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Salja03 27-04-2008 06:22

New and dreaming of Cruising half of every year
 
Hi all,

I am new to the forum, and have been spending a lot of time reading other's posts. I have been working hard for the last 20 years, and am somewhat tired of the game (read: industry) I am in. I am a specialist in IT transformations, but what I really want to do is transform mine, and my partners life. We both love to travel and experience life, and I reckon cruising is the way to do it for me. Just step out of the game entirely...:p

I sailed a lot with my father when I was young, and he has always owned boats, but I haven't been sailing seriously now for nearly 15 years, and more than overnight for 20. So I am am very green to the whole thing. Actually I am pretty much starting from a 'I know nothing' standpoint, and will take it from there.

We want to spend half the year working (contract work and online businesses) and the other half sailing and touring - I ride a large touring motorbike (Goldwing 1800 for those who know).

The plan is to move to France at the end of next year (currently live in the UK), go and do the RYA yachtmaster courses (for me) and Day/Coastal Skipper (for the boss), buy a boat around March/April/May 2010. We will then start to do small trips around the Med from our base in South France, gradually increasing mileage and experience until we start moving further afield.

Boat-wise I wanted to leave the decision about what we wanted until I had done some research, the RYA courses, and maybe crewed on a couple of boats for experience. We are fairly sure we would like a Catamaran, as we both like the stability and space factors (she gets sea-sick, but I just get a grin on my head).

We know we want something with a bit of space but is not too big, as we want to be able to sail 'short-handed'. It will need to be a used boat (new seems crazy to me), something between 4 and 15 years old I would guess, should be able to cruise, and be setup for cruising. Will also want to have a few amenities on board, such as fridge, freezer, washing machine, half decent shower, and reasonable storage. I also want to be able to plug in laptops etc, to do IT work onboard. We don't really need a lot of bed space - one for us, a spot for the dog, and maybe one for visitors (otherwise used for storage space) of no more than two other adults. Handling-wise, my wife is quite petit, so need to take that into account, and we don't mind something that is built more for comfort than speed, as long as it isn't unwieldy. We thought maybe about the 35 to 40 foot range for a Cat or 38-42 foot for a monohull.

I'm keen to hear any thoughts about boats I could look at, even monohulls haven't completely been taken off the list. Am also curious to hear if the requirements I've mentioned so far are completly bonkers, or are reasonable?

Anyway, I'm glad I came across this forum - I have already learnt a heck of a lot by reading previous posts!

All the best, and will see you on the water in 2010 !!

James (Ozzy bloke) & Carina (Swedish girl)

SkiprJohn 28-04-2008 21:58

Aloha James and Carina,
Welcome aboard!! Sounds like great plans and I hope you can put them into effect.
I'm not familiar with the area in which you'll be sailing so can't make any recommendations as to what boat to purchase or where to get it but I always recommend a fiberglass monohull no longer than 36 feet on deck with an aft cockpit and cutter rig, and, of course a diesel engine.
Kind Regards,
Johnl

David M 28-04-2008 22:11

Welcome aboard James and Carina!

I'm in pretty much the same boat as yourself concerning my career..I have pretty much had it and want to drive my own boat and go where I want with that boat. So, I came to this forum to learn as well. I spend much of my time in here reading the old threads as well as the new postings. There are also other sailing forums online to get boat information, but in the name of not being rude to the nice people who run this forum, I wont name them. :) This forum though is clearly one of the best.

Stick around and learn. Time is on your side. Feel free to ask questions. There are no dumb questions here. We were all born knowing nothing about anything...people are generally pretty nice here and newbies are especially welcome.

You will learn over time what boats best suit you by doing your studying and chartering a number of boats.

David

Salja03 28-04-2008 23:12

Thanks guys,

i really appreciate the welcome. Every day is a step closer to doing what we really want to do... Just gotta keep taking those steps until we are there!

Cheers,

James

Ex-Calif 29-04-2008 00:25

James - Interestingly a friend of mine is doing a similar thing and is in a similar industry. However he is less commital on getting the boat.

He has taken a sabbatical and spends a ton of time at the club. He is never short of boats to ride on and has done several deliveries lately as crew.

His experience was a lot like yours. PLenty of time on Dad's boat and dinghy's as a kid. He is now back in the saddle so to speak and is just fine on keel boats.

He has been "goofing" off for about 6 months now and is in job hunt mode for a contract. He is looking for the right boat but for now he gets tons of time on the water without one.

Salja03 29-04-2008 23:15

Sounds like he is having a great time! i rather think that my other half would get more than a bit upset with me if I did that though! The move to France has been planned for some time, so taking 6 months off would get me in a lot of trouble :-)

Sounds like a great way to get the skills up though. I'll have to look into whether I can do some weekend runs like that. trouble is, I'm in a fairly landlocked area at the moment. But a couple of long weekends crewing between now and then could be a good idea. Thanks for the idea Dan!

Cheers,

James

Jim Thomsen 29-04-2008 23:43

Hello James,

I was also tired of working all the time and 3 years ago I stopped. We bought a boat and are now cruising the Med. It was a fantastic decision!

A couple of cost issues to consider for the Med. Catamaran berths are harder to find in many places and usually cost at least 50% more. Berth fees for monos seems to take a big jump abover 12 meters (about 39 feet).

Best of luck!

Jim

Salja03 30-04-2008 23:04

Thanks Jim, that certainly bears thinking about! Can you tell me what you pay on average for a berth, and what size boat you are in? It's nice to know there are other people out there who are already successfully doing what we are about to do as well..!

Cheers,

James

philip van praag 30-04-2008 23:33

"We thought maybe about the 35 to 40 foot range for a Cat or 38-42 foot for a monohull".

hi we are uk at moment and saving for the med
there is a big diferance between a cat and a mono in this size range.
we have a 37ft cat and you need a to go to a modern high volume mono in the 49-55ft range to get the same amount of living space.
as to morings in the med its the same as the uk 1 1/2 but we spend time at anchor or on a swining moring. so we can choose to keep our costs down
plus we can get in places you cant with a big draft we draw 1.2m
we dry out on slips for repairs but i admit this may be more of a problem in the med with lack of tidel range.
good luck with your dream.

Salja03 01-05-2008 15:03

Thanks Phil, also good to know!

Cheers,

James


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