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Old 16-01-2021, 23:13   #1
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First time/long time

Greetings, Cruisers Forum!

My name is David, and I'm one of those guys with a plan.

The group of planners I belong to is the "sailed all my life" "on other people's boats" subset. I have cruised and lived aboard for as long as a week at a time enough times to know that I want to eventually move to my own boat and give full-time living a try. I belong to a club that is open six months a year; therefore, I am skippering some sort of monohull between 27-40' on average 150 days a year.

I know enough about sailing to know that I know only the easy part of the cruising life: Making a boat go and stop and handle anything Massachusetts coastal waters can throw at you Force 8 on down. On-the-spot repairs. Provisioning for short trips. Anchoring, navigating, planning (love to plan: see my profile pic.). Using autopilot. Fine points of sail trim. Anchoring, docking, mooring, grounding (yes I have grounded three times; tell me you haven't)/kedging off, heaving to, retrieving conscious MOB, rigging a jackline so you're not hanging over the side with your head underwater, sailing in fog, dark, snow, etc etc etc. All this I know. I know there is no right of way; there are rules of the road; there's a time to go through the rip and a time not to. I know that 7-1 is something someone dreamed up, but there are also physical principles behind it. If we meet at an anchorage, I am not going to be running that generator or letting my halyard slap or misjudging swinging distance. I may row over and toss you a beer, however. Those are the easy things.

I do not know the hard things. I do not know how to maintain a boat for long periods of time, outfit, build, repair, etc. I have done no passage longer than 50 nm, and weathered no storm Force 9 and up, recovered no unconscious POB. I am reading all of your posts about engines, other complex equipment, location of chainplates, which wind vanes to buy, water in the bilge, treacherous voyages, and the various ups and downs of permanent on-board living. I read with fascination about people building boats. There's so much knowledge on this forum, a guy could lurk for years. I have never bought a boat, and that right there sounds like a whole lot, just from reading posts of other first-time shoppers. I like fixing things and doing repairs and futzing around, but unlike some whose posts I've read, I am not an engineer or IT whiz or jet pilot.

I have not settled on what I want to buy, but I have sailed enough boats to tell you what I will not be buying:

J-27, Sabre 30 (stiff boat in a gale, tho), Tartan 31, Beneteau 310, 323., 34, 343, 36.7 (though that last one is fast and fun to race!); Jenneau 349 (fun for a daysail and a picnic, tho), 389 (nice coastal cruiser for a run to Cape Cod, tho); Bavaria 37 (a heavy tank that you reef at 23 knots); Hanse 375, 415 (fast boat tho), C&C 34 (fun to sail, tho), C&C 38.

These are all nice production fin-keel/blade rudder more-or-less performance cruisers that I will not buy when it comes to buying my boat.

I am heartened to see that almost no one here owns these particular makes and sizes.

While lurking, I've also been checking out boats made by smaller producers that some of you own. I imagine when I finally am in a position to sell out, buy, and set sail, I will end up in an FRP monohull 34-40' max, as I will likely be solo most of the time.

Unlike a lot of people who post here about their dream boat, I haven't decided what I'm going to do. Probably chase the warm, dry seasons up and down the East Coast of the U.S. Still unclear. I like to gunk hole, and I'm curious about bilge keels and retractable keels; the only retractable thing I've sailed was a centerboard O'Day. I've also been reading carefully about ketches, since some here like them for shorthanded sailing. I'll be looking to find a way to sail one. The people who sail with me like nice weather only so I'm considering pilothouses, though those tend to narrow down your selection quite a bit. I see that a couple of modern producers make bilge-keel-pilothouse pocket cruisers with self-tacking jibs, which sounds like my dream except you need half a mil to land a new one, once you get past boat/equipment/dinghy.

And, thank you for reading this far, a couple of times each season I may be looking for crew for a seven-day trip.

Thanks,

df
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Old 16-01-2021, 23:30   #2
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Re: First time/long time

Welcome aboard David! On my bulkhead I have an old photograph of a little gaff sloop, a Friendship sloop, I found out recently, anchored in a beautiful slough somewhere in New England I think. I have had that photograph since before I owned a boat, so I've had that picture for, yikes, 40 something years. It was my inspiration. I can understand your interest in gunkholing. Good luck in your adventures wherever they take you!
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Old 16-01-2021, 23:39   #3
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Re: First time/long time

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Welcome aboard David! On my bulkhead I have an old photograph of a little gaff sloop, a Friendship sloop, I found out recently, anchored in a beautiful slough somewhere in New England I think. I have had that photograph since before I owned a boat, so I've had that picture for, yikes, 40 something years. It was my inspiration. I can understand your interest in gunkholing. Good luck in your adventures wherever they take you!
Thank you for the warm welcome, Don.

I offer you a shot I took of a Friendship cutter here in Boston Harbor:

Few know that before there were auxiliaries, these were the boats lobstermen used to lobster!
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Old 17-01-2021, 00:29   #4
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Re: First time/long time

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Thank you for the warm welcome, Don.

I offer you a shot I took of a Friendship cutter here in Boston Harbor:

Few know that before there were auxiliaries, these were the boats lobstermen used to lobster!
Beautiful!
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Old 17-01-2021, 02:50   #5
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Re: First time/long time

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, David.
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Old 17-01-2021, 03:34   #6
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Re: First time/long time

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Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, David.
Thank you, Gord.

From the posts of yours that I have lurked, I know you as a sage.

Beers from my putative dinghy tossed in your general direction. (Non-alcoholic if you go in that direction.)
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Old 17-01-2021, 03:38   #7
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Re: First time/long time

David, welcome to the community! As we spent our many cruising years as shallow draft, US East Coast gunkholing fair weather cruisers aboard a ketch; I'm keeping a strong interest in hearing about your upcoming adventures.
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Old 17-01-2021, 05:05   #8
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Re: First time/long time

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David, welcome to the community! As we spent our many cruising years as shallow draft, US East Coast gunkholing fair weather cruisers aboard a ketch; I'm keeping a strong interest in hearing about your upcoming adventures.
Thank you for the warm welcome. That is a beautiful boat. You lived the dream. God bless.
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Old 17-01-2021, 11:54   #9
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First time/long time

Hello David. You seem to have much more experience and knowledge than most of the new posters with ”a plan”.

For those who are enamored with Friendship Sloops I suggest the book Princess by Joe Richards. Beautifully written love affair with his ancient wooden Sam Morse built boat. I love this story But I know I’m not the guy who should own any wooden boat.

And while you are dreaming, take a serious look at Tayana Vancouver 42 designed by Robert Harris.
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Old 17-01-2021, 13:33   #10
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Re: First time/long time

Welcome aboard David. Your CV seems way better than most who post "I wanna live aboard and cruise" plans, and I reckon that you will do just fine.

Your experience with a multitude of modern production type vessels has shown you one end of the spectrum. Traditional vessels like that nice Friendship might occupy the other end. IMO you won't find many newish boats that lurk in the middle, especially pilot house ketches with bilge keels!

While my criteria were different than yours, I faced a similar quandary when seeking our second long term cruiser. Our response was to buy a one-off, one that almost perfectly met our long list of desires and requirements. This approach is kinda slow to execute, but can result in a wonderful match between you and your dream boat. The east coast of the USA still harbors some great shipwrights, and their products come up for sale now and then... and because so many customers are afraid of anything that doesn't look just like their neighbors in teh marina, sometimes the prices are not so bad.

So, keep your eyes open for such opportunities as you wander the yards... might just find what you want!

Good luck!

Jim
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Old 17-01-2021, 14:20   #11
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Re: First time/long time

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Originally Posted by Jim Cate View Post
Welcome aboard David. Your CV seems way better than most who post "I wanna live aboard and cruise" plans, and I reckon that you will do just fine.

Your experience with a multitude of modern production type vessels has shown you one end of the spectrum. Traditional vessels like that nice Friendship might occupy the other end. IMO you won't find many newish boats that lurk in the middle, especially pilot house ketches with bilge keels!

While my criteria were different than yours, I faced a similar quandary when seeking our second long term cruiser. Our response was to buy a one-off, one that almost perfectly met our long list of desires and requirements. This approach is kinda slow to execute, but can result in a wonderful match between you and your dream boat. The east coast of the USA still harbors some great shipwrights, and their products come up for sale now and then... and because so many customers are afraid of anything that doesn't look just like their neighbors in teh marina, sometimes the prices are not so bad.

So, keep your eyes open for such opportunities as you wander the yards... might just find what you want!

Good luck!

Jim
Thanks, Jim. I'm fascinated by your one-off. I can't tell from the picture, but is that a tall rig? Just curious what in particular you were looking for when you dialed up that customization...

I posted that Friendship was mainly to show Don CL a picture, because he mentioned having been inspired by one. I think it does tourist rides in the harbor, and they are motor-sailing most of the time.

I don't think anything like that meets my needs, though they are beautiful and it's fun to take pictures of them!
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Old 17-01-2021, 14:25   #12
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Re: First time/long time

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Originally Posted by Tayana42 View Post
Hello David. You seem to have much more experience and knowledge than most of the new posters with ”a plan”.

For those who are enamored with Friendship Sloops I suggest the book Princess by Joe Richards. Beautifully written love affair with his ancient wooden Sam Morse built boat. I love this story But I know I’m not the guy who should own any wooden boat.

And while you are dreaming, take a serious look at Tayana Vancouver 42 designed by Robert Harris.
Thank you for the welcome! Any particular reason why you'd suggest a Tayana?

I have read a lot about your boat. Moreover, a friend had a 37, I believe, that he sailed around the world. Great design, seems like. Can I singlehand a 42-footer? That's a lot of mainsail...

I don't know about this forum, but to me, there's nothing more fun than to go geek out on someone's boat.
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Old 17-01-2021, 14:26   #13
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Re: First time/long time

Welcome
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Old 17-01-2021, 14:39   #14
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Re: First time/long time

Quote:
Thanks, Jim. I'm fascinated by your one-off. I can't tell from the picture, but is that a tall rig? Just curious what in particular you were looking for when you dialed up that customization...
David, I didn't dial it up myself... it was an existing boat that came on the market locally to me and that met our criteria nearly perfectly. And she was built by a master shipwright for his own use, so he put lots of detail work into her that a customer might not have wanted to pay for. She's worked out very well for us over the nearly 18 years we've owned her... all full time live aboard cruising.

And I might add that we had been actively searching for three years when it all came together for us... we were getting desperate!

Jim
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Old 17-01-2021, 15:45   #15
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Re: First time/long time

Welcome
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