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Old 21-06-2021, 11:06   #16
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Re: Could use some guidance

Hi, I've driven across the US a sizable no. of times and love doing it, but my preference would be the sailing option. That is of course irrelevant/uninformative for your choice. One useful thing I want to say is that it is not an irreversible decision. If you buy a boat (or an RV) you can always sell it without too much of a loss and go the other route. You'd need to buy wisely and spend wisely to keep the option open, but it is an option, especially given your age. Do keep in mind that with a boat, "parking" can be a bit of an expense compared to an RV. I hope that takes some of the heat off and wish you luck.
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Old 21-06-2021, 11:09   #17
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Re: Could use some guidance

Originally Posted by boatman61 View Post
Drive down to Mexico and look at some boats.. mix in some travel adventure with research, hear there's some decent cheapish boats down that way.

I feel Boatmans61 is correct.
This idea encompasses the merits of both.
Boat may well be less expensive down there.
And, a good long trip there think to think about things.
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Old 21-06-2021, 11:18   #18
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Re: Could use some guidance

You didn't tell us anything about your health and disability issues. Does this have any bearing on your ability to safely single hand a sailboat? Does it limit your ability to do most maintenance and repairs on a live aboard sailboat? I mention the latter as I would guess doing most of your own maintenance and repairs would likely be the only way you could handle the costs of a live aboard capable of longer passages.
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Old 21-06-2021, 11:24   #19
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Re: Could use some guidance

Originally Posted by Dyzfunktionall View Post
Hello there, I am new to this forum, but I wanted to throw my hat into the ring and get a consensus on a choice that I am in the middle of making. I am 32, (be 33 in a week and some change), disabled vet (meaning my income is paid by the VA), and since I am now finally financially unburdened from my younger mistakes and prior marriages, and the VA has finally worked out suitable care/health management, I want to begin the process of uprooting from the shackles of normalcy. I currently reside in California, though I am a native of Tennessee. Anyone who has lived in Ca undoubtedly knows how insane the Cost-of-Living is in this state, versus almost every other state. However, simply returning home to the south just does not really pique my interest anymore either.
It has been a long-time dream of mine to live free’er or I should say more mobile. I do enjoy some of the qualities of life that being rooted provides, like decent internet, reliable hot showers, and good Chinese delivery. That said, the crossroads I am currently facing is the choice between a liveabord sailboat or an RV (mainly a truck and 5th wheel rig). I grew up in a single-wide, lived in the barracks/deployment hooches, and have since rented rooms or small studios, so I am fairly used to compact living or not having large spaces for lots of belongings. The need or ability to live small is not a new idea to me, nor does it scare me off. Where I am torn is between my comfortability and love of the land, and my insatiable curiosity of the sea.

Sailing - I took my ASA 101, 103, 104, 105/106, 113, & 118 out of Santa Cruz back in 2017, and have since then (health provided) been able to sail with friends of family to stay somewhat current on the common practice and principles.

RVing – I have an old camper and have stayed in it for a few months out of the summer up in the Shasta mountains during them blistering summer heat waves/fires. Used to drive a tow truck after the service and enjoyed long hauls and road trips.

What draws me to the idea of a liveaboard sailboat is the freedom to go virtually anywhere in the world, the ability to make said sailboat self-sufficient (solar, desalinator, fishing, etc..), and the ability to leave the U.S. freely, and be totally unhooked from the world or people I should say. That being said, I do realize how costly a boat can be. First the purchase, old mechanic proverb “Good is never cheap, Cheap is never good”, pretty much translatable into anything in this world. I know a good liveaboard will cost me a pretty dollar upfront and then there’s upkeep which is a bit more costly than say, an RV rig. Getting the boat into a self-sufficient stage if it isn’t already there, and then cost of things breaking down or needing to be replaced. All those things do not scare me, simply due to the ability to check out from society and just sail off whenever I’m feeling like it (so long as the boat is fit haha). The drawback I face is the physical aspect, how demanding it can be, and how often will I actually set sail for new lands being that it is just me onboard?

What draws me to the idea of an RV rig, is the comfortableness level I possess. I have towed trailers 45ft.+, behind a flatbed Pete with the owner’s dually loaded on the back, across the country. I have more experience turning wrenches on trucks/autos, engines, and my own old camper, that nothing is really new to me in that area. Being able to take my rig and home on the road and boondock it out in the middle of the desert is just as appealing. The drawbacks though are a little more mental and financial, rather than physical. I would be forced to remain in the states9or Canada/Mexico), paying outlandishly stupid insurance and fuel costs (unless of course I kept the bulk of my travels in the southern states). While the trailer could be made fairly self-sufficient, the truck could not operate on wind and solar to keep me going, which further limits my escape. There are plenty of parks and federal lands to camp, but not a single piece of land isn't owned in this country, unlike the sea. Physically I have no concerns about being able to handle this lifestyle.

My end goal for this is to seek knowledge and advice from those seasoned above me, who care to share their wisdom and experience. I've heard there’s some form of rivalry between the RV’ers and Boaters of the world, but the idea of being able to stake my claim to a home of my own and take it with me is a love I think both sides share and can hopefully offer me insight on which I may be better suited towards.

Thank y’all.
You don't say how disabled you are but if you can drive, then you must be somewhat functional. Solo sailing can be difficult, not just for the lack of sleep but for the usually simple tasks of picking up a mooring ball or dropping an anchor. I think if you had a buddy who could go partners with you on a decently equipped boat, this plan might have a better chance of success. Sailing is not physical most of the time but can be quite physical at points where the sH#t is really hitting the fan. Are you capable of doing this by yourself? Not sure how much the VA pays but keeping a boat well maintained is not cheap (think way more than gas for your RV) I do hope this works out for you but Chinese delivery at sea ain't going to happen nor are any hot showers longer than five minutes. Were you to become an expert on diesel engines, you could make some decent money on your travels. to beef up your income.
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Old 21-06-2021, 11:32   #20
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Re: Could use some guidance

May I suggest to do also research on the insurances.
The hardest and most expensive is to find is a hull asurance for a circumnavigation for an old boat which is not surveyed. Even when you are less demanding it is often so.

It all depends of what you want.
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Old 21-06-2021, 14:50   #21
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Re: Could use some guidance

Hello, Dyzfunctional,

Thank you for your service.

Welcome to CF.

It is an interesting choice you pose, and I, too, think it will depend on how much you need VA facilities. When you think you're halfway between Mexico and the Marquesas on a small boat, and you're in some difficulty, what then? A question that perhaps you and your doctors could answer.

I'm a long time cruising old woman, now, having lived on the water now since 1986. Here are a few thoughts, in no particular order. It sounds to me as if coastal cruising could work out well for you, leaving you with space for land access as wanted or desired. Some people do split their time about half and half between sailing and some other land based activities they enjoy, and enjoy the variety it brings; it may or may not be an option for you, but summer sailing and winter desert camping might work.

If you are feeling kind of heartsick and disgruntled with the craziness of people and the world, your own healing from that lies within you, and you need to follow your heart's desire, and lose your bitterness. Forget "fair". It went out the door long ago. Bad things happen to good people, and it is a question of accepting and moving on. There is a lot of craziness in the world, and not a whole lot to be done about that.

Right now, with Covid, cruising overseas is severely limited, which you could count as a point in favor of blending love of land and sea. Likely things would be better by the time you decided to go offshore. And, if you located in the Pacific Northwest, there is a lot of cruising to be done after Canada opens to American vessels again. So far, they're pretty closed, even to Canadians, whose own travel is restricted. If you relocated to Texas, you'd have access to the Gulf of Mexico and to deserts......

I like Boatman 61's suggestion to you, if it fits with your body's condition. Again, something for you and the docs. You could flip a coin, and if you don't want to do what it tells you, you still learned you have a preference, so you can do that.

Follow your heart, man, and enjoy. There is nothing in the lalnd world like successive sunrises at sea. But, it's not for everyone. When you walk or swim away from the culture that spawned you, there are things you give up, and friends, too. It is a big decision, not to confuse it with a dream, but to accept there will be downsides, too. Do understand Mother Ocean doesn't really "care" about us. We are tolerated on her until we screw up too badly, then gone to Davy Jones. This may be okay with you. It is not okay with everyone: I know people who will not sail out of sight of land, period.

Who scorns the calm has forgotten the storm.
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Old 21-06-2021, 18:11   #22
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Re: Could use some guidance

We live in northern California and find the cost reasonable compared to many other states we have lived in. We also live in a 41 ft fifth wheel during the winter.....tons of space and very comfortable!! We have also live on a 45 ft powerboat and 46 sailboat the rest of the year and they are also very comfortable.
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