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Old 23-02-2021, 09:16   #61
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Location: N.W. Arkansas
Boat: FORCE 5 14'
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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

This channel helped me learn the basics:
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Old 23-02-2021, 16:08   #62
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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

Originally Posted by Belle25 View Post
Upsie! "A week," I meant to say.
God I wish I could sail 4 or 5 times a day. If you can, go for it!
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Old 23-02-2021, 16:09   #63

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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

Originally Posted by Don C L View Post
God I wish I could sail 4 or 5 times a day. If you can, go for it!
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Old 23-02-2021, 16:20   #64
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Boat: MystereS 17' Catamaran #531, Bristol 27 #182
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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

Originally Posted by Belle25 View Post
I'm in the same boat too. I have no sailing experience and want a monohull sailboat. I don't like the sailing dinghy idea at all. I wonder what kind of path I should take to start. Has anyone completely skipped the Lasers / Sunfishes and become a good sailor?
I started with a 17' catamaran that I bought with a friend.
We never took lessons. Just read a lot of books and did a lot of sailing.
We sailed until it snowed and started when the lake was still half covered in ice.

It took a few years before I was confident enough to fly a hull single-handed while on the trapeze...

I think I'm pretty competent at sailing. A small cat will certainly get your reflexes working ;-)

I just bought a monohull for single-handed cruising, so the expectations and skills are somewhat different...

Now there are new things to be learned: Docking, Reefing, Navigating, Maintenance, etc. that were not needed when sailing on inland lakes.

A small dinghy is great to learn sailing and boat handling, but that's only a small part of cruising.
Montreal, QC
Looking forward to sailing on Lake Ontario this summer...
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Old 23-02-2021, 16:58   #65
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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

Here's the initial checklist I used when eyeballing a boat and putting it on the short list:

Initial Presentation - Dirty or Clean, Rundown or Well Maintained
Hull and Topsides
  • Inspec at acute angle look for bumps and flat spots
  • Damage to rub strips, toe rail, stem, dock rash ets
  • If on hard, keel front edge, bottom, alignment with hull, separation?
  • Hull to deck joint separation
  • Signs of bliserting of damage/repair
  • Tap with screwdriver around suspect areas - sharp or dull sound?
Running Gear
  • Rudder - move by hand stop to stop, smooth?
  • Check zincs
  • Check prop for pinking or other damage
  • Check cutlass bearing play
  • Walk deck, listen for any creaking/crackling
  • Tap deck around stanchion bases, deck fittings etc
  • Check stanchion bases are solid
  • Look for telltale caulking around fittings, chain plates, ports and hatches
  • Any gelcoat crazing or cracks, damage, possible sites of h2o intrusion
  • Check winches rotate smoothly, listen to pawls
  • Check for stiffness, life left in it
  • Look up through canvass, in good condition
  • Look for tears etc and check stitching
  • If sails are up, unroll a few feet check for stiffness, stitching, mold, birds, tears etc
  • Look at leech, esp around batten pockets
  • Check sacrificial cloth, in good shape?
  • check furler operates smoothly
Running and Standing Rigging
  • Sight up mast, straight, no dings, corrosion etc
  • Look up check out spreader tips
  • Check base for corrosion, boot condition
  • Check stays for swelling, broken wires, odd colors, kinks, bends
  • check sweage fittings for cracks, pitting, swelling, bends, corrosion
  • check chainplates and deck fittings for cracks, corrision, pitting etc
  • Look for bent tangs, elongated clevis pin holes, out of fair leads from stay
  • check cotter pins
  • check stays not loose
  • condition of running rigging, green and nasty or good cond
  • sheaves, cheek blocks, rope clutches etc working
  • yank on stays, ensure spreaders don't move around
Head and Bilges
  • pull up all boards from sole
  • check for smell
  • check for cleanliness, esp indications of "mud line" or possibly past sinking in slip
  • check float switch operates
  • examine thruhulls and sea cocks for corrosion
  • turn sea cocks, ensure turn smoothly
  • check for oil in bilges
  • using inspection mirror and flashlight look up inside, look for signs of leaks into bilge or other issues
  • condition of keep bolts and backing washers
Salon and staterooms
  • Open all storage, lockers, under benches etc look for signs of leaks, mold etc
  • ensure all cabin doors open/close and no signs of adjustment, explore if door frame out of true
  • check for unexplained moisture
  • examine interior chain plates or thru-deck rigging attachments for past leaking
  • check below all ports and hatches for signs of water streaking, leaks etc
  • check wood trim for h2o damage
Electronics and Electrical[LIST][*]battery size, age, placement, retaining straps, connections etc for cleanliness and up to standards[*]check wiring to ensure boat wiring[*]check visible contacts - no tape or wire nuts etc[*]all visible terminals clean and secure[*]wiring orderly and labeled clearly[*]no unsupported wiring[*]look for chafe, bare wire, broken wire etc[/LIST
  • engine is clean, check for oil leaks, mirror below engine look for leaks
  • check around pan and head gasket look for leaks
  • check engine to transmission case for leaks
  • check belt tension, condition, look for belt dust/misaligned pulleys
  • check racor is clean
  • check all hoses and lines for age, checking, general condition
  • check no oil in coolant overflow
  • check no emulsion on oil fillter cap or dipstick
  • examine oil on dopstick for level, no burnt smell, color etc
  • check no fuel on oil dipstick
  • look for dates on filters - serviced recently
  • transmission moves in/out of gear smoothly

That s/b thorough enough to determine if its worth short-listing the boat or making an offer. doesn't take the place of a proper survey though.
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Old 24-02-2021, 11:43   #66
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Re: First timer, can use some help choosing a boat

You certainly have a good budget. If you're looking to cruise, I would get a ketch in the 40-50ft range. Those are the best for blue water with a budget like yours. Don't hold back! Get something a bit bigger for your journey. You won't regret it!
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