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Old 28-06-2020, 14:06   #1
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New to Sailing - Taking Advice

I have been interested in sailing for the longest time and recently purchased a boat at a bargain price (1991 Macgregor 26). I am currently learning the ropes for both sailing and boat maintenance and was wondering if you guys had any advice for a newcomer? Recommendations on books, mistakes to watch out for, and things I may want to check on the boat but would not have otherwise thought about would be much appreciated!
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Old 28-06-2020, 14:49   #2
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Congrats! Way to jump in with both feet. I'm a huge proponent of this approach. Any one of the Nigel Calder books would be a good start. Read LOTS and ask question on the forum too, even if (when) some people give you grief about being a newb. Get a good filter - for yourself - there are a variety of opinions out there on the "right way." I really enjoy the vlogs of Mads with Refitting Athena. But be careful. Boat work is a slippery slope. Don't get bogged down by too many boat projects and forget to sail!! Regularly getting out there makes you better in both sailing and your boat's systems. Enjoy the process
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Old 28-06-2020, 16:00   #3
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

That Mac Gregor is trailerable with a big engine?
If so, go to YouTube and see lots of videos with the same boat in the Florida keys or other grounds. The basics of sailing is quite simple, don’t worry too much at the beginning, just understand where the wind is coming from, and what are the angles you can make the boat go forwards. The rest is just piloting, preparation, and common sense.
Here is a starter link

https://youtu.be/A-tqeX0csR4
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Old 28-06-2020, 16:05   #4
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

I first took mine out and motered only to get a feel for the boat, then I went out and raised only the jib to get a feel for that. Then I went out a few times and did what I was comfortable with till I had both sails up and wondered why I didn't do it sooner.


Try to get someone with experience to go out on your boat with you and you will learn more than they tell you.
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Old 28-06-2020, 16:48   #5
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

My advice:


Sail, sail, sail then sail more.


Sailing is like dancing - you do not learn it from books.


And do not get discouraged with McGregor's moderate performance under sail. It is a great starter boat and the choice of many new boaters. Further down the track you can decide if you want more sailing thrills or more powerboat experience.


PS Like in all sailing A+1 is the golden rule: 'A' stands for what you already can do, +1 stands for making small comfortable steps ahead.


Good luck and enjoy the ride!
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Old 29-06-2020, 01:36   #6
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

The reason you got it at a "bargain price" is that a MacGregor 26 is--how shall I phrase this delicately?--a piece of crap. There are those here who advocate jumping in blindly with both feet. Fifty years ago I could have blindly hurled myself out the open door of an airplane, but I went to jump school first. Glad I did.
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Old 29-06-2020, 01:47   #7
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

The reason you got it at a "bargain price" is that a MacGregor 26 is--how shall I phrase this delicately?--a piece of crap. There are those here who advocate jumping in blindly with both feet. Fifty years ago I could have blindly hurled myself out the open door of an airplane, but I went to jump school first. Glad I did" as written in above post

PaulJNolan, I don't think the original poster was after an opinion how good or bad his new purchase is. More like what is the best way forward. Barnakiel gave an excellent response.
I share his view.
Good onya Gbencomo!
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Old 29-06-2020, 02:17   #8
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by HankOnthewater View Post
PaulJNolan, I don't think the original poster was after an opinion how good or bad his new purchase is. More like what is the best way forward. Barnakiel gave an excellent response.
I share his view.
Good onya Gbencomo!
Yes, Paul. That was pretty harsh.

Considering that GBencomo is a new sailor. It's a perfect starter boat.

Sail, sail, sail, Gbencomo! And if you have to "choose a sail" as Lazy1 indicates, put up the main. Although I would never advocate putting up just one sail. There are two sails for a reason. Find out why!
Good luck,
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Old 29-06-2020, 02:34   #9
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

I think it is a terrible "starter boat." Virtually any boat in a local one-design fleet would be far better.
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Old 29-06-2020, 04:51   #10
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul J. Nolan View Post
I think it is a terrible "starter boat." Virtually any boat in a local one-design fleet would be far better.
Okay, okay - we get it!

Thank you for your unsolicted opinion about his choice of boat. As Hank suggests, the OP wasn't asking what you think of his boat. He was asking for some helpful suggestions.

Got any?

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Old 29-06-2020, 05:22   #11
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Okay. Here's a book on "mistakes to watch out for": Total Loss by Jack Coote. You might want to read it before casting off.

Paul
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Old 29-06-2020, 05:23   #12
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Congratulations on becoming a boat owner. as someone else said...sail, sail, sail. I would just advise you to do so in winds less than 15 at the beginning. Learn to reef the sails, and when. Most people reef to late.

See if there is a sailing club or races nearby. Race on other peoples boats. Ups the learning curve fast.

When docking, only go as fast as you want to hit something. Most newbs (including me) go too fast when docking.

Go have fun. Some people will talk negatively about your boat......forget them. Go have fun.
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Old 29-06-2020, 05:34   #13
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Cruisers forums never disappoints.
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Old 29-06-2020, 09:33   #14
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Ouch... as a fellow n00b, some of these replies are why people hate the internet. We get it, some of you are so experienced and came out of the womb sailing and knowing it all. Great. Others of us are learning as we go, reading, and trying to not make the same mistakes twice, or ideally, learn before making some mistakes. Good luck, and as others said, more sailing, on your boat, on others boats, (harder thanks to covid) etc.
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Old 29-06-2020, 09:47   #15
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Re: New to Sailing - Taking Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul J. Nolan View Post
The reason you got it at a "bargain price" is that a MacGregor 26 is--how shall I phrase this delicately?--a piece of crap. There are those here who advocate jumping in blindly with both feet. Fifty years ago I could have blindly hurled myself out the open door of an airplane, but I went to jump school first. Glad I did.

Not so.


On my dock there are:


- 3 McGregors,
- 2 posh Benneteaus,
- 1 amazing S&S Swan.


2 out of 3 McGregors go out every weekend.
1 of the Benes goes out twice a year.
The Swan has never been seen sailing.


So much for McGregor being a piece of crap.


Additionally, McGregor ha some outstanding features like superbly voluminous and comfortable interior and an engine that can be swapped for new withing 1 day's work.


It is a very good choice for a new sailor on many counts.


b.
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