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Old 01-05-2014, 11:49   #16
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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Originally Posted by selkirksghost View Post
It has been in the forums before. Not sure where the thread is now. Had to do a lot of my own foot work, but love our system. And can't beat the addition of AIS. It has top priority in electronics, as far as I'm concerned. I am a professional mariner on merchant ships and can tell you that your little radar reflector is useless. With AIS, you WILL be seen. Radar is nice, but a power hog and only guarantees you will see the other guy before he runs you over.
But I digress.
Is the boat US registered? If yes, the fit out could cost you in import duties when you get back to the US, not to mention the duty of US parts going into St Marten. You could always do a short cruise, prior to refit, back into US territory to avoid that. Or keep your boat outside the US for it's life. Fully doable if your cruising is extensive. St Thomas has reasonable access to supplies. Otherwise, to kill two birds, Curacao has extensive yard facilities, at least industrially, and is below the "hurricane line". Holiday Inn there also does a free spread for Americans for Thanksgiving, or used to.
All good info. If you find that thread I'd be interested to read it.
Our plans are to stay out as long as we can. Yes, offshore sale is the plan and we have no reason to need to be in the US for more than a few days with the boat. If that changes we will cross that bridge when we get to it.

Marlena and I will make a list from all these good suggestions so we appreciate them all. Thank you. PMs welcome as well if it's an extensive list or things like that.

I feel I had better search for a place to start a thread for the questions however, of course after searching a bit for existing answers, so I do not fill up the meet and greet thread with Q&A. I was reading the Lagoon Forum last night. I'll search for a Caribbean Provisioning and retrofitting a new, ex-charter Cat after. Then places to go for Hurricane season that are family friendly.

We got good news that the boat is on the hard currently having things serviced, replaced worked on. The list was quite reassuring (engines serviced, front stay replaced, rigging work, anti-foul, etc). I am very happy with the relationship building with the selling agent, who is representing the company (Moorings) very well. This is important to us that we have someone who is helping us not just selling us a boat.

Until we see the boat in person or get the survey results I won't know what to start planning on so that will have to wait for now.

Hello everyone else who has posted your hello from around the World. My experiences with Open Source Autopilots (think autonomous flying robots) has given me many good friends in the France, Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Australia, New Zealand, Greece, Switzerland, I'm sure I'm missing many elsewhere as well. It already feels like I'll be adding to my Sailing friends now. Maybe I can introduce you all to personal autonomous things that you can build yourself. Show your kids, if you truly build it yourself they are cheap as toys. I can show you how.

BTW: I have installed OpenCPN and downloaded and installed ALL maps from NOA on my laptop (running Ubuntu 13.04). Not the easiest install but I got through it.

Truly many things you probably thought were impossible to do yourself (flying, swimming, sailing robots, large scale wireless networks, etc) are extremely doable and inexpensive and the info is available online. Maybe we can do DIY robotics, Mac/Linux workshops etc somewhere while we wait out Hurricane season somewhere. No charge, I guarantee you all know things you can teach us. Thankfully no taxes on helping each other out.

...reminds me I've completely forgotten how to tie my knots, time to find some rope and watch a few YouTube videos...
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Old 05-05-2014, 19:32   #17
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Good news, offer accepted. Survey to happen this week. The ball is rolling.
I'm searching CF every day and still not finding anything about who's in the Caribbean or ABCs with (or without) kids...so we can know who's out there currently and maybe read up where everyone is going or staying for Hurricane Season.
What I have learned is there is some mosquito borne virus going around...our girls are mosquito magnets. Really. We counted 18 on one the other day. For some reason if the wife and I get 1 or 2 they have 20 bites. That's alarming me.
We also think probably wiser to get a slip or be near the marina for the first couple of Months and really learn the boat inside out. Hire a captain (referrals requested) for lessons on our boat. I'm thinking first ASA105 to continue my lessons and beyond. I figure we can't be over prepared or too close to shore to start with. I am praying for a mile season this year and to make as many friends as possible.
If you're in the Caribbean and living aboard PM me. How's the weather? Where are you going to be during the season this year (and why). Or if there is a thread I haven't found pls reply with it I'll go post. I'm still trying to find where to start one for our "Hey we are going to be in St. Martin end of June where are you?" thread.
Hope the weather is good wherever you all are.
Cheers,
The Conger Family.
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Old 05-05-2014, 23:37   #18
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

We're heading south at a slow bell. There are three Minecraft fanatics onboard who will give you a run for your money. We're just making Tampa and don't have any concrete plans so can't nail down dates for the Caribe. We can tell you, liveaboards with kids are few and far between. We had previously sailed the West Coast, where lots of kids are born and raised on boats. We have only recently met seagoing kids in the Gulf though, after 9 months of sailing. We're crossing our fingers for the Keys.
Don't let the Hurricane season ruin your good time. Plan out some hurricane holes, or even haul out spots if you have to, and keep them in your pocket. Even whacky storms like Lenny in '99 will give you a few days warning. You will find that many of them blow right by, although the Northeast corner of the Windwards statistically is NOT the place to be. (Curacao has been hit by 12 storms in the last 130 years. St Martin has been hit by 12 storms since 1981.) I went into St Croix the day after Lenny hit and found that some boats had ridden it out in Christiansted at anchor. Of course, there were a few on the beach. And one guy sunk his boat (intentionally), then refloated it, with little damage. He had no inboard, of course. And one beached boat about 30 of us managed to refloat using a dinghy and some basic Archimedes' principles.
There is definitely a lot of learning to be done. Don't discount what you will find in old sea stories like Melville, Conrad, Slocum, Warwick Thompkins, Tristan Jones, William Buckley, Montessier, etc. Many fairweather boaters will discount tradition with a flip of the tongue without ever trying. You will have crossed a huge gap going from weekend boater to a liveaboard. It is a lifestyle.
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Old 06-05-2014, 00:09   #19
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

Congrats David. You will soon be joining the fleet of "Kid Boats" as cruising families call themselves. Friends just arrived today in Fatu Hiva, total of 6 Kid Boats buddy boated for the puddle jump. They are on a new Antares 44i and had a very mellow crossing, 20 days and 20 hours for 3053 nm.
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Old 06-05-2014, 00:10   #20
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

Being an ex charter cat I would be sure to look at the supplied anchor, often old generation and possibly undersized. Adequate anchor gear is very much a primary safety reqt.

Plenty of anchor threads on CF to work through without turning your thread into another anchor war with a recommendation.

Cheers and congratulations.
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Old 06-05-2014, 04:40   #21
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

So far so good--hopefully the survey goes well.

Your wife may wish to check out a closed group on Facebook called Women Who Sail. They're very friendly and there are a lot of ladies & 'kid boat' moms asking questions & sharing info. I think they'd be really helpful for her on some of the questions you're asking about.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:46   #22
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirksghost View Post
We're heading south at a slow bell. There are three Minecraft fanatics onboard who will give you a run for your money. We're just making Tampa and don't have any concrete plans so can't nail down dates for the Caribe. We can tell you, liveaboards with kids are few and far between. We had previously sailed the West Coast, where lots of kids are born and raised on boats. We have only recently met seagoing kids in the Gulf though, after 9 months of sailing. We're crossing our fingers for the Keys.
Don't let the Hurricane season ruin your good time. Plan out some hurricane holes, or even haul out spots if you have to, and keep them in your pocket. Even whacky storms like Lenny in '99 will give you a few days warning. You will find that many of them blow right by, although the Northeast corner of the Windwards statistically is NOT the place to be. (Curacao has been hit by 12 storms in the last 130 years. St Martin has been hit by 12 storms since 1981.) I went into St Croix the day after Lenny hit and found that some boats had ridden it out in Christiansted at anchor. Of course, there were a few on the beach. And one guy sunk his boat (intentionally), then refloated it, with little damage. He had no inboard, of course. And one beached boat about 30 of us managed to refloat using a dinghy and some basic Archimedes' principles.
There is definitely a lot of learning to be done. Don't discount what you will find in old sea stories like Melville, Conrad, Slocum, Warwick Thompkins, Tristan Jones, William Buckley, Montessier, etc. Many fairweather boaters will discount tradition with a flip of the tongue without ever trying. You will have crossed a huge gap going from weekend boater to a liveaboard. It is a lifestyle.
Hello, it made my Girls day to hear of other Minecrafters out there on boats. Until we get on the boat I setup a server at: mc.ppzuav.com that is open. Until now we didn't know anyone to ask to join.
Yours and all the replies are read carefully. Thank you very much. Digesting it now. It is a lot to take in and do. We very much appreciate it.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:46   #23
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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So far so good--hopefully the survey goes well.

Your wife may wish to check out a closed group on Facebook called Women Who Sail. They're very friendly and there are a lot of ladies & 'kid boat' moms asking questions & sharing info. I think they'd be really helpful for her on some of the questions you're asking about.
Excellent, I've FWD this on to Marlena, thank you very much.
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:51   #24
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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Originally Posted by deckofficer View Post
Congrats David. You will soon be joining the fleet of "Kid Boats" as cruising families call themselves. Friends just arrived today in Fatu Hiva, total of 6 Kid Boats buddy boated for the puddle jump. They are on a new Antares 44i and had a very mellow crossing, 20 days and 20 hours for 3053 nm.
That statement "You will soon be joining the fleet of..." is exactly what keeps us moving forward. Very much looking forward to making that real. We are doing our part and going for it. Buying this boat will about wipe us out so we have to quickly learn to be living on the cheap not in a marina or moored. The idea being get one we can live on and be offshore or at anchor and more self-sufficient. Choice is made, time to find out how well we did...

I am hoping we don't make too many mistakes and get this right. Thank you for letting us know we are not alone. It helps us to not feel like we've lost our minds by doing this. Everyone inland here thinks it is the most insane thing a family could do...but you probably heard all that as well and have been in our shoes. Thank you for making it work to lead the way for us by example.
-David
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Old 06-05-2014, 10:59   #25
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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Being an ex charter cat I would be sure to look at the supplied anchor, often old generation and possibly undersized. Adequate anchor gear is very much a primary safety reqt.

Plenty of anchor threads on CF to work through without turning your thread into another anchor war with a recommendation.

Cheers and congratulations.
Thank you for that. Excellent point. Marlena and I both read: "The Complete Anchoring Handbook" ... now time to put that to the test. We also read Storm Tactics and many other books.

We have planned to spend whatever it takes to get enough rode, chain, bigger anchor it takes to be secure at anchor. We will have access to a "Wholesale" account at Budget Marine in St. Maarten and the boat will be at Captain Oliver's at the start (given we can get a slip for a few weeks there).

Anyone else out there with a Lagoon 410 or something similar who would like to PM me their anchoring setup I'm very interested. I'll look it up online at Budget before we get there. I'll also ask the guy doing the survey or broker about the ground tackle situation and anchor.

Keep it coming, thank you all very much.

-David
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:21   #26
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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That statement "You will soon be joining the fleet of..." is exactly what keeps us moving forward. Very much looking forward to making that real. We are doing our part and going for it. Buying this boat will about wipe us out so we have to quickly learn to be living on the cheap not in a marina or moored. The idea being get one we can live on and be offshore or at anchor and more self-sufficient. Choice is made, time to find out how well we did...

I am hoping we don't make too many mistakes and get this right. Thank you for letting us know we are not alone. It helps us to not feel like we've lost our minds by doing this. Everyone inland here thinks it is the most insane thing a family could do...but you probably heard all that as well and have been in our shoes. Thank you for making it work to lead the way for us by example.
-David
It has been quite awhile since I was last cruising, but if memory serves I think the kids use VHF 81A in anchorages for morning discussions of homework and to plan what they want to do after studies are done for the day.

One thing you might discover, as being on a Kid Boat that is a catamaran, they will socializing more on your boat.
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:35   #27
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

david -- welcome aboard and good luck with the survey -- we spent 3-4 years in the carib - a bit on both sides -
first this is suppose to be a light hurricane season but it only takes one and not sure of your insurance but ours was trinidad only -- you can make grenada and then if something looks not quite right do the 80odd mile sail to trini
second - there are some kids out there and we ran across a few but we left last year so no idea on where or when
third -- as for ais --we have one and would not do without it - but in the island hopping in the eastern carib we used it to keep track of boats we were sailing with -- so for the short term put it at the bottom of your list
fourth -- water water everywhere and not a drop to drink - we put on a small watermaker and best investment we ever made - we love it
fifth - not sure where you are getting your weather but if you can afford an ssb we are big beliver in them - now that will start a small war on this forum but we would not do without ours for weather grib files , position reports as i have my ham license and use shiptrak, and also as ham free email and as a techie you can figure out how to use sound card instead of getting a pactor modum -- and speaking of weather we subscribed to chris parker when we were in the carib - some love him some do not - but he is a sailor and pretty fair weather fcst and as a subscriber he will route you

good luck -- by the way our cost of cruising for 5 years is out there in the dollars and cents part of this forum - so while not a family of 4 or a cat it can you give an idea
any way we can help please let us know -- we would give you some intro to cruisers in the area but all of the ones we know are either headed north to escape hurricane season or south and not around you
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Old 06-05-2014, 11:53   #28
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

As selkirksghost said, cruising families in the Caribe are few and far between. You should start a family cruising blog so other Kid Boats know where you are and where you are heading to. Here are a few for you to check out....

s/v Field Trip the folks I mentioned above

S/V Totem - a family sailing the world

Sailing Full-time with the Faulkner Family

A Sailing Family... Our Life Aboard "Begonia"

Yogic Sailing Family | A Euro-Aussie-Argentine family of 4 living their dream, sailing the world

Zen is HOME! | Zen - family cruising catamaran

Mitgang/Gottesman Family's Sailing Voyage Aboard Whatcha Gonna Do

Sailing Wondertime

Windtraveler

A google search will bring up a lot of cruising family blogs. A good way to find other Kid Boats, and you might wind up like my friends aboard S/V Field Trip, making passages buddy boating with 5 other Kid Boats.
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Old 06-05-2014, 12:02   #29
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

David and family, welcome to the forum.
You have started on the right path and done a lot of prep work - you will do well.
As mentioned before, the first priorities are the place to refit and hurricane avoidance, perhaps you can do both at the same time, depending how the boat is equipped. Don't let hurricane plans for the last minute, as the best places fill up quickly.

I am sure once you get to the boat the nature of your questions will be more technical, and this place is great for help with those.

Are the girls naming the boat? One suggestion related to their speciality: Mobs. Kinda different name, but look at this description and see how fitting it is: Mobs are living, moving entities. Generally, mobs are affected by the environment in the same ways as the player: they are subject to physics, and they can be hurt by almost all the same things that harm the player. !!!

I hope all goes well with the survey and sale.
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Old 09-05-2014, 12:25   #30
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Re: Hello World from a family of dreamers

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...One thing to consider is that your boat may not be ready to go cruising at the time of closing. If any significant refit is required, St. Martin is not the worst place to do it and, rather than rushing work and attempting to get out and down to at least Grenada in an untested boat before hurricane season, you may wish to consider getting the work done there while she is on the hard, and delaying your move aboard until November.

Anyway, good luck with your new offer and keep us posted!

Brad
This was the orig. plan really...but every marina and storage in the Caribbean appears to be full. I spent considerable time yesterday calling around and it seems all booked up.

Plan B now is get South. Still in contract waiting on the survey results. Initial indications are good though. I really can't imagine us not buying this boat. Just a matter of a bit more negotiations based on the survey most likely.

If anyone knows of an open and safe (we would be living there) place close or in St. Martin I'm all ears. Key words being "available now". Otherwise Plan B is without the wife and girls I sail it down with a competent crew to Grenada or Trinidad.

Always open to joining up for safety as well...who's out there that will be near St. Martin in Mid July (likely departure date after adding some things).

@SVTatia: Hello, thank you. Not sure yet about name. The current name isn't so bad. I wouldn't want to anger the sea Gods or the Boat by changing a good thing without good reason. :]

@deckofficer: Excellent, I will go to each with my wife when we get a second to stop and breathe...so much to do...so little time...days feel like weeks all of a sudden.

@selkirksghost: Hopefully we can meet up. We hope to meet and interact with as many other sailing families as possible so keep us updated. Once safely South my wife and girls will come aboard and we will start our hands-on learning/living.

Hmm, this reminds me, anyone know of an anchorage Down South within range of Wifi/Internet? I can give up almost anything but initially it would really help to have even slow Internet while at anchor down there...just that feeling of not being completely disconnected from civilization and let family friends know we are alive.

-David
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