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Old 12-09-2012, 19:33   #16
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

If you are locked in on an Alberg design, and going for trailerable, less than 30 feet, the price drops even lower..Look at the Tritons, Ariels,Cape Dory 25,etc...there is a bunch of almost the same boats out there.And an outboard would be fine with any of these boats(and cheaper/easier to deal with problems/repower).
I'm on the wrong side of the wrong Great Lake, or would make you a great deal on an great Ariel....
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Old 12-09-2012, 20:44   #17
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

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Originally Posted by Boulter View Post

This is a very high energy level activity due to my geography. I am nowhere near any big water, it is a 4 hour round trip to the nearest piece of Lake Ontario, or 6 or 7 hours to Toronto area. Those of you in the Chesapeake, Florida, or California areas have a huge advantage in boat shopping. For me, the endless driving is getting tiresome, and expensive. Side bar: Of coarse I have a big advantage in slip and storage costs due to the low population and weak economics of my closest bit of L. Ontario, but I need a boat to take advantage.
So will this forever boat be forever on lakes? If so I agree with previous poster - get something that works on lakes. I personally would not do a trailer sailer. I am inherently lazy and the rig and derig time would kill my motivation to sail.

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I am analytical. My first pass at things is the written word, and any diagrams and pictures that go along with words. So there is this ongoing tension between my endless readings and study and my wife's “buy a #$%^ boat!”. So while I am quite happy with my knowledge development over the past year, and my confidence in selecting a suitable forever boat grows daily, I find I have run out of time. I know, I know, many hear say it takes 2 or 3 years to find the “one”, but this impresses not my wife. She knows nothing of pointing ability or tenderness or anything else of the myriad technical details, it all just reduces to “buy a boat”.
This is what we call in the engineering business "analysis paralysis." Better is the enemy of good.

One thing that comes to mind is perhaps you are frustrated at not being near the bodies of water that make a 35-40 boat make sense.

I knew a guy that got long summer vacations (a teacher) - he kept the boat on the great lakes in dry storage, splashed it for summer and went sailing for 8 weeks. To me it didn't sound cost effective but who am I to comment on how others spend their money?

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The next big issue is that most, maybe 80% of sellers want their price, said price was quite reasonable circa 2007.

<snip>

So the new plan is to buy some 30 footer to get started. Likely an Alberg 30. Whatever old Alberg or Catalina I can scrape up with a decent diesel engine, because let’s face it, most of these boats are selling for about half the cost of repowering. So rule 1 has to be under no circumstances buy a 30 foot boat that will need a new engine within 10 years. Needing a new engine in a boat this size renders its value at best zero, and perhaps less than zero as you are still paying marina fees. I think then guy in London with his engineless Bristol 29 is starting to realize this - current ask $2,500.
If you are worrying about he price or percentages you or someone can get in a bank you are somewhat focused on the wrong thing. A boat isn't a financial investment. It makes no sense. It is a lifestyle investment.

You also can't think about the engine in terms of worth or not worth.

Everything on the boat is deteriorating. You get the right price (even if that includes a fragged engine) and you start paying to keep the boat in "original" condition. You will replace rigging, sails, maybe engine over time. You amortize these costs by time on water. In the end you sell it for what you paid or close to it.

Your cost of sailing was the maintenance (and if pedantic the opportunity cost of leaving your money in a bank)

My boat was cheap ~$15k. I have put double that or more in in 5 years. However cost per month is solid at $400. I am redoing the engine right now - that will send cost per month up for a while, but it will be amortized over time.

There is a counter that says get a boat with a fragged engine now and not worry about the diesel for the life that you own it...

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So I’ll get my 30 footer to putter in and on and wait. Wait for just the right forever boat to show up at the right price, with the right geography. In the mean time my wife is happy because she has a boat. I’m reasonably happy because she is happy.

You aren't getting any younger so...

Just buy the boat, honey...
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Old 12-09-2012, 21:13   #18
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

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Originally Posted by Boulter View Post
Hi:
I am analytical. My first pass at things is the written word, and any diagrams and pictures that go along with words. So there is this ongoing tension between my endless readings and ...........
Boulter
Yes...this is the problem...not finding the right boat. There are lots of those around.
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Old 12-09-2012, 21:49   #19
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

My first boat was a Catalina 27. I owe that to a friend telling the broker to show me Catalina 27s and not any of that other junk he had. Made it simple. He knew what I needed better than I did! Then I moved up to a Catalina 30, which I had for 21 years....many trips with family (3 kids). Now a CT41 ketch....heavy, lots of boat, lots of caring for it......love it immensely, but would NOT have been a good starter.

Take the plunge........
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Old 12-09-2012, 22:14   #20
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

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That Bristol would be a good choice, but Massachusets is too far away. But look for similar boats and avoid the Hunter/Catalina/Benneteaus. Try not to spend to much and recognize that you will learn a lot from your first boat, what you want in your second boat.

David
It's a first boat, why on earth would you avoid those with the most likely resale? A Catalina 30 is probably one of the best ever starter boats (no bias here ) due largely in part to the fact that there are thousands of them plying the waters, and the owners group is amazing. Got a question? It's been answered at least a dozen times in the archives, and there's literally hundreds of folks willing to answer it again. They're fun to sail. You learn about trim and weather helm quick, and when you blow it she'll round up a might gentler than many others. Big enough to easily stay a week in, small enough to get cheaper slips. They're everywhere, easy to buy, most decent surveyors have seen dozens, issues are all well known, and they're probably the most boat for the buck around.

Plus, as a starter boat, it ought to be for a lot more than just learning boat handling or sailing. It's to make noob mistakes on projects, learning the hard way what not to do. If you are willing to go in with the mindset that it will be worth $0 in three to five years, and spend accordingly, then you are free to use it as the ultimate learning platform. Any resale then becomes bonus.

We bought a Catalina 30 as a starter (like I said, no bias here) and I would make the same decision again every day and twice on Sundays. Repowered, rewired, and replumbed it. Made mistakes here and there, bought some kit that looked cool and turned out to be worthless. Had some "brown pants" moments. Found out the Admiral loves the life. Glad I made a bunch of those mistakes/discoveries before we bought the 40 footer. I think every 2 feet of LOA doubles the cost of everything...

If you want to look for a smaller "forever" boat, then by all means, get one. If you're looking for something to get first, learn on, and coastal cruise then why not get a coastal cruiser with great built in technical support?

JRM
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Old 12-09-2012, 22:18   #21
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

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Originally Posted by JRM View Post

Plus, as a starter boat, it ought to be for a lot more than just learning boat handling or sailing. It's to make noob mistakes on projects, learning the hard way what not to do. If you are willing to go in with the mindset that it will be worth $0 in three to five years, and spend accordingly, then you are free to use it as the ultimate learning platform. Any resale then becomes bonus.
Yup. What he said...

Big enough to learn boat systems, big enough to spend time on. Cheap enough to afford it and the inevitable mistakes...

Easy to sell on.
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Old 14-09-2012, 12:55   #22
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

Hi:

Pretty fair comment all around.

Trailer sailors don't work because we don't have a tow vehicle. If I were a F150 man, I'd likely be there.

I was thinking larger to get what the vast majority take for granted: headroom and a long enough berth. Both these we usually marginal at 40 feet and will be quite gone at 28 or 30.

We will see what happens.

Boulter
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Old 14-09-2012, 13:14   #23
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So, basically, you have made up your mind and wanted sympathy, not options?

You spoke in your original post about sailing specs, now your priorities are for interior comfort, but you still have not told us what you want to be able to do with your boat.

I think your wife may be on to something - you want the perfect boat on paper and seem a bit indifferent to reality.
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Old 14-09-2012, 13:17   #24
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Re: Reflections of a newbie trying to buy a boat

I asked the question earlier on this forum: "Is it really a buyer's market?" and if you can locate that thread you will see that it is not that black or white, it is a mix of grey shades. Good boats will always sell at a price higher than project boats.
As you mentioned cities in Canada, keep in mind that our economy has not suffered as much as south of the border and boats are still in demand especially with the huge wave of baby-boomers looking for ways to retire in the sun... Canadians in the Lake Ontario area pay more for their boats because they want the taxes to be paid in order to have the right to sail in Canada. If you were in Quebec, you would be able to purchase an in-bound boat on Lake Champlain and would probably never bring it to Canada.
So read that thread I just mentioned, you will find all kinds of opinions.
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