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Old 17-07-2006, 13:28   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Arkansas/Florida
Boat: No sail boat, 25' Century Center Console power boat
Posts: 4
Just saying hello.

Just discovered this site a couple of days ago and just registered. No, not a sailor yet, but currently trying to breath life into the dream (as the name implies). Gonna start small with a dinghy, maybe crew at local sailing club, then work my way up. Definitely want to cruise one day.

Just went into business for myself a couple of years ago and the business is gaining traction, so the dream may very well become a reality sooner than later. I have fished for years and sport fish out of Homosassa FL every year. I have extensive power boating experience in all types of weather and vessels. Have boated through freezing ice storms while waterfowl hunting, and recently got caught in a little Alberto action while fishing a recent cobia tournament in Florida. The world of boating is definitely not new, but sail boating has ALWAYS appealed to me and I have yet to experience .

Have surfed many different sites and am in the "accumulating knowledge" phase. Birthday coming up so lots of "how to sail" type books on the list. Hope you will forgive any stupid questions I may ask, but I do believe the only stupid question is the one that is never asked. I look forward to using this site and the knowledge of you experienced cruisers/sailors in my introduction and education about sailboats and sailing.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 17-07-2006, 14:10   #2
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Long Beach, CA
Posts: 829
Welcome, and take heart: I've already asked most of the stupid questions, so at least you won't be the first!.


s/y Elizabeth— Catalina 34 MkII
"Man must have just enough faith in himself to have adventures, and just enough doubt of himself to enjoy them." — G. K. Chesterfield
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Old 17-07-2006, 14:19   #3
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Vero Beach, Florida
Boat: Endeavour 37 Ketch "Capella"
Posts: 70

As the next newest forum member, allow me to say. "Welcome aboard!"

I learned how to sail pretty much the way you plan to. On race night, at the local yacht club, I stood on the end of the dock wearing boat shoes and a hopeful expression. There was almost always a boat that was short a required crewman per class rules. That was in the sixties and I have never looked back.

Lots of VERY knowledgeable people here. Most are glad to share information.

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Old 18-07-2006, 04:45   #4
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Join Date: May 2003
Location: New Bern, NC
Boat: Prout Manta 38' Catamaran - Sunspot Baby
Posts: 1,521
Images: 14
Welcome aboard!

Learning to sail is easy, really. All that time you spent on power boats is good experience, and any time in the water surfing, diving, etc. adds to your “feel” for the ocean. Coming and going in harbors and marinas, sail boats are usually just low HP power boats with a stick in the air. Your boat handling skills are directly applicable.

The expert sailors can get deep into theory of sail, when to adjust the halyard tension, out haul, back stay, etc. but for most cruisers sail trim is pretty simple.

You’ll get used to the deck heeling pretty quick and the lower cost fuel fills will be a welcome change.

Big boats are easier to sail than dinghies.

Again, welcome.

Sunspot Baby
She took my address and my name
Put my credit to shame
Sunspot Baby, sure had a real good time
Bob Seger
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Old 18-07-2006, 10:04   #5
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Kea'au, Big Island, Hawaii
Boat: Cascade, Sloop, 42 - "Casual"
Posts: 14,192
Aloha Dreams,
Welcome aboard. Hope you enjoy this forum as much as I have.
Yes, by all means learn sailing in dinghys without motors or engines. You'll be a lot more sensitive to wind, current, tides if you do.
My recommendation is that you find a fairly good used Sunfish sailboat. They've been making them for about 55 years and are proven trainers which are easy to rig and have you out on the water quickly. They also have quite a racing fleet. You can take a friend out with you on them as well.
Start Sailing Right! is an excellent book for new sailors. Not quite as involved as Sailing Illustrated by Royce but very good instructional quide.
Happy Sailing,
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Old 18-07-2006, 10:42   #6
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Arkansas/Florida
Boat: No sail boat, 25' Century Center Console power boat
Posts: 4
Thanks for all the good info and advice thus far. I really appreciate it and also find this site full of good advice from experienced sailors. I guess you can't get a better start than that. The ability to interact directly with those "in the know" civilly and for free really can't be beat. Glad I found this site.

The other day I found a Yahoo group for the local sailing club (mainly racers) and found the contact information for the B fleet captain. I will definitely be contacting him later this summer before they start their fall/winter race season and see if I can get on as crew for a boat. I suppose that's as good a way to start as any since I'm not really in the position to start cruising anytime soon. I think the racing would be fun to start and should offer a variety of weather/wind condition in which to learn sailing (as well as offer some outlet for the competitive spirit).

Definitely gonna get my own dinghy for next summer, researching that right now.

Thanks again to all those that take the time to interact on this site.

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