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Old 29-07-2012, 02:26   #1
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Haven't even raised my first sail

Hello, my name is webb dillard, videographer by trade, anyhow the wife looks at me and says..."what do you think about getting into sailing, then when our daughter graduates HS (12 years away) we can retire to a catamaran in the caribbean?"

What a grand, and wonderful idea.

It just so happens, though, i don't know **** about sailing, but i have plenty of time to learn. We are not dainty people, we are actually pretty keen on doing things ourselves, and being in control, so i feel like we have the gumption for sure. any bumps and bruises on the way the wife can heal, as she is a nurse.

Can somebody here point me in the direction of a good starting point. what books, school, a boat that a vacationer would crew, etc etc.

thanks in advance
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Old 29-07-2012, 03:52   #2
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

G'day Cap'n (and Admiral) Dillard, welcome aboard!

Congratulations, the sailing bug seems to have bit. If it's a confirmed infection, you'll be vacuuming up anything and everything to do with sailing and the sea, and the internet is a good library (if you can wade through the information overload and can sort out the BS from the valuable stuff).

If at all possible, perhaps it would be prudent to go on a charter on a cat in the Caribbean, with a respectable and experienced Skipper & Crew, to see if the experience matches the dream. Also, if you're near a sailing club, ask about intro courses in dinghy sailing. If you've got 12 years that's plenty of time to collect experience...
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Old 29-07-2012, 04:20   #3
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Don't spend any money at first just spend a few months browsing through this forum where, "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy. You must be cautious.” Seriously, if you're just starting out and wanting a ton of info, weclome to the right spot Webb Dillard.
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Old 29-07-2012, 08:25   #4
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

well, from your responses, i feel comfortable that we are in the right place...we don't even have a boat and i know the wife is admiral.

we have already started to explore charters, we live about 5 hrs from the coast and have found several day, evening, and overnight charters we will try first...i am sure i will post a bunch of questions. thank you two for your quick responses.

WD
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Old 29-07-2012, 09:16   #5
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

"retiring to a boat in the Caribbean"
Ha ha ha ha ha , just kidding.
Retiring is when one sells the boat and stays home and plays on the Internet
Having a boat in the Caribbean is a new kind of stress, one in which you will never have a free moment of time or spare money.
and of course, a week chartering in thr bvi is not a lifestyle.
But good luck
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Old 29-07-2012, 09:42   #6
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Quote:
Originally Posted by bruce smith View Post
"retiring to a boat in the Caribbean"
Ha ha ha ha ha , just kidding.
Retiring is when one sells the boat and stays home and plays on the Internet
Having a boat in the Caribbean is a new kind of stress, one in which you will never have a free moment of time or spare money.
and of course, a week chartering in thr bvi is not a lifestyle.
But good luck
But I'd have to agree. Owning a boat is not retiring, just changing life styles. Boats can be a lot of work and stress, especially if one doesn't know boats.

Your best bet would be to charter first, then if it's good for you both then consider a purchase of a new boat. An old boat will just be the next occupation.
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Old 29-07-2012, 13:13   #7
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Aloha and welcome,

I will not discourage you in any way. There is always room for another sailor and fulfilling your dreams in this way is the way we all started out.

I recommend a basic sailing course and reading any books about sailing and living aboard that you can find in your public library or on line. For a basic sailing course book I recommend "Start Sailing Right!" for boat handling.

You might even consider buying a very simple sort of sailing craft such as a Sunfish just to see if you like sailing and boat ownership. 14 feet long and easy to carry to the beach by pickup, cartop or trailer and if you shop around you can get one fully operational for about $500. Good training and fun to race as well.

kind regards,
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Old 30-07-2012, 04:44   #8
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Hi Webb,

I just got here myself and am in almost the exact situation, except mine is about a 7 year plan. I was first looking at a power boat, but considering it would cost at least half a month's retirement pay to go to my target destination (and be stranded without the funds to get back), I'm readjusting the plan toward sailing.

I am just starting to look into sailing lessons for the misses and I. I'll let you know what I find. What's your general location? I'm in the northern VA/DC area but Fl might be the retirement locale in 3-4 years.

Gary
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Old 30-07-2012, 07:21   #9
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

I had been lake sailing in my youth on a little dingy and had always loved it.
Forward about 30 years and the wife and I where on a cruise in the Islands and did a day sail (Booze Cruise?)on a catamaran. We LOVED it even though it wasn't much of a "cruising" boat we had a ball.
Forward about 10 years and the wife comes to me and says "lets buy a summer home". I respond "Remember that day sail on the Cat?"
Background: Other than the dingy sailing and a few day sails on other peoples monohulls = zero experience. Never did an overnighter on a boat. On a scale of 1 to 10 as far as mechanical ability I would say I was a 9.5, never met something I wouldn't tackle or take apart. Wife .5. That's why she married me I think but loves the water.
1. Spent the next year looking at Catamarans and reading. Learned that "booze Cruise" boats and REAL Cats have nothing in common when it comes to interiors and comforts.
2. Next winter we decided to take a week long sailing lesson in the Abacos on a 43' Cat with 4 cabins and 2 heads with 1 other couple and an Instructor and his wife. Had one of the best vacations EVER, we both passed our ASA tests and decided this was for us.
3. Next summer I spent most every Summer Tuesday night crewing on a 32' monohull racing on the Chesapeake learning sail trim and general procedures at the same time started our search for a Cat in the 38' range.
4. In 2009 we looked at several boats including a 38' Leopard in Florida (we live in VA) on a 9 hour trip, took 15 mins. on board before the wife had 10 things she didn't like about the boat and we go home the same day. Then a month later in March we found her. A 2004 Lagoon 410 SE Owners version with Electric Drives, well taken care of and clean. Also $100k more than the budget but the wife has spoken and to be honest, 4 seasons later Electra Glide has been a true pleasure and worth every penny. We spend the weekends from mid April through November on her as well as a few vacation weeks sailing the Chesapeake and enjoying the lifestyle. Waterfront property (we're on a "T") and the two of us have spent many a night watching the sun go down from the netting. We are still learning and haven't been in the open ocean yet but if things go as planned we will be in the Islands on our own boat in a few years.

Did I mention We are having a ball...

Steve in Solomons MD
Lagoon 410 SE
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Old 30-07-2012, 07:58   #10
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

welcome! It's your life. Live it!
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Old 30-07-2012, 08:18   #11
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Welcome Capt Webb and crew! You have so many different options and some of them depend on where you land home is now...and/or if you can relocate. I started on a 20' trailer-able swing keel before I met my new family and now we have a 28' weekender that I am using to 'train my crew'. The next step for me is a bigger boat that we can spend months on to navigate the Chessy, and then into retirement (maybe sooner) on to ocean cruising. So you see...for me it appears to be a 'three boat process'. But I am in one of the biggest sailing grounds in the world and will hopefully have no problem in the buy/sell process.

Read a few books(watch some film)...then make the decision how you want to do it. You will get a lot of opinions...some good and some bad....but you are the Capt and it is ultimately your decision.....and it will be through out you sailing lifestyle. Some head to open water and islands, some live on the land at waterfront and sail on the weekends.....IMHO both are approved lifestyles in my book!
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Old 30-07-2012, 08:22   #12
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Where are you at? If you are on the Texas coast, I have a sail you can raise this weekend.
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Old 30-07-2012, 08:29   #13
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Re: Haven't even raised my first sail

Quote:
Originally Posted by Webb Dillard View Post
well, from your responses, i feel comfortable that we are in the right place...we don't even have a boat and i know the wife is admiral.

we have already started to explore charters, we live about 5 hrs from the coast and have found several day, evening, and overnight charters we will try first...i am sure i will post a bunch of questions. thank you two for your quick responses.

WD
So for the time being it's 3 in the regular crew.
Zero sailing experience.

If you have the budget to charter a boat right now you probably have the budget to guy a small boat to learn on, say about $3-5k. Is that correct?

Where are do you want to sail out of? Which coast do you want to set off from and more specifically where on that coast? 5 hours from coast is still pretty vague, where are you specifically?
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