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Old 21-12-2007, 03:39   #1
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how big and which one is best?

Hi guys and gals,

I am done with powerboats and am looking to purchase a trailerable sailboat for My wife myself and two small children (4 and 1 1/2 years old.) I have minimal sailing experience and will have to take some refresher courses with my wife. Anyway, I need trailerable because i live at the coast in North Carolina and can't afford to keep it in the water. Any ideas on what size would be best for day sails that i could launch by myself?

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Old 21-12-2007, 04:39   #2
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welcome aboard, The answer to your question will be answered by the more knowledgeable people on here, and that is not me. I used to do some sailing out of Beaufort NC. So sit back and enjoy the ride and all the knowledge you will get here.

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Old 21-12-2007, 04:42   #3
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There are a number of decent trailer sailors in the 25 foot range. For water ballasted boats look at Hunter, Catalina, MacGregor for example. For the more conventional crowd Seward, West Wright, and Com-Pac. I like the Compac and Catalina because I'm familiar with them, but they all have their pros. You might be able to find an older San Juan or Precision that fits your needs.

Check out the trailer sailor forum if you have not already.

I made the jump from racing catamarans to powerboats and then to larger monohulls. While I love sailing, I have to admit that monohulls are slow by comparison.

How are you pulling this boat? Some boats require a lot of tow vehicle. If you move up from a $20,000 civic to a more expensive pickup simply to tow the boat, you will want consider the extra cost.
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Old 21-12-2007, 06:05   #4
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There are guys selling mid 70's 25' catalinas and newports around here for 5 grand. You could easily squeeze two adults and two kids on that for some weekend gunkholing.
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Old 21-12-2007, 09:43   #5
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If you are looking for some weekends aboard you can get some great deals on Catalina 22's and 25's, Oday 22's and 25's, etc., etc. Why not look at some boats for sale and inquire here for opinions on the boat(s) in question.

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Old 21-12-2007, 10:14   #6
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Aloha Wood,
Welcome aboard!! You are getting a lot of good advice and you ae in an area where there are lots of boats for sale. I'd try for something in the 25 foot range. I owned a Catalina 22 for awhile and they are a bit short on room below for 4. However, they are a great boat and if you plan to be on deck more than below they might be a good boat for you.
Kind Regards,
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Old 21-12-2007, 11:49   #7

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I'd suggest a couple of early trips to the local ramps, to see what is involved in the launching and then later in the recovery. With a trailersailor there are a few physical limits to get around:

1-Towing vehicle, weight restrictions. Can you pull it, and an adequate trailer?
2-Raising and lowering the mast, pretty much by yourself. See which boats make this simpler, or just go beyond your limits. Either watch--or offer to help.
3-Keel, or lack of. You can tow a J/24, but then the fixed keel means a high tow rig. You can tow a boat with a retractible keel, or just a centerboard, but that means performance tradeoffs.

Best thing? Try to meet local owners, see if there's a local owner's association or if a local dealer can put you in touch with some local customers, and try to get a ride on the boat. You know sailors, sailors are easy. Offer to bring lunch and they'll take anyone out for the ride.[vbg]
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Old 21-12-2007, 11:57   #8
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And don't forget the smaller Ericson's. I have a Ericson 23 MKII. Nice boat to learn sailing skills with!
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Old 23-12-2007, 06:37   #9
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Thanks for all the advice. I drive a four wheel drive SUV and have the capability to pull a decent load. However after owning a motorboat and launching it single handed I know size is not the issue. It is ease of use. Thanks to all and I'm sure there will be more.

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Old 23-12-2007, 22:44   #10
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Have you considered keeping your boat somewhere where it is dry stored with the mast up?

It seems like it would be much less of a hassle. You may eventually get tired of having to mess with the rig each and every time you want to use the boat. A couple boats in your size range, that are very reasonably priced used, built well, that sail decently are the J-24 and the Moore 24. Trailerable boats in that size range tend not to sail well with the light centerboards that they typically have. Yes, a fixed keel boat in that size range can be towed but with more difficulty. Consider getting a boat with a decent sized racing class. Whether or not you feel like racing now, eventually you will get the bug. Racing on boats that size is great fun.

Life begins where land ends.
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Old 23-12-2007, 23:19   #11
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One of my first boats was a Macgreagor 21 Venture. I was poor then...opps...I'm poor now! Oh well...I use to pull it with my 58 Chevy. I had loads of fun and was a great introduction to sailing and sailors. I took many people out sailing after i owned it for a few months and no one ever knew I was a novice. It was a minimal investment and i sold it for the same price as I had bought it for.

"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: Wow - what a ride!"
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