at the getgo - boats is all about compromises.

Well that should be more than enough to get this ball rolling.

Thanx everyone, Chris.
So many choices gets confusing - but puzzling own answers out is all part of the game (and fun?!) of boat ownership .
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Old 15-09-2012, 12:43   #23
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

Originally Posted by presentmoment View Post

1...but is it practical to upgrade them w/ the likes of a watermaker, cockpit shower, nice stereo (in the cockpit too), solar panels and such? Or were they just not designed with these things in mind? (well I guess obviously not - but can they be adapted well?)

2. Also, I hear they are quite narrow...maybe not the best for living on?
1. Of course. You can add those to almost any boat in that size range. Think of it as "personalization!"

2. It's all relative. Look at the numbers. And go get on board some, too. Sometimes narrow is GOOD - as I mentioned earlier.
Stu Jackson
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Cowichan Bay, BC, (Maple Bay Marina) SR/FK, M25, Rocna 10 (22#) (NZ model)
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Old 12-03-2016, 08:46   #24
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

Buy a boat that fits you and your personality. Head room is important for live aboard and also cooking and refrigeration. I sailed ti Australia from Buffalo, Ny and most of it solo. My choice was a cutter rig with furling headsails as it is easier when weather changes quickly. Wind generator, watermaker and a rollup dingy did the trick. Get the largest water maker for the money and space available as you will need to run your motor to make water. Older Bob Perry designed boats are safe and well built and cheaper but although the teak decks look nice, stay awau from them as they need a lot of care. A good dodger and self steering is another good thing if sailing alone. Have fun and enjoy the sea. You will fine most live- aboards are friendly and helpful
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Old 14-03-2016, 13:05   #25
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Re: Wanted: Live Aboard Wisdom From Worldtravelling Veterans!

I'm sort of shopping for a boat with very similar requirements. Timeline is very open.
About all I can say is go see as many boats as possible, even if you don't think they will be potential buys. Look at deck layouts, cabin size and layout, be honest what is more important to you while looking. If you hope you get used to a feature you don't like - you probably won't - look for a different boat.
Imagine having to do something on the foredeck at night in a big sea.
Think of trying to work on the engine at sea in bad conditions to get it running again.
What kind of engine, if it's older check on spare parts availability, same with winches etc.
Get a good idea of exactly what you want and have a survey done, once again be honest with yourself about how much work and money it will cost to get it to where you want it. Not all old boats need a lot of work, not all newer boats are well maintained and safe to sail over the horizon in...
My current boat is 40 years old and was owned by one family for it's entire life, very well maintained, I even got the original bill of sale. I was actually shopping for a slightly bigger boat, went and looked at this one, bought it.

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