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Old 12-03-2021, 06:20   #16
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

I figure since I started this thread already, I might as well use it as a blog or status update of sorts, maybe someone finds it interesting.

Since my first post two months ago, I've mostly been spending my time looking for candidate boats online. Most of the boats I find interesting are relatively far away from Croatia, probably due to not being seen as typical tourist charter boats? Here's the kind of boats that interest me:
  • Ideally long or full, not fin, keel.
  • Skeg-hung or similar, not spade, rudder.
  • A somewhat shallower draft (ideally under 1.5m), but no centerboard.
Turns out most boats on sale in Croatia don't fit these characteristics. Am I wacky for not wanting a fin keel, spade rudder boat? Perhaps I'm being too paranoid? I don't intend to race. I just want the lowest possibility of lines fouling up the prop or my keel falling off. Also, being heavier and a bit more stable would be nice.

Given that other countries (e.g. Greece, Spain, UK, Netherlands, Sweden) have a lot more boats that look like something I'd want to buy, I've recently spent some time getting an RYA license to help ensure I can sail legally through other countries of interest. If sailing the Med, do you think a local Croatian license + an RYA license are enough? Or would an ICC be required?
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Old 12-03-2021, 09:40   #17
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Welcome aboard, Tramuntana!

Croatia is beautiful; my wife and I visited a few years ago and fell in love with it. It's like Italy, but without Italians. I wouldn't mind living aboard for a year or two and go gunkholing in the islands. The food was fantastic, and I miss ajvar, the hotter the better -- yum!

Don't worry too much about repairs and upgrades. Unless you're independently wealthy you'll be on the learn-by-doing plan, and with the help of Yew Tewbe etc. it's a lot easier to figure out fixes and repairs.

I'm a semi-retired software dev and working remotely is wonderful. The only problem with working remotely on a boat is that, after a while, working becomes less important and sailing becomes more important. Great for mental health, not so great on the budget.

Again, welcome aboard and looking forward to reading about your journey!
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Old 12-03-2021, 11:56   #18
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Welcome to the forums, tramuntana. I am currently in Turkey and see a lot of good deals advertised in Croatia. There are even many people here bringing boats from Croatia to sell. I hope your plans go well.
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Old 12-03-2021, 13:07   #19
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

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Originally Posted by tramuntana View Post
If sailing the Med, do you think a local Croatian license + an RYA license are enough? Or would an ICC be required?

You usually need only the licenses the country of registration of the boat requires. Croatia with it's stupid rules about dinghies is a bit of an exception and I don't know how much this is just extortion because nobody ever dragged Croatia to court for it.



However what you really need it the SRC licenses (any will do) for the VHF on board. This one isn't optional and not having one can get you in trouble.
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Old 13-03-2021, 04:07   #20
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

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You usually need only the licenses the country of registration of the boat requires. Croatia with it's stupid rules about dinghies is a bit of an exception and I don't know how much this is just extortion because nobody ever dragged Croatia to court for it.
I wasn't aware of these -- which rules about dinghies? I do understand Croatia is very heavy on paperwork compared to other countries. We have a lot of boats and every now and then someone dies by propeller, causing ever stricter regulation. Us being an ex-communist country probably doesn't help either...

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However what you really need it the SRC licenses (any will do) for the VHF on board. This one isn't optional and not having one can get you in trouble.
My local Croatian license covers operating a VHF so I'm hoping that will be enough.
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Old 05-04-2021, 05:30   #21
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Time for another blog update, maybe someone in similar shoes finds it interesting.

Since a month ago, I've continued looking at boats online and trying to figure out what kind of boat I'm actually interested in. I've discarded the full-keel fantasy, both out of necessity and practicality. Relatively few cheap boats on the market in the Mediterranean seem to have a full keel, limiting my search. And it took a while for me to come to terms with the fact that I won't be doing the kind of sailing I typically read about in famous books about world cruising, at least not anytime soon. Assuming we can even agree on what the pros of a full-keeled boat are, they still likely wouldn't fit my use case: cruising the Adriatic and a couple of years later the Mediterranean (rarely sailing for more than a couple of days at a time).

I've visited five different interesting boats and tried to get a feel for boat variety and how price ranges vary with type of boat and age and boat condition. Most of the boats I've visited were locally (or close to locally) manufactured boats such as Elan 295 and Elan 31 (the older edition). Overall I liked them and am confident I'll find a boat in Croatia or very close to Croatia this Spring.

The elephant in the room however is finding a relatively cheap place to put the boat during at least Winter, as I don't think I'll be running off to Tunisia or the Canaries any time soon. Marinas in Croatia are relatively expensive (for a 10 meter boat it's about $4k to $5k yearly) compared to what we call "public moorings" (the government giving you a temporary but long-term right to use a certain mooring) which can cost literally $200 a year! Getting one of those is next to impossible however, since selling them is technically illegal (the moorings technically not being yours to sell).

The search continues...
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:10   #22
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

I actually am quite fond of the small Elan and Salona (the Elan 35 is really a fun boat) and you also might consider the Schöchl Sunbeam. While those are pretty rare overall, in the Adriatic you'll have a bigger chance to find them.

Don't be too hung up on the draft, go with what's common in the area. If the marinas are full of boats with 1.80m (6 tf) draft, you can safely assume that it works well in the area. We usually anchored in 4-5 m depth in Croatia, so no strong need for shallow draft.

Perhaps someone with more experience can chime in, but I have the impression, 1.5m doesn't make such a big difference compared to 1.8m. I think to really benefit from a shallow draft kicks in when you reach 1.3m.
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Old 05-04-2021, 06:35   #23
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Quote:
Originally Posted by tramuntana View Post
Time for another blog update, maybe someone in similar shoes finds it interesting.

Since a month ago, I've continued looking at boats online and trying to figure out what kind of boat I'm actually interested in. I've discarded the full-keel fantasy, both out of necessity and practicality. Relatively few cheap boats on the market in the Mediterranean seem to have a full keel, limiting my search. And it took a while for me to come to terms with the fact that I won't be doing the kind of sailing I typically read about in famous books about world cruising, at least not anytime soon. Assuming we can even agree on what the pros of a full-keeled boat are, they still likely wouldn't fit my use case: cruising the Adriatic and a couple of years later the Mediterranean (rarely sailing for more than a couple of days at a time).

I've visited five different interesting boats and tried to get a feel for boat variety and how price ranges vary with type of boat and age and boat condition. Most of the boats I've visited were locally (or close to locally) manufactured boats such as Elan 295 and Elan 31 (the older edition). Overall I liked them and am confident I'll find a boat in Croatia or very close to Croatia this Spring.

The elephant in the room however is finding a relatively cheap place to put the boat during at least Winter, as I don't think I'll be running off to Tunisia or the Canaries any time soon. Marinas in Croatia are relatively expensive (for a 10 meter boat it's about $4k to $5k yearly) compared to what we call "public moorings" (the government giving you a temporary but long-term right to use a certain mooring) which can cost literally $200 a year! Getting one of those is next to impossible however, since selling them is technically illegal (the moorings technically not being yours to sell).

The search continues...
for you
https://www.njuskalo.hr/jedrilice/ba...oglas-33406540
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Old 25-04-2021, 10:38   #24
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

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Originally Posted by more View Post
Thanks! I checked this one out but ultimately decided against it since I think it's a bit too much boat to handle, for me as a relative newbie.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joh.Ghurt View Post
I actually am quite fond of the small Elan and Salona (the Elan 35 is really a fun boat) and you also might consider the Schöchl Sunbeam. While those are pretty rare overall, in the Adriatic you'll have a bigger chance to find them.
Thanks for the suggestions. I found some of these but in the end decided against them for one reason or another (I have nothing against those particular models, rather only had issues with specific boats I found available used and for sale).
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Old 26-04-2021, 10:22   #25
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Welcome to CF.
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Old 06-05-2021, 06:46   #26
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

And another quick blog update, for those who may be wondering what's up.

I've continued looking at boats and have seen about fifteen of them, getting a bit of a feel for what one can get for a particular price in Croatia when it comes to used sailboats up to ~11m long. Finally, I came across a particular boat that I like a lot, and am currently in the process of (hopefully) purchasing it. I've arranged for a hull survey and, barring any unfortunate news (e.g. widespread osmosis, possibly to the point of it being a structural issue), will buy the boat.

The boat is an 80ies Elan 31 and it seems to have been quite well maintained, at least compared to most of the boats I've seen so far.
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Old 08-05-2021, 18:11   #27
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Aaaand I've bought the boat.

See you on the water, everyone!
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Old 08-05-2021, 19:11   #28
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Congratulations !
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Old 09-05-2021, 02:39   #29
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

Was it the Elan 31? I did my first serious crossing and my first gale on one of these. They're very capable boats although I think, people undervalue / underestimate them a little. In the 80ies, when Bavaria was flooding the Adria with Microcondos to sell well for the wives with the sailing performance of a bathtub, Elan was the more sporty option at the cost of being less wife-friendly.

As long as you don't have political problems as a Croatian to sail a Slovenian boat, you should be happy with it.
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Old 09-05-2021, 06:49   #30
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Re: Ahoy from Croatia

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Was it the Elan 31?
Yep! The older J&J version. Although, technically, it's an Elan 31S, which as far as I can tell is the same as an Elan 31 but with an added spoiler / swimming platform.

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As long as you don't have political problems as a Croatian to sail a Slovenian boat, you should be happy with it.
In case of trouble, I'll escape to Portorož and change my name to Jožef!
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