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Old 16-03-2007, 04:33   #1
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Another newbie

My wife and I are life longe boaters although I have to admit that most of our experience has been on power boats. We have been on several sail charters in the USVI's/BVI'. We are facing a mid life crisis of sorts. We have been threatening for years to move to blue water and live aboard. Well long story short we just came back from a ten day trip in the USVI's and my wife is being offered a job in St Thomas. We are forty and don't have any children and seriously considering renting our house here and buying a liveaboard sailboat there. I can sail despite my stinkpot background and do enjoy it. We live in WV now and have been boating on the inland rivers forever. We have bluewater experience in Florida both the West Coast and the keys as well as Miami, we have also boated in the Bahamas and have done three charters in the Virgins so this isn't some drunken vacation epiphany. We are both also certified divers and I hold a 50 Ton Masters from the USCG. I guess my question is if you were going to spend forty to sixty grand on a good used boat what would you buy. I think based on our experieces staying aboard boats I would say we want a two cabin boat and I would realy prefer one with a seperate shower in the head. The reality of day to day life will be we still have to hold down real jobs and work so the boat will be a floating condo with weekend sails through out the Virgins and probably a few weeks annually island hopping. So creature comforts will likely take priority over huge ocean crossing keels and sail storage lockers. I specifically saw a Hunter (be nice) on Tortolla for sale that has a very appealing cabin layout. That said its a freestanding rig? I am sure I am opening a can of worms here but what are the thoughts on a fourteen year old boat set up with this rig.

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Old 16-03-2007, 09:41   #2
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Welcome to the Cruiser forum. I'm sure there is just a whole lot here to keep you reading. Please ask a lot of questions and read the various sections.

I guess my question is if you were going to spend forty to sixty grand on a good used boat what would you buy.
$40K to $60K won't get you a really good used boat with a lot of room to be all that picky. Getting a grip on how much space you really need is maybe the hardest part of your task. The second part is living aboard and having a real life on shore means you automatically have a lot of extra stuff. Extra stuff is not a good thing!

There is only one absolute rule as far as picking a boat for your purpose - it has to hold you and all your stuff. After that we can get a little more picky - but not all that much.

I'll assume you may leave a lot back on land in storage. When you live aboard with all that stuff the ability to take off for a quick sail gets to be more of a problem because - all your stuff.

Make the amount of stuff you need match the ability to keep it and in your price range you won't be looking at a long list of great boats. You'll be looking at a short list of well used boats that need some work. You'll need to balance the amount of work they need, the cost, the on going expenses and the amount of space you'll have.

After that you'll really want to both take a long hard look look and decide if this boat will win an ugly boat contest. If you get past all that you'll maybe have a boat you can like and will work. I see it as a process you go through and not as a list of maybe good boats. I would start by looking at lots of boats, get over to and look at more boats and asking prices. You need to come to an understanding of how far the money will go and how much creature comforts you really need.

You have a lot of hard choices to make but I'm sure you can find lots of good stuff around the forum to get you thinking and maybe after you get started how to deal with the other problems of just owning a boat you live on.

Paul Blais
s/v Bright Eyes Gozzard 36
37 15.7 N 76 28.9 W
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Old 18-03-2007, 02:30   #3
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Welcome Jay,
Good luck in finding what you seek, and hope others closer can give the advice you need.
Don't take life too seriously. No ones going to make it out alive......Go see our blog at
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Old 18-03-2007, 09:53   #4
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Sounds to me like a Morgan Out Island 41 would fit your needs and price range. They were built for those waters and are heavy duty and large enough to be comfortable. A floating condo they are sometimes referred to. Good Luck
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Old 18-03-2007, 12:14   #5
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Aloha Captain Jay,
Welcome aboard!! Good to have you here. Your questions will be answered if you do a search on this forum. "which boat" might get you a bunch of old threads you can consider.
Kind Regards,
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