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Old 14-05-2010, 12:43   #1
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Retired Boatowner-Wannabe Living on St. Croix

Hello CF members,
My wife and I retired 2 1/2 yrs ago and now live 6 mo/yr on St. Croix. Part of my - and hopefully someday our - dream is to own a sailboat so that we can cruise the Caribbean. We've joined the local yacht club, are getting to know more members, and hope to learn from their experiences.
Our sailboat budget is $100,000.
As to experience - we've bare-boat chartered three times in 23 yrs; own a sunfish, I recently took a 3 day refresher course on a Rainbow 24, and crewed at a regatta with a member of the yacht club.
I've heard good things about cats and interested in learning more, but I've never sailed on one. I am somewhat concerned that cats may be out of my price range.
I suspect this is not the proper forum to start gathering information, but so far in my meanderings around the website I haven't found the right one, so any help in that regard is appreciated.
More to say, but I'll save that for the appropriate thread.
This looks like a great organization and I look forward to being a member.
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Old 14-05-2010, 12:58   #2
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Welcome to the forum. Depending on your needs, how much room you want, how far you want to go, how many bells and whistles you want, etc, $100K should get you going in the boat business. Don't forget to budget a good percentage for upgrades, repairs, replacements and ongoing maintenance.

On the cat vs monohull question, you will find a number of threads on that issue. The discussions can be passionate although I don't think any blood has been spilled so far.

You are correct that in general you will find a longer monohull for the same money that you would for a cat. But you should also think about the total square footage as well as the length of the boat. The beam of the cat does give you more real estate for the same length.

I find the ideas of cats intriguing myself but decided I could not afford one that would have what I wanted so got a monohull. Another thing that decided me was the motion of the cats. They do sail level compared to a monohull but the lighter displacement and buoyancy in certain sea conditions can give a jerky motion that I personally do not like.
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Old 14-05-2010, 12:58   #3
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100K will buy a nice boat but plan on doing some unplanned improvements etc. if you need some insurance you better check that cost as well as dockage and storage. water is deep in your neck of the woods so no worries about draft. i would think 35 feet would be a good size for the virgin islands. and you know about the trade winds. go for it and good luck
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Old 14-05-2010, 13:18   #4
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Thanks for the quick welcoming replies and the encouragement! Already I'm feeling that I'm not on a mission impossible. I am concerned about unplanned repairs, upgrades and ongoing expenses and have not yet established an ongoing budget for upkeep. Your "heads ups" in that regard are appreciated, I'll start with a rough budget list and work to refine it.
Thanks again.
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Old 14-05-2010, 15:15   #5
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Welcome to the forum and whatever boat you choose go for it.
I bought a Geminii 30 ft for 68 or 69,000 a few years back, she needed new cushoins and a headliner but other than that she was good to go. So what I am trying to say is yes you can find a cat under 100 and IMHO it would be perfect for the caribbean. Have fun on your boat shopping adventure.
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Old 14-05-2010, 15:55   #6
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Check out the westsails they are heavily built great heavy weather sailer's lots of usable space and priced within reason also a very forgiving boat
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Old 15-05-2010, 10:21   #7
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Welcome to the forum. Your budget will have you looking at smaller & older cats, but that may be okay depending on your cruising plans.

At his point, it might be better to focus on what sort of cruising (marina-hopping vs. anchoring out; desire to do long passages vs. short hops, etc) you would like to do and then try to find a boat that will fit with those plans.

Fair Winds,
Mike
~currently in St. Thomas (heading for St. Croix YC in 7 - 10 days)
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Old 16-05-2010, 07:42   #8
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Thanks to all for your welcoming remarks and good advice! After a few days I plan to start a new thread in a different forum with more specific questions. In the mean time I'll continue to poke around CF to see what information I can gather.
Mike, if I see you on St. Croix perhaps we can have a beer together.
Best regards,
Peter
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Old 16-05-2010, 09:36   #9
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FYI about long term cruising

[QUOTE=Peterstxmt;452377]Hello CF members,
My wife and I retired 2 1/2 yrs ago and now live 6 mo/yr on St. Croix. Part of my - and hopefully someday our - dream is to own a sailboat so that we can cruise the Caribbean. We've joined the local yacht club, are getting to know more members, and hope to learn from their experiences.
Our sailboat budget is $100,000.
As to experience - we've bare-boat chartered three times in 23 yrs; own a sunfish, I recently took a 3 day refresher course on a Rainbow 24, and crewed at a regatta with a member of the yacht club.
I've heard good things about cats and interested in learning more, but I've never sailed on one. I am somewhat concerned that cats may be out of my price range..

FYI, Some other points to consider.
You could have many years of fantastic sailing vacations to any place in the world for $100,000.00. You could lease a boat in several far away places and when done get on the plane and go home with out the concern about maintenance, thief-loss problems, and medical problems. According to insurance reporting the average time a person sailboat cruises is twenty four months. Of that, four months is actually cruising the rest is stopped somewhere along the route. [[That is, they quit cruising on the third year]] The single screw trawler has the longest ownership cruising record. For these special breed of cruisers itís over six years. But the reason is obvious when the list is complied. Then the person stay docked and never move again using every excuse you can imagine or their health destroyed [ like my joints hurt and Iím getting old] and eventually sell a boat that was too much to handle in the first place and is worn and torn by time. Contrary to popular belief, dockage is very expensive [that is for what you getting for your money] and staying on the hook is also expensive and requires a lot of maintenance. Those tucked away places are filled with dreams gone badly because money and health changed. That is not to say a person of late retirement can not do it, the question is why go through all that aggravation when at retirement age there are better ways to spend the money and enjoy places and time. Recently I sold my sailboat to someone that had that same dream. He told me his cruising dreams to St Croix. I tried to explain the idiocies of the cruiser-lifestyle. It is truly a life/love relationship and not a cutesy adventure from a TV show. But he bought the boat anyway. I do wish him the best.
If you like I will explain about fresh water problems. I suggest you read two accounts first. One called Micro cruising by Dave and Mindy and one called Sailing to Hawaii Ė First attempt. Each one shows completely different concepts and solutions. Not saying you would do the same thing but each person is different. And keep in mind the three rules of cruising.
Now my other sailboat is sold I am now searching for a different type of sailboat myself with my eye on returning to Hawaii, It will be my twelfth sailboat, I am 67 years old.
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Old 16-05-2010, 09:41   #10
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Hi Peter, good to see you here! Good luck in your boat search.
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Old 17-05-2010, 10:07   #11
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Hi Mike,
I lve in St. Croix and this past February my wife and I bought a ondo in Schooner Bay and put our Idylle 15.5 Cayenne III up for sale. She is in Nanny Cay in Tortola for much more thanyour budget. However there are at this time 2 Gulfstar 50's well within your price range. One is a a mooring in the outer harbor and the other at the end of the dock by Angry Nates. Another Mike bought Vixen II from Rob Jones at Jones Maritime. We lived there for many years and for our 51 footer including water and electricity with two a/c units, our monthly bill was $650. We went south during the hurricane season. e-mail me at:

cayennita <at> hotmail <dot> com

for more help. Now we are CLODS (Cruisers Living On Dirt).
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Old 17-05-2010, 12:06   #12
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Quote:
I lve in St. Croix and this past February my wife and I bought a ondo in Schooner Bay
Aye Schooner Bay.
Been there many times using a friend's condo.

Thought about buying a place there.

Which one did you get and how many are on the market, and what is the prices doing..? Going up or down or sideways..?

PM me.

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Old 17-05-2010, 12:28   #13
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We bought the 3 bedroom unit on Courageous that is closest to the pool. You know how those buildings have an upper bedroom in the corner units. We wanted the west facing harbor view. The unit actually dropped 85K from the year before. The lower buildings are asking around 200K. One in our building closed lat month at 225K down 30K. Look up ReMax in St. Croix or Google Schooner Bay. There might be around 4-5 more. We only have two steps to the front door from the parking area right in front.
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Old 17-05-2010, 12:37   #14
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We bought the 3 bedroom unit on Courageous that is closest to the pool.
Aye, that is probably the one I stayed many times the last 14 years..

Thought about bying it, but prices was still high.

(Bubble ready to burst)

Been buying bargain priced real estate here in Fort Lauderdale instead.

Still looking at St. Croix, but not ready right now.

Lived on a boat there in the 80s, now my friends have either died or moved off the island.

Go diving the wall off Salt River once or twice a year, still have my dive gear in Gallows Bay...Will stop and say hello next time...
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Old 20-05-2010, 08:16   #15
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[QUOTE=solosailormike;453157]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Peterstxmt View Post
Hello CF members,
My wife and I retired 2 1/2 yrs ago and now live 6 mo/yr on St. Croix. Part of my - and hopefully someday our - dream is to own a sailboat so that we can cruise the Caribbean. We've joined the local yacht club, are getting to know more members, and hope to learn from their experiences.
Our sailboat budget is $100,000.
As to experience - we've bare-boat chartered three times in 23 yrs; own a sunfish, I recently took a 3 day refresher course on a Rainbow 24, and crewed at a regatta with a member of the yacht club.
I've heard good things about cats and interested in learning more, but I've never sailed on one. I am somewhat concerned that cats may be out of my price range..

FYI, Some other points to consider.
You could have many years of fantastic sailing vacations to any place in the world for $100,000.00. You could lease a boat in several far away places and when done get on the plane and go home with out the concern about maintenance, thief-loss problems, and medical problems. According to insurance reporting the average time a person sailboat cruises is twenty four months. Of that, four months is actually cruising the rest is stopped somewhere along the route. [[That is, they quit cruising on the third year]] The single screw trawler has the longest ownership cruising record. For these special breed of cruisers itís over six years. But the reason is obvious when the list is complied. Then the person stay docked and never move again using every excuse you can imagine or their health destroyed [ like my joints hurt and Iím getting old] and eventually sell a boat that was too much to handle in the first place and is worn and torn by time. Contrary to popular belief, dockage is very expensive [that is for what you getting for your money] and staying on the hook is also expensive and requires a lot of maintenance. Those tucked away places are filled with dreams gone badly because money and health changed. That is not to say a person of late retirement can not do it, the question is why go through all that aggravation when at retirement age there are better ways to spend the money and enjoy places and time. Recently I sold my sailboat to someone that had that same dream. He told me his cruising dreams to St Croix. I tried to explain the idiocies of the cruiser-lifestyle. It is truly a life/love relationship and not a cutesy adventure from a TV show. But he bought the boat anyway. I do wish him the best.
If you like I will explain about fresh water problems. I suggest you read two accounts first. One called Micro cruising by Dave and Mindy and one called Sailing to Hawaii Ė First attempt. Each one shows completely different concepts and solutions. Not saying you would do the same thing but each person is different. And keep in mind the three rules of cruising.
Now my other sailboat is sold I am now searching for a different type of sailboat myself with my eye on returning to Hawaii, It will be my twelfth sailboat, I am 67 years old.
Thanks SolosailorMike. You raise good points that we think about, too. While we're still putting together numbers I suspect that on a financial basis it would be hard to justify purchasing a boat. The attraction is having your own boat available whenever you want it, able to modify it, don't have to plan in advance .. more emotional than rational. It's like a fisherman (I'm not) - why do they spend so much time and money fishing when it is so much cheaper, easier and faster to buy a fish at the local market? In any case we're still exploring our options - I'd put the odds right now at about 60 - 40. Thanks for your thoughts.
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