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Old 26-06-2014, 03:46   #16
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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Any specific feedback would be welcome. I currently live two hours from the ocean, so I can't get something that needs a ton of work before I can sail off into the sunset. Incidentally, on the subject of steel boats, I know how to weld, I have a welder and a plasma cutter, and I've never worked with fiberglass at all...
This is a young boat but you absolutely must not skip doing a professional survey with surveyor not recommended by the broker or the owner. The survey must include a hull sounding. You absolutely must be sure the hull is sound.

That is a lot of boat for the price - maybe a distress sale?

So here are some direct observations

- That is a huge boat and you have no experience - you cannot step aboard and sail into the sunset. At best you liveaboard and invest a year learning how to sail - in something smaller.
- Experienced skipper's would have trouble sailing that boat single handed - Do you really need that much space?
- I don't know your financial situation, have you considered the running costs? Boat part prices increase exponentially with size.

I understand you don't want to "miss the boat" so to speak on buying what you think is the right boat so I am not discouraging the purchase. Just be realistic and decide what if I am wrong on size and utility? Am I willing to sell at a loss or wait to sell in order to get teh right boat later - only you can answer that. I don't view the $100k as at risk. You will spend that again in teh first couple of years of running expense - the purchase is the cheap part.

I do have a concern about your get ready to sail plan. If you plan to move to the boat and learn to sail properly, other than the difficulty of sailing a boat that big by yourself you could do this.

In terms of draft and boat size - you will be restricted. My brother did a similar thing and moved onto a deep draft ferro. There are fuel docks he can't get to except at high tide and he literally cannot dock by himself in a blow, meaning full service marina's with dockhands.
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Old 26-06-2014, 06:50   #17
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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Thanks so much for all the replies so far. I hope to get a lot more, too.

I don't really like the look of a catamaran so that's out.

At the risk of someone else on here liking the boat so much they go out and buy it, here's a link to the boat I'm seriously considering...

Used 2006 Dunn Boatworks George Buehler Vagabond Series Otter, St Augustine, Fl - 32080 - BoatTrader.com

Any specific feedback would be welcome. I currently live two hours from the ocean, so I can't get something that needs a ton of work before I can sail off into the sunset. Incidentally, on the subject of steel boats, I know how to weld, I have a welder and a plasma cutter, and I've never worked with fiberglass at all...

I've seen this boat anchored in South Beach and it is really an ugly boat. Sticks out like a sore thumb. Don't like to say a boat's ugly but this one sure is.
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Old 26-06-2014, 08:47   #18
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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I don't view the $100k as at risk. You will spend that again in the first couple of years of running expense - the purchase is the cheap part.
I have absolutely no problem admitting I don't yet know anything about boats, but from the hundreds and hundreds of posts I've read here and elsewhere, it seems that figure is a bit high, no? If I buy a boat in excellent condition that needs virtually nothing, confirmed by a competent and thorough survey, and on which all the sails, rigging, etc. are in excellent condition, you're saying that I can expect to spend one hundred thousand dollars in the first couple of years?!?
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Old 26-06-2014, 09:17   #19
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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I have absolutely no problem admitting I don't yet know anything about boats, but from the hundreds and hundreds of posts I've read here and elsewhere, it seems that figure is a bit high, no? If I buy a boat in excellent condition that needs virtually nothing, confirmed by a competent and thorough survey, and on which all the sails, rigging, etc. are in excellent condition, you're saying that I can expect to spend one hundred thousand dollars in the first couple of years?!?
There are no guarantees. Just read a few posts of what new owners found after buying boats which were surveyed by supposedly competent surveyors.
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Old 26-06-2014, 09:18   #20
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Re: Where Do I Start?

With all due respect, if its been your lifelong dream to retire on a sailboat, why haven't you ever been on one? My advice is don't bite off more than you can chew. Buy a cheap daysailor/weekender and learn to sail and cruise. Then, after a few years, you will know better what you want. After all, it seems you've got nothing but time.
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Old 26-06-2014, 09:43   #21
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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With all due respect, if its been your lifelong dream to retire on a sailboat, why haven't you ever been on one? My advice is don't bite off more than you can chew. Buy a cheap daysailor/weekender and learn to sail and cruise. Then, after a few years, you will know better what you want. After all, it seems you've got nothing but time.
No offense taken...I had a family to support. My son is now almost grown, his college expenses have been seen to, and I'm now single. My goal is not to rent an apartment or buy another house and remain hip-deep in the rat race, but rather to get out of it--aboard a sailboat.
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Old 26-06-2014, 10:40   #22
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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I've seen this boat anchored in South Beach and it is really an ugly boat. Sticks out like a sore thumb. Don't like to say a boat's ugly but this one sure is.
The boat would look pretty good if you came in with a big saw and cut that big square box off the top. That may be one of the worst looking cockpit enclosures I've ever seen. Other than that the boat looks nice.
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Old 26-06-2014, 12:01   #23
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Re: Where Do I Start?

a lot of folks here will tell you go small and then big -- i will not - we were never on a sailboat until Christmas 2000 - bought a brand new 40' jeanneau ds40 in 2003 and in 2007 cut the dock lines and have been out since - up and down the east coast 3 times - all the bahamas twice then mexico to colombia to jamaica to trinidad to antigua and then across the atlantic and now our 2nd year in the med

we went new on purpose as i knew nothing about boats and i was still working and took the boat as a tax deduction as a 2nd house -

we have spent a lot on upgrades but we live on her full time - we sold up and sailed out

as for cost in the dollars and cents area are 5 years of cost data as we record every penny spent and on what -- it might help give you an idea

good luck
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Old 26-06-2014, 17:09   #24
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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Originally Posted by TenSeven View Post
I have absolutely no problem admitting I don't yet know anything about boats, but from the hundreds and hundreds of posts I've read here and elsewhere, it seems that figure is a bit high, no? If I buy a boat in excellent condition that needs virtually nothing, confirmed by a competent and thorough survey, and on which all the sails, rigging, etc. are in excellent condition, you're saying that I can expect to spend one hundred thousand dollars in the first couple of years?!?
This is hypothetical and worst case but you need to be ready.

You are in big boat land - To live off hook you need a baddass charging system. What if your $3000 battery system dies? - $800 charger, inverter etc.

What does it cost to dock this thing? Call that your monthly rent. Where can you haul it out? What does that cost? What does it cost to insure it? Do you go "naked" - no insurance. What if you lose the boat then.

What if you are in a blow and that sail that is in good shape splits a seam. $4,000 for a mainsail for that thing?

Compare the cost of 3/8" rope to 1/2 or 5/8". How many feet of rope are on that boat.

Then you will want upgrades - electronics etc.

We have a few big boat members - stargazer, pelagic etc. Might PM and get a private measure of running costs in the 50-65 foot range.

Like I said - You can do this. I just recommend you think about what it is you "need" vs. what you want.

Don't worry about the haters talking about how ugly that boat is. My brother lives on a boat and most would not call it beautiful. But he has been retired on the boat in Thailand for 3 years and his monthlies are around $3,500.

Get a great survey. offer a bit lower. Make sure you can cover the expenses for a year and stay close to the marina for a year. Take lessons or get someone to teach you to sail on a smaller boat while you live on your dockominium and learn.

My brother panned to pick up the boat, sea trial and sail to Australia. he is still in SEA and I am glad. He's learned a lot sailing between Thailand and Malaysia and he's learned a lot about taking care of the boat.

If it doesn't work out and you keep the boat in good nick you sell it on maybe taking a loss. If you get it for $90 and sell it for $80 and pay $7000 in dock fees you had $17k in rent for the year and had a blast.

If you are solo, as I said I think docking that thing is a huge issue solo especially with no bow thruster or other aids. I like the pilot house idea for a liveaboard. Might look at smaller Nauticats - I was really hung up on PH designs for a while. But this is a lot of boat at a not too bad price. It is cheap because steel is not for everyone and the curb appeal is not for everyone.

Boats are a compromise, size, fitout, design, price etc. I'd give up some curb appeal for size and price...
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Old 26-06-2014, 17:38   #25
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Re: Where Do I Start?

1988 Sadler 34 SE Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

Mahina Expedition - Selecting A Boat for Offshore Cruising

A couple of links to ponder. The Sadler has positive buoyancy, so if you manage to put a big hole in it, it should stay afloat. That's nice to know if you're dodging icebergs off the coast of Greenland.
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Old 26-06-2014, 23:26   #26
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Re: Where Do I Start?

It's strange--it seems that some people can cruise in retirement on $1 a day, and someone else tells me I should plan on spending $100,000 within the first two years of buying a $100,000 boat(!). I know how to be frugal and I've read several books on frugal cruising. I retired early so I could have fun while I'm still young. That said, I don't want to be penniless in five years. I don't know if reading all the posts in the forum make me want to set sail, or make me want to find another dream. :-/
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Old 27-06-2014, 00:51   #27
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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It's strange--it seems that some people can cruise in retirement on $1 a day, and someone else tells me I should plan on spending $100,000 within the first two years of buying a $100,000 boat(!). I know how to be frugal and I've read several books on frugal cruising. I retired early so I could have fun while I'm still young. That said, I don't want to be penniless in five years. I don't know if reading all the posts in the forum make me want to set sail, or make me want to find another dream. :-/
Fair enough and I am not trying to scare you. My brother lives on a 40 foot boat for $3500 a month.

There is a thread here called "Cruising on $5,000 a month" which is the rich person's thread compared the the "father" thread "cruising on $500 a month."

Read those threads - No one has a 50 foot steel boat.

The only other way this works is you buy a pristine $100k boat and don't maintain it. In 5 years you step off having taken all the value out of the boat in terms of maintenance items.

But to sustain from 46-80 you have to maintain the boat. And a 50 foot boat has relative big costs...

And not to be a smarty pants but whoever told you you can retire on any boat for $30 a month needs to come here and start a "Cruising on $30 a month" thread - There are lot's of folks who'd like to do that - Peace...
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Old 27-06-2014, 06:06   #28
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Re: Where Do I Start?

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Originally Posted by TenSeven View Post
It's strange--it seems that some people can cruise in retirement on $1 a day, and someone else tells me I should plan on spending $100,000 within the first two years of buying a $100,000 boat(!). I know how to be frugal and I've read several books on frugal cruising. I retired early so I could have fun while I'm still young. That said, I don't want to be penniless in five years. I don't know if reading all the posts in the forum make me want to set sail, or make me want to find another dream. :-/
OK, here's an answer from someone who has cruised on the absolute, minimum budget. I spent a few years cruising on a 36 Morgan in the late seventies. Of course inflation will impact some of the costs but should give you a benchmark.

First, due to my very limited income I was forced to live on the bare minimum, much less than anyone would want to do voluntarily. At times I was so broke I could not afford to buy diesel so couldn't crank the engine and had to sail everywhere I went. While it did make me a really good sailor it's not an experience that many would want to duplicate.

My opinion to get a realistic idea of costs you need to break them down into two categories; the regular, ongoing costs to live every month and the occasional big costs.

Monthly costs will be food and drink, water, fuel, dock rent, restaurants, entertainment, regular maintenance items, etc. Down to a certain minimum you can easily manage these costs. If you cook onboard, anchor out, keep engine hours down, limit trips to restaurants and bars then you can manage these costs. If you really want to get tight, when you go to the market are you buying rice, beans and spaghetti or filet and truffles?

You have to factor in a few, unavoidable ongoing maintenance issues like oil changes, filters, haul and bottom paint every year or so.

This does not address insurance for boat and personal health care. Depending on your situation this can be a pretty big bite.

Now the big items. Some you can plan for, some can be an ugly surprise but would be generally low risk of happening. The surprises are similar to what you might experience with a car, like blowing and engine or transmission or unexpected trip to the hospital. Not something you have to deal with on a regular basis and if you're lucky maybe never. BUT, if you do it will be big. New engine for 40' boat could set you back $15-$20,000. So how do you budget for this? Same way you do at home. Keep a rainy day fund and be prepared but probably won't need it.

The non-surprise big items will be the periodic large consumables. On a boat this will be things like sails and standing rigging (the permanent wires and bits that hold up the mast). Both have a finite life. Depending on how much you sail your sails could last 3-4 yeas or 8-10 years. Typical full time live aboard cruiser in the middle 5-7 years. On my 42' a new main or genoa is $3000-$4000. The standing rigging is similar. Can get up to 10 years before replacement is needed. My new rigging costs under $4000.

So my take, yes you can live on $500/month if you are very frugal but every once in a while you will have to shell out several thousand for the big ticket items.
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Old 30-06-2014, 01:27   #29
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Re: Where Do I Start?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TenSeven View Post
It's strange--it seems that some people can cruise in retirement on $1 a day, and someone else tells me I should plan on spending $100,000 within the first two years of buying a $100,000 boat(!). I know how to be frugal and I've read several books on frugal cruising. I retired early so I could have fun while I'm still young. That said, I don't want to be penniless in five years. I don't know if reading all the posts in the forum make me want to set sail, or make me want to find another dream. :-/

somewhere on the dollars and cents thread i put out 5 years of cost data -- not make believe or armchair cruisers or i some time cruise or ect -- we live 24/7 on the boat - no dirt or anything on dirt -- we put down everything we spent and by catagory -- so check it out -- it is about the average of what real cruisers spend out here -- we talk to a lot of folks and the costs are about average -- we keep the boat updated and each year try to upgrade something -- but as you can see one year we did a ton of upgrades to really set off and that included a 2nd fuel tank, watermaker, more solar and a few other goodies
so check it out and see what we spend
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Old 30-06-2014, 23:03   #30
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Re: Where Do I Start?

I'd buy a blue water boat. I have a lord Nelson 41 and it's a great boat. I think a good size to live on is about 45' depending on get configuration.


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