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evansmith 19-04-2011 18:50

Live Aboard Help

In a few weeks I will begin working at the beach and instead of trying to rent an apartment or house I have been thinking about buying a sail boat and living on it for the summer. At the end of the summer I can either keep the boat or sell it to recoup my costs.

I am looking at a 1969 25ft fiberglass boat now. It looks nice from the pictures and I'll check it out in person this weekend. My concerns are: no head, and no outboard. The owner is asking $3000.

I think I will need to install a window ac unit so I don't die in the Alabama summer. I will be mostly just sleeping on this boat in between stints deckhanding.

I went to sailing camp several years when I was young and for a short time had a little laser sailboat. So I am a sailing novice! I would like a boat I can sail myself and learn on, yet still have some level of comfort, and be around $3000.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated! Tell me what I am looking for ! Thanks!


Lancerbye 19-04-2011 20:22

Re: Live Aboard Help
Welcome aboard. Your plan is sound except the part about recouping your losses by selling the boat. That seldom happens, but the adventure would be worth the expense anyway.

evansmith 19-04-2011 20:27

Re: Live Aboard Help

Originally Posted by Lancerbye (Post 670309)
Welcome aboard. Your plan is sound except the part about recouping your losses by selling the boat. That seldom happens, but the adventure would be worth the expense anyway.

I guess I should have elaborated on that-I would sell the boat for whatever I could get for it quick if I choose to do so and chalk the difference up as the price of adventure.

Boat suggestions are welcome...! Now I am looking for a 20'+ with an OB motor at least.

Ocean Girl 19-04-2011 21:37

Re: Live Aboard Help
Check out the columbia 26 fantastic layout down below, can be found cheap, and are a blast to sail. Just be sure to check her decks carefully cause some had issues with soft spots, (they are pretty old boats so more than likely these issue are already addressed). You can check for soft spots by walking around the deck while bouncing on the front part of your feet,the soft spots will stand out from the solid feeling deck. Yes the seller will think you are crazy, but it sniffs out rot pretty good.
The link above also is a good way to check out other models, it has an extensive library of all the boats that site has advertised for sale so you can even see the trends in sale price.
Some other boats to see
Catalina (any)

Your plan sounds good, have fun.


A window AC unit (100 bucks) stuck over a hatch works great, get 3000-5000 BTU (IMHO)

evansmith 19-04-2011 22:22

Re: Live Aboard Help
Great 25ft sailboat

Here is the boat I'm looking at. The owner doesn't seem to know much about it. I am concerned that it is a centerboard since the water around here is so shallow.

Ocean Girl 19-04-2011 22:44

Re: Live Aboard Help
It looks like an Islander to me (not sure), good boat, check her decks carfully. When you look at the boat trace her hull ID, you can find out her model and builder (should be a set of raised letters and numbers imprinted on the stern FBG, near the toe rail).
At 2400 with no engine it is not a steal but could be a good boat.

evansmith 20-04-2011 05:55

Re: Live Aboard Help
Thanks for the reply! I'll check the boat out and maybe make an offer. Without motor I'm thinking 1800-2000. I don't want to lowball him but I can't move it without a motor. Also-any input on the centerboard? I was thinking I would need a "shoal draft " or swing keel type boat.

SaucySailoress 20-04-2011 06:20

Re: Live Aboard Help
Sounds like you're gonna have a fun summer!!

Ocean Girl 20-04-2011 07:00

Re: Live Aboard Help
Um, not sure about the ceterboard,once we know the make and model I am sure someone here will be able to give input. There are a lot of boats out there, dont worry too much about offending the seller. I think 1500 for that boat is tops (IMHO) so he isnt "giving it away" BUT I havent seen it, it may have soft decks, rooten stringers, or the CB may be missing. Very little gear with it, it is basically a hull, deck, and mast. Remember, it is 41 years old. This is a buyers market, keep an eye out for other boats so you have as many options as possble.

DeepFrz 20-04-2011 07:05

Re: Live Aboard Help
I'm not sure about living on a boat with no head. Try going in a bucket for a while at home to see what you think. Actually a porta-potti is what you will need as you can't legally dump overboard.

skipmac 20-04-2011 07:31

Re: Live Aboard Help
If the boat is without motor then the sellers list price of $2400 is absolutely not giving it away. A friend got a 26 Columbia free from an owner that could not afford the cost to store and maintain the boat.

Speaking of cost to store, don't forget that once you buy the boat you will have to pay a monthly rent to a marina to park it. That could be as much as the rent on a small apartment, depending on the area and amenities. Suggest you check local marina rents before you go any further.

SkiprJohn 26-04-2011 11:33

Re: Live Aboard Help
Aloha and welcome aboard!
Its not an Islander, Coronado, Cal or Catalina and I see that the shrouds are mounted inboard on the cabin top with only one set of lowers so its probably a light trailerable.
We all have so many opinions but to be certain I'd ask the owner who the manufacturer is. Let us know and we can give a better answer to your question.
kind regards,

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