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Old 17-10-2014, 11:21   #31
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Inspired, yes, mentored, certainly, but taught?
Well... No formal lessons, of course. But they did start out by copying his glider designs and by studying his published works about gliders and how to fly them.

The real point, of course, being that even those who are "self taught" almost always begin by learning from others.
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Old 17-10-2014, 11:47   #32
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

I have yet to meet a sailor that knows it all. every sail and every crewing brings experience and more problems youve never seen before with it. To many variables and equations on this rock we call mother earth to experience everyone of them so I suggest this.
When you can sail your boat sail it. When it's on the hard crew for someone else. And if you get a chance to take a course then take it. Next week I finish my first course on safe boating but I had to take this ne to get to the next seamanship to get to navigation and radio which is the one I want to take.Stll I learned something every class.
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Old 17-10-2014, 11:58   #33
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

Both the school of hard knocks and a high quality sailing school will give you experience, and experience is what you need.

The difference between the two is that you'll survive the classes.
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Old 17-10-2014, 12:17   #34
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

I started out many years ago, thinking if I read Eric Hiscock, and Chapmans, took a power squadron course, and got a decent ocean boat, surely I'd manage. And I did. Later, after I'd gotten the boat from the Great Lakes to the Gulf of Mexico, and around the Caribbean, I got a license, and started to work with Outward Bound (teaching on their 30' open boats) and the Sea Education Association (teaching on their 100'+ schooners). I found out how much I didn't know, and how much more quickly I might have picked up what I did know if I had gone with some of those more formal learning opportunities. And like many self educated sailors, I had put more time and effort into the things that I liked best, and shortchanged some areas that just weren't as much fun. I then had to fill in gaps, like rules of the road, theory, engines, and weather - all important, but stuff my 'hard knocks' approach hadn't knocked into me yet. What I had saved was potentially thousands of dollars taking the courses I later wound up teaching, at the cost of getting a spotty education in lieu of a more balanced, comprehensive one. For a number of years now I've been teaching offshore voyaging for the Maryland School of sailing, in trips from the Chesapeake to and from Bermuda or the Virgins. 'Students' - mostly already boat owners - report thinking their money (lots of it) well spent, and that they finish the course better prepared to go cruising than they were. Lower cost alternatives - crew services, volunteering for delivery crews, etc are available, but more of a crapshoot as far as being secure in getting onto a well found, capably run vessel.
Like all free advice, take it for what it's worth.
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Old 17-10-2014, 12:34   #35
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

My suggestion : do both.

In my case, I did a basic ASA sailing course, then sailed my own dinghy for a couple of years, then did the higher level course, then used the sailing club to get some experience of skippering larger boats (24 to 27ft range). I thought this was a very successful (and enjoyable) path. The advanced course meant so much more when I had been sailing on my own.

I also did a couple of classroom-based courses in the winter when it was raining (navigation).

I believe that all experience is good. Classes and sailing on your own might be different, but they are both good.
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Old 17-10-2014, 23:31   #36
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

Each person has their own best way to get into sailing and learning. Some do best with sailing 101 to start, some jump onto a boat 30 minutes before the start of a race to be "ballast", some go out with friends and some just jump in with both feet and buy a boat to learn.
I jumped onto a 25 foot ultralight to be "ballast" with a master sailor/racer and did two full racing seasons every opportunity--during the week, weekends/long distance, etc. 3 years later I bought my first boat which I still have-a 40 footer and singlehand her in long distance races, doublehand across the Pacific, etc.
It gives me great joy to take others out for their 'first' sail and see their faces light up--especially kids/teens and help direct them to their best way to further learn sailing. Some still sail with me 10 years later--they have become very accomplished Laser, FJ or keel boat racers.
Most beginning courses do not prepare a person for how to deal with the unexpected--the school of hard knocks affords learning how to think and deal with the unexpected, even for the 'experts'.
Paid deliveries as a licensed master take me far and wide, but I'm still learning, and learning about the unexpected regardless of how much I work at 'anticipating' every thing.
:>
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Old 18-10-2014, 00:01   #37
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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I'm flabbergasted!
Sailing gentlemen, is more than just learning how to steer a boat and trim the sails.
Ceolregs anyone? Or do they not matter? Or do you learn them by bumping into other boats? (don't worry that'll buff right out)
Buoys? Yeah they're in the way but I try not to hit them?
Day and night signals on ships? (well I just get out of the way) Try that in a crowded lane
Navigation? Who needs to be able to read a chart - I just put my little thingy on the chartplotter on where I want to go and follow the line?
Are you all serious?
I'm not sure where your headed with this comment

Are you for sailing schools or against, or a combination of both ?
I've not seen anyone post suggesting these things are not important.

And at least here, and in most states of Australia these 'basics' are part of a speed boat license which is what is required to operate any boat with an engine of significance. But the question was not about the basics, it was about 'sailing'
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Old 18-10-2014, 00:12   #38
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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And at least here, and in most states of Australia these 'basics' are part of a speed boat license which is what is required to operate any boat with an engine of significance.
Minor thread drift.... in Victoria you need a boat driver's licence to operate any boat with an engine....and also any boat with an engine must be licenced...you also need a licence to fish in the sea....

And unlike Tas all of them are renewable annually. Work the cost of that out for a family of four with a yacht, a tender and maybe a jetski or two....

Funny thing is there is no provision for practical training... having never seen the sea you can go and sit the 'test'... then go and buy something with 2 x 300 hp on the back and away you go.....

Its one of the reasons I buggered off to South America...

Rant over... carry on chaps...
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Old 18-10-2014, 00:18   #39
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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I have yet to meet a sailor that knows it all..
You might not have met them, but, I bet you have read their posts.

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Old 18-10-2014, 00:22   #40
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Minor thread drift.... in Victoria you need a boat driver's licence to operate any boat with an engine....and also any boat with an engine must be licenced...you also need a licence to fish in the sea....

And unlike Tas all of them are renewable annually. Work the cost of that out for a family of four with a yacht, a tender and maybe a jetski or two....

Funny thing is there is no provision for practical training... having never seen the sea you can go and sit the 'test'... then go and buy something with 2 x 300 hp on the back and away you go.....

Its one of the reasons I buggered off to South America...

Rant over... carry on chaps...
Hell that's strict!
I thought all the states were trying to standardize .

In Tassie, we don't have to register a tender to a larger vessel at all.
Outboards smaller than 6hp I think you don't have to have a license for at all.
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Old 18-10-2014, 00:26   #41
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Hell that's strict!
I thought all the states were trying to standardize .

In Tassie, we don't have to register a tender to a larger vessel at all.
Outboards smaller than 6hp I think you don't have to have a license for at all.
5hp in NSW and 4hp in Queensland and no license or registration.

4hp motor stickers are a good seller.

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Old 18-10-2014, 00:35   #42
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Hell that's strict!
I thought all the states were trying to standardize .

In Tassie, we don't have to register a tender to a larger vessel at all.
Outboards smaller than 6hp I think you don't have to have a license for at all.
My mistake, it's 4hp in Tasmania. And it looks like nowadays you do a practical course of four hours to get your license and then your okay to go purchase that 80foot 500hp world cruiser. But whilst your aloud to buy a vhf and hf to have on the boat you can't use them without a further certificate.
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Old 18-10-2014, 01:09   #43
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Originally Posted by Rustic Charm View Post
My mistake, it's 4hp in Tasmania. And it looks like nowadays you do a practical course of four hours to get your license and then your okay to go purchase that 80foot 500hp world cruiser. But whilst your aloud to buy a vhf and hf to have on the boat you can't use them without a further certificate.
I believe they have standardised survey requirements for charter boats and stuff and its all under AMSA rather than state marine boards now... maybe they are going the same way with drivers' licences.

Dunno, I buggered orf towards 'points east' 12 years ago.....

Back on track... as mentioned previously I am self taught re actual sailing... probably why I am such a crap sailor of the 'point in the general direction and pull on bits of string until sails stop flapping and boat starts moving' type.....
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Old 18-10-2014, 01:17   #44
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

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Back on track... as mentioned previously I am self taught re actual sailing... probably why I am such a crap sailor of the 'point in the general direction and pull on bits of string until sails stop flapping and boat starts moving' type.....
Yea, that's how I've been doing it. The navigation and weather I picked up in both my coxswain courses from years ago and also some recreational flying.
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Old 18-10-2014, 04:32   #45
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Re: Sailing school or school of hard knocks

Crewing on other peoples race boats, cruising on other peoples cruising boats and reading.

Paying for a three day course what a joke, if you have money to throw away go for it. I meet people with the "certificate" after a three day course that says they can skipper a boat competently.... hilarious. Experience and competence doesn't happen overnight.



Self taught is just kidding yourself.
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