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Old 11-12-2016, 12:15   #16
Jim Cate's Avatar

Join Date: May 2008
Location: cruising SW Pacific
Boat: Jon Sayer 1-off 46 ft fract rig sloop strip plank in W Red Cedar
Posts: 20,818
Re: Making a living doing gelcoat repair while cruising the Carribean

While there are certainly reimbursable skills that is not how things generally work in the cruising community...
This is a good observation, Phil. In what I call the 'real" cruising community, reciprocal help is the norm, and money is never exchanged. The skills that are present in the average popular anchorage are astounding, and by the time cruisers have been out for a few years, they understand the need for mutual support from within the group. It is amazing, and very gratifying to be part of.

I have no experience in the Caribe, but from reading lots of posts here on CF I believe that there are a lot of boats there that are not long term cruisers, and the behavior patterns may be different than here in the Pacific islands. This might mean more willingness to hire out work... I dunno.

Finally, the locals may appear to be unworldly and naive, but they will have a very good idea about what goes on in the anchorage, let alone in a marina... and they will not be happy if visitors are taking over any jobs that they might otherwise be doing. Careful adherence to permits may satisfy the authorities, but we've heard of cases where local 'tradesmen" have expressed their unhappiness with poachers with violence. Not what most folks want to deal with!

Jim and Ann s/v Insatiable II, house-sitting ashore for the winter (and it is weird living ashore!)
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Old 11-12-2016, 13:16   #17
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Kingston Ont Canada
Boat: Looking for my next boat!
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Re: Making a living doing gelcoat repair while cruising the Carribean

When we arrived in Antigua (apres trans atlantic) we were approached almost immediately by a lady offering to do our laundry. We accepted and she took it all away. A few minutes later, another lady, same offer. And again. And again. Pretty soon young men came knocking...carpenters, electrical, refrigeration, name it. It would seem to me that at that time, and on that island, there was an abundance of skilled and unskilled labour seeking work on boats. I watch a group of boys who's offering was diving on your anchor. Their outboard was running rough. They pulled it up on land, tore it down and put it back together again in no time with just a small pouch of tools. It would have taken me days. Most noticeable was that they barely spoke, they each just knew exactly what to do.

Good luck with your endeavor. The only way to know for sure is to try.
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