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Old 03-16-2005, 04:14 AM   #1
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Default Books and advice

I am 53. I cant sail yet but I am going to retire in 12 years to the carribean. I will know how by then starting now.

What are your favorite books on cruising ?

Any advice on schools?

Any advice on how to retire now ?

And whats the story on this hole in the water you pour money into . What should I expect to spend per year ??????

And how do you communicate by computer on a boat . Is there a good satalite system yet ?

And ...And.....And.....

From the Berkshires in Massachusetts , I remain

TOM
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Old 03-17-2005, 05:13 AM   #2
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Greetings Tom,

You may not have had responses to your questions because they are so all embracing and therefore difficult to answer effectively.

My suggestion would be to subscribe to a good sailing magazine which concentrates on cruising so that you get some broad overviews of things that you can explore in greater depth through books and conversations with others. There are also excellent sites on the internet that will make interesting reading. Follow many of the links given by contributors here and build up your own list of "favourites".

I would join a yacht club (many of them have a cruising division) and volunteer to crew on a boat. Once you get to know the skipper, volunteering to assist to help with the maintainance program of the boat will endear you to him/her and will give you valuable skills and knowledge of the costs of maintainace (just wander through a chandlery looking at the cost of items is an education in itself!)

As you associate with those who are currently sailing, you will be able to focus your questions more effectively. I have found the cruising community to be incredibly open to helping others, welcoming of newcomers and a fantastic source of information.

Enjoy the journey!

Rod
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Old 03-17-2005, 09:20 AM   #3
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Learn to sail now. Start on little boats - sunfish, lasers, sailing dinghies. Learn to read the wind, to reassure yourself that you are in control. And when the boat capsizes when you lose control, that's a lesson, too.

Then read about sailing - other people's experiences. DOVE and MAIDEN VOYAGE are interesting. THE TOTORORE VOYAGE might be difficult to find, but it will show you some of the bad times on a sailboat [extreme, sure - sailing in the Antarctic is extreme]. Read cruising magazines, sailing magazines, and talk with people who love sailing. And remember that your dream is not anybody else's and you will have to shape it yourself.

Don't worry about the little stuff - communicating by computer on a boat - in 5 years it's all going to be completely different, so what you learn now is probably going to be useless in a few years.

Charter a sailboat in the Caribbean. Until you do you aren't going to have any idea whether you will have a chance of enjoying it.

Fair winds,

Jeanne
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In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

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Old 03-17-2005, 11:12 PM   #4
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Hi Tom, all the above is good advice. Get a subscription to "Good Old Boat" magazine. They have a website and offer a free review copy. Early back issues are available on DVD. The point of this mag is that smaller is better. I'm a semi-retired yacht captain w/ mega yacht experience and I live on and sail a 26' sloop. I would take my boat anywhere in this hemisphere. Calm seas, Doug
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Old 03-18-2005, 07:44 AM   #5
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Thanks Doug for the direction to "Good Old Boat". Living in the land of Oz, I had never heard of the magazine. A quick web search and there is a site with a heap of archived articles, now added to my favourites, to be read when time allows. Much appreciated!

Rod
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Old 03-18-2005, 06:24 PM   #6
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Thank you all for your advice. Please keep em coming. This is a great site.

And I'm on my way thanks to you

I remain

TOM from the Berkshires.
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Old 03-21-2005, 12:54 PM   #7
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Tom,

In all frankness, sailing can be HARD. I've done a bunch of ocean sailing in my 20s, 30s and 40s, and it can get TOUGH. I mean, like being stuck on a roller coaster in a thunderstorm for DAYS. And you can't go to sleep, and must work on the rollercoaster carss wheels to keep the wheels on, or you will fly off the roller coaster. You can't put this work off until later, when the ride is smooth and the weather improves, you have to do it NOW, no matter that you're tired, seasick, hurt.

Not all ocean sailing is like this, but sometimes it is, and you must be able to do it.

Honestly, if you want to do this, take professional lessons, and then charter some sailboats working up to and past 30 footers, to see if you're going to be up to it after age 60.

In your shoes, I would not mind at all aiming myself at powerboats, trawlers etc. Past age 60, it may be more fun and less pain to motor than to sail.

Matt
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Old 03-27-2005, 09:43 PM   #8
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To be honest Matt's comment is very depressing. I am 40 now and also look to go sailing late 50's - 60's just dont have the money to do it any other way. Have sailed before when I was in my 20's and that was what lit the spark. Can we hear from folks that are sailing in their 60's. I suppose one wants to be real but jeez thats killing a lot of dreams. Matt just took the wind out of my sails.

Can someone suggest a good dingy to start, something that doesn't capsize to easy as the crocodiles in the local lake are bigish. I saw sunfish and lasers bandied about does anyone have an opinion?
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Old 03-27-2005, 09:51 PM   #9
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We have met so many people in their 60s and over still sailing, still crossing oceans. about 10 years ago a couple wrote to the Seven Seas Cruising Association to say that they were no longer living on their boat and cruising - after 2 (maybe 3) circumnavigations started after they had retired - because at age 83 they wanted to do some land cruising in the US for a change. 83!

You're only as old as you let yourself be. I can't see myself so long as there's no mirror around (and I AVOID them), and thus I don't have to behave my age - don't know what it is.

Oh, by the way, in my Cruising Dictionary I have a section on "Books". The basics for cruising. http://www.cruiser.co.za/faq.asp

Fair winds,
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In 1986 we went cruising for a few years. After 20 years and 50+ countries and several oceans, we are STILL "cruising for a few years".

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Old 03-27-2005, 10:09 PM   #10
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I felt the same way you did Mid S...but what the hell , I am going ahead anyway...I want to be buried at sea anyway......my plans dont call for any long passages. I am more a sail to something I can see or just beyond and watching weather to stay out of weather.. I have a couple coves in the VI that I want to get to know better. Thanks for commiserating....TOM

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by midshipman

To be honest Matt's comment is very depressing. I am 40 now and also look to go sailing late 50's - 60's just dont have the money to do it any other way. Have sailed before when I was in my 20's and that was what lit the spark. Can we hear from folks that are sailing in their 60's. I suppose one wants to be real but jeez thats killing a lot of dreams. Matt just took the wind out of my sails.

Can someone suggest a good dingy to start, something that doesn't capsize to easy as the crocodiles in the local lake are bigish. I saw sunfish and lasers bandied about does anyone have an opinion?
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Old 03-27-2005, 10:16 PM   #11
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I love this forum, I especially like the positive attitude. The more we talk about it the more we want to leave tomorrow. The Berkshires are beautiful but its time to get serious about a more peaceful existance with the universe. Thank you all and keep the replys coming. And Jeanne,Your frequently asked quetions is fantastic. Between My Gal Diana and I , we shall read it all.

I remain

TOM

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Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by Tom Farley

Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by JeanneP

We have met so many people in their 60s and over still sailing, still crossing oceans. about 10 years ago a couple wrote to the Seven Seas Cruising Association to say that they were no longer living on their boat and cruising - after 2 (maybe 3) circumnavigations started after they had retired - because at age 83 they wanted to do some land cruising in the US for a change. 83!

You're only as old as you let yourself be. I can't see myself so long as there's no mirror around (and I AVOID them), and thus I don't have to behave my age - don't know what it is.

Oh, by the way, in my Cruising Dictionary I have a section on "Books". The basics for cruising. http://www.cruiser.co.za/faq.asp

Fair winds,
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Old 03-30-2005, 02:15 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by name='Converted Post'
Originally posted by midshipman

To be honest Matt's comment is very depressing. I am 40 now and also look to go sailing late 50's - 60's just dont have the money to do it any other way. Have sailed before when I was in my 20's and that was what lit the spark.
It's interesting that our situations are similar, but I also have a wife and two kids. Our planning is that we can do a lot of sailing in the local area (Columbia River, Puget Sound), even if we can't do a "big cruise" soon. We joined a club that allows us to sail any of 44 sailboats in four different locations the area, which costs $125 to $155 a month, but it's less expensive than owning a 23-27 footer at the moment.

We've also cut expenses and have opened up special investment accounts for long-term sailing plans (Roth IRAs). Even if you can only put alway a little a month, it can add up in the long run for a sailboat in the future, and possibly an early retirement for crusing.

If all goes perfectly for us (over the next 15 years), we might be able to cruise full time starting at age 56, with the kids in college and our paid-off house sold. Only real question is how we will handle health insurance...

Meanwhile, we can sail the club boats, and hopefully be able to afford a one week charter in the San Juan Islands in a year or two, once we're bareboat certified.

Anyway, go sailing. Worry about crusing later. I sailed Laser IIs in college, and they were great, but nowadays I like keelboats like Santana 20s and 23s. Locally, for example, there's a great Cal 20 fleet that races. If you join, moorage is only $50 a month, and a good Cal 20 can be had for $3,000. We also looked at a nice Tanzer day sailor for $600.

The point here is that sailing doesn't have to be very expensive, but you may need to do what we did and turn off Internet at home, cancel the newspapers, stop eating out, etc. to save money.

Good luck!
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Old 03-30-2005, 03:45 AM   #13
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Hello PDX, Thats the positive mental attitude I was talking about.

I have already given up useless ebay items and no more restoratioins of old boats and trucks. If I gave up rum I could probably buy a boat pretty soon but Isnt rum a pre requisite to the high seas.

If you read the article in the new Rolling Stone about the oil supplies, we who live on the land are pretty much screwed... soon.

What amazes me is that we just spent 2 weeks on Roatan off Honduras and the peace I felt from being away from civilization is what keeps me wanting to join you folks out there who are doing it

Wait for me

I remain

TOm in the Berkshires.
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Old 04-04-2005, 09:45 AM   #14
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Hello Tom

So many questions can be answered just by reading. With that simple skill I researched and learned all I needed to know, given my financial situtation, to purchase, outfit and sail a 32ft. vessel around the world. I'am a working man with limited resourses and yet realized my dream (it's not over yet). I was fifty years old when I first set sail on my first true Ocean passage. I'am 57 now and have sailed some 45,000 nm. One can save all kinds of money just by reading. I bought a 40 year old singer sewing mach. Mod 107, several books on sail design, several on sail construction, and made 3 sails, that served me well. At half the cost of new sails. I might catch some flack on this one but, forget the sailing schools(waist of money). I learned to sail by reading and sailing. I ment folks that were sailing on as little as $150.00 per month or in my case $400.00 per month thats with some extras. Some folks who had the money spent a great deal more. Nearly every book I read provided invaluable info. Sell everything you have and go now there will never be a better time. Cruising turns into a life style, one that cannot be matched living ashore. I met a fellow in Durban SA who arrived within 3 days of me and had left less than ten miles of where I did 30 years earlyer. He had made his living out there with all he had learned while sailing. As you can see the whole is only as deep as you allow it to be. Good luck and fair winds to all.

D
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