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Old 09-05-2012, 12:04   #31
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

Sweet, thanks deck officer. I was thinking of saying, 'might as well keep the dog on watch for what it's worth' as to the legalities of solo sailing! Do you use AIS on your boat and what sort of yacht do you prefer to sail, just out of interest.

As to the SSSSM, doesn't sound like my cup of tea. Involving peoples emotions in that way and me asking for info on SOLO-sailing... Well..!
I am solo at heart... Just a sailor rolling with the birds!!
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Old 09-05-2012, 12:37   #32
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

There are a number of women out there cruising solo. I would recommend a boat in the 30-34 foot range, could be smaller, but not much larger. I've a older "mature" 34' boat with simple sail plan that makes it easy to sail and dock by myself. A ketch like zee's would be an option too... Smaller sail areas are your friend in a blow..

My boat has a shorter (older CCA) sail plan, with a lower freeboard, that makes it easy hopping onto the dock to tie up. I keep my boat systems simple, so either I can repair them, or work around it should something fail.

AIS works well, though it will not spot smaller boats (fishing boats, etc) or warships/coasties.

So go for it!!
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Old 09-05-2012, 12:56   #33
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Originally Posted by Xantusiidae View Post
Hey everyone! I am a New Zealander looking for some advice on solo sailing offshore. I know there would be different views on a woman sailing as opposed to a guy, myself being the former! My family and I have had a few years cruising offshore- mostly to the islands and back but we have recently flown over to the States as we have a new yacht here. So a new patch of water, always fun.
I'm just looking for some advice on choosing a yacht and affording to buy/travel in it- when I am a bit older!
Xantus,

Recently there was this Dutch girl of about 15 years old who went around the world SOLO ... why wouldn't you do it (or even being able to do it) ?

I've sailed the Atlantic single handed several times, although I had my share of problems I will do it again somewhere in the future !

Live your dream and enjoy it !

Greetz from the tropIX
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Old 09-05-2012, 13:32   #34
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Originally Posted by Xantusiidae View Post
Sweet, thanks deck officer. I was thinking of saying, 'might as well keep the dog on watch for what it's worth' as to the legalities of solo sailing! Do you use AIS on your boat and what sort of yacht do you prefer to sail, just out of interest.

As to the SSSSM, doesn't sound like my cup of tea. Involving peoples emotions in that way and me asking for info on SOLO-sailing... Well..!
I am solo at heart... Just a sailor rolling with the birds!!
Don't go by the name, SSSM, it gives it a bad rap. I'm like you, just enjoy solo sailing. Most the conversation on that group just deals with solo sailing, like Margo toughing it out at Shelter Bay marina in Colon, Panama, waiting for the rebuild of her engine and zeehag at a nice new marina in Mexico, kicking back.

sailorchic34 gives good advice. My old boat that I have all my solo miles on was an ex-race boat, a Cal 40. I'm sure you could handle it, sails aren't that big. Next time out I'm looking at a cat, Catana maybe, 41'~43'. Last boat was not mine and for work, an ugly 32,000 ton drill ship (rig).
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Old 09-05-2012, 14:02   #35
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Don't go by the name, SSSM, it gives it a bad rap. I'm like you, just enjoy solo sailing. Most the conversation on that group just deals with solo sailing, like Margo toughing it out at Shelter Bay marina in Colon, Panama, waiting for the rebuild of her engine and zeehag at a nice new marina in Mexico, kicking back.

sailorchic34 gives good advice. My old boat that I have all my solo miles on was an ex-race boat, a Cal 40. I'm sure you could handle it, sails aren't that big. Next time out I'm looking at a cat, Catana maybe, 41'~43'. Last boat was not mine and for work, an ugly 32,000 ton drill ship (rig).
Deckofficer, you LEGEND! That rig is HUGE
I was actually going to go for a Cal- I think it was a 33, loved the boat. A great sailor too! I'm keen on a racer cruiser (don't know if you call it another name) so that pretty much fits the bill. Don't think I would go up to a 40'.

and yes, sailorchic34- was just going to say- love your message! I had heard that AIS works for yachts too- giving the name and it's nationality but I could be wrong?!

basile, HI! Cool message but I'm not too keen breaking any records- much rather have freedom in my own terms and certainly NOT PUBLIC- I would be a sitting duck! :P
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Old 09-05-2012, 14:18   #36
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Deckofficer, you LEGEND! That rig is HUGE
I was actually going to go for a Cal- I think it was a 33, loved the boat. A great sailor too! I'm keen on a racer cruiser (don't know if you call it another name) so that pretty much fits the bill. Don't think I would go up to a 40'.

and yes, sailorchic34- was just going to say- love your message! I had heard that AIS works for yachts too- giving the name and it's nationality but I could be wrong?!

basile, HI! Cool message but I'm not too keen breaking any records- much rather have freedom in my own terms and certainly NOT PUBLIC- I would be a sitting duck! :P
Not huge, but most ugly.


But when I posted some of the crew, the ladies sure liked this guy.


I just don't understand it, this guy is the "catch of the day" lol
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Old 09-05-2012, 15:09   #37
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

HA! Very funny. I think my generations tastes are somewhat different ... I know a young guy who worked as a diver for a rig, said it was horrible! So I'll take your word for it being 'most ugly'!
Where do you sail to on your Cal and any woes (that you would care to place here) with having one? Say, does she sail well in light winds? Also, a decent experience going on down here in 'sunny' Miami. We currently have 40kts wind and a good sized lightning storm above our heads... Nice to be in a boat at the mo
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Old 09-05-2012, 15:30   #38
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

One semi major passage on the Cal, Long Beach to Muluge, Mexico. First time offshore, first time solo passage, had the time of my life. Had just bought it and matched the purchase price with cruising goodies. Was constantly patting myself on the back the entire downwind run, thinking I was the proud owner of the fastest boat around. Then in Isle de Conception around the Sanispac anchorage met a nice family sailing on their Santa Cruz 50. Went for some fun day sails with them, a Prout Snowgoose, and a Nor'sea 27. My image of my boat being fast disappeared, as the SC50 was much faster on all points.

No problems, it is a fast downwind boat. Had my HAM SSB and there were Bridge (the card game) players in the anchorage, to pass the time. Snorkeling in those clear waters was excellent, as this is a bay within a bay. So far removed from tourist areas that the local town of Muluge and cruisers were just one happy social group.
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Old 09-05-2012, 15:38   #39
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

I would certainly consider using a good roller furling rig. I would be far more concerned about falling overboard than getting run down. I have solo commercial fished, sailed and just about everything else, most days I prefer it. When I was single the smallest mono that I considered for solo was 42', I was looking at a long term live aboard situation. As luck would have it, I married my soul mate at the tender age of 48 and opted up to a 53' vessel, with all roller furling and I have sailed it solo on an 800 nm crossing of the gulf of Alaska, the only other vessel I saw offshore was a trawler on my last day in the open sea. Not to start a Cat/mono debate, I also looked at the Wharram cats, which might be a good choice, with all the different plans out there you could build your own and know it inside and out. One book I read that fired my imagination about building my own boat was "From a Bare Hull" by Fenc Mate, This has been well over 20 years ago so I don't know if it is even in print still. It would be one way to own a larger vessel with out the initial capital outlay. There are some of these project vessels out there that can be had a pretty good price.
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Old 09-05-2012, 16:36   #40
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

Deckhand, sounds like an awesome yacht! I started out on a 'slug of a yacht' so any ideas of being fast were never there! But I HAVE clocked 11kts in 13kts of wind in our peterson cutter- which was epic until I realized I couldn't slow down
yeah, I like SSB's... When they work! On our last yacht we had the 'basket affect', which you can google. It caused us to be blocked from sending out our signal- nightmare.

captain58sailin;

would love to hear about your sailing in Alaska. I have a friend who works up there for fishing and does cruising too, he says it is the most incredible place. Well, for various reasons I would want a smaller yacht. One of the main ones being; navigation- It is harder to handle a larger yacht under sail, from my experience! Also, the cost of it far more than a smaller one: Fuel, marinas, maintenance, things like that- which isn't what I want to drain my wallet! I'm not bothered about a cat or mono but I have only had exp on mono's so I cannot comment as to a cat! I will hunt down the book you recommended all the same. Cheers!
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Old 09-05-2012, 16:37   #41
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

sorry, basket EFFECT
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Old 09-05-2012, 16:49   #42
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Originally Posted by Xantusiidae View Post
Hey everyone! I am a New Zealander looking for some advice on solo sailing offshore. I know there would be different views on a woman sailing as opposed to a guy, myself being the former! My family and I have had a few years cruising offshore- mostly to the islands and back but we have recently flown over to the States as we have a new yacht here. So a new patch of water, always fun.
I'm just looking for some advice on choosing a yacht and affording to buy/travel in it- when I am a bit older!
I don't see any fundamental differences between a male and a female sailor, solo or otherwise - on some things a female is likely to have to substitute brute force and ignorance for some smarts - but that not always a disadvantage! But even that not neccessarily so, male sailors come in all shapes and sizes (and ages!) of physical ability - same as females.

The legalities? my reading is that going solo is not illegal. The consequences could become legal trouble - but in my book that is two very different things. Like onshore, if a fella in a Wig don't say you are guilty then you are not. and the best defence against that is not being there. 2 ways of doing that, the first is not to do anything that might go wrong - the second is not to get your name attached to anything that might warrant you being there .

The choosing a yacht and affording to buy and travel in it is the far bigger challenge. On that I can only echo the suggestion to buy the smallest and cheapest you are comfortable with (to both sail offshore and live on - IMO equally important, albeit for differing reasons). Will involve compromises - but that is boats for ya. They all require those......even those 50 foot plus and costing $500k.

IMO having money in the kitty is worth "sacrificing" a few nice to haves / wishlist items, but many of those choices are each to there own. Nothing gets as old real quick than lurching from one financial crisis to another, whether afloat or onshore - some things are the same.

On the money side really only 2 ways to go (albeit some overlap), save up and go (and come back when money runs out, or hope to be dead by then!) downside is that likely won't still be so young when you head off. The other is to be good at making money on the hoof (and not simply boat related stuff), a skill that can be learned - but getting truly comfortable outside a certain income (both the amount and it being regular) is something that not all can get happy with.

Some folks are better than others at identifying and then snaffling opportuntities as they go along in life, and rather than a PITA also consider the uncertainty as part of the fun (albeit life always more fun with some cash in the bank / food in the fridge! to smooth the bumps).

Which are you? you probably know that already by your "career" / life choices to date. For me I like starting the year knowing I could earn a million pounds a month (even though I know I probably won't!) - rather than knowing the most I will get is only XXX (no matter how much that "only" is - and the fact that it could well be more than I will make myself!). Also depends on how you value your time not spent working for "da man".....afloat or onshore some things are the same.

Bon voyage .
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Old 09-05-2012, 17:34   #43
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

Solo can be far safer! (sometimes)

I recently finished my Yachtmaster although I have several years of casual offshore sailing before that. I have only sailed solo on coastal hops, but even on those I have practiced getting short sleeps because I will soon need to be able to do it for longer trips.

What amuses me is that most of the sailing school trainers have a racing background and the courses are structured as though every boat will have a crew of at leats six. This may be the theroretical ideal but in practical terms has no basis in reality for the cruising sailor. The Yachtmaster trainers talk as though everyone has enough crew to do a 4-on / 8-off watch system and that any less would be totally irresponsible. Until I got the piece of paper I dared not mention that I had actually single handed my boat. However, on both the training courses and on other private vessels I have observed that most watch keepers do not actually keep a good watch anyway. Several times I have caught watchkeepers napping on private yachts and in one instance when on a training yacht I came up for my watch, we were closing on a fishing vessel at 500m which was not observed either by the Yachtmaster instructor or his student. I have less confidence in random crew than I have in radar alarms & AIS and these are available to the single handers. The single hander with such equipment does not have to burden himself with crew management. With careful planning I believe that the single hander is as safe as most crewed yachts and infinitely safer than a 55' Maritimo at 20 knots on autoplilot.
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Old 09-05-2012, 18:24   #44
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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Money talks.

Wait 'til the first accident that claims a life and the sponsors are sued, then see if there is another race.
"A significant proportion of the (Vendee Globe) entrants usually retire, and in the 1996-1997 race Canadian Gerry Roufs was lost at sea."

(source: wiki)

Moreover, in other solo races more sailors were lost (e.g. MiniTransat).

Part of the explanation is that these races are organized by the French, who are the best sailors in the world, who have the best boats in the world and maybe most importantly: who still remember what Liberte! means.

C'est la vie.


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Old 09-05-2012, 18:42   #45
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Re: solo sailing... A good idea?

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I don't see any fundamental differences between a male and a female sailor, solo or otherwise (...)
Have you tried getting a little bit closer? Taking off those shades of yours?

;-) jokes' end

Actually, 1+!

I too think a solo sailor is a solo sailor ... and especially so while sailing.

If we see more solo men sailing then this is probably entirely due to our socio-economic structures. He is out, solo sailing, she is tending his magnanimously donated flock.

A solo person in a criminal country is another thing. Avoid. But then again: even if you are a 6' tall and extremely fit guy (doh: simply put - someone like me!) - then, STILL, avoid!

So I say go sailing and whether you are a guy or a girl or anything in between, you will find like-minded sailors along your way.

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