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Old 10-17-2007, 09:53 PM   #15
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About a mile north of the lock on the Missouri side of the river. There is a marina where my friend keeps his boat. This guy takes newbies all the time to the Bahamas out of Miami, and has done it for over 35 years. I was one of them, and look at me now.

Did you work in the Granite City mills? If so we may have crossed paths at one time or another. My first sail was right there on the river, and it changed my life. At the end of town on the right hand side for years sat a 32 Ford Pick up. I can't remember the business, but I actually tried to buy that truck.

I lived in Collinsville, Belleville, Edwardsville, and so many other towns....oops customer. I will send you a pm soon......John
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Old 10-18-2007, 12:04 AM   #16
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Hello Imagine,

The last 9 years that i worked was at a place called Mart Corp. it is located in West Port over by the airport in St. Louis, they made very big power washing machines. Before that i was a metalergist and have worked at a number of steel foundries and yes Ganite City steel was one i wroked at for very short time i think in 1993. When i was burnt i was working at Dinnion Foundry as the oven operator and after that i desided to change the line of work i was in.

I just moved to Alton this year in June from down by 6 flags but a have a friend that lives right there next to the marina your friend is at. That is called West Alton and i have been there a few times with my Dolphin 19'.

The next time i am out i will go down and see if the truck is still there.

I am so happy you know something about this area, i am sure i will have a number of question.

Today i spent some time reading about stepping the mast, which was the one thing that i had the biggest fear of doing. I was so happy to see how it was done, I now know that it is something that i can do with help. Just could not picture a light going out while out and climbing the mast is one thing i will avoid as much as i can.

One thing i am trying to do is figure out the things that i will have to do in order to know what i will be able to do alone or need help with. I am sure i will never sail alone.

What started this dream really going was the days out on my boat seeing others sail on Clearwater Lake and then reading online how people retirer and live aboard. I know that it is what will make me happy and that i will be able to do it, even if i am unable to sail every day i can find a marina down south and live aboard.

I feel like i have lived and worked a very hard life and now that the kids are grown it is time that i slow my life down some and be happy with my life. That is why i tell people that i am changing my lifestyle and not just that i am going to live on a boat. To me a boat is a home and if taken care of like a home a person could be so happy with the lifestyle.

My sister thinks that sail boats are made only for parties and that people get on them just to get drunk and go fast. lol I try to tell her no it is the feeling of being free and that not all people drink on boats, myself im not a drinker but do not mind my friends having a few cold ones.

My reasons are to be free, free from my ties at land, the every day driving, the crime, the sounds of a city oh and i cant foreget the winters (i hate the cold).

well i hope to get to know you better and i would like to thank you for your post.

John
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Old 10-18-2007, 04:57 AM   #17
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Well good luck.

Even cheap boats are expensive. Like over the medium term you will be looking at probably a new motor, sails, electric windlass etc. Nevertheless it can be done.

I think you should narrow the size down to 32-36, for cost and handling. Probably a cutter. Big enough for two if you get lucky.

$1500 is ok to live on once major boat expenses have been taken care of but unless it is fully inflation adjusted beware.

You probably won't know unless you have experienced it, but even in moderately rough conditions you can be literally thrown around the boat if you are not careful to hang on.

You also have a substantial learning curve to undertake, not only learning to sail but learning all the rest that goes with command ie sailing courses.

You don't get boats surveyed unless you intend buying. You should therefore learn enough to pick out the problems that can be ascertained.

No rush. Try it first. Have fun.
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Old 10-18-2007, 05:29 AM   #18
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Hi John,

I’ve said this before but I think it applies especially to your concerns. Study different types of boats from an ergonomic point of view and as in Kirk’s great story about that couple…attitude is everything once you have made your decision. Study… then go with your gut feeling as to what platform feels most comfortable, and then enjoy learning how to service that platform concerning your specific needs. Have fun and remember…the journey has already begun
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Old 10-25-2007, 02:44 PM   #19
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"All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible."

T.E.Lawrence
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Old 11-05-2007, 07:18 PM   #20
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I'm going to give a bit different piece of advice. I would seriously consider a junk type rigged boat. The most trying thing on a boat (imho) is reefing the std. bermuda rig in a sudden blow. snapping your harness lead onto a jackline, clambering forward in the weather, struggling with the flapping sail...well, not going to be good on a previously injured back. With a good junk, you sit in your ph or cockpit, let fly the halyard and the rig comes down, settles into the lazyjacks, and you take another drink of coffee.

Now junks are not particularly fast to windward, but they are the equal of the bermuda offwind, and often superior and that's without having to set any poles or chutes...which is another thing your back might not be up to.

The best way to get a junk rig on a boat is to buy a used one all set up by its previous owner. Often they will be built of steel which might work well for you also as used steel boats are often tremendous buys in the places where fibreglass is king. For cruising, a sound steel hull properly barrier coated and maintained is generally stronger than a glass boat, especially when grinding up against a reef, a concrete wharf, or some yahoo's dock queen which has come loose in a blow and headed your way. They are generally more watertight due to the welding of decks, houses, and fittings as opposed to bolt thru's on wood or fibreboats. They have their quirks, but many experienced circumnavigators prefer them. Once prepared their maintenance is not a burden. With the junk rig, especially a free standing one, a whole lot of what can go wrong on a boat is eliminated, and the costs involved in maintaining the rig and sails is drastically reduced.

Since your income is secure, and deadlines and schedules won't be your problem, get one with a good motor and big tanks, plenty of sail area (easier to reef than add sail later) and I think you may find that sailing predominately downwind, while adding a little motor power to those times you absolutely have to go hard to windward, will suit you just fine. you will also spend a LOT less money over time.

Lastly, if you consider any steel hulled vessel, be sure and retain an experienced metal boat surveyor adept with an ultrasound. Pay him whatever it takes to go over the boat with a fine toothed comb. A good man with an ultrasound can not only tell you what's solid steel and what's not, but can find invisible places where perfectly good appearing coatings have nevertheless come loose from the steel underneath.

Ok, one more piece of advice. over the years I've seen an awful lot of cruisers start out in 30's, move to 33's, then 36's or 7's, and either finally settle in the 40's or with gobs of money for electric reefing /furling stowaway sail setups, graduate into the 50's or even 60's. With a good junk rig, most men can safely handle up to say a mid 40's to 50 ft. boat without expensive powered equipment. The difference in living between a 35 or 36 and say a 40 or 42 is vastly more than the numbers suggest due to the increase in ship's volume. If you're going to live on this boat, and maybe pick up a mate a long the way assuming you're single now, its something to consider. I used to singlehand my 54' sloop without electric winches etc., and I wouldn't recommend it. Tons of living space, full shop etc. but the stress took most of the fun out of sailing so I found myself going out less and less unless I had a bunch of crew to go with me. Finally I sold the boat and began to rethink my priorities. I settled on what many would still consider a *large* boat at 44ft. and around 38 thousand pounds displacement. I'm not alone. If you read around a lot of experienced sailors beginning to think about their own personal and perhaps *last* boat, have settled right in that 43 to 46' range, setup to require minimal foredeck action to handle the sails etc.

One thing for sure, get out on the water first, as one of the best places to go shopping for good used boats is at the termination points of "dream cruises" where many once proud owners find that being seasick for days on end, fighting in close quarters, and not being able to talk for hours with aunt martha on the phone everyday doesn't quite fit the dream they had imagined. You can find some hellacious deals at the end of cruising season in these places. Just first make sure you aren't going to turn right around and do the same thing.

You can read all the sailing magazines, books, and forums like this in the world but until you get out there in a blow in the middle of the night and the power goes dead...you won't really know if sailing is the life for you

now just to be fair, there really are those idyllic days on the hook, sunset splashing an amazing array of colors across the westward horizon, a warm breeze caressing the fronds of the palms into seductive and almost hypnotic waves to the tempo of the rhythmic lapping of the sea at the shoreline; the sounds of seabirds reassuring their mates that all is well as they return to their evening roosts, the delightful smells of fresh seafood sizzling on the grill tempered with subtle (and sometimes NOT so subtle) aromas of mysterious and exotic spices..., that glass of your favorite beverage, whatever it may be, sitting there held close in the palm of your hand, and if you're lucky, the knowing smile, understanding and comraderie eloquently communicated without words by a fellow being and kindred spirit.

AT its worst, well, it can be pretty bad..but....

at its best...well, it IS the best

Good luck to you.

seer
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Old 12-02-2007, 02:41 AM   #21
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Thank you very much for your post Seer, I do love the idea of a steel boat its funny just the thought of it feels safe. lol The one thing i have to say is after looking around i think it may be hard to find any boat setup just the way i want. I have never heard of Junks so i will research that Thank you. Now a little update. As of 2 weeks ago i have settled some of the legal battles after a very long time and i was shocked to learn i have more money than planed, In another 2 weeks i plan to go look at a Huns Christian i found she is a 1985 36' and the asking price is 1/3 the money i now have, To be honest i have some doubts with this boat as i have read a lot and found that a number of people think of the Huns Christian as being the Caddy of sail boats and with the asking price being so low $49,000 and the work being done on the boat in the last year 2006: New haul out with bottom paint; Prop Polished; New Zincs. I get the feeling( it could be too good to be true) but i am willing to spend the $300 flight cost to look at it. I do not plan the first boat i see but i do have a very short list of boats i am willing to buy. Well thank you all for your advice and i fill update as i know more. John
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Old 12-02-2007, 04:46 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by johnar View Post
In another 2 weeks i plan to go look at a Hans Christian i found she is a 1985 36' and the asking price is 1/3 the money i now have, To be honest i have some doubts with this boat as i have read a lot and found that a number of people think of the Huns Christian as being the Caddy of sail boats and with the asking price being so low $49,000 and the work being done on the boat in the last year 2006: New haul out with bottom paint; Prop Polished; New Zincs.
Hi John,

Your expressed doubts about this boat may be very valid !! If this is the one in San Diego, then check out the full specs as provided in the brokers advertisement. There is no clear mention of the Engine = make? hours ? condition ? etc...? Likewise there is no mention of the Transmission , the standing Rigging etc... !!!

Here is a current advertisement for another Hans Christian that is 3ft smaller and 2 years older :-

Hans Christian

Length: 33' Beam: 11.75' Draft: 5.5'

Year: 1983

Type: cruiser

Hull: fiberglass monohull

Engine: 1 diesel inboard

Location: Bellingham, Washington

Asking: $121,500

However, It could still be the buy of the last 25 years - but if you go ahead with the idea, then advice often given on this forum is :- to get your OWN Surveyor to do a full survey for you - at the same get a Marine diesel mechanic/technician to check the engine and transmission thoroughly, including tests under load.

Somehow methinks that this is another of those times that its a good thing " to look the gift horse in the mouth"

All the Best

Richard
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Old 12-02-2007, 05:49 AM   #23
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I knew something was not right about it. Yes it is the same boat. Yes before i buy any boat i will have it checked out fully. To me it is alot of money and will be my home, i would never buy a home without it being checked. I guess it is back to plan A that is to just go down and do a local search.

Thank you so much. Just showed me i am getting smarter.

John
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Old 12-02-2007, 07:57 AM   #24
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I was just thinking (I know big mistake) maybe I should ask for some advice. As you know I am shopping now but with living in the Mid West I will have a lot of travel cost added with having boats pulled and checked by surveyors could become very costly before I even find the right boat. As of yet my search has been very limited to local places and online search more to just get some type of clue to the market. I have also been trying to different types of boat. What I have learn so far is that I am looking for a boat no larger than 40' something 2 to 3 people can handle, large tankage. Where I start to get confused is the rigging. I know I have talk about my Back problems but do not see that as big a problem as some would think. I have read a lot about different rigging but with the lack of experience and advice on different types best for me it is hard. I think it is hard to find the right boat with the right rigging with the right everything, there has to be some kind of trade off. Ok back to the subject at hand. Can anyone offer advice on a way to search for the right boat? I have read that shopping on the west coast you get less boat for your money, on the north east coast better buy for your buck and south east (FL) a lot more boats to pick from. I look at this like buying a home but you can not look at the basement of a boat everything has to be checked by a professional. well to be honest I have some fears of making a mistake to me it is a lot of money. And like many others I would like to get the most for my buck. I understand what you plan to use the boat for plays into it a lot, myself I would like to find my boat and live the first 6 months to a year on the hook around the Keys then do some traveling. As of right now I am single but like I tell my family joking when they say "I will be so lonely" I hope to meet me a nice island girl to have as first mate as always there is some truth in every joke, but with love you never know what will come your way until that day comes I will make use of traveling mates that I have seen post looking to crew for passage. If I ask point blank what will the boat be used for my answer would be cruising. I have done some sailing before but it will be unlike anything I have planned I need some Bad weather experience, after talking to a few friends I have met on here I believe the best way for me to do this is move onto the boat and make more friends that day sail or short trips that will be willing to let me crew and learn the things I need. For the last 33 months this move has been in the planning stage and I have read so much but it is now time to move on to the hands on stage and make the leap. Well I am very sorry that my posts are so long, for some reason when I sit down to post a few words it turns into a book. John
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Old 12-02-2007, 11:24 AM   #25
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I just woke up to snow (SNOW!), and surprisingly low temperatures for snow; 21* F, -6.7* C. What am I doing here?!!!

Which reminds me of our own search for a cruising boat, and the difference a year of experience makes.

We had decided to go cruising "when we retire" and that was when I set out to learn to sail. By the time we bought Watermelon we had sailed on a series of boats from 20' to 30', giving us a reasonable idea of the approximate size we were looking for. Peter figured about 42'. That still left a lot about cruising boats we had no experience with. We had a lot of help and a lot of luck.

Watermelon was 39' and a roomy 39' at that.

I think the best information we got from sailors was from the delivery captains who had lots of experience on many different makes of boat. Doesn't cost much, either - a couple drinks, a pleasant afternoon or evening listening to their stories.

A few years ago, looking for a new boat, we spent far too much time driving up and down the Florida coast looking for a boat, and not finding one. Partly because what we really wanted didn't exist. We sighed deeply, kept eyes and ears open, and a year later found our current Watermelon. Another compromise, but the right boat for us for right now.

The most important thing to keep in mind is "if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."
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Old 12-02-2007, 01:24 PM   #26
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Thank you very much for your post Seer, I do love the idea of a steel boat its funny just the thought of it feels safe. lol The one thing i have to say is after looking around i think it may be hard to find any boat setup just the way i want. I have never heard of Junks so i will research that Thank you. Now a little update. As of 2 weeks ago i have settled some of the legal battles after a very long time and i was shocked to learn i have more money than planed, In another 2 weeks i plan to go look at a Huns Christian i found she is a 1985 36' and the asking price is 1/3 the money i now have, To be honest i have some doubts with this boat as i have read a lot and found that a number of people think of the Huns Christian as being the Caddy of sail boats and with the asking price being so low $49,000 and the work being done on the boat in the last year 2006: New haul out with bottom paint; Prop Polished; New Zincs. I get the feeling( it could be too good to be true) but i am willing to spend the $300 flight cost to look at it. I do not plan the first boat i see but i do have a very short list of boats i am willing to buy. Well thank you all for your advice and i fill update as i know more. John
Johnar,

I would consider taking a trip to a boaty area and spending a week or so looking around. There are a LOT of boats for sale, many of which aren't actively listed but the yard managers know them etc. In the yard I'm in in ne Florida there must be close to 20 cruising type boats for sale. Many fully rigged and equiped at sacrifice prices. It is a serious buyer's market out there. There is a website called Mahina Expeditions something (google it) where a pretty experienced sailor sets forth a darned good monologue on cruising boats, naming quite a few as good prospects and explaining why. You might peruse that. In any event, getting physically to a boating location and looking at a lot of boats, talking to a lot of sailors etc. I think would be more cost and time efficient for your purposes.

Places like Lauderdale, here in St. Augustine, San Diego, Seattle, etc. would offer up a LOT of information and a lot of boat *eyeballing* in a week or so, and are relatively cheap to get to with an advance air/hotel deal.

Lastly, a friend once advised me to buy a dirty but sound boat, explaining I would make a ton of money just cleaning it up. He was right. Americans tend to buy on 'show', i.e. superficial appearance, thus depressing hugely the price of boats that have been sitting awhile (on the hard is better than just hanging out in the water...) If the hull and rig are sound, the mechanics sound, etc., you could be sitting in harbor refinishing interior wood at your leisure, having saved gobs and gobs of money. I know of several who have purchased boats needing interior refurbing and sailed off to Cartegena, or several ports in Venezuela and for very small daily rates, had their interiors transformed by local expert craftsmen into floating palaces. I mean simply beautiful, and come out waaaaaaaaay ahead on dollars, leaving far more for cruising

Something to consider.

again, good luck and take professional advice It's the most cost effective thing you can do around boats.

seer
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Old 12-02-2007, 02:48 PM   #27
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Got to agree with the previous poster, bigtime. I was slapping myself on the back for getting into my somewhat Spartan liveaboard so cheaply until I found out the previous owner had offered it to his dockmates for almost half what I paid for it...with no success...there are a lot of beautiful deals going on at marinas that never make Yachtworld, and a little hanging out and personal exposition over chilled hops might produce opportunities to make the most miserly green with envy...lol
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Old 12-02-2007, 10:49 PM   #28
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Thank you all so much I think I will head down to Florida and stay a few weeks a friend of mine offer to let me stay at his home in FT Lauderdale. this should save me some money.

John
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