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Old 29-10-2007, 12:45   #1
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Hello from Toronto

My husband and I are looking for our first sailboat. Having only been on a boat once we are extremely new to sailing but my husand has fallen for it completely. He plans to take lessons once we have the boat. We are looking for something fairly new in the 27 - 32 range since we plan to use it alot for weekend overnight sails. We also will hopefully be able to teach our young Boxer to love it as well...he already doesn't mind the life jacket.

My husband, Ian, is hoping I will grow to love sailing as much as he does and will eventually agree to take two years off in the near future and sail around Europe with him (we would get a new boat in Europe for that).

I hope to learn alot from the forum already I have found excellent information.

Julie
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Old 29-10-2007, 13:07   #2
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Good to have you on the forum, lots of very knowledgeable people post here and anyone can pick up a lot of information.

I have known quite a few people in your situation.. it works for some and doesn't for others but that is how life is in anything. I would suggest you consider taking sailing classes yourself.. but not necessarily at the same time or in the same class as your husband.

Many if not most newer sailors tend to get the Captain Bly syndrome with their crews.. wife included... this frequently doesn't last long as we tend to learn who the Admiral actually is and who is the Capitan.

You can often tell when you have turned the corner when the less physical person actually takes the helm is things like docking and setting anchor... and the more physical person does the heavy work... newer "skippers" can't seem to find this as a practical thing feeling "only" they can be at the Helm when in fact the person "in command" is often Not the person at the Helm of a ship.

Don't try to force yourself to "love" sailing it is something that will either work its way into your sole or will not. You can still enjoy it with out it being the "center" of your thought. Plans always change as knowledge is gained... work within your knowledge and ability.

While it may not be a smart thing to bring up... buying a boat before you know how to effectively use it may not be the best thing to do. How do you really know what to look for? You and your husband may avoid significant mistakes in boat selection if you first learn to sail via a qualified school and take the opportunities to sail with others on different types of boats... then figure out what is important to you and your sailing plans and base your boat purchase on those factors... less chance of being disapointed... boats are not very fluid in resale time and value except fluid always flows down hill.
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Old 29-10-2007, 13:48   #3
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Julie,
If you're going to take lessons in Toronto, Ashbridges Bay Yacht Club has an excellent keel boat program where you learn on 24 -26 ft boats. It also has boats that you can "share" once you're qualified. It is an excellent club.Ashbridges Bay Yacht Club, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Shameless plug from a member.
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Old 29-10-2007, 14:04   #4
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Thanks Rick we would probably consider taking lessons there since they are kinda close to home (we are in cabbagetown) - we will definitely check it out. Once we get a boat we are thinking of keeping it at the Outer Harbour Marina - we like how private it is and how close it is to Cherry Beach for our dog.

Reaity Check - thanks for your encouragement and words of advice...I appreciate what you are saying about waiting to buy a boat till we know for sure what we want and I agree...my husband has spent six months doing tons of research and we have gone out on a charter on one boat and plan to charter a few more to try different ones, plus we will hit more boatshows.

The thing is though my hubby has his heart set on a Hunter - we know it isn't the best actual sailing boat but it is a very comfortable boat and the layout inside is awesome (he wants an aft cabin) and for now we will probably only use it almost like a cottage on the water so comfort is really important - we will probably only be sailing around Toronto Harbour and in Lake Ontario the first few years so he thinks after all his research that a Hunter should be fine, are there other boats we should maybe take a harder look at as well?
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Old 29-10-2007, 14:48   #5
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If you want comfy boat and aft cabin in a production boat you should also look at Catalinas. I also think they're better built than Hunters and they have the highest rate of return customers of any NA boat. But I am biased since we have one. We did look at a few Hunters and we just felt the Catalina stood up to the test of time better than similar aged Hunters. Beneteau also an option though fewer of them in the Northeast of Canada/US to choose from.
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Old 29-10-2007, 18:23   #6
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A production boat sounds like just the ticket for now. We are still on our starter boat (27 feet) and use it as our weekend camper. We have a furling genny and lazy jacks. All lines run to the cockpit so single handing is a breeze.

We find sleeping aboard for 2-3 days is not a problem but clearly we don't have enough boat for our needs on longer trips.

We have added battery capacity, a fridge, a couple of really good fans and a single burner cooker. The ipod power is wired to the boat and we are very comfortable. we are probably going to add a solar charger and a 12V dvd player for Christmas.

Lessons are a great idea and even if you don't eventually sail dinghy's I'd recommend some time in them. You get a great sense of boat handling in a light dinghy. Also they are a lot of fun.
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Old 29-10-2007, 22:04   #7
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Welcome aboard.
Good choice on size. I also would recomend the Catalinas. My opinion, they are the best bang for the buck. The 30 is a good size for everything you mentioned, and easy to handle. Lots of them on the market. Reasonable price, and they hold their value if you decide to move up. Nothing in your current plans is outside of the capabilities of the Catalina 30.
By the way, I do not work for Catalina
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Old 30-10-2007, 19:11   #8
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As a newbie who started on a Catalina 27 this summer, I recommend Catalinas too for a basic reason: popularity is a self-perpetuating. I found mountains of info on them on the net, there is an army of fellow cat owners who can give you advice, you can still buy parts for them, and there will always be someone willing to buy it from you down the road (if you keep it in decent condition).
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Old 30-10-2007, 19:59   #9
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Don't know about Europe, but when we cruised the Caribbean we were surprised by the number of Canadian flags we encountered - mostly from Toronto/Lake Ontario. For some great Canadian logs go here:

Destiny's big trip, page 1

BoatUS.com Cruising Log

Wind-Borne III - Journal Entries

Beneteaus, Catalinas, Hunters are perfectly suitable for this kind of cruising.
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Old 30-10-2007, 23:11   #10
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Hello from the Wet West Coast. If you have the bucks, go for the 30 to 32. For BC coastal waters, its my personal belief around 32 feet is the perfect size. Tanzers are great "lake" boats.
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Old 31-10-2007, 08:00   #11
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Newbie here-oldie liveaboarder

I moved away from Florida and my boat in 1991. Now I am ging back and buying the same boat back. I plan on doing most of my cruising on Tampa Bay and surrounding bays and rivers. My plans are to be there by the end of Dec. I see from what I have read and seen for myself that the liveaboard and cruising world has really changed yet the Camaraderie and sense of community is still there. I look forward to getting back into it. Living on the water is very rewarding. I am eager to read and participate in this forum.

Wil Collins AKA cowboywil
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Old 31-10-2007, 09:01   #12
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Julie,

One other advantage of belonging to a club (I think if you take lessons at ABYC they throw in an associate membership) is that if you're looking for a boat most club members will let you check theirs out. This way you get to see most boats and can form a preliminary idea of what your likes and dislikes are. For a 30 footer I'd lean toward a CS30. I had one years ago.
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Old 31-10-2007, 16:33   #13
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Aloha Julie,
Welcome aboard!! I'm certain you'll get lots of advice on the forum here. Keep in touch and let us know how your lessons and boat search is coming along. I, like a lot of others here, prefer Catalina.
Kind Regards,
JohnL
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Old 01-11-2007, 14:34   #14
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Thanks Everyone. I sure am learning alot...I am not sure if I will ever be as passionate as my husband about sailing but if I keep reading all the posts on here I am sure I will be as knowledgeable!

I spoke with Ian about Catalinas and we looked for some online but seems like when people buy them they keep them ...we couldn't find too many 2000 - 2005 in the footages we are looking for for sale in the northern states (were some further south but we don't want to go that far we want a freshwater boat). Maybe later in the year there might be some we will keep looking. In the meantime we are going to look at a few Hunters in PA in two weeks.
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Old 01-11-2007, 14:50   #15
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The Niagara's are great Lake Ontario boats, very high volume hull, very light and sails great in light airs, really a blast to sail on Lake Ontario.

The lake can certainly blow up a storm but alot of the sailing is 5 to 10 knots of wind.
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