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Old 26-05-2015, 09:08   #1
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Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Hi there!
I'm a newbie to the forum, and looking for any pearls of wisdom from you to help my wife and I get ready to become full time cruisers in 7-8 years.
Here's our plan and what we're doing:
-Right now we've got kids at home, and in full career/family mode and live 8 hours to the nearest ocean or decent size lake (live in AZ), so we don't have many opportunities to practice sailing. In the past year we took ASA 101 together, then did a live aboard 103/104 in the Keys with our teenage kids (we loved it!!!!).
-I'm browsing this forum for info
-I'm listening to audio lessons for ASA 101/103/104 (downloaded from iTunes) while I commute to work as a review.
-Plan to bareboat somewhere (Catalina island?) a few times.
-Reading The Voyager's Handbook for additional info.
-Prepping finances for retirement and cruising.
-Thinking of catchy boat names

We have had little to no experience until last year, so I feel like I'm racing against the clock to learn as much as I can while we are still in our 40's.

Any other suggestions? Thanks!
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Old 26-05-2015, 10:35   #2
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Welcome aboard! Sounds like a great plan. Keep taking advantage of any opportunites you can. Happy cruising!
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Old 26-05-2015, 11:35   #3
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Welcome and greetings from SW Florida. Relax, you have a good plan.
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Old 26-05-2015, 13:11   #4
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Welcome. I suggest you charter as often as possible during your vacations over the next 7-8 years of your plan, and go boat shopping so you know what you like and don't like. There's lots you can do on the internet, reading, researching and talking with others.
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Old 26-05-2015, 21:07   #5
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Quote:
Originally Posted by pvermilyea View Post
Hi there!
I'm a newbie to the forum, and looking for any pearls of wisdom from you to help my wife and I get ready to become full time cruisers in 7-8 years.
Here's our plan and what we're doing:
-Right now we've got kids at home, and in full career/family mode and live 8 hours to the nearest ocean or decent size lake (live in AZ), so we don't have many opportunities to practice sailing. In the past year we took ASA 101 together, then did a live aboard 103/104 in the Keys with our teenage kids (we loved it!!!!).
-I'm browsing this forum for info
-I'm listening to audio lessons for ASA 101/103/104 (downloaded from iTunes) while I commute to work as a review.
-Plan to bareboat somewhere (Catalina island?) a few times.
-Reading The Voyager's Handbook for additional info.
-Prepping finances for retirement and cruising.
-Thinking of catchy boat names

We have had little to no experience until last year, so I feel like I'm racing against the clock to learn as much as I can while we are still in our 40's.

Any other suggestions? Thanks!
Howdy and Welcome Aboard the Forum!

I know that feeling of "against the clock." There is a lot to learn. Luckily there are some great resources available now, like this forum site. There is MUCH information here in countless comments and threads.

I noticed you mentioned the iTunes sailing lessons. Would you please tell us something more about that. I have not seen that before, and might want to recommend it to others in future tips.

I will post some of my my favorite tips down below. below. They may not be what you expect, but I believe they will help you in the near term and in the long run if you intend to spend much time here on this forum and if you wish to gain the most from the knowledge available and shared here etc.

Good luck on your sailing adventures and have fun!

Steady
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A Few of my Favorite Tips for New Members to this Forum:

Since you are new to this forum, let me mention a few things you might miss but that could help you more enjoy your time here:

Forums 101 - Posting, Accounts, Basics

There are also some "social groups" that are more focused on special interests, and as I saw, they can be fun for their members. I am not a member of those groups, but you should be able to find them if you do some exploring of the forum website, look for "groups."

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My POV: Profiles Help People Relate

Since a site like this is all about "sharing," the more sharing you and others do, the more interesting, fun, and potentially helpful this site becomes for all. It is what makes it a nice, more friendly, social community too.

I am an unofficial advocate for posting "About Me" information in a member's forum Profile "About Me" tab or page or section. You can also post photos (e.g. of your boat, etc.) and a description of your sailing goals or experiences or boat projects. I also think it is a good idea to include in your profile where you are located (country, region) and your type of boat if you own one now or had a boat in the past. If you did not put much information in your profile initially when you signed up as a member, you can edit it later and add more.

As I see it, the "About Me" tab (page) within your forum profile is the most helpful part of the profile. Many members will look at it, so it is a good idea to put something in there early in your membership here.

The About Me page/tab is always instantly accessible by any member in seconds. You may click on a member's name (or avatar) to see their public profile and through that page you can also send them private messages if you wish. You can look at my profile for one example, and see I have written something in the About Me tab, and also posted some photos in an album (in this case showing my other passion; I am an artist and I am passionate about painting sailboats).

If you have posted relevant information in your "Meet & Greet" post, simply copy some of that to you profile "About Me" page, because the "Meet & Greet" post will soon disappear into the archives in a matter of days.

I also see the About Me tab/page as a good place to post any long-term requests you might have. For example, I am an artist who likes to paint sailboats. So I have an "evergreen" long-term request or appeal asking that any sailor who has taken a photo or snapshot of a traditional or special sailboat, to please contact me via a Private Message (PM) and let me see their photos of those boats, as I am always looking for new models (reference photos) to use in future paintings I might make. Other sailors may have other long-term requests (e.g. looking for some special boat part, looking to connect with owners of a type of boat, looking for information about their boat model). The About Me page is a good place to keep that long-term request visible, especially as owners of your brand of boat may look there.

I encourage you to complete the profile early in your membership in the forum, so those people who would like to know something about a new member can learn. I did not post a complete profile (only due to my ignorance about that feature of the site), until after I noticed that my empty profile page had already had 1,000 views by forum members. This meant I missed sharing information with those 1,000 folks who had some level of interest in who I am. I missed the chance to connect with others who have more shared interests, and I might have missed some possible friendships too. I was completely surprised at how many people look at member profiles, so it really is used and viewed and can be a good way of sharing information and connecting and relating. I firmly believe it can help a member (individual or couple) and a community in many ways.

You can maintain your privacy or use a pseudonym or "screen name" as you wish. Not everyone does post any written "bio" or even a photo of themselves. Some people are shy or reserved. I respect that too. But, I have seen the positive benefits of sharing some information and believe it is the best thing to do in most cases.

I also encourage the use of a photo (e.g. a "headshot") of the sailor (or couple) as the avatar. I think it adds to the human feeling of an online community to see a face and know a little about that person, and makes it more likely that people are treated with respect and courtesy. I have seen several members change their avatar from a generic one (e.g. a cartoon) to a personal one (a human face) and was pleased to see the face of the real person. Our human brains are wired to remember faces, it is natural. Later, it becomes nice to see the real human face of a friend, even if you have never met them in person.

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Old 26-05-2015, 21:51   #6
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

If you are planning to come out to So Cal chartering to cruise around, Catalina is a good choice but you'll need to take some kind of test so they know they'll get their boat back. I'd recommend hiring a skipper to go out with you a couple times to help show you the ropes. Just one trip with a knowledgeable skipper could be worth a hundred classes. If you are coming to the Channel Islands area I know of two excellent skippers. Chartering out of Channel Islands Harbor or Santa Barbara and going out into the Santa Barbara channel can get you a wide variety of conditions to practice in, in a relatively short distance, to develop skills you'll use everywhere. Not a bad place for a family vacation too, and about a 9 hour drive from Flag. Welcome and good luck!
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Old 27-05-2015, 04:44   #7
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, pvermilyea.
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Old 27-05-2015, 06:59   #8
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Thanks for the info! This is very helpful. Don, if you could send me the names that would be great.
I do sometimes feel a little underprepared for taking a boat out myself even after completing 3 ASA classes. But at some point I'll just have to wing it. It's finding the right balance between safety and pushing myself out of my comfort zone that can be tricky.
The audio ASA prep courses I'm listening to are found on iTunes by just searching for "learn to sail" or the link below. The link is for the 103, but from there you can find the other courses he recorded. I find it helpful, especially since I don't have much time for sitting and reading but do spend hours driving every week. . If you think I should let others know about it elsewhere on CF let me know.

Sailing! Learn to Sail: Basic Coastal Cruising; Lessons for the ASA 103 Exam, Vol. 1 Of 2 by Franz Amussen
https://itun.es/us/94ZN5




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Old 27-05-2015, 08:38   #9
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Re: Newbie to Forum Looking for Pearls of Wisdom to Become Cruiser

Thank you all for the responses. That's helpful! Don, if you can pass along the suggestions for captains, I'd appreciate that. Even after 3 courses, I sometimes feel a little underprepared to take a boat out off the CA coast having never sailed in the open ocean on my own. But there's a fine balance between being overly cautious and getting out of my comfort zone to force myself to learn.
Steady- For the audio sailing lessons I am listening to, you can search the iTunes store for "learn to sail", or go to Sailing in the Mediterranean. The author does a pretty nice job, but of course it doesn't replace actual time on the water. Since I don't have much time for reading books or sailing on the water quite yet, this is the next best thing.
Let me know if there is some other place on the forum people might want to know about this.
https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/sa...ic/id934925737
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