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Old 03-06-2008, 08:05   #1
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Good advise needed for newbie.

Greetings from the endless beach they call Iraq,

I grew up around my dad's power boats and have always loved the water. I am a diver with c-cards for open water, dry suit, dive medic and rescue diver. It only seems natural for me to continue in my aquatic sports. Prior to deploying to Iraq (for the 3rd freaking time), I was looking at getting a power boat for the family. Then the gas prices hit the roof. I started looking at sailboats about 6 months ago and doing a lot of research. I am really looking forward to getting a boat and using a little free power. I have looked at boats from the present and back to the mid 60's. For my tastes I really prefer the looks of the older boats. The looks of the cabins with lots of wood really hits the spot for me. I have always been the AVID do-it-yourself type of person. I think that I would enjoy bringing life back to an older boat as much as sailing her. If anyone information on what brands to steer clear of let me know.

Mike
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Old 03-06-2008, 09:13   #2
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Wood is beautiful and I agree there is something about the older classic lines that sings to my heart. However, the amount of work to maintain a wooden hull is amazing. If you can get a fiberglass boat with lines you like and enough wood above the water line to meet your aesthetic needs, I feel it is better.

George
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Old 03-06-2008, 09:49   #3
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While you can save some money on the fuel side of the ledger the other parts don't come too cheap. The expenses of owning a boat mount up. until you are getting into the larger trawlers the fuel is not really that big a percentage of the whole cost picture.

Old sailboats can be huge money pits and the value of fuel savings really becomes peanuts compared to the rest of the costs. I would agree with George you really want a little less project and a lot more boat on the first trip. Starter keel boats in the 22 - 27 ft range can all be sailed well and will give you some fun experiences. The basic parts can all be explored and frankly cost less to fix up than something bigger. Unless you have a shed and a large area to work I would suggest the old wood boat idea is not really the place to begin. There is a lot to be gained from working on a newer younger boat. You could actually sail off in one and you can still go broke trying.

Boats in that range can be purchased almost any place near the water and with a little bit of fixing are ready to sail. Even at that you still get a lot of projrcts to contend with. Owning a boat comes with a short list of projects that as you knock off the list only gets longer. When the time comes and you are ready to sell they sell a lot easier than bigger more expensive boats. Starting small at first just makes the whole thing work easier and you get more fun out of it. All your boat expeirence still counts so all that will be quickly familiar. Once your sailing ability improves you can then explore other options with some better ideas of what you really want to do.

Here is a link to a neat old Catboat. It's the biggest still on the Chesapeake. This boat is amazing. She was hauled out when I was working on our boat.

Sailboat charters St. Michaels, Maryland-Sailing Chesapeake Bay - Sail Selina II

Iris is quite the captain too.
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Old 03-06-2008, 09:54   #4
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classic looks, modern bottom

Sunspot Baby has my vote as well. There are some great classic looking boats with as much teak to polish as you could want but with fiberglass hulls and a variety of designs underneath, from full keel to racer wings, to fit the sailing you're going to do. Maintaining a sailboat is like maintaining a helicopter, even normal use is bound to shake something loose or, like week before last, an errant jibsheet gets away while you're doing a single-handed tack and rips off that starboard dorado vent. There will always be something to do.

The traditional look was a big part of my choice of my thirty-five year old Tartan 30, but the modern fast hull was equally important. When you get home, you can come work on Immrama whenever you feel the need. She's in Oriental, NC so I hope to see Sunspot Baby on the Nuese.

Take care and hurry home, please.
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Old 03-06-2008, 10:15   #5
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I am just finishing up a project such as you mention here. Ours is a Cal 2-29, fiberglass with enough wood to make it look nice, but not eat all my time up maintaining it.
Even a boat that would seem to be ready to go will in all likelyhood need quite a bit of work to bring it to the condition that you really want. Of course, that would be your personal choice as to what condition you really want a boat. Some want a show boat that they never have a chance to sail, others want a boat that they do very little maintenance and just sail until it falls apart. The vast majority I think are somewhere in between.
I am always amazed at how much I spend on just the seemingly little things as Paul mentions. But in the end, I would never trade our sailboat for a power boat. I love sailing far more than driving a power boat. I have owned several of both up to 40'.
One of my all time favorites was a little day sailer - a McGregor Venture of Newport cutter rigged trailer sailer. Very light - not overly sturdy ( I did sail it in the ocean in the PNW - but only on carefully chosen days) but a joy to sail if I was only going to be out for a few hours or a day at a time. What I really liked was that I did not have to leave it at a slip in one place - I could trailer it to any lake or bay that I wanted to. This is not a recommendation for McGregors - just that I liked the one I had. I also had a McGregor Venture 21 - I liked the Venture of Newport much better.
The only thing I would really say is don't buy any boat sight unseen. Don't buy an "Ebay boat" unless you can go and carefully look it over first.
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Old 04-06-2008, 00:44   #6
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I'm glad to hear that I'm headed in the right direction. I do need to say that I am looking for a fiberglass hull. The wood is mainly for the inside. I do have a 40x60 shop to work in with plenty of head room. I am thinking of something like a Hunter, Columbia, Tartan or one of the Cal's. I have read that the McGregors are not strong enough for more open water and dont want to get anything that would prevent me from sailing from Florida to someplace like the BVI.
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Old 04-06-2008, 06:23   #7
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Having a shop and tools can make it possible to do interior work. That is one area where you may find a lot of things to keep you busy. A sound hull and rigging often is found on boats with interiors that need work or can be modified into something special. That kind of work may be something you would enjoy more. It is complex. A carpemters level does not really help you much aboard a boat. Things need many measurments. Fitting and installation is as demanding as building fine furniture. It can be a way to display all the craftsmanship skills you have ever learned and force you to learn a few more skill too.
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Old 05-06-2008, 18:31   #8
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Aloha Michael,
Welcome aboard! I agree with Columbia, Cal and Tartan. They made them pretty tough in the older models. I wouldn't look for anything longer than 36 LOD.
Hope you enjoy the forum. Check out a few books on sailing. Buy "Start Sailing Right!" if you can find it.
Kind regards,
JohnL
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Old 21-09-2014, 14:35   #9
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Re: Good advise needed for newbie.

Is there wind and few currents where you are going to use it. In the Seattle north area most sil boats have the mast but no wind during june july august dick t. I used to be a sailor have sailed muy boat althru the south pacific and to Thailand. One summer with the boat sailing from Seattle to Alaska was enough for me. I switched to power. dick t.
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Old 21-09-2014, 15:30   #10
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Re: Good advise needed for newbie.

You are responding to a dead thread... last post in 2008.

Jim
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